Tag Archives: nature
At Keystone Café, the radio plays
and words of a song from the sixties pierce my coffee-bred thoughts:
Always something there to remind me…
Trying to forget, I know this world is but a dream
a temporary mirror of the other
that place where you and I reside in eternity
mere cells within the One Great Plan
where time has no meaning
and words don’t exist
and love is a given
Yet here, amongst dog rose and lupin
she, open and pink
and he, closed and blue
we became like them – rooted in sand
surrounded by stones and their stories
drinking summer grey mists
on salt water taffy mornings
but rose petals fade and lupins shrivel
their seedpods of black
hanging like coffins
in this moment
eagle perches for the view
and fish dance
and gulls dive for the feast
this is mine
All the while
the ferry inhales and exhales passengers
like a heart-lung machine
a blood bank of journeys
a breaker of waves that crosses the synaptic sea
and, locked into terminal, transmits
holders of keys to neurons
In bursts of energy
flowing down rivers of roads
streams of pulsing potential
these elements of the greater intelligence
try to carry its message
this for the arms that yearn to hold
that for the aching walk-alone legs
and yesterday’s broken dream becomes
one Sunday transformed
A poem is born in words that don’t rhyme
as the radio plays another song:
Can’t you hear the pounding of my heartbeat,
You’re the one I love…
Holding the mirror close, all I see is my own breath
and waves that drill the shore in a tumbling roll
while the ocean remains constant
and eagle takes flight
Dead drifted wood
Dreaming ghost branches
Rising sun warms
Awakened water flows
Earth thirst quenched
Memories take root
Jingle’s Poetry Picnic prompt: Spring
Thursday Poet’s Rally – Wk 60
dVerse Poets prompt – Imagery
Haiku Heights – Gem
To be a writer
is like being two atoms that dance with one
Hydrogen playing with Oxygen
moving with scintillating, procreating fluidity
a disciplined yet unchained pattern
until the quadrille
with hardly a breath
transforming into crystals,
each one a unique expression
of water being frost
rock being mountain
or wind being ripples on river’s skin
like human being body, emotion and thought
like me, turning molecules of mind into words
dancing the rounds and rhythms,
pulling sounds and meanings like taffy;
stretching, tempting, and loving the sweetness
of post-rain petrichor, poetry and story-being-born.
Discipline is all it takes;
it’s only a matter of focused attention.
All the while my faucet drips
a metronome playing Chopin’s Funeral March.
It echoes against the cold hard tub: Dum Dum da Dum,
Dum da Dum da Dum da Dum…
A suitable march for somber scenes
or penned phrases that smirk.
Do you remember Mommy’s funeral?
When we weren’t supposed to laugh?
Suddenly, simple things such as a lady’s hat
black and wide
a saucer-shaped ride for snow,
turned resignation and sorrow into nonsense,
amplified our sighs into unstoppable giggles,
and hoots escaped from our throats
bouncing off gravestones
and falling like stars of grief-relief.
We stood there, two children hugging themselves
trying to appear with socially-acceptable sadness
behavior more suited to the tragic event.
Laughter, glorious laughter
like a toad released in a classroom of nuns
shocked the mourners and freed us.
Mourners shifted in confusion
at our emancipation.
Surely we weren’t glad that Mommy died?
No more bed pans
No more sheets and laundry
Not one more morning of waking up wondering
if she’s dead
or still dying…
Is that faucet still dripping?
Handel’s Water Suite No 2
now skipping like tigger in my tub
bouncy, boisterous and… happy.
In the yellow pages under Plumbers, I find Scotty.
I call and ask him for a quote.
He knows my rented cottage
I forgot that this is an island,
a community of small and intimate
where no sparrow falls without everyone knowing
just as no bath leaks
nor pipes crack
nor drain becomes clogged
without Scottie fixing it
I need more than a washer, he says,
to stop this rhythmic dripping that disturbs my work.
Receiving his quote, I discover that words come cheap
but plumbing doesn’t.
His repair will cost me a whole chapter
including the edits.
Handel’s happy notes begin to grow on me.
Staying in the moment, I hear another pattern
an attitude – a practice of choice – an epiphany.
A drip or a sound need not be my nemesis
instead it is a setting; fire and fuel for my work.
I listen to the rhythms, inhale them, accept them into my being
Words commune and bond with water
dancing the dance of intention
while I, in glorious birth,
exist again and again and again
bonder of sights, sounds, heart and soul
in crystal-forming discipline
becoming what I already am
Submitted to Poetry Palace’s Thursday Rally:
I share it with my aged dog
and with the skunk who flavors the night
outside our bedroom window,
with the gardeners who sit on the lawn
eating knapsack lunches of red thermos soups
and coffee with enchiladas and chicken wings,
and with my neighbor who cries after dark
only a screen and her loneliness between us,
and with thick-skinned shrubs by the door,
and with my writer’s desk – the patio table
that serves in all weathers except those below frost,
with the tissue that catches my sneezing results,
with roofs, gutters and condo paths
and black-paved neighborhood drives,
and with drains that carry the showered flour
of green and yellow wind-bourn dust,
I share the fare of reproduction
unplanned and promised tomorrows
from insect-assisted procreation,
wiping it off my laptop keys
washing it from swollen eyes
and coughing in irritation
all the time
loving what it brings – trees,
leaves, grass, bark and blossoms,
spring green and summer gold
and autumn, crazy and colored,
taking only the winter to rest, until
up the nose it goes again
this love-hate relationship with
Pollen photos courtesy of Google images
Shared on Imperfect Prose
And: Theme Thursday:
Annie Dillard walked by my side when I lived on the northernmost tip of Vancouver Island in 1975. My isolation was no less than hers, although I was surrounded by people: loggers, fishermen, trappers, hunters, chefs, waiters and a bar full of whiskey that I was in charge of. During my hours off-work, I hid in a cove down by the harbor, or I went to the dump to be entertained by the bears. Always, Annie came with me. “Pilgrim at Tinker Creek” gave me everything a solitary girl needed. Her words were my refuge, my delight, my confusion, my comfort. When I think of the six months in Port Hardy, I think of Annie.
“The Writing Life” is full of her parables: a man who rowed against the current until the current changed and brought him home; chopping at alder logs like a crazed woman until she learned to chop through the wood and the logs relented; watching Rahm roll his stunt plane through the air, making beautiful patterns like the precise blue-green swallow, and learning that it was all about sticking with the rhythm and paying attention to the lighting. All her stories trap the reader’s attention and pull them in until they realize she’s teaching about writing. It makes me wonder if Annie has ever written about anything else. Aren’t all her books, when you get down to her basic message, about the writer’s life?
Annie secludes herself. She goes where she cannot be distracted by the usual daily din, finds a small, often cold and somewhat dark, shack of a room to write in. She tells me to “spend it all; play it, lose it, all, right away, every time.” She warns me not to hoard a good phrase for a later time, for in the hoarding act, it will be lost. It must be freely given, she says, reminding me of what my Dad used to tell me, “Nothing is yours until you give it away.” She bids me to “examine all things intensely and relentlessly. Probe and search each object in a piece of art.” She describes watching parallel rows of ocean waves breaking up, as if they were “reproducing the sensation of reading, but without reading’s sense.” (Brilliant, Annie – just brilliant observation!)
Annie wrote a whole chapter in one and a half pages. She warns that the writer’s life is wrought with danger – especially when the writer leaves the work. She uses an erupting typewriter and her struggle to prevent the room from catching fire as the only scene/event in the chapter. Her final statement, instead of giving explanation, assured the reader that though she’s had no trouble with it since, she knows it can happen. She never says if it ever really did happen, (she might have dreamt it), or whether she invented the whole scene as a metaphor for the labor a writer goes through, only to face complete destruction. It doesn’t even matter that we don’t know. She pulls off another parable, so powerful, that it took less than 2 pages to leave me contemplating the scene for half an hour, playing with her words and wondering what gave her the courage or even the idea, to write a whole chapter in five short paragraphs and teach a lesson about sticking with it no matter what.
I love you, Annie. Show me that trick again.
I want to tell Annie my parables; about the bears I watched, and how I learned that you have to respect the mother. I want to show her how the rescued bird looked out for his brother and saved him from starving. I want to show her how the English robin’s hunger, keen sense of hearing, and his successful hunt convinced me that I could return to America and make a new life out of nothing. I wonder, when Annie ponders the world she secludes herself in, does she have a question in mind that nature answers? Or does she gaze and observe until nature teaches her the question? Perhaps the result of every writer’s work is in reality nature’s own act of learning.