Monday, October 26, 2015

Things to Believe In

Things to Believe In
Patricia Monaghan

trees, in general; oaks, especially;
burr oaks that survive fire, in particular;
and the generosity of apples

seeds, all of them: carrots like dust,
winged maple, doubled beet, peach kernel;
the inevitability of change

frogsong in spring; cattle
lowing on the farm across the hill;
the melodies of sad old songs

comfort of savory soup;
sweet iced fruit; the aroma of yeast;
a friend’s voice; hard work

seasons; bedrock; lilacs;
moonshadows under the ash grove;
something breaking through.

And the only innocence is not to think

I have no philosophy, I have senses…
If I speak of Nature it’s not because I know what it is
But because I love it, and for that very reason,

Because those who love never know what they love
Or why they love, or what love is.

To love is eternal innocence,
And the only innocence is not to think…

Fernando Pessoa

Nevertheless, live

The Second Sermon on the Warpland
For Walter Bradford

This is the urgency: Live!
and have your blooming in the noise of the whirlwind.

Salve salvage in the spin.
Endorse the splendor splashes;
stylize the flawed utility;
prop a malign or failing light—
but know the whirlwind is our commonwealth.
Not the easy man, who rides above them all,
not the jumbo brigand,
not the pet bird of poets, that sweetest sonnet,
shall straddle the whirlwind.
Nevertheless, live.

All about are the cold places,
all about are the pushmen and jeopardy, theft—
all about are the stormers and scramblers but
what must our Season be, which stars from Fear?
Live and go out.
Define and
medicate the whirlwind.

The time
cracks into furious flower. Lifts its face
all unashamed. And sways in wicked grace.
Whose half-black hands assemble oranges
is tom-tom hearted
(goes in bearing oranges and boom).
And there are bells for orphans—
and red and shriek and sheen.
A garbageman is dignified
as any diplomat.
Big Bessie’s feet hurt like nobody’s business,
but she stands—bigly—under the unruly scrutiny, stands in the
     wild weed.

In the wild weed
she is a citizen,
and is a moment of highest quality; admirable.

It is lonesome, yes. For we are the last of the loud.
Nevertheless, live.

Conduct your blooming in the noise and whip of the whirlwind.

Gwendolyn Brooks

A Seizure of Happiness

"For more than half a century, beloved poet Mary Oliver (b. September 10, 1935) has been beckoning us to remember ourselves and forget ourselves at the same time, to contact both our creatureliness and our transcendence as we move through the shimmering world her poetry has mirrored back at us — an unremitting invitation to live with what she calls “a seizure of happiness.”

Mary Oliver on Love and Its Necessary Wildness

I did think, let’s go about this slowly.
This is important. This should take
some really deep thought. We should take
small thoughtful steps.

But, bless us, we didn’t.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Thrity-one Spells

Which one to try first?
In the book of spells
I do not find the one
that helps you forget
what you want
to forget. There is one
for making the bees
come out midwinter
and another to make
the walls speak what
they’ve seen. There’s
a spell for making
minutes go slower, and
a spell to turn a woman’s
skin green. But no spell
to forget what we wish
not to know. There are
thirty-one spells for
forgiveness, though.

Rosemerry Trommer

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