Saturday, October 27, 2012

night and day

This is how you find the poetry out here in the field. This is the tiger for its stripes, the forest for its trees. The words glide on that lovely tide of tongue and throat. The words settle into the skin of these unsettled thoughts, lithe and unrelenting. This trick of tenderness, the wind and water carving away the obligatory stones, the gentle and the calamitous sharing their shadows with the wall. This task of endurance, the sentiment sharing your flesh for as long as it is yours.  The moment might have just slipped by, it might be a thousand years buried, but it is alive in your blood and breath as soon as you take it in. The song changes partners, but it knows the dance is all there is. The poetry knows you by the names that never were. The poetry knows you when you see it.

The song spreads over the landscape. The song lights the inside of your skull. It knows the longing, it knows the lonely. The poetry pressed from that distant light, measuring the empty and the flow. The music written in some trembling hand, the words captured alive, so tender and true. The heavy footprints of these passing fancies, the deft brushwork of life feathering every art. The daft promise that dreaming brings, the furtive ache that ignites with every waking breath. Another time, another place. Another word let loose, hoping there is something to all that bible talk about reaping and sowing. The human heart the seed of all these native dreams and earthly hopes. The song runs along the surface of my blood, the poetry my chosen ghost. The song unseats every god and king, the world burning temples and trailing words.

Another time, another place. Cocktails and evening clothes, the sound of singing coming from the party inside. The changes made to the pronouns to protect the secrets of flesh and intention. All the pieces to the puzzle this map of hits and misses means I will never know. Weather shifts skins and changes neighbors, words carry their baggage across the sea of time, sleek and fearless and unyieldingly flexible. The brightest of the morning sun, the dazzling contrast between starlight and the night, this human burden the only blessing we enjoy. We are the rain drop and the deluge, the beauty and the beast. We are the devilish details and the sad refrain. I hear an old song sung with craft and art, and I am transported to another world, and am at once rooted to my own location. Wanting that one who will never know me. Wanting nothing but this ancient beauty, alive and free in the days and nights of this indifferent earth.

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