Saturday Morning

Oh, the coming-out-of-nowhere moment
when, nothing
happens
no what-have-I-to-do-today-list

maybe half a moment
the rush of traffic stops.
The whir of I should be, I should be, I should be
slows to silence,
the white cotton curtains hanging still.

~ Marie Howe, “The Moment” (via Poets.org)


Photo: Eylül Aslan

Waiting. At The Star Market. Trying to Bend the Image.

7:05 am. Stamford station.

I’m waiting for the 2151 Acela to Baltimore. Overhead board flashes On Time, Track 2.

There are two empty seats adjacent to a scruffy, long bearded old man. He’s wearing a heavy jacket, way too heavy for August. A rollerboard stands to his right. His head bowed, sleeping. You’re asking for trouble. Find another seat. I look around, and can’t find another seat. I catch others watching me, judging, ‘The Suit won’t come near That.’

And Mind, ever so efficient, calls up a Marie Howe poem, The Star Market:

“The people Jesus loved were shopping at the Star Market yesterday. An old lead-colored man standing next to me at the checkout breathed so heavily I had to step back a few steps. Even after his bags were packed he still stood, breathing hard and hawking into his hand. The feeble, the lame, I could hardly look at them: shuffling through the aisles, they smelled of decay..Jesus must have been a saint, I said to myself…stumbling among the people who would have been lowered into rooms by ropes, who would have crept out of caves or crawled from the corners of public baths on their hands and knees begging for mercy. If I touch only the hem of his garment, one woman thought, could I bear the look on his face when he wheels around?”

He lifts his head, turns towards me and stares.  I freeze.  The Others are now watching. I pause, and make my move.

I take the seat next to Him.

Others watch for a moment, eyebrows raised, and then go back to their smartphones. Did you do it because you wanted a seat? Or because others would think less of You, or that you didn’t want this Suit to meet their expectations? Or because you didn’t want Him to think you thought any less of Him?

There’s one empty seat between us. But there’s tension in the gap. He turns to look at me, I can feel his eyes on me. Here it comes, Can you help me out with a few bucks, Sir?”  

He sits silently. [Read more…]

One note, low as a base drum

drum-splash
Someone or something is leaning close to me now
trying to tell me the one true story of my life:

one note,
low as a bass drum,
beaten over and over […]

~ Marie Howe


Notes: Photo: Sprogz – Water Drum. Poem: Prayer via Spirituality & Health

 

We want the spring to come

hair,mist,fog

We want the spring to come
and the winter to pass.
We want whoever to call
or not call,
a letter,
a kiss —
we want more and more and then more of it.
But there are moments,
walking,
when I catch a glimpse of myself in the window glass,
say, the window of the corner video store,
and I’m gripped by a cherishing so deep
for my own blowing hair,
chapped face,
and unbuttoned coat that I’m speechless:
I am living …

~ Marie Howe


Sources/References:

Related Post:


Doubt

photography, black and white, bird, hand, bird in hand

It was like the moment when a bird decides not to eat from your hand, and flies, just before it flies,

the moment the rivers seem to still and stop because a storm is coming, but there is no storm,

as when a hundred starlings lift and bank together before they wheel and drop,

very much like the moment, driving on bad ice, when it occurs to you your car could spin, just before it slowly begins to spin,

like the moment just before you forgot what it was you were about to say, it was like that, and after that, it was still like that, only all the time.

Marie Howe, “Part of Eve’s Discussion” from The Good Thief

[Read more…]

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