Lightly Child, Lightly

Tell me a flashlight.
at 2:30 in the morning.
Here come sparklers.
Use them to trace letters of light in the darkness.

Tell me the world.
Here comes light, unspoken.
Light hooks a claw on the horizon, pulls itself into view.
Here comes water, saline, scattering single-celled organisms.
Land is a puppet. It climbs hydrothermal vents like stairs.
Lava congeals. Land rises.
Here comes land, hand-springing out of water.

Wind is a comma, pausing the day…

~ Rebecca Lehmann, edited from Natural History (Brooklyn State Hospital, December 19, 2015)


Notes:

  • Photo – Stefano GardelChasing Light. Poem: Thank you Beth @ Alive on all Channels
  • Prior “Lightly child, lightly” Posts? Connect here.
  • Post Title & Inspiration: Aldous Huxley: “It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them.”

Sunday Morning

Refresh yourself, sister
With the water from the copper bowl with bits of ice in it –
Open your eyes under water, wash them –
Dry yourself with a rough towel and cast
A glance at a book you love.
In this way begin
A lovely and useful day.

Bertolt Brecht, “Sister” from Do-it-Yourself Brecht Poem Toolkit

 


Notes: Photo: heather milazzo with Face Washing .  Poem: Thank you Whiskey River.

Lightly Child, Lightly

It is daybreak here in Rio.

A lovely and cold dry morning.

How nice that all nights have radiant mornings.

It’s a quarter to six. I write while listening to music. Anything will do, I’m not difficult.

I am completely magical and my aura is bright blue.

Everything I touch, is born.

~ Clarice Lispector, from “Brasilia; Splendor” in The Complete Stories (edited)


Notes:

  • Photo: ignantShot by @michaelenorthrup. Poem: via Violentwavesofemotion
  • Prior “Lightly child, lightly” Posts? Connect here.
  • Post Title & Inspiration: Aldous Huxley: “It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them.”

Back…back…back.

Am I as old as I am?
Maybe not. Time is a mystery
that can tip us upside down…
Who was I at age seven?

Sixty-eight years later I can still inhabit that boy’s
body without thinking of the time between.
It is the burden of life to be many ages
without seeing the end of time.

– Jim Harrison, from Seven in the Woods from Dead’s Man Float


Notes:

  • Inspired by – “We go back … and back … and back … through the layers of fear, shame, rage, hurt, and negative incantations until we discover the exuberant, unencumbered, delightful, and lovable child that was, and still is, in us.” By Melody Beattie (via Bright, Shiny Objects)
  • Photo: Ivanovo detstvo (Ivan’s Childhood) • Directed by Andrei Tarkovsky 1962 (via Your Eyes Blaze Out)

Lightly Child, Lightly

Maybe there is a word in it somewhere
to describe the world this morning,
a word for the way the early light
takes delight in chasing the darkness
out of store windows and doorways.

Another word for the way it lingers
over a pair of wire-rimmed glasses
someone let drop on the sidewalk
last night and staggered off blindly
talking to himself or breaking into song.

~ Charles Simić, “The Dictionary” (The New Yorker)


Notes:

  • Photo –Sona Maletz with House of the Rising Sun (via Newthom). Poem: via See More
  • Prior “Lightly child, lightly” Posts? Connect here.
  • Post Title & Inspiration: Aldous Huxley: “It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them.”

Selecting a Reader

First, I would have her be beautiful,
and walking carefully up on my poetry
at the loneliest moment of an afternoon,
her hair still damp at the neck
from washing it. She would be wearing
a raincoat, an old one, dirty
from not having money enough for the cleaners.
She will take out her glasses, and there
in the bookstore, she will thumb
over my poems, then put the book back
up on its shelf. She will say to herself,
“For that kind of money, I can get
my raincoat cleaned.” And she will.

~ Ted Kooser, “Selecting a Reader”, the opening poem in his new book: Kindest Regards: New and Selected Poems (Copper Canyon Press, May 8, 2018)


Notes:

  • Ted Kooser’s new collection went on sale at Amazon (only in Hardcover) this month for $28.69
  • Portrait of Ted Kooser via KUOW

Monday Morning: I want to be the world, freshly washed.

Inside the body of the world
there lives a vine
that awakens
in footprints and rootprints,

that touches our suffering

that heals the broken earth

that intertwines our pulses

until our breaths carry a new seed

within them.

While we sleep rain saturates the land
and in the morning
a luminescence
tunnels through fog.

I want to be the world, freshly washed.

~ Karissa Knox Sorrell, from “Luminescence,” Gravel Magazine


Notes: Poem – Memory’s Landscape. Photo: wsj.com, May 17, 2018, Rodrigo Garrido

Bed Time

May you sleep the most famous sleep: the night kind, one-third-of-your-whole-life-like…This kind of sleep is an egg: broken, mixed in, eaten, membrane shredded and forgotten like the torn-up dreams that let you go…The day was made for you to join the others…They are thirsty and smart and aching, waiting for you to carry your load.

A good memory moves me through the current

I hear birds and whispers
Like water gnawing a hull

I build a fire
In the bottom of my boat
A good memory moves me through the current

Frank Stanford, from “If She Lives in the Hills,” What About This: Collected Poems of Frank Stanford

 


Notes: Poem: via Vale of Soul Making. Photo (via The Guardian) by Cherry Kearton in 1890s: Dartford warbler and chick on Richard Kearton’s hand: ‘By the exercise of a little patience I tamed the adult female until she would at last alight on my hand and feed one of the fledglings, at rest on my wrist, without the slightest sign of fear or nervousness.

 

Sunday Morning

I have found such joy in simple things;
A plain, clean room, a nut-brown loaf of bread,
A cup of milk, a kettle as it sings,
The shelter of a roof above my head.
And in a leaf-laced square along the floor,
Where yellow sunlight glimmers through the door.

I have found such joy in things that fill
My quiet days: a curtain’s blowing grace,
A potted plant upon my windowsill,
A rose, fresh-cut and placed within a vase;
A table cleared, a lamp beside a chair,
And books I long have loved beside me there.

Grace Noll Crowell, from I Have Found Such Joy


Notes:

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