Ineffable

Monday Morning Musings:

Ineffable,
the word lingers from my dream
almost visible–

how to describe
the dream state,
a word floats in the air—

almost visible,
liminal,
the world of in-between.

Ineffable,
the world today,
inconceivable

that we let it happen—
the naked emperor rules,
the fools see what they want to see

despite fire, plague
the flaming hate
and the ceaseless lies

rekindling the blood libel,
as the full moon hums fiercely
in warning, in horror

we look on,
but also,
ineffable

the beauty
of lunar shimmer
and morning glow

of herons
and deer
and the serenity of the river flowing on

carrying ghosts and memories,
in its currents
time bends, reflecting and refracting

the past merges with the future,
till it, too, is ineffable.

I did wake up today with the work ineffable floating in my head. We didn’t go anywhere this week, but historian Heather Cox Richardson’s Letters from an American email today reminded me of all the events that have happened within the past week—”It was only last Sunday– seven days ago– that the New York Times released information about Trump’s taxes. Since then, we’ve lived through Tuesday’s debate and the wildfire spread of coronavirus through the inner circle of the White House, along with other stories that would have crippled any other administration but that now pass by with hardly a ripple.” My morning walks and talking to loved ones is keeping me sane.

We ordered Chinese food this weekend and watched two Merril movies: I’m Thinking of Ending Things (on Netflix) and A White White Day, an Icelandic movie available to rent on Amazon Prime and other platforms. I liked both of them more than my husband did, but they are both movies I’m still thinking about. The actor who plays the main character in A White White Day is so compelling, and his granddaughter is very cute. I’m Thinking of Ending Things, is a Charlie Kaufman film, so if you’ve seen his other movies, you know this will not be straightforward. There’s also a connection to Fargo, the TV show, not the movie. Jessie Buckley who plays the young woman in the movie, is in the new season, and her co-star, Jesse Plemons, was in an earlier season, as was David Thewlis, who plays his father. We’ve watched the first two episodes of the new season of Fargo, which is set in 1960 Kansas City, and we both like it so far.

I’m hosting dVerse today, so I’ll be back later. 😏

Here’s a another blue river shot for Liz.

Boat Slip, Delaware River, West Deptford, NJ ©️Merril D. Smith 2020

25 thoughts on “Ineffable

  1. I agree with Marian’s comment about the word “ineffable.” And about your lovely thoughts (and images) in tough times. You are picking up some beautiful images on your morning walks. ❤

  2. When we seek to find beauty, surely we will find it; your photographs and poem are evidence of that. We cannot change the world, but we can select our vantage point to view the world. No one can set the lens for us…that is up to us.

  3. Have you had to bundle up the last few mornings, Merril? It’s been cold here with a lot of low rising steam crossing the lake behind our house. You had some incredibly beautiful shots today. I loved the amazing sky!

    • Thank you, Jill! Yesterday morning it was definitely cold, and I was bundled up. This morning it wasn’t quite as cold. But I don’t mind when the sun comes out in the afternoon. 😀

  4. What super photos of our home town and your section of it. I must say the word ineffable has always bothered me because it looks airy and silly in the visual picture the arrangement of the letters gives me. I tend to see words as having personality based on their looks and not necessarily what they mean. It can be confusing. Anyway my point is I enjoyed finding out what the word means to you.

    • Thank you very much, Claudia. We’re fortunate to live near the river and park.

      I think you mentioned once maybe about letters or numbers. I guess that’s a form of synesthesia? I feel like colors have a taste or smell sometimes, but that just might be my imagination. 🙂

      • I don’t know, it’s just that words have always had “faces” to me, for lack of a better word (I don’t know there is a word) and sometimes it is influenced by meaning and other times not. Since I learned to read I have thought this and was surprised to learn that others don’t see it this way. Guess this is why phonics never worked for me way back in 2nd grade, since words were so individual to me just from the look of them, I easily memorized them.

  5. Wonderful that you can both hold the layer upon layer of the ineffable and stay grounded in nature. This speaks to me so much I want to replay it:

    “that we let it happen—
    the naked emperor rules,
    the fools see what they want to see

    despite fire, plague
    the flaming hate
    and the ceaseless lies

    rekindling the blood libel,
    as the full moon hums fiercely
    in warning, in horror”

  6. Oh, Merril, as soon as I saw that first photo I thought, There’s my blue river!! I first encountered the word “ineffable” in a British Romantics course I took in college. I will always associate it with poetry, nature, and the sublime.

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