Why Did I Flee?

“The world that used to nurse us

now keeps shouting insane instructions.

That’s why I ran to the woods.”

~ Jim Harrison from Songs of Unreason

 

You wonder why I fled?

Well, what was left?

 

I ran to the woods,

thinking I could be Thoreau

just go–

you know?

Escape the insanity,

the inanity of the world

where insults are hurled

at the weak

and those who can’t speak

for themselves

when life is bleak.

Then I dreamt I had a dream–

well, it seemed

to make sense at the time,

full of poetry and rhymes

I don’t remember,

but wish I could.

So, I decided to leave the woods.

I hiked a new trail out of there—

ignoring the signs that warned, “Beware!”

Why did I flee?

I suppose I just needed to see

what is and was and what could be.

 

Ivan Shiskin, “Forest,” [Public Domain] Wikipedia Commons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is for Day 22 of Jilly’s 28 Days of Unreason, poetry based on the poetry and work of Jim Harrison.

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The Search

“I see today that everyone on earth

wants the answer to the same question

but none has the language to ask it.”

~ Jim Harrison from Songs of Unreason

 

She gallops the globe, dawn to night

searching for wondrous words to say–

what are the sounds, what can be right?

She gallops the globe, dawn to night

seeking the language to bring light

to darkness—she questions the way.

She gallops the globe, dawn to night

searching for wondrous words to say.

 

To sway the world, what words are right?

What to ask, who knows what to say?

Still she journeys, circling through night

to sway the world—what words are right?

Perhaps they’re doomed, without the light

stuck, hope at bay—what is the way

to sway the world, what words are right?

What to ask, who knows what to say?

 

This is a double triolet (is that a thing?). I felt it needed a second stanza.  This is for Day 21, of Jilly’s 28 Days of Unreason. We are writing poetry inspired by the poetry and work of Jim Harrison.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Words

“I’m quite tired of beating myself up to write.  I think I’ll start letting the words slip out like a tired child. “Can I have a piece of pie” he asks, and then he’s asleep back on the cusp of the moon.”

~ Jim Harrison from Songs of Unreason

 

Oh, the words. . .

they spill

heedlessly,

sometimes needlessly

breezily,

dreamily fluttering

gliding owls

against the moon

hearing her tune

(she hums and croons)

echoing it back

with a hoot and screech

just out of reach,

the right words

flittery flit

lazily split

do a dip

then flip

from my mind

(leaving me behind)

they fly,

I sigh . . .

and wave goodbye.

 

This is for Day 19 of Jilly’s 28 Days of Unreason—poetry inspired by the poetry of Jim Harrison.

 

Dreams of Flying

“Just beyond the bruised lips of consciousness.”

–Jim Harrison, “Birds Again”

 

I linger

for moment

just on the edge of consciousness–

why can’t we remember that moment

when we free fall

into another orbit–

that split second

we escape the mundane

to fly–

in dreams,

a secret world revealed,

opened,

I taste the stars on my lips

and wake to find the world glittering.

 

This is for Day 10 of Jilly’s 28 Days of Unreason—poems inspired by Jim Harrison’s Poetry.

 

 

The Cost of Flight

“The cost of flight is landing

 

The cost of flight

is landing

heavy and earthbound

after soaring

weightless in a fantasy–

of scintillation

carried by solar winds

into a starry sea.

But then

at night,

we hear—again–

the whispers of dreams

sighing, straying souls.

We remember,

gathering their fraying tatters

making them whole,

and once more—

glide high and far,

and free.

 

This is for Day 2 of Jilly’s 28 Days of Unreason using quotations from the poetry of Jim Harrison.

 

 

 

 

Echoes of Sounds and Silence, Haibun

I hear a poet on the radio today and learn that one definition of clamor is silence. It’s a word with opposite meanings—meaning loud, insistent noise and silence both. My mind, too, seems full of opposing thoughts, but it’s never truly silent, even in my sleep. Ideas, voices, songs, bits of this and that spin around non-stop within my brain, clamoring for attention, moving at high speed like race cars speeding around a track. Or, like meandering streams or comets that leave a fiery trail before vanishing in space–the poems that die unborn. They are all the birds in the dawn chorus and the night’s humming moon. They ebb and flow like the tide. I can stop and focus on one or more, if I choose. Sometimes I don’t choose.

 

birdsong wakes the day

growing with summer sunlight,

echoing in dreams

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is for dVerse, where Frank has asked us to write a Haibun Monday poem on “silent sounds,” “all those thoughts and chatter that go through our minds. . .”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Dreams that Dance

His thoughts                            And prayers

were broken-winged               she thought, meaningless things

never soaring                          sometimes boring, never driving

far                                            to the stars, where she longed to go,

but earth-tethered                     unfeathered, she remained

he stayed, staid,                       while she longed for blazing rays,

only in night’s dreamscape wandering high      to dance together in the sky

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A contrapuntal poem for dVerse, where Paul is tending the bar. My poem is three separate poems.

 

 

The Dance of Space, NaPoWriMo, Day 22

Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt asks us to “take one of the following statements of something impossible, and then write a poem in which the impossible thing happens. I chose this one:

The stars cannot rearrange themselves in the sky.

 

Somewhere in space, stars always sing,

and in a distance place, they also dance,

in quadrille or waltz, they sway and swing,

they arrange themselves, but not by chance.

 

And in a distant place, they also dance,

sometimes, a stellar pas de deux–

they arrange themselves, but not by chance–

of course, they do, well, wouldn’t you?

 

Sometimes, a stellar pas de deux

to the carillon of time’s dawn

of course, they do, well, wouldn’t you—

move with joy, before it’s gone?

 

To the carillon of time’s dawn

in quadrille or waltz, they sway and swing,

move with joy before it’s gone—

somewhere in space, stars always sing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“However, what it is really exciting about NGC 1097 is that it is not wandering alone through space. It has two small galaxy companions, which dance “the dance of stars and the dance of space” like the gracious dancer of the famous poem The Dancer by Khalil Gibran.”

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA. Acknowledgement: E. Sturdivant

 

A Dream Whispers, NaPoWriMo, Day 14

For my friends

A dream whispers over my head,

a chant,

it is time–

with friends,

smell roses and cool water spray,

let sweet shadows ache

as sun lives through summer storms—

we do and have and will

love the beauty of these days

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Year’s Eve, 2016
We are linked, heading into 2017.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Off prompt for NaPoWriMo because I have a busy weekend with friends. The Oracle knows!