Ask What They See: NaPoWriMo, Day 3

Marc Chagall, The Blue Fiddler

The moon sighs and sings, a luscious silver spray in blue,
the fiddler plays along, repeating feather trills,
the universe’s secret smiles–

now watch the ghosts dance, bird-winged, eternal–
or almost–

and ask what they see,
and if they dream, or
revel in argent glow,

their hearts recalling when and never, before
shadows and the afterlight of a thousand stars in song.

Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt asks us to create a “Personal Universal Deck,” a card deck of words. I like the idea of creating my own word deck, but today I’m basing my poem on words from the Magnetic Poetry Oracle. We have a standing Saturday date to collaborate, and I wouldn’t want to upset her. 😏

Time Has No Edge

Gustav Klimt, “The Kiss”

Time has no edge, no borders fence
its undiscovered frontiers,
the shadowy seas of before merge
into the ocean of after. The currents carry us,
voyagers on a ship of life, knowledge, and memory
as we sail in-between, barely noticing,

the spindrift carried by the wind, drifting,

barely remembering
how a month was forever at five years old, then understanding
that an entire lifetime can be lived in a minute’s dream,
and realizing
that a glance, a smile, a laugh, a kiss can last forever—and beyond,
timeless.

For dVerse, where Lisa has asked us to write a poem about edges or fringes. Work in progress. 😀

Before the Before, and After

Before the before
of star-danced light
and rippling time, before
there was what is now,
what was

wonder

in the after, in the bang and crash
of stellar flare and dust, there was
a time of infinite possibilities–

chance,

our meeting, or fate? All that was before,
leading to it. In the crash and bang of bodies,
we’re born

and give birth to others. And in the after,
the wonder of infinite possibilities,

chances we take, paths to follow, as the light
of the past twinkles on future dreams.

For dVerse, where Peter asks us to think about turns in poetry.

Enduring Dreams

Reflections. The Delaware River at Red Bank Battlefield. ©️Merril D. Smith, 2021

How does the Earth begin its spin each day?
With constancy it turns to seek the light
of sun, then sister stars dance in their way
sparkling the darkling, glimmering the night.
And with these sights, so constant and so true,
the physics of space, the motions that trace
the course of years, our course, being with you
through sorrow, more joy, a smile on your face,
even as lines delve deeper, gray grows hair,
the trees once green are dusted with the snow,
fledglings feather-wing themselves in the air
catching the currents, soaring through wind-blow—
and I watch the river glow as it flows
reflecting dreams, life, us, endures and goes.

My attempt at a Shakespearean sonnet for Ingrid’s EIF Sonnet Sunday for Valentine’s Day. I don’t quite have the meter right, but it’s a first draft and written at 6 AM. Anyway, Happy Valentine’s Day!

Beginnings and Endings

“As if we could hear music inside the words”
–Gail Newman, “Trust”

I hear, but cannot stop the chirp of time,
it travels in waves with the flap of wings,

and in flowing light it sings,
celestial harmonies pulsing in shimmers–

even caged, it chitters and cheeps,
dives and circles, soars and sweeps
past to future, a never-ending story

of bangs and fury, prismed glory
that curves and repeats—again and again

I become my mother and my daughters, all the before and ever-after,
my words are carried on a glittering song,
the essence of my universe, music and laughter.

This is for dVerse, where on Tuesday, Laura asked us to “begin at the end” by using one of the final lines she supplied to influence our own poem. She asks us to think about our own ending lines. Today, Peter asks us to consider our beginning lines.

Ever since I read this article about a Blackfoot woman who translated astrophysics terms into the Blackfoot language, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about chirping stars.

Breath In, Blue Fire

Breath in—blue fire,
the universe’s secrets, the champagne clouds,
the blush born in ferocious fever-dances,
the aching beauty of after
the light-singing stars.

What was so is still
the moon whispers, listen and recall
the ghost rhythms of time–

and if,
the breeze explores,
it urges the sky toward spring
through the black beneath the storm,

where sea-ships, dream-carriers,
sail under a spray of diamonds
toward tomorrow.

Happy day after Christmas! Here’s my message from the Oracle. She made me work for this one.

In Blue Sea Whispers

Jay Hall Connaway, Public Domain, Wikipedia


But do you still ache for dreams
crushed by purple-shadowed storms?
Fever-hearted, you watch the diamond glitters
of sun-licked rocks,

~and after, you breathe, cooled,~

smelling all the ifs in blue sea whispers,
you drink it in–
yet even so, the wind asks why
time both haunts and heals.

Another sensory sort of poem. This time it’s my Saturday message from the Magnetic Poetry Oracle.

Early Morning

Heron, Early Morning on the Delaware at Red Bank Battlefield, October. ©️Merril D. Smith, 2020

Love lives a thousand times,
a dazzle of moon music; star sighs
through lightless sky and blood dreams

~the wind whispers, and the river murmurs
yes~

and if we listen–
under deep cover, the earth remembers,
blooms over and over again.

My message from the Magnetic Poetry Oracle. She knows the world, the seasons, and all about deep time.

Ask Why

Foggy Morning, Delaware River at Red Bank Battlefield

The goddess urges—
dream of luscious ifs,

in storms and shadow-seas
see the mist rise to honeyed sun
singing of time—
recall summer petals as floating light.

A thousand sleeps were–
in bitter after-aches,
cry at the blood moon,
ask why

it shines
while the wind whispers
heart breaths–
love, there, here, always.

It’s Open Link Night at dVerse, where Mish is hosting. I never got to Tuesday’s prompt on the vatic voice, but I consulted the Oracle today, and this is where she led me.

Soaring

Breathe if—

and let time fly into the fevered brilliance of the sky—
fire and ice, the stars know

the secret of eternity,
ghost-lights sailing in a vast sea,

a dazzling memory,
like a voice, a laugh, a kiss that lingers

from a dream
as you wake, surrendering to the now–

summer now an almost-smile
in the blue-shadowed mist.

Did I cry? Did you—
asking for angels–but

a hero gone
to the ever-after.

The stars know the secrets,
ghosts dancing to the music of the universe,

but closer, I watch the birds by the riverside
catch the wind and soar out of sight.

Vulture over the Delaware at Red Bank Battlefield Park

My message from the Magnetic Poetry Oracle. It was a struggle today to get a clear message. We have lost a hero. Rest in peace, Ruth Bader Ginsburg.