Monday, September 17, 2012

Autumn by Amy Lowell

Autumn 2011 at Casa Dragonfly.

 

Autumn

By Amy Lowell 1874–1925
 
All day I have watched the purple vine leaves
fall into the water.
And now in the moonlight they still fall,
but each leaf is fringed with silver.
 
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Goodbye summer.  Don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out, you hot, mean bitch.  Adios!!  ~Marion

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Reading Mary Oliver...


Storm clouds over Casa Dragonfly
 
 
From the poem, ‘Work’ by Mary Oliver

And how shall we speak of love
except in the splurge or roses, and the long body
     of the river
shining in its silk and froth;

and what could be more wonderful
than the agility and the reaching of the fingers of Hannah,
who is only seven days old;

and what could be more comforting than to fold grief
like a blanket---
to fold anger like a blanket,
with neat corners---
to put them into a box of words?

 From:  “The Leaf and the Cloud”, page 13


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Another raggedy dragonfly visiting me, 2012
 

From the poem “Gravel” by Mary Oliver

The high-piled plum-colored storm-heavy clouds
are approaching.
The fly mumbles against the glass.

This is the world.
The hot little bluebirds in the box are getting ready to fly.
This is the world.

The sweet in the parsnip
waits for our praise.

The dragonfly lives its life
without a single error, it also
waits for our praise.

The pale-green moths are pressing
against the screen, fluttering, they are
dying to get in to press their papery bodies
into the light.

This is the world.

From:  “The Leaf and the Cloud”, page 43

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I love Mary Oliver.  She has a grasp on the natural world like no other poet I've ever read.  She speaks to my heart today from her book, "The Leaf and the Cloud", an amazing book length poem in seven parts. 

xo,
Marion

"Look at the trees, look at the birds, look at the clouds, look at the stars... and if you have eyes you will be able to see that the whole existence is joyful. Everything is simply happy. Trees are happy for no reason; they are not going to become prime ministers or presidents and they are not going to become rich and they will never have any bank balance. Look at the flowers - for no reason. It is simply unbelievable how happy flowers are." ~Osho

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"I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it.... People think pleasing God is all God care about. But any fool living in the world can see it always trying to please us back." ~Alice Walker, The Color Purple, 1982

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"I thank you God for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees, and for the blue dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes." ~e.e. cummings

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Sunday, September 9, 2012

As Our Bodies Rise, Our Names Turn Into Light by Charles Wright

Sunlight spilled, 2010 by Marion

 
 
As Our Bodies Rise, Our Names Turn Into Light
By Charles Wright
 
The sky unrolls like a rug,
                                                unwelcoming, gun-grey,
Over the Blue Ridge.
Mothers are calling their children in,
                                                mellifluous syllables, floating sounds.
The traffic shimmies and settles back.

The doctor has filled his truck with leaves
Next door, and a pair of logs.
                                                Salt stones litter the street.
The snow falls and the wind drops.
How strange to have a name, any name, on this poor earth.

January hunkers down,
                                                the icicle deep in her throat---
The days become longer, the nights ground bitter and cold,
Single grain by single grain
Everything flows toward the structure,
                                                last ache in the ache for God.

1995
 
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I awoke shivering this morning because I went to bed with all the windows wide open last night.  It was a luscious, humidless 57 degrees.  I felt as if I'd been transported to another place and time.  It was near 100 degrees all last week. 
 
My orange cat brought me a baby rabbit almost as big as he was to the back door.  I thanked him, then rescued the poor, scared little bunny.  I sat in the cool sunlight and picked up my heavy "Norton Anthology of Poetry", all 1,376 pages of it, and it fell open to this poem.  Poetry has saved my life over and over and over again.  Few understand this, but the ones who do have also changed my life. 
 
Happy almost Autumn,
~Marion
 
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"Ink runs from the corners of my mouth
There is no happiness like mine.
I have been eating poetry."
~Mark Strand, "Eating Poetry," Reasons for Moving, 1968


 

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Towns We Know and Leave Behind, The Rivers We Carry With Us by Richard Hugo

A battered, tattered, curious old river dragonfly visiting me last summer.


I've spent most of my life along the Red River in Louisiana and this poem just brings out the river-love in me.  My uncle who raised us was a carpenter and fisherman and made a living from the river.  I often went with him to run the nets and he'd drop me off at a sandbar to play while he baited lines.  Today I live a few miles from the river but I think of it every day.   ~Marion, reading Anne Michaels on this rainy day in Louisiana.  xo

The Towns We Know and Leave Behind,
The Rivers We Carry with Us - By Richard Hugo

for James Wright

I forget the names of towns without rivers.
A town needs a river to forgive the town.
Whatever river, whatever town –
it is much the same.
The cruel things I did I took to the river.
I begged the current: make me better.

Your town, your river, or mine –
it is much the same.
A murdering man lives on the land
in a shack the river birds hate.
He rubs the red shriek of night from his eyes.
He prays to water: don’t let me do that again.

Let’s name your river: Ohio.
Let’s name all rivers one in the blood,
red stream and debris in the blood.
Say George Doty had a wrong head.
Say the Ohio forgives what George did
and the river birds loved his shack.
Let’s name the birds: heron and sweat.
Let’s get away from the mud.

The river is there to forgive the town
and without a river a town abuses the sky.
The river is there to forgive what I did.
Let’s name my river: Duwamish.
And let’s admit
the river birds don’t hate my home.
That’s a recent development, really
like mercury in the cod.

Without a river a town abuses the air.
The river is there to forgive what I did.
The river birds hate what I did
until I name them.
Your river or mine –
It is much the same.
A murdering man lived on the bank.

Here’s the trick;
We had to stay drunk
to welcome the river
to live in a shack
to die on the bank
beneath the bigoted sky
under the river birds
day after day
to murder away
all water that might die.

A murdering man is dead on the bank
of your new river, The East,
on mine, The Clark Fork.
It is much the same.
Your river has gulls and tugs.
Mine has eagles and sky.
I rub last night from my eyes.
I ask bright water what’s happened.

The river, I am not sure which one,
Says water has no special power.
What should I do?
Or you?

Now water has no need to forgive
what shall become of murder?
How shall we live
when we killed, when we died by the word?

Whatever the name of the river,
we both had two women to love,
one to love us enough we left behind
a town that abuses the day.
The other to love the river we brought with us,
the shack we lived and still live in,
the birds, the towns that return to us for names
and we give them names knowing the river
murders them away.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Autumn Sunlight

 
I found this beautiful photo at Pinterest.  I don't know the source, but the way the sunlight touches the wood of the open window breaks my heart and reminds me of Autumn.  I think of the past, of friends, of a woman in a window, and I grieve and I don't know why.  Time, which used to pass like molasses being poured from a  cold cup, is now a runaway train. 
 
But Autumn seems possible once again.  I hope, in the autumn of my life.
 
Love,
Marion
 
*****
 
The foliage has been losing its freshness through the month of August, and here and there a yellow leaf shows itself like the first gray hair amidst the locks of a beauty who has seen one season too many. ~Oliver Wendell Holmes
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Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. ~George Eliot
 
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The great thing about getting older is that you don't lose all the other ages you've been. ~Madeleine L'Engle
 
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How beautifully leaves grow old. How full of light and color are their last days. ~John Burroughs
 
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The soul's dark cottage, battered and decayed,
Lets in new light through chinks that time hath made.
~Edmund Waller
 
*****
 
 

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Drunken Poet's Dream by Ray Wylie Hubbard


Thank you, Annie, for introducing me to Ray.  (Snicker...)  I'm seriously in love with him. xoxo
 
Drunken Poet’s Dream
By Ray Wylie Hubbard

I got a woman who's wild as Rome
She likes being naked and gazed upon
She crosses a bridge then sets in on fire
She lands like a bird on a telephone wire

I'm gonna hollar, and I'm gonna scream
I'm gonna get me some mescaline
Then I'm gonna rhyme that with gasoline
It's a drunken poet's dream

There some money on the table and a pistol on the floor
A few paperback books by Louis L'amour
Whisky bottles are scattered like last night's clothes
Cigarettes, papers and Oreos

My harmonica's got a busted reed
My lips are chapped and about to bleed
She says, that's nothing when she was a kid
She danced with the dead at the pyramids

I'm gonna hollar, and I'm gonna scream
I'm gonna get me some mescaline
Then I'm gonna rhyme that with gasoline
It's a drunken poet's dream

I'll never pay back my student loan
Smelling like Coors and cheap cologne
She tells me not to worry about Judgment Day
She says dying to get to heaven's just not our way

I'm gonna hollar, and I'm gonna scream
I'm gonna get me some mescaline
Then I'm gonna rhyme that with gasoline
It's a drunken poet's dream

I got a woman who's wild as Rome
She likes bein naked and gazed upon
 
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