That moment gone was but a spot of time
Yet still I yearn towards its eternity,
To find it past yet feel it presently
For such moments are best realized in rhyme.
But somehow this one fails to really be
As full in feeling as it was before;
In that one moment, not a second more,
I find its spirit transcends poetry.
Oft the poet makes his meaning more
And gives a life to what is dead and dust,
Ascribing value, love where there was lust,
In all his writings, common turned to lore.
But this sweet minute cannot come again
And adding meaning’s mass would wear it thin.
The words that lie written beneath our feet,
Titles of saints, these graves in graven stones,
The echoes of reformers’ gracious tones
Which once and still all sinners here would meet.
And still these words evoke fascination
Of both pilgrim and poet’s seeking hearts,
Quickening with the spirit each their arts,
Knowledge grown into Imagination.
And as the lighted panes of color sink,
The sun behind their beauty surely must
Rise as the divine out of the dust,
Drawing all to come and deeply drink.
Great voyages were here put out to sea
And brought by mercy’s gift more safely back,
Lifted, purged and saved by utter wreck
Foretold in written art-turned-prophecy.
Come feel the place preparéd by the Word,
Too vast, too true for human reason’s reach.
Though past, the sermons said yet seem to preach;
Freeing the soul to pray and thus be cured.
-Cambridge, July 2nd, 2018
Walking through Cambridge, inspiration is difficult to avoid. My apologies to those on the sidewalk who had to go around me as I stopped to give this poor bird a proper elegy.
“His eye is on the sparrow,” so ’tis sung
But ‘neath some foot or wheel its feathers flung-
Poor claws curled up in pain all that remain
Of this, the least of these, abandoned-slain.
The serpent struck, his head then doomed to crush,
Yet somehow just this little life- this thrush-
Drops down, his sun-stripe yellow turned to grey,
And he who flew now falls into decay.
Though sorrowful surrender stills his wings,
Another takes his tune and still he sings.
*(Poetic disclaimer: I’m not a huge fan of AABBCC… but this the rhyme scheme that happened and it somehow seems fitting.)
My phone storage is full due to my incessant note-taking…although I carry a notebook on me constantly, I somehow still find bits of poetry, philosophical musings, and novel brain-showers caught beneath the screen. Here’s one from my final morning in Scotland last summer:
I might just sit here for a bit.
Here, where I am at once everyone
and no one.
Where I can hear men talking,
Where I can watch mothers and children- ducks, squirrels, human.
Where I can trace the birds’ antiphony from tree to tree.
Where I am just another flower
refreshed by a sweet sunlight hour.
Yes, I might just-
I might just sit here for a bit.
Let me premise this by saying that this is not intentionally about death and I am not dying (except to get out of school).
Once again, this was inspired by my favorite little running route and the feathered friends who live there. (Speaking of birds, there is a little snippet at the end of this dedicated to one of my favorites.)
To leave this bit of earth,
This valley dear
Is something all must do
And yet do fear.
To leave for homely hearth
This little place
Is to be fin’ly through
With oft-run race.
To leave the many birds
I’ve come to know
Makes all their soothing songs
A lost echo.
To leave- I have not words
That truly say!
Where my sore heart belongs
I listen to the crow
And cricket as he bows
The bluebird I like best
Now takes to sky;
Returns he to his nest
And so must I.
As promised, here is the poetry snippet dedicated to the little bluebird:
Blue is the light
of his feathers and my eyes:
Deep and bright
With ancient youth
And oceans turned to skies.
Thank you to https://www.inaturalist.org/guide_taxa/304206 for the bird information/photo. I am incredibly comforted to know the blue bird was in fact a bluebird.
We are mariners, mariners we,
made for the land, parted from sea
from that second day and still –
striving as on the earth to fill-
drawn by its alluring, billowy waves-
we drink down the depths
to find watery graves.
We hear the call, that age-old call,
a whisper first, a breeze enthralls,
that grows and storms, restless ocean
which floods within the hearts of men.
And from our own mouths, it ever rails:
“Depart, depart, and set your sails!”
And so headlong into the deep
we crash from quick-eroding beach.
Toeing the sand was never enough;
we ached to ride the riptides rough.
Water there upon land gives life
but here the salt-foam drains it dry.
But never we stop to ponder: why?
Why to the sea, which roars, “Stay back!”
Why tempt a beast, that is bound to attack?
But the sea is within us; we ate of its fruit
it drowns from inside ’til shore zephyrs fall mute.
We fashion our ships, believing them arks
to keep us safe from the ghostly white sharks.
But up on their decks as we voyage across
we all yet shoot down heaven’s albatross.
Best stay inland, best anchor your soul.
Our bodies might swim, but this old sailor knows:
there is no raft or vessel that might
bear us when the steady dock’s out of sight.
Cast out the life-sucking salt in your heart!
Rebuff its waves with its own cry: “Depart!”