I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

28 March 2008


There are no poems tonight
flowing through my pen. I write,
instead, the merest prose.
Because I have not been out among flowers,
I haven't listened to trees and river
tonight. I came in the house,
I spent time with a human lover.
When the wind called me outside
and the dog next door barked long and loud
over the fence, I ignored
those blandishments. I stayed
in the chair by the computer screen,
or the armchair in front of that other screen,
the TV, with stories of artists going to Antarctica.
And I wanted to paint, I wanted to draw.
I wanted to be, too, in that earlier program
about the cave artists. They were all shamans
according to the scientist who studied them.
I wanted to do those things, create those forms,
go into the trances with them,
share their joys and alarms
and above all their glorious visions.
Oh, I stayed home tonight,
I didn't go out, but my heart
with longing travelled – far, far,
to the ancient caves full of magic smoke,
or the whaling stations of Antarctica
now fallen into ruins, as nature
reclaims the majesty of that space.
Even in our living rooms, She will take back
what is rightfully hers – a place
inside myself where I cannot but listen
to the songs of the earth, and all its children
of which I am one. And I know again
in the beat of my blood,
in the rise and fall of my breath:
I am moon, I am sun,
I am tree, I am cloud,
the ox and the deer and the horse as they run,
the eye that finds them, the hand that depicts.
And I am the journey over the rim
of all that the past and the future expects;
I thrum with living, I commune with death.

© Rosemary Nissen-Wade 2008


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