Whose voice

I’m figuring out how to play “Blackbird” on guitar. It makes me feel like a cicada— sounding a bit awful, but feeling happy to spend time in musical daylight, sound spheres.

Of course, this song is about night and the light it contains. Outside my window, fireflies move in wide arcs in the rough breezes ahead of a thunderstorm, another heat wave on its way.

the waves roll up darkness

and leave a white foam

as calm as a fish

whose eyes focus quick and

near, for whom nothing is

too near

from Saffron Threaded, poem titled “Soon”

Sometimes we can write our dreams and call them poems. We can best recognize and respect the voice we listen to this way.

Fireflies in dark flight flash, flash. Lingering

night out on the water, birds call back and forth.

All things caught between shield and sword,

all grief empty—the clear night passes away.

from “Sleepless Night” by Tu Fu, translated by David Hinton

I don’t hear a blackbird, but cicadas, crickets under the scent of rain. Those always belong to poetry. They can guard it well.

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