Wing shift

Wind speed is a factor. The more you can use it, the better. To be airborne, born into poetic flow, and fluid with each gesture, we need to embrace experiences.

In artistic practice at our best and most honest, we trace the line of flight from birth to death. We balance on life’s axis.

I’m reflecting on this today, the anniversary of my grandmother’s passing in March 2020. There’s that poem of mine that stubbornly stays unwritten.

Instead, a vernal equinox morning walk, with my dog on a short leash, with the crystalline coldness of the wide river whispering into my coat collar. Not many gulls, but overhead passes from time to time an angle of geese on their strong wings and voices. I ask myself which voice I would like to have—river murmur or geese glee.

Today is also International Day of Happiness; however, World Poetry Day (3/21) follows immediately after, which reflects universal experience, I suppose. Always after happiness passes, there’s a chance for reflection.

“The reason for adopting a positive attitude toward existence despite all its miseries and limitations is ‘not because happiness exists,’ but ‘because truly being here is so much,’ and

everything here
apparently needs us, this fleeting world, which in some strange way
keeps calling to us. Us, the most fleeting of all.

“Like Kierkegaard, Rilke believes that gratitude for life must take the form of unconditional acceptance. ‘Joy,’ he claims, is categorically ‘more than happiness,’ for ‘happiness befalls people, happiness is fate, while people cause joy to bloom inside themselves.’”

From “Rilke and the Poetics of Revelation” by translator Rick Anthony Furtak as introduction to Rilke’s Sonnets to Orpheus

I think this “truly being here” is what poems call us to. It can unfold from reflection.

In this reading by Rita Dove for World Poetry Day 2021, I especially love her poem that enters into Beethoven’s reflections on losing his sense of hearing. But this whole reading is a gem.

The sense of music and humaneness in poetry is what turns the sorrows of it into joy— that elusive quality of presence. Dove enters through curiosity and empathy.

Inquiry awakens. Love awakens.

by Mei-mei Berssenbrugge

I love a person leaving who sees birds in other worlds, nearby.

All the good in nature I imagine in birds, their images like quantum leaps.

Goodness is part of my awareness that sensing a bird intends.

We feel love shape a situation in which our friend’s inseparable on a constitutive level from the immediate.

Worlds emerge and transform, so metaphor uses birds to extend disrupted thought.

I want to learn from what generated the metaphor, the need.

from A Treatise on Stars

If you want to make… a coda poem

Imagine the poem as the tail of a bird balancing on a branch. As the tail of a comet announcing the deep winds of the sun. Celebrate World Poetry Day 2023 by writing something that uses wind speed for its energy.

2 thoughts on “Wing shift

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