Quiet Down, Class

A good and ancient good friend of mine wrote me poem when she wasn't looking. I hope she doesn't mind me adding the line breaks, which suggested themselves rhythmically:

Lake Michigan has a voice for each season.
In the fall, it is raspy, an octave lower
than just a month before as waves
crash onto the shore with choppy,
cold strokes.
Its movements amplify against the autumn
leaves and fill your head with urgency,
as if to make you remember the sounds before
the ice creates only silence, distant creaks,
low groans.
I was hypnotized by its song. I felt a rhythm
that I can only describe as timeless or primal
or something even more.
I picked up a stone.
Of course, this is how it has to be. Poetry moves through us when we aren't looking [for poetry], and maybe only then. There's a kind of listening that doesn't anticipate, that doesn't plan its response. As Jiddu Krishnamurti has said, "There is a totally different kind of energy when there is pure perception, which is not related to thought and time."

Yesterday I quoted MLK, Jr. at length -- he talked about how there was a need to go back, to rediscover something that was lost. Maybe that's what all of this is about. I think poetry is a part of what was lost. To find it again requires this totally different kind of energy, though. Like a perfectly thrown Hail Mary into the end-zone, poetry is nothing unless it finds a wide-open receiver. I'm re-inspired to become that receiver, that reader, that listener.

Also, my wife's pregnant. Ha! Seriously! Due date: April 25th.


Mark said...

Super congrats again! We're going to be in the parent club now.

Ed said...

congratulations, casey!

Casey said...

You're such a lurker, Ed! If you'd leave a comment once in a while, I'd certainly be more conscious of you as part of my very small audience -- undoubtedly the tone would change!

(Thanks, though! -- awesome, huh?)