[Image: “Nowhere Man,” by user cayusa on Flickr.com. Used here under a Creative Commons license.]
From whiskey river:
One Way In
This is how I hold my place in the world:
one line at a time, counting beats until
they come out right, chasing the sound of words
the way a dog chases cars to get her fill.
And this is how I fill my days: I slip
the ink across the page — a second skin —
and leave behind the color that my lips
print on the glass, a way of coming in.
This is how I stay in view: I take down
everything exactly how I see it,
I say it one way then turn it around
to see if there’s another way it fits.
I hollow out a page to make a nest,
I stretch the pen out like a branch and rest.
(Joyce Sutphen [source])
Sending These Messages
Over these writings I bent my head.
Now you are considering them. If you
turn away I will look up: a bridge
that was there will be gone.
For the rest of your life I will stand here,
If these writings can bring a turn
or an echo that touches you — maybe
a face, a slant, a tune — you will stop
too and bend over them. When you
look up, your thought will reach
wherever I am.
I know it is strange. and there is no measure
for this. The only connection we make
is like a twinge when sometimes they change
the beat in music, and we sprawl with it
and hear another world for a minute
that is almost there.
(William Stafford [source])
The original, shimmering self gets buried so deep that most of us end up hardly living out of it at all. Instead we live out of all the other selves, which we are constantly putting on and taking off like coats and hats against the world’s weather.
(Frederick Buechner [source])