Thursday, November 28, 2013

Just This:

Two nights ago, just this: the radio turned up, the window rolled down, my hand out side the window in the wind.

And then more: I stopped for the red light and leaned over the steering wheel, waiting for green, and go, and the mad wind that rises from the road to lift my hand, a five fingered soul ever so slightly from its slump.

Iowa Poem #4 , Thanksgiving Day 2013

If you came to Iowa now, you would find
Prairie grasses talking, some to themselves
Tired from a summer of waving and shouting
To every passing car and plane, some in hushed
Tones under a feather blanket of earlier-than-expected snow.
Some would be pointing right up at the heavens,
The memory still fresh of being razor-sharp and green.
Blades now brown and edges worn smooth,
They rage to God against the dying of the light.

And to their neighbors, who they are sure cannot hear,
They brag, "If summer never ended, I could have made it,
Made it all the way....."
One holds the record for bending so as not to break.
He tells terrible tales of coming back from near dead,
Of being cut, mowed and trampled.  

One does not speak; the wind plays his body like a saw.
Can you hear the wobbly melody?
Heel and toe, heel and toe, heel and toe.

To  the wonder of  having learned to dance

Among a rustling symphony of shaking shoulders,
To having existed at all.

Sarah Averill, 
Novermber 28, 2013

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Edward Hopper wanted to spend his life painting light hitting the wall. Inside walls, outside walls, some psychic walls. I used to think this was stupid or at the very least bizarre.

But then I've experienced it--light hitting the wall.  Mostly its in the late afternoon when the sun is low in the sky, the way it sends light at an angle through the glass or through the air to hit something as close to dead on as it can before it dips out of sight or turns red and looses steam and just can't turn it on any more.

First, it's "how the hell does it do that?" My mind makes feeble attempts to puzzle out how photons, little electromagnetic particle/wave/don't know who or what they are/ can turn dark into light. Faster than a shadow can fall, I'm exhausted by the effort and the questioning softens into "wow, just look at that." It's gone through the glass, my eyes are singing and I can drop several gritty problems that have bobbed up and down the column of my consciousness, defeating my efforts at  "be here now."

When you live without as much of that as you can get, it takes more than a few days to slip into taking it for granted and the ennui at endless sunshine, I suppose. Before Iowa I lived in Syracuse NY where I made a sport of finding breaks of sun in dense Great Lake clouds. One of the first things I noticed moving here was that it was sunny for entire days and sometimes weeks.

That by long way of saying, I am taking winter coming on alright, mostly by running in the dark along the river, and noticing sun hitting the wall on its daily rounds.