Thursday, August 8, 2013

Poetry Days, One... A Blessing

Poetry Days

Lower than half mast, almost reptilian, my nearly closed eye lids admit only a sliver of a view; two shades of blue, a ruler-straight line where the sea meets the sky.  The sound of the winds off the ocean mingles with the bright crash of the waves; a constant music for my somnolent soul.  As my eyes finally close, thoughts drift through my head; casual visitors only, they are not invited to stay. These are the poetry days, when my mind lingers over only the most beautiful words; contemplates only the picturesque thoughts.  These are the days designed to provide what I need for the rest of the year. 
 They are the hours of needed bliss.

There comes a time in August when the seaside calls.  I hear it at the breakfast table or in a line of crawling traffic.  It sings down telephone wires; drowns out even the most scintillating of conversations.  It is insistent, persistent, tempting, and there is nothing for it but to answer.  And so I throw drawstring trousers into a straw bag.  Find my widest-brimmed hat.  I place a stack of new books in the backseat of my car.  And soon, crossing the bridge to the island, I notice, with barely contained glee, the lights on my cell phone become fainter and fainter till eventually I know I am deliciously unreachable.  I have left the prose of life far behind me.  I concentrate on the poetry only.

While I’m away for the next few days, I’ve scheduled some of my favourite poems to share with you all.
An evocative picture.
A wonderful poem.
Each day.
I hope you enjoy these poetry days.
Do let me know which ones you like best.

A Blessing
by James Wright

Just off the highway to Rochester, Minnesota
Twilight bounds softly forth on the grass.
And the eyes of those two Indian ponies
Darken with kindness.
They have come gladly out of the willows
To welcome my friend and me.
We step over the barbed wire into the pasture
Where they have been grazing all day, alone.
They ripple tensely, they can hardly contain their happiness
That we have come.
They bow shyly as wet swans.  They love each other.
There is no loneliness like theirs.
At home once more,
They begin munching the young tufts of spring in the darkness.
I would like to hold the slenderer one in my arms, 
For she has walked over to me
And nuzzled my left hand.
She is black and white, 
Her mane falls wild on her forehead, 
And the light breeze moves me to caress her long ear
That is delicate as the skin over a girl’s wrist.
Suddenly I realize
That if I stepped out of my body I would break
Into blossom.


  1. Joyous!
    and Envious!
    Big Sit Down and Do Nothing Fun......

  2. oh my goodness pamela.
    the one you started with here has set the bar high.
    such a beautifully described meeting with two gentle creatures. I stepped through the fence with him and touched the sweet fragile ear.
    thank you!
    enjoy your time with the sea. xo

  3. One of my all time favorites--the contemplation of a detail causes the poem itself to "break into blossom"

    Your sight line beyond that foot is a poem in itself, a pencil thin straight line poem/

  4. Having been raised in the West--so far west I could drop off the edge of the earth when I needed--your photo worked in much the same way as the seashells I held to my ear as a girl; I could hear the throb of the waves against the shore and the skirl of the wind. Smack dab in the middle of the country as I am now, I can still hear the siren call of the sea.

    Enjoyed today's poem, especially the line: "if I stepped out of my body I would break into blossom." Wishing you a handful of blossom days, Pamela.

  5. I love the simile of those ponies 'bowing as wet swans' - such a beautiful image.

  6. Every creative soul needs their space.Enjoy yours and come back bursting forward.

  7. Poetry days, the best days of all.
    I absolutely adore the poem, thank you. One for my fave poems file methinks. Can't wait for the next.

  8. Far from the madding perfect. Don't you find that we enjoy solitude more as we age....I know I do.

    This one is going to be hard to beat Pamela - I could see it all happening so clearly and almost felt the nuzzling in my hand too.

    Enjoy your shore time - it looks awesome.
    Hugs - Mary

  9. One of the joys of being in San Francisco this year - the book stores full of American poetry unheard of in Europe. Mary Oliver first editions for a buck ! And now James Wright.

  10. I understand what you're saying. The prose of life is a gift, but the poetry of thought and hope, creativity and rest is what each of us needs to breathe, I mean, REALLY breathe.

    I just finished a primer class at The Loft Literary Ctr in Minneapolis with a fine teacher; she is an award-winning poet and each Tuesday was like going to the beach. It was a time to play in the waves of words, the undercurrent of challenges, while looking out at the horizon of possibility. Enjoy yourself my dear. Anita

  11. love that!

  12. Pamela,
    Enjoy your days of complete relaxation. This first poem is a favorite already because of the beauty it creates in my imagination...two sweet ponies and a beautiful pasture. Ahh, I'm relaxed.

  13. Wonderful Pamela! Please do enjoy your time away, as it always goes by too soon!

    The poetry is lovely!

    Designer Barry Dixon Feature

  14. It's all beautiful prose, but the one I'm drawn to is the blessing. A confirmed horse lover and owned by one, I'm surrounded by these wonderful creatures and this is just so meaningful.

    Thanks for bringing it home! MMR

  15. Love this poem - here is another by James Wright

    by James Wright

    A bear under the snow
    Turns over to yawn.
    It's been a long, hard rest.

    Once, as she lay asleep, her cubs fell
    Out of her hair,
    And she did not know them.

    It's hard to breathe
    In a tight grave:

    So she roars,
    And the roof breaks.
    Dark rivers and leaves
    Pour down.

    When the wind opens its doors
    In its own good time,
    The cubs follow that relaxed and beautiful woman
    Outside to the unfamiliar cities
    Of moss.

  16. "brake into blossom" ¡Beautiful!

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