Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Coyote in the sun; Good Friday in the Métro

He spent a long time in the meadow Sunday, mostly lying down curled up in the sun. The lives of animals exist in parallel to our lives. In this case, even if this guy was sick or injured (and we rarely see them and never acting like this!) there was  nothing we could do about it. I am sure he wouldn't have just gotten in the car to go to the vet, who is closed on Sunday anyway. He seemed to be working on a spot on the front of his back--the fur looked wet and matted in the photos and he bent his head around repeatedly to lick or chew at it. Most of the rest of the time he just curled up in the warm sunlight. Every so often he would get up and turn around a few times and lie back down again. This is one of the only two pictures I got of him on his feet. We will wonder about him for a long time.

Here is more from Adam Zagajewski's Tremor.

Good Friday in the Tunnels of the Métro

Jews of various religions meet
in the tunnels of the Metro, rosary beads
spilled from someone's tender fingers.

Above them priests sleep after their Lenten supper,
above them the pyramids of synagogues and churches
stand like the rocks the glaciers left behind.

I listened to the St. Matthew's Passion,
which transforms pain into beauty,
I read the Death Fugue by Celan
transforming pain into beauty.

In the tunnels of the Métro no transformation of pain,
it is there, it persists and is keen.

                         Adam Zagajewski, translated from the Polish by Renata Gorczynski.
                                                   In Tremor, Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 1985. Page25

I think my coyote is also in this poem. I love the way the text moves from small religious things to ritual to buildings to glacial rocks to the big questions concerning pain and art's healing, which is after all, not a solution. Well. I just love the movement of this 12-line poem.

When my brother was dying of cancer he listened to a Passion--I think it was this one---and he wrote me about it. That was many years ago now, but he is still my brother. I have three other brothers and some people don't have any, but he blessed my life in so many ways. He said everything is a poem -- it's all poetry, and I loved the way he explained that. He studied the way people talk to each other: once he spent a long time analyzing a short video of a mother and daughter talking while they loaded a dishwasher together. There was really a lot in it, like a very short play by a very sharp playwright. This made me very curious about the way people talk to each other. All talk is language play. Take a walk downtown and listen to people on the sidewalk, if you can. It's all poetry.  Sleep well.

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