Saturday, May 10, 2014

"and something found"

This is my grandkid's recent selfie which I think is pretty terrific! (I did change it to black and white and then added the vignette.) Today I went to the YTHS haiku Reading in the Teahouse at the Japanese Friendship Garden in San Jose's Kelley Park.. Roger, our park ranger and long-time member, had arranged a very interesting presentation on koi and a haiku workshop in the morning, and fixed us hot dogs and salad for lunch. In the afternoon, we heard four excellent writers read. I think this may have been my favorite Teahouse Reading ever! (Our group, the Yuki Teikei Haiku Society has held an annual one there every spring for 22 years!) Each one of the four readers had an interesting "voice" and a fresh and original spin on the material they had written. It just made me feel better about writing as a project, and about examining your own experiences and surroundings and treating them in fresh ways in your writing,


The brightly colored animal paintings of Franz Marc, who was killed in the First World War, have always been favorites of mine. So I was delighted by this poem in the Gettysburg Review that came today in the mail.

The Conservation of Matter

A flurry of leaves in the window\
like those calendar pages flying
in old movies
to indicate time passing,
and it is passing,
though where it's going
nobody seems to know.

Something is always lost
and something found---
an earring or the key
to a secret door,, 
to some second self.
I watch as energy and matter
bow and switch places,
as last year's leaves appear
and disappear again

like my childhood room
with its billowy curtains
and the picture of orange horses 
with blue manes hanging over my bed---
I thought it was gone,

but I walked through
the Marc Museum last month,
and there it was, the very picture.
And the child I was, 
still hiding in this body,
rose up in recognition.

Linda Pastan, from Gettysburg Review, Summer 2014, page 183.

Here is a link to the Wikimedia Commons images of Marc's horses. If you do a Google Search for Franz Marc horses and you will find many, many more. This poem has short stanzas of unequal length, and a narrative development.

Here is the Poetry Foundation link for Linda Pastan,  And here is her Wikipedia Page. Look her up, she is an interesting poet and has earned your attention with a fine body of work.

And here, in the public domain, is the Franz Marc painting, a reproduction of which hangs over my writing desk. They are irresistable! I saw mine years ago in a shop window in Palo Alto and went right in ant bought it without any hesitation. I think you might need a brightly colored Marc animal, too!

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