Wednesday, May 15, 2013

when the light is not yet useful

Human Beauty

by Albert Goldbarth

If you write a poem about love...
the love is a bird,

the poem is an origami bird.
If you write a poem about death...

the death is a terrible fire,
the poem is an offering of paper cutout flames

you feed to the fire.
We can see, in these, the space between

our gestures and the power they address
—an insufficiency. And yet a kind of beauty,

a distinctly human beauty. When a winter storm
from out of nowhere hit New York one night

in 1892, the crew at a theater was caught
unloading props: a box

of paper snow for the Christmas scene got dropped
and broken open, and that flash of white

confetti was lost
inside what it was a praise of.


by Elizabeth Reninger

at this time
when the light is not yet
useful, merely

when a bright
honey pours
nectar over a curved
horizon, into a nameless

chalice, and your vision
wakes also, as if
to meet it, touching

when for an endless
moment all
colors are

color a shimmering
fabric an infinite
wisdom this

of pure love, so suddenly

your own. . .

I've been thinking about morning light, how it awakens us, how our vision meets the light and how we sometimes are able to merge with it. A type of wisdom. And also, thinking about how, usually, we are insufficient to meet it. A 'distinctly human beauty.'

There are days, like today, this morning, when my photographs seem so the confetti lost in the snow storm. And so they are, so they are.


  1. Thanks for this. I appreciated, somehow, seeing last year's galls amidst this year's pussywillows...

    1. Thanks, Ariel. And they're late here, but in Winnipeg....


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