Wednesday, April 9, 2014

two things are certain

After being gone for a week, a mere week, the morning light had changed. Earlier, more honeyed. It swings in at a slightly different angle.

The day after we get back from our spring break vacation, I go to the grocery store to replenish the pantry, and I buy a basil plant and an oregano plant. Rob heads out and buys some hydrangeas because he want to photograph them, get back to work. He also buys a bunch of sunflowers, bright yellow - must be because of the Monet and Van Gogh that we saw. Anyway, who can resist flowers at this change of season where everything is brown, and mud and dirt and grit.

Before we left I'd bought a few books, and hadn't looked at any of them. One was Caribou by Charles Wright. (On the recommended shelf above). I've been reading Charles Wright for a long time. I think I've read nearly everything he's written. When I saw he had a new one out, I hesitated. (Trying not to spend so much money, right).

The first poem I turned to:

Crystal Declension

by Charles Wright

Well, two things are certain -
                                      the sun will rise and the sun will set.
Most everything else is up for grabs.
It's back on its way down now
As a mother moose and her twin calves
Step lightly, lightly
                              across the creek through the understory
And half-lit grasses,
Then disappear in a clutch of willow bushes.
                                                                        If one, anyone,
Could walk through his own life as delicately, as sure,
As she did, all wreckage, all deadfall,
Would stay sunlight, and ring like crystal among the trees.

I think the poem is book review enough.

I've been trying to walk through my life delicately, sure. That's just it, isn't it?

But most everything is up for grabs.

And in truth, I've been stumbling, getting caught up in the underbrush of things, the deadfall. Not picking my way through carefully enough, not stepping lightly, lightly.

But okay, deep breath. Let's begin again.

"The sun will rise and the sun will set."

And thank you, Charles Wright.


  1. I've been thinking about Van Gogh (and the influence of Japanese "calm things" on his work) ever since your post about still life being considered a lesser art. Aren't his sunflowers just some of the most beautiful paintings ever?

    1. Agreed! Yes. And the shoes.....thinking of the beauty of the quotidian.

  2. Thank you for the insightful pictures, and Charlies Wright's very expressive words...
    I am Learning much from your post.


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