Friday, May 6, 2011

Some days we just need a sign.

I should say some days I need a sign.

I really don't want to complain because this year, the year I danced, the year I tried to do a new thing or two (while not panicking about the abyss or loss or the giant unknown future) has been tremendously fascinating. And mostly compliant (i.e. I have not fallen or failed or had my hopes dashed too badly.)

But some days are harder than others. And oddly, those are often the days built around events filled with people. Even in the midst of familiar, loving, kind faces, or maybe especially in the midst of familiar, loving and kind faces, loneliness can still haunt the playground.

Today I found a book on a bench at Iris on Main Street. I bought it because it told me to, this little Octavio Paz book of poems.

It is the sign I needed today and this is the poem I needed today. So I share it with you in case you need a sign too.


At times poetry is the vertigo of bodies and the vertigo of joy and the
vertigo of death;
the walk with eyes closed along the edge of the cliff, and the verbena
in submarine gardens;
the laughter that sets fire to rules and the holy commandments;
the descent of parachuting words onto the sands of the page;
the despair that boards a paper boat and crosses,
for forty nights and forty days, the night-sorrow sea and the day-
sorrow desert;
the idolatry of the self and the desecration of the self and the dissipa-
tion of the self;
the beheading of epithets, the burial of mirrors;
the recollection of pronouns freshly cut in the garden of Epicurus, and
the garden of Netzahualcoyotl;
the flute solo on the terrace of memory and the dance of flames in the
cave of thought;
the migrations of millions of verbs, wings and claws, seeds and hands;
the nouns, bony and full of roots, planted on the waves of language;
the love unseen and the love unheard and the love unsaid: the love in

Syllables seeds.

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