Wednesday, December 4, 2013

December Trees: A Way of Seeing

Backyard Sunset ~ Lambent Sky

Not long ago, a dear friend wrote to say
"We need a poem -- but would prefer a miracle."
I sent her this poem, which is as close
to a miracle as anything I can think of:

Between You and Me

Don't you love that breathlessness before dusk
when trees are crisp and black against December?
Less a fragment of late afternoon
than a way of seeing, each roof and branch
pressed flat against lambent sky.

I used to believe I knew myself.
I used to believe I was separate
from what broke in waves around me.
Lately, I have sensed a different way
of moving through days --
something softer and slower, like pushing gently
through clouds and water, only you, too,
are the clouds and the water,
the green memory of someone you loved
and the distance and the grief.

It's all right if you don't understand.
It's all right if you want a life
as polished and precise
as one of those twigs stenciled on twilight.

But have you ever walked home at noon or at dusk,
in winter or in summer, and not remembered
how you found your way back?
And when you realized you had not been
you, but all that you walked on, and by,
and through, weren't you happier for it?
Couldn't you almost name who you were?

by Francine Marie Tolf, contemporary American poet
found in her book Prodigal

I couldn't get the audio on the this interview to work,
but I enjoyed reading it all the same.
See also my earlier post "Love Me Love My Cats"

Thanks again to Francine for her generosity
in sharing her work and her beautiful poetry.
The December sky means even more to me each evening,
now that I have the words of this poem
to carry around inside my head!

1 comment:

  1. A note from the poet: What a wonderful compliment to me and to my poetry, Kitti. I am so thankful. I do not want to change a thing about what you wrote about "Between You and Me." It has made my day, my week and my month!

    A cat-loving kindred spirit, Francine Tolf