Sunday, July 17, 2005

A Poet's Word

Jane Hirshfield - Excerpt from "Rebus" (Given Sugar, Given Salt)

You work with what you are given,
the red clay of grief,
the black clay of stubbornness going on after.
Clay that tastes of care or carelessness,
clay that smells of the bottoms of rivers or dust.

Each thought is a life you have lived or failed to live,
each word is a dish you have eaten or left on the table....

This rebus - slip and stubbornness,
bottom of river, my own consumed life -
when will I learn to read it
plainly, slowly, uncolored by hope or desire?
Not to understand it, only to see....

Reading this left me wondering what I have fashioned out of the clays that were doled out to me in this life. Some have made it to the kiln and have assumed forms only less final than death. What continues to spin on the wheel, evolving with time and whim still remains to be formed, colored and created. I try to view the process with detachment, compassion and occassional love.

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