“If we had a keen vision and feeling of all ordinary human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow and the squirrel’s heart beat, and we should die of that roar which lies on the other side of silence.” ~ George Eliot, from Middlemarch

“Dark Crystal” (Vendee, France)
by Philippe Albanel, DeviantArt

                   

Two for Tuesday:

Two tunes, two poems, too tired for more.

Music by Gary Moore, “Still Got the Blues”

                   

sorrows

who would believe them winged
who would believe they could be

beautiful         who would believe
they could fall so in love with mortals

that they would attach themselves
as scars attach and ride the skin

sometimes we hear them in our dreams
rattling their skulls         clicking their bony fingers

envying our crackling hair
our spice filled flesh

they have heard me beseeching
as I whispered into my own

cupped hands       enough not me again
enough       but who can distinguish

one human voice
amid such choruses of desire

~ Lucille Clifton

                    

Music by Gary Moore, “The Loner”

Second Story

How strange to be sitting in this room,
to be noticing the windows—clearer than air—
how they let in everything, the leaves,
the bright-colored leaves, hanging like bits
of paper from the trees, and the thin woman
across the street sweeping her porch—
though she swept it yesterday and the day before
and will, most likely, sweep it tomorrow—
and how strange to be thinking of you, always
of you, as the room changes imperceptibly, easily
moving from moment to moment, like a lover
whose infidelities are purely imaginary,
imagined by you, just as you’re sure
the house might betray you, accommodating shadows
in your absence, sure that the room only
pretends to be your room, light climbing the stairs—
like an intruder or friend who left a long time ago—
pausing, changing its mind, going back down again,
as if the door were open and it could
come back anytime. Strange after so much time
to feel the same feelings, only stronger,
as the dust settles thickly on the tables,
and the afternoon shadows, unsure of themselves,
shrink into corners or lie on the floor,
and no letters arrive and the phone doesn’t ring,
and the woman sweeping her porch casts
a cold eye up at you—the face in the second story
window, the whorled face staring at the view—
goes into her house and shuts the door.

~ Elizabeth Spires

“Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared. ” ~ The Buddha

This image appeared on my Tumblr dash, and it really moved me. Just pause for a moment and consider: 100,000 people sitting quietly, praying for peace and an ease of the world’s suffering. I am not always a curmudgeon, nor am I always, eternally cynical, just most of the time. Perhaps the weather from the storm brings to mind the accompanying quote and song. Who knows?

 

100,000 Thai Theravada Monks in meditation for peace and in prayer to ease the suffering of the world (Dhammakaya Temple, Bangkok Thailand).

“What is the appropriate behavior for a man or a woman in the midst of this world, where each person is clinging to his piece of debris?
What’s the proper salutation between people as they pass each other in this flood?”

~ The Buddha

Music by Lily Allison, “Birds and Ships”

Lyrics by Woody Guthrie:

The birds are singing in your eyes today.
Sweet flowers blossom in your smile.
The wind and sun are in the words you say.
Where can your lonesome lover be?

Birds may be singing in my eyes this day.
Sweet flowers may blossom when I smile.
But my soul is stormy and my heart blows wild
My sweetheart rides a ship on the sea.

Oh, my soul is stormy and my heart blows wild.
Where can my lonesome lover be?

“All is visible and all elusive,
all is near and can’t be touched.” ~ Octavio Paz, from “Going and Coming”

                   

As one listens to the rain

Listen to me as one listens to the rain,
not attentive, not distracted,
light footsteps, thin drizzle,
water that is air, air that is time,
the day is still leaving,
the night has yet to arrive,
figurations of mist
at the turn of the corner,
figurations of time
at the bend in this pause,
listen to me as one listens to the rain,
without listening, hear what I say
with eyes open inward, asleep
with all five senses awake,
it’s raining, light footsteps, a murmur of syllables,
air and water, words with no weight:
what we are and are,
the days and years, this moment,
weightless time and heavy sorrow,
listen to me as one listens to the rain,
wet asphalt is shining,
steam rises and walks away,
night unfolds and looks at me,
you are you and your body of steam,
you and your face of night,
you and your hair, unhurried lightning,
you cross the street and enter my forehead,
footsteps of water across my eyes,
listen to me as one listens to the rain,
the asphalt’s shining, you cross the street,
it is the mist, wandering in the night,
it is the night, asleep in your bed,
it is the surge of waves in your breath,
your fingers of water dampen my forehead,
your fingers of flame burn my eyes,
your fingers of air open eyelids of time,
a spring of visions and resurrections,
listen to me as one listens to the rain,
the years go by, the moments return,
do you hear the footsteps in the next room?
not here, not there: you hear them
in another time that is now,
listen to the footsteps of time,
inventor of places with no weight, nowhere,
listen to the rain running over the terrace,
the night is now more night in the grove,
lightning has nestled among the leaves,
a restless garden adrift—go in,
your shadow covers this page.

~ Octavio Paz (trans. Eliot Weinberger)

                   

Music by Keith Urban, what else, “Raining on Sunday”