25 September 2010

A Gift upon Awaking

Words of the Sculptor

We will now discuss Death,
That changing of one thing into another,
A reality beyond which we cannot see,
Stuck as we are in the undaunted hereness of now.
We work upon substance
As firm as marble, as fragile as porcelain.
Don't go into the next room.
There is nothing inside---
No floor.
Take this chisel. Make your scratches on the rock.
Let the people coming in later wonder what you meant
By your wild profusion of grapes.
In a little while you can go stand
At the door of the floorless room
And toss in a shard.
But don't expect to hear it clatter at the bottom.
The one I threw is falling yet.

13 September 2010


TIME does not bring relief; you all have lied
    Who told me time would ease me of my pain!
    I miss him in the weeping of the rain;
I want him at the shrinking of the tide;
The old snows melt from every mountain-side,        5
    And last year’s leaves are smoke in every lane;
    But last year’s bitter loving must remain
Heaped on my heart, and my old thoughts abide!
There are a hundred places where I fear
    To go,—so with his memory they brim!        10
And entering with relief some quiet place
Where never fell his foot or shone his face
I say, “There is no memory of him here!”
    And so stand stricken, so remembering him!
                                                             Edna St. Vincent Millay

02 September 2010

Suite for Cello Number 2 in D Minor

Everywhere I see a solitary bird.
I see his ragged silhouette against the
bleak and empty winter sky.
Where is your lovely black-winged mate
who flies so often by your side, inside your cries
where has she flown, wherever has she fled,
oh, is she lost beyond your feathered ken?
Will she return? Will she return? She will return.              

Dear lonesome bird, you're not alone in seeking for elusive wings,
for my eyes too, they scan the skies, the hidden tops of mountain peaks,
the lonesome ways, the thronging crowds, the gentle slopes,                      
the rocky shores, the narrow alleyways between
the hostile brick and concrete walls. Sometimes I think I see a flash              
of color in a graying sky and trace it with my eyes to where it lands,
but when my hasty feet arrive I find no bird but just
a scrap of cloth tormented by the hungry wind in twilight, going, and now gone.      

But now I know I look in vain for what I seek.              
How can I ever hope to see the form that does not even
to my knowledge haunt my dreams?
The sun still shines and makes things grow.
The tawny grass flows up and over slopes               
and covers paths I followed innocently long ago.
The time goes on, the years go by, the seasons pass,
the bright sun sets and rises every day anew.               
But just on earth, just for us here, for us alone.
And still I walk the rocky trails and laughing banks of mountain streams,
the arid hills, and wooded groves. I tread the dark and thorny paths
I never knew in brighter days; I never realized were there.

But everywhere I set my feet, in all those winding, narrow ways and rocky tracks,
I see the subtle, simple signs of one who's passed along that way and placed       
with purposeful intention there some stones.
I read the messages intended for my eyes and placed where only I will see.      
And so I step in company with one I seek, but slightly slipping out of time.       
I walk alone but not alone, but not alone, not quite alone.

But everywhere I look I see a solitary bird,
alone against the
bleak and empty winter sky.
Where is your lovely black-winged mate
who flies so often by your side, inside, inside your cries, inside your cries?
Where has thy love flown, will she return? She will return.

I walk alone but not alone.
And everywhere I set my feet, in all the winding tracks,
I see the messages from one who's gone ahead
and placed the stones where only I will see.
I see a solitary bird, I see his ragged silhouette
against the sky.
I read the messages he left
in odd-shaped stones, along my path,
a subtle message just for me.
I see a solitary bird.
I walk alone but not alone.