Some EA inspired poems

by Breaking Glass Tunnels2 min read21st Dec 20201 comment

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EA Art & Fiction
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Hi everyone,

2020 has been a challenging year for me, as it probably has been for most people. A few times I turned to poetry to help soothe worry or sadness. As well as reading the poems of others, a couple of times I ended up turning to some poems I had written across 2018 and 2019. Occasionally I’ve thought about how these aren’t really producing much value sitting on my computer, and that even if most people don’t find value in them, it’s not a huge cost to put them online anonymously in case some people do.

I haven’t studied poetry so I doubt that these would be technically “good” poems. But I often think of Mary Oliver’s description of a poem as a temple or a forest – a place to enter, and in which to feel. So, I’m posting these here in case they act as such a place for any of you.

I would also love to hear other people's poems! And/or links to poems you find inspiring or comforting. I will also link to a couple of other poems I like in a comment.

 

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Autumn, 2019

 

A clear blue sky. 

Air cold and crisp.

On my face; warm sun and fresh breeze.

In my eyes; leaves gold, orange, lemon-lime green.

 

In a universe of unimaginable vastness and darkness,

how crazy that my seeing eyes and feeling face are here.

 

And to think!

This is happening many billion times over.

 

Of course, not every day is crisp clear skies. 

But many are. 

If we stop to think about it. 

 

And of course, not all those billions have the fortune,

to stand and appreciate tree leaves, 

free from pain, hunger and loss.

 

But each year more and more do have that fortune,

and less have the pain, hunger and loss 

that unjustly robs them of their appreciating. 

 

What could be more important than safeguarding clear skies and clean breeze

for our billions, and billions more, 

to go on reveling in this improbable inheritance.

 

****************************************************

A response 

 

My life has been good, it has been valuable. 

 

My skin has been kissed by the warmth of the sun.

My ears have taken in complex, sweet melodies, 

harmonies a hundred voices strong.

My eyes have witnessed more sunsets than I can remember.

Pink, orange, yellow, blue combining,

with softest sweetness,

quietly proving that there are infinitely many versions of perfection.

 

My mind has marveled at the intricacies of biology, 

the beauty of nature’s order,

that laws governing all space-time can be made clear with the power of reason.

 

And the whole of me has felt the force of love.

That force that comes from somewhere unknown, 

but sits in the centre of my chest,

extends out through both arms,

and turns to the beloved to radiate the thought; 

“You are so beautiful.

What a wonderful thing that you are here.

What a wonderful thing that you exist.”

 

My life has been good, it has been valuable.

It has added value to the world.

 

So don’t tell me that had I not existed, 

the world would not have been worse.

 

And don’t tell me that it doesn’t matter,

whether or not more people get to see, hear, feel, be

the goodness of this world.
 

 

****************************************************

Evening commute

 

On a train at 6pm,

Heading west, facing east.

 

Warm bodies fill the carriage,

shoulder to shoulder on the seats,

side to side on their feet,

gently swaying in unison as the wheels rattle along the tracks.

 

So many faces;

some scrolling, some staring, with thoughts far away from here.

So many minds;

all with their private histories, hopes and fears.

So much value;

here in this carriage.

 

And I can't help but think,

how beautiful all those faces look 

in the golden light of a fading sun.

 

 

****************************************************

An ode to the moon

 

How many other beings have gazed upon you?

In their darkest hour,

in contemplation of purpose,

or in simple joy at your loveliness?

 

How many other paths home have you guided?

How many other poems,

written or unwritten,

have you inspired?

 

As I watch you now rise,

what others are watching you set?

pushed back into quiescence by the dawning of another day.

 

As I gaze upon you now

what others have gazed upon you in times past?

 

A lover, stealing forbidden moments in your glow?

A seafarer, navigating on your tides?

A sentry, guarding over dear ones by your light?

 

What others will gaze upon you

In centuries, millennia, 

to come?

 

Others who might think on me 

as I think on the sentry,

the seafarer, 

the lover.

 

Perhaps you can be our message bearer.

 

Tell them that I too have kept watch by your light, 

been pulled by your tides, 

and loved in your glow.

 

Tell them that I too have gazed upon your beauty 

and thought on others

in other times.

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1 comments, sorted by Highlighting new comments since Today at 12:57 AM
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Two poems which I find especially helpful are:

Maya Angelou’s ‘A Brave and Startling Truth', and Mary Oliver’s ‘Wild Geese’.

To be honest, I struggle a little with the focus on self in ‘Wild Geese’, and this wild idea that we supposedly don’t have to be ‘good’. But I think many people in EA could do with leaning in to these sentiments a bit more; putting a bit more of a focus on caring for and accepting themselves. And while I do think it is honourable and right to strive towards being ‘good’, I think it's also true that we don’t have to be ‘good’ to matter – we each have intrinsic worth which is valuable no matter what impact we have on other people. So I hope you all go and hug your soft animal bodies.