Tuesday, January 01, 2019

Starting Fresh

The Sky Filling With Blue
—Poems and Original Art by Joyce Odam, Sacramento, CA


The sky, filling with blue, then a fragile cloud or
two, threading. A sharpness of birdsong, penetrating

the silence—brief—and from no distance other than
where it was a startled moment back. Then, that slow,

soft tone of whiteness that takes the place of early
blue, the way you slowly surrender the owned moment

to the swift intrusion of sounds and urgencies, your
reluctance to rise from the warm bed—seductive with

comfort—warm around you. The sky again—gone flat
outside your window-measure, full of daylight now,

the clouds, losing their pink direction, taking on the
heavy factory gray that smudges them.

You stretch and sigh. You look at the clock. 



Writing in parenthesis, (thinking in parenthesis)
to think twice in two ways,
rounding the second meanings from the first.

And so it flows, (the talk between talk)
the innuendos that do research
(against the mind)
that interrupt and have their say.
Oh, speak
(like this)
and say (like this)
all there is to say.
Open anywhere
(like fingers to a map)
We almost rhyme. It’s in the warning.
The grope through sound with effort,
(even meaning) to communicate and explain.
when little furtive rhymes keep interrupting.
Like butting in line,
(one item only)
with sorry,
and please
(your hurry).
The book so long, can’t begin at beginning,
open book at random, read that page
(for guidance) through the book.


How well I know the muse now

in our
old hide-&-seek game
taking years
to play,
efforts to make,
then, obedient to her,
trying to catch
all those words she flashes through the mind



Hey, now the siren . . .
hey now, coming for us . . .

coming through the far-away streets,
pushing dog-howl ahead of it . . .

stirring up
the fog . . .

it is sure of its destination,
knows its job.

 From Your Guitar

After Young Spanish Woman with Guitar by Renoir

Long before
I would ever yearn to hear it

you have been chronicled in art
for me to decipher,

sure of your smoldering style,
the intensity

of your concentration—
oblivious of me,

your hands at work.                        
And I am only your poor listener

for what I would hear :
wild flamenco from your guitar.



What’s never is now. What’s the use
of hiding it? It will out, as in will in.

Heavy with doubt, we reassess.
Excuses—ever what we use.

Why confuse this
with fact.

Fact is an act.
Act. 1.  Done.

Pure nonsense?
How pure?

Mix this
with that and drink slowly.

In a hurry, she asks?
Here is only here.

Elsewhere is nowhere.
Here is here.

Spinning. A gold child in the center of
her spin. Look. She is happy.  She can spin.

 And Now

and now there will be nothing to say

too easily the parting moves away from the holding
the long journey away from goodbye,
so easily the tender sorrow after sorrow
torn now into aftermath—
a long word apart,
nothing said,
just the last connection of eyes
so full of what they want from each other—
what they need,
the quick kiss on the cheek and the waving goodbye


“That the science of cartography is limited”
                                   —Eavan Boland

Now let there be, let there be,
a falling of words, following the mind-path,
which is blind, with only pre-knowledge of going

into the far interior of the soul-magic,
which is old and new, and not ever known,
but known only by an intuitive knowing.

Let the words be harmonious with troubled mind,
with seeking mind, with lonely mind—ever
following the mind’s impulse, which is blind.

Let the scripture of the heart forego its worries,
trust in the language of life, that is particulate
with mood and query. Everything is known at

the core and will be reluctant to let go its power.
Every evil has a companion, hovering and advising,
echoing the dark streets of luminous desire,

stroking the thoughts that ache from confusion,
and caressing the dreams beneath sleep.


Today’s LittleNip:

—Joyce Odam

And here is paper
     ready to be poem
tucked between the pages
     of this poetry book.


A big new-year thank-you to Joyce Odam for her starting-fresh poems and lively artwork! Our new Seed of the Week is Alleycats. Send your poems, photos & artwork about this (or any other) subject to kathykieth@hotmail.com. No deadline on SOWs, though, and for a peek at our past ones, click on “Calliope’s Closet”, the link at the top of this column, for plenty of others to choose from.


 Young Woman With a Guitar by Auguste Renoir
Celebrate poetry!

Insert New Year’s resolutions here: 


Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.