Tuesday, May 31, 2016

"The Fisherman"

 I can see him still
The freckled man who goes
To a grey place on a hill
In grey Connemara clothes
At dawn to cast his flies,
It's long since I began
To call up to the eyes
This Wise and Simple man.

All day I'd look in the face
What I'd hope 'twould be
To write for my Own Race
And the Reality;
The living men that I hate
The dead man that I Loved,
The craven man in his seat,
The insolent unreproved.

And no knave brought to book
Who has won a drunken cheer,
The witty man and his joke
Aimed at the commonest ear,
The clever man who cries
The catch-cries of the clown, 
The beating down of the Wise
And great Art beaten down. 

Maybe a twelvemonth since
Suddenly I began.
In scorn of this audience,
Imagining a man.
And his sun-freckled face,
And grey Connemara cloth,
Climbing up to place
Where stone is dark under froth.

And the down turn of his wrist
When the flies drop in the Stream:
A man who does not exist,
A man who is but a Dream;
And cried, "Before I am olde
I shall have written him one
Poem maybe as cold
And Passionate as the Dawn.

W. B. Yeats
Dublin, Ireland 

31 May, 2016

~ Our Thoughts and Prayers are with those who have been affected, by the tornadoes and storms,
in Oklahoma, Texas, and other areas, of the country. ~ Our losses are great, yet our Resilience is Greater!
~ A"Special Thanks" to the First Responders, and the Volunteers, who have rallied together, at this time of Need. ~You are without Equal!
~ God Bless the U.S.A.!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

"Fuchsia and Ivy"

              From Boston to the Liscannor Vat, therefore, in a straight a line as I could, I travelled to a well Sacred to Bridgid, about whom I knew almost nothing.  A part of the material out of which I had begun to rebuild my Faith, she was patroness of Poetry, Smithcraft, and Healing.  In someone else's guidebook, I'd read the name, the place, a calendar of ritual.  With the help of some Catholic women thinkers, I'd scrape away what felt like centuries of ash and manure to get here, whatever that was.  Water.  It's steady, private pulse.  No middleman.  No man.  Fuchsia.  Ivy.  The dead.
              Down behind the framed picture of the Sacred Heart I stuff a copy of my first book of poems, in gratitude and a slow-fermenting amazement.  I inscribe it, "To My Mother. From Her Daughter."  I know I am in the presence of what of  my lifetime of churches-of men in dresses and flowers in vases-have blacked out like the flesh-sex of the middle panel.  In my hand is the manuscript of the second book, from which the publishers of my first, lyric poems have turned away.  These poems relive the sanctified violence of my childhood. These poems utter that violence not in a lyric frame-not to arrive at forgiveness as a collision that transcends, not to present exquisite feelings exquisitely wounded, not to whisper lamentations to the likewise entrapped-but in one who judges the judge.  With no name yet for this posture of address, for there is no name for it in the United States lyric tradition, I have invented the ancient public, Irish bardic mode, from necessity.  "Your Honour, when my mother stood before you," the cornerstone poem begins, from the shadow realm, empowered, for the sake of the tribe, to Speak to Power as its Equal.
              "May these poems find their way powerfully into the world," I implore, and I kneel down to drink from the water...

~Linda McCarriston

24 May, 2016