Tag: Poetry

Remembering

 


We remember, and the memories float
like clouds that shape themselves
then dissolve into something else.

We remember, and the past comes to life
as if there is no difference.

We remember how the years pile up
like children’s blocks we try so hard
to keep from crashing down.

We remember and at our best embrace
sweet gratitude.

 
Gudrun Mouw (c)
May 9, 2017

A Poem

April 21, 2017

I have been editing a nonfiction manuscript that I wrote before the death of my mother. I just recently took it up again after more than a decade. I began with some optimism and ease, expecting quick completion. (I was eager to move on to new ideas for another project.)

However, as I found myself in the midst of unresolved emotions, my efforts slowed down. Difficulties seemed to arise out of nowhere as judgments threatened. I wished I had never begun. I had to remind myself as a student and teacher of yoga, this situation, most likely, was the perfect opportunity for growth.

Deciding not to reside in emotional turmoil, I rededicated myself to be the neutral witness. I set aside my desire to rework the last chapter, returned to the beginning and am happy, for now on page 16, to pursue ongoing resolution.

April 23, 2017

I have been contemplating the concept that objectivity is not neutral as an extension of my recent return to neutral attention. Still, there is more. I have also been remembering things.

After reading poetry (on a university radio station) with a friend and fellow poet, my friend said to me: “Unfortunately, no one will know what a great writer you are until after you are dead.” This happened in the 1980’s. I also remember a barely concealed sneer by the radio interviewer regarding “women poets writing about their cats.”

Why did he ask us to come on his show? Had he not “read” our proposed selections ahead of time? Having written on the death of our family cat as a metaphor for something else, unfortunately, I allowed this experience to have a dampening effect on my writing life.

Now I write, because it is the song I have to offer. And every once in a while, I am reminded how women have not come as far as we sometimes like to think we have.

Gudrun Mouw (c)

Journal Entry The Process of Writing

1.

 

  1. Tuli Fog

 

“Life is Difficult”

M. Scott Peck

 

“That’s swamp fog,” he says, “it collects

in watery crevices

between local hills, especially, after

this wet…wet winter.” I nod, thinking, mysterious,

beautiful and wispy,

 

thinking of someone who said,

I will drain the swamp; instead,

he empowered swamp monsters

to pollute our air,

streams, rivers….

 

2. The Need to Learn

 

Yesterday, I heard the sound

before the sound.

 

I remember Opa, ignoring papers

to Auschwitz, Poland,* was forged

in to a hidden man,

 

a silent man,

shrunken

inside his clothes.

 

I need to learn each day as if new,

so everything humane becomes audible.

 

3. Today’s Mammal

 

“Look,” he says, “back there! The bobcat!” I remember

crying out as the gopher ate my last butterfly plant,

and bobcat came to grab that offender. Now, we wave,

“Hi, friend, good to see you! It’s been a while!”

 

He looks at us over his right shoulder; his tail tilts

left. He almost stops, steps forward at his former speed,

not fast, not slow, but casually, self assured.

We have nothing on our offering plate, today, and he knows it.

 

 

 

*From Ashes Into Light,  explores dealing with fascism

 

 

 

 

 

A Poem

Swami Sivananda recommended that courage is a good quality to meditate on during the month of March. For me, this has turned out to be difficult to implement.

First of all, there is the task of examining fears regarding the state of the world, regarding the experience of pain, regarding the aging process, regarding traveling loved ones, and so on. However, when fear becomes chronic, I also know that anxiety and other disorders are not far behind. And so it comes down to recognizing the power of choice.

Embracing choice means choosing to acknowledge fear, no doubt, but also transforming the contraction of fear into an expanded awareness where courage can thrive. Now, the month almost over, another storm is expected. Wind rises. Grey clouds stretch out in long lines with hints of light penetrating, and the friend to courage becomes hope.

Gudrun

The Spiritual Journey

1.
I’m on a mission uphill,
downhill, back and forth,
I refuse to fall into myself,

to sink. Cold
may contract
all it wants.

Breath lifts and lifts,
I raise my face to sun
like a prayer.

2.
In that space between rain
after rain, after rain,
I stand on wet grass,

close my eyes, hear happy birds,
see the play of red and gold
behind lids, radiance.

3.
When anger crosses the street
and makes a sharp left,
I am relieved.

I check the slider and two doors;
one was not locked.

I sit by a west window and enjoy
bright afternoon light
almost warm.

………..
Gudrun Mouw (c)
March 1, 2017

A Poem

I would like to be able to celebrate the news that From Ashes Into Light has won two more awards. How can this be done when the world is reeling and in shock?

I realize, after the presidential election, that my book reads like advance warning. There are things to ask ourselves, and From Ashes Into Light brings up some of these issues in stark ways. I am reminded of the Dylan line: “The times they are a changing.” And the change can be frightening.

I am reading Ge’rard De Nerval from 1854. The poem called Golden Lines begins with a quote from Pythagoras, “Astonishing! Everything is Intelligent!” Yes, I agree, we are swimming in consciousness. Still, what we do with that consciousness/intelligence makes all the difference.

The Romantic Poets responded to difficult times by turning to nature. This was an “Attack on the Old System,” according to Robert Bly in his News of the Universe poems of twofold consciousness.

How will poets respond to our current era? In many different ways, surely, unless an overwhelming movement develops in the genre.

               Morning Cold

Instead of pushing against cold,

muscles contract until

they become aware of themselves

after shock.

Many months of drought, at last, rain;

rain turned to tears.

I wear yellow to remember the sun,

to ward off complacency.

(C) Gudrun Mouw

November, 2016

A Poem From Ashes Into Light