Sometimes, There are Scars

The Florilegia Project #5:
Spring Equinox

I haven’t missed a quarter or a cross-quarter day in years. Today I went to look up in my brain, and then online, whether the Equinox was this weekend or sometime next week—and discovered I had passed its threshold unknowing. Happy spring-flowering, everybody.

I’m a little disappointed. My early morning walks on seasonal turning-days get an extra lift from the knowledge of those turnings. I love the way ritual observance can both heighten and focus attention. It’s a small, important pleasure I make a point of making room for in my life.

I did have such a lovely frosty field-wander this morning. I can apply the quarter-day filter in retrospect, perhaps, like I do when I’m editing photos. Though I do that last to get the look of how the moment felt—and this feels like the opposite. A more difficult translation.

The other thing I forgot with the Equinox is The Florilegia Project. I’ve been neglecting it a lot lately, putting it off for one important something or another, and then catching up on 3 days of my miniature art installation in a single hour. For those of you following, thank you for bearing with my erratic posting. I suspect—given the intense reality of all our suddenly altered lives—you understand.

This group of sparklets, gathered between Imbolc (spring’s beginning, winter’s last word) and this balance-day of flowering and green and summer-on-the-way, is a weird, unsympathetic bunch. Spreading out my sticky notes, I found sparklets bespeaking pleasant, attentive leisure or measured praise, looking sideways at lines almost curt, or about to break open, or just inexpressibly sad.

As ever, I have been surprised at the malleability of those tricky units of meaning, words. They assemble into nearly infinite possibilities, even if you, their wielder (or perhaps their instrument), cannot imagine precisely how when you sit down to build with them.

In faith, then, I have attempted another such assembly.*


Sometimes, There are Scars

We called down 
to hear a sound survive us: 
"Do not only fear."

In a twilight beyond repair, 
we recline, bathed in pleasant 
insignificance. 

The thought of being happy here
is saying something important.

*

What lies deeper than the moment
or the self?

Lingering 
presupposes a gathering 
of the senses.

All of life swims and glitters.
To name is to praise,
and to lose in one instant,
this day of newly rinsed clarity.

*

Let us bless 
the grace of water.

Water
never lies.

I distrust 
the cycles of water.

*

Sometimes the world is so intense
it's hard to close my eyes.

This clean light, that tastes of paradise.
The feelings I have, late at night,
gazing at wood embers.
The rosary of constellations.
Twilight birds, that wheel in the trembling air. 
The pile of feathers, where flight 
met appetite.

To see such things, 
you have to be 
out there.

(We lived within the outside
for two million years. 
Now it's mostly photos.)

*

The mind itself owes its emergence
to an excess of time: its precious,
unexpected, generous guardian.
To the slender cracks between nights and days,
where it blooms like an apple tree—
so beautiful, it is a spiritual act 
to visit. 

*

You know your own needs. Or you will.
A wide and accurate knowledge:
elusive textures of consciousness,
the finest nuances of voice. Feelings 
—our most perishable possessions.

And now you are free
to go in and out of infinity, to step
into a thrumming crystal silence.

*

Silence can be carried, 
like embers from a fire: 
violet in shadow, 
scattered with rifts of gold.

I'm getting my gossip
from the whispers of the aspen trees, 
becoming changed 
but what I've not yet heard,
unexpectedly nourished
by the vast nothingness. 

A single star is uttered,
and I think of you.
And this delusion 
that the meaning of life
can be learned.

*

Moved to reverence
by the touch of the morning sun,
the world is pure again—
receiving gifts, and giving them.

I did not think to stay long here, just
longer—humming 
my one golden note.

Such is the flower garden of neglect.
It's made from what remains.

*As always, these are not my words. I have modified tense or speaker here and there, I’m mostly responsible for punctuation and line breaks, and any fault you find with the order is mine. Sources for the words themselves are here and here.


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