Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Words, words, words have you heard

The first thing I saw this morning was a tweet announcing Maya Angelou's passing. My initial thought was along the lines of a light has been extinguished and the world is just a little darker for it. 

I know we all read I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings in high school so we all have words she painted with embedded somewhere in our psyche.

I only like some poetry and fewer poets. Shelly was and is my favorite. I am a fan of the Romantics. Yes, the band, too. I consider Ms. Angelou a Modern Day Romantic. I imagine she is now walking into a pub being greeted by the likes of Keats, Byron, The Shellys both, lifting up their glasses in a welcoming toast. Can you imagine the conversations?

When celebrity dies I rarely give it much thought. This time it just feels different.



When Great Trees Fall

When great trees fall,
rocks on distant hills shudder,
lions hunker down
in tall grasses,
and even elephants
lumber after safety.

When great trees fall
in forests,
small things recoil into silence,
their senses
eroded beyond fear.

When great souls die,
the air around us becomes
light, rare, sterile.
We breathe, briefly.
Our eyes, briefly,
see with
a hurtful clarity.
Our memory, suddenly sharpened,
examines,
gnaws on kind words
unsaid,
promised walks
never taken.

Great souls die and
our reality, bound to
them, takes leave of us.
Our souls,
dependent upon their
nurture,
now shrink, wizened.
Our minds, formed
and informed by their
radiance,
fall away.
We are not so much maddened
as reduced to the unutterable ignorance
of dark, cold
caves.

And when great souls die,
after a period peace blooms,
slowly and always
irregularly. Spaces fill
with a kind of
soothing electric vibration.
Our senses, restored, never
to be the same, whisper to us.
They existed. They existed.
We can be. Be and be
better. For they existed.” 
― Maya Angelou

Enough of this sappy shit. I need coffee.