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MARCH 2008

 

My First Brush with Poetry

Poems I first painted grabbed their materials from nature
As if to save it all from another vision, a prayerful dream.
I splashed her frail color on a private screen inside my head
Where no point-of-view could reach or define my lyrics.

I played on wind contraptions and rubber bands, a desk drum
Thumping in my heart, waiting for anxious breath of soul to
Catch an academic sail in a windowless room intended for
Grades and papers, one brief “ah” exclaimed by a naïve heart.

I aimed for other chairs on other aisles where damp watercolors
Ran in ribbons, yet saw no solutions in the landscape of love.
We students waved a multitude of passion flags above 
Unexplored worlds, hoping to simplify the language of freedom.

Poems I scattered were pieces broken off the larger picture
Getting darker with each desperate decision I made , like
A storm front of entertainment giving way to dingier cellars
And deeper hiding until my words for joy were a monk’s chant.

Language stiff as brocade tapestry filled my impossible illusion
Making the fever of belief into sick rooms of whisper and candle.
Clutching the shroud of nature in a tremble of hands, the poem
Of childhood passion lay uncovered without its flutter of days. 

My brush with poetry came back stronger in the end when
Light slanted obliquely on the landscape nearly empty from
Resourceful gleaning, telling what had to be told in language
Easier to bear, no secrets, no tapestry of passion to unfold.


 

Photo by Eugene Brown
 

© Jimmy Warner, 2011

 

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