I have recently discovered Jeanette LeBlanc. Lovely, lovely writing.

Easy. )
403: Listen to the song of the paper cranes... (Cranesong)
( Jun. 1st, 2015 06:42 pm)
Hiraeth beckons with wordless call,
Hear, my soul, with heart enthrall'd.
Hiraeth whispers while earth I roam;
Here I wait the call "come home."

Like seagull cry, like sea borne wind,
That speak with words beyond my ken,
A longing deep with words unsaid,
Calls a wanderer home instead.

I heed your call, Hiraeth, I come
On westward path to hearth and home.
My path leads on to western shore,
My heart tells me there is yet more.

Within my ears the sea air sighs;
The sunset glow, it fills my eyes.
I stand at edge of sea and earth,
My bare feet washed in gentle surf.

Hiraeth's longing to call me on,
Here, on shore, in setting sun.
Hiraeth calls past sunset fire,
"Look beyond, come far higher!"

- Tim Davis

The west that I long for is the American one rather than the authors' native Wales, but he captures the feeling well. I usually express it in some specific way--the mountains are too old, or the sun is always at the wrong angle--but what I'm missing is a more thoroughgoing sensation of place.
In class yesterday, we spent just about all of it discussing the poem "You and I are Disappearing" which was written in response to the iconic "Napalm Girl" photograph from the Vietnam War. (Warning: Cannot unsee.)

The dreamlike quality of the poem cut through my habitual responses in a way that the image could not. Photos are by definition records of things past. But the words have a visceral present-ness that brings home an echo of what it's like for something you've seen to never truly leave you.

It is masterful: I am haunted.
(but especially cats, who do it so well)

Call me by my true names
The ones that have no voice
And singing in our silence

See me in my true forms
The shapeless ones in no-space
In no-time

Know me as my true selves
The ones who're none and all
Yet always different

Call me by my true names
That I may answer
With yours


403: Listen to the song of the paper cranes... (Default)


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