William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Archive for November 2018

I Am Forgiven

I’m sailing down the road burning fossil fuel, fouling the air with exhaust made by my noisy, powerful engine, slaughtering countless insects, the occasional bird, rabbit, cat, deer, and dog, when I suddenly realize what an insane, barbaric thing I’m engaged in — all of this destruction at my hands while sitting in comfort and calm, with dials glowing, gauges, fabric, plastic, leather, and shiny knobs. I am a murderer, […]

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Mind Over Matter

When I’m in a room full of people and everyone is talking at once, I often find myself in a kind of bodily hum, a state of vibration that is both pleasant and painful, as, say, a rock in a riverbed might feel when the spring melt has begun and it’s exposed to a new wave of sensation and song. The state is suspended when my attention is required in […]

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What Better Definition?

It wouldn’t be hard to convince myself that I am in hiding, that I have been in hiding for years, and that I am a hermit or recluse, despite being seen in public every day, and speaking in a friendly fashion with people I meet. One curious thing is that my voice seems to belong to someone else, and that the sound of it seems to come from a great […]

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There Is a Story

It seems these older pieces are coming together in a way that makes them read as if they’re being written now, one giving rise to the next in a natural progression. I realize this is my impression. I don’t know if it strikes you that way. But I think this feeling is partly due to the pieces I am writing now — those which stand alone, and those which serve […]

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Canvas 592 — To the Child

You’ve just sailed into the harbor. This is your face. And this is the face of all who are glad you are here. Do you see she is a he is a we with a tear?   To the Child So much strife, rooted in the idea of ownership — in the idea that “this land is your land, this land is my land.” But this land, this earth, this […]

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A Working Arrangement

There is still the funny little matter of what to save and what to throw out. This question comes up every few weeks or years, when the urge arises to gut entire closets with their stacks of storage tubs half-buried in all manner of curious debris — papers, crayons, lamps, fried or obsolete electronics — even old decorative pillows long past their presentable lifetimes. Some decisions are easy. For instance, […]

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Do Not Be Crippled by Reason

I no longer have the arrogance to believe I will live beyond this word, this thought, this sentence. And as for being understood, that hardly seems important. Do I understand myself? Am I even meant to be understood? And if I think I am understood, does that mean I am? And is that really desirable? I go on writing and publishing. None of it is for me to decide. After […]

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The Smiling Eyes of Children

Not until I’d written the last word of what follows, did it occur to me use the title of my unpublished novel. But that letter has been read — by a few, a very few — and will be safely forgotten unless someday someone summons it into the light. Come forth Lazarus! And he came fifth and lost the job.   The Smiling Eyes of Children Let’s say you’ve come […]

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One More for Finnegan

Am I serious, or joking? Do I ask this in fun, or do I really not know? Am I neither? Am I both? Laughter comes from a deep well. Tears are melted snow. Smile at my funeral, smile when I go. And smile at this grave fool’s work I do, especially so, especially so.   One More for Finnegan It’s one more for Finnegan, Then we go on home. Michael […]

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