William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Archive for November 2019

Wolves

Writing poetry all night. Some call it dream. Some call it sleep. In the morning the paper is blank. Snow has covered the ink. The graves. The hollow reeds. The bird tracks. Then you wake.   Wolves I sweep the floor, but not beneath your feet. Your brow defends the shadow fallen there. Frail sun leaves ice unscathed and windows cold. Another winter just begun, bolder than the last. Remembered […]

Continue Reading →

November Song

Raking through the remains of mushrooms, their quiet cities dissolved of themselves, By tine-stroke their gray-purple thoughts entering the atmosphere in clouds, Scattering their soft lumps and particles, promoting their culture and furthering their aims, I am the ghost of the day; see me through your window in the soft yellow light of late afternoon; Tap on the glass and I will look your way — yes, like that — […]

Continue Reading →

The Trick

It’s a wonderful occupation, this search for the ordinary, knowing it can never be found. Sixteen days have passed since I noticed a fallen birch leaf riding piggyback on a fig leaf still attached to the tree. The fig leaf is yellower now and with pronounced reddish veins. And the birch leaf, having lost most of its color and diminished in size, remains right where it was. November 6, 2019 […]

Continue Reading →

This Deep Love

How can we know each other if we don’t know ourselves? Between these sweet, holy, terrifying glimpses, how? Into each narrow crevice and wide chasm go the stories we tell. By lip and by eye we fill, by wrinkle and tongue. O dear one, maybe this flower will do, this shout ’cross the pond. This deep love in the dark night of our blind spaces.

Continue Reading →

Impressions

Two impressions met in the wind; each asked where the other had been; caught in a glance, both said; and passed again.   Impressions Year upon year, fall upon fall, the maple leaves on the path remind me of hands. And one must die to know what it is to be held that way — die to the branch, die to the stem, die to the light, die to the […]

Continue Reading →

Moss, Frost, Tea

It may seem a small matter, chancing to pass the house of a neighbor the very moment he is cursing vehemently in his driveway at six in the morning, his garage door open and garage brightly lit behind him; and it may seem an equally small matter, chancing to pass the same house the following evening and to have the scene repeated, with minor variations — this time he was […]

Continue Reading →

Footsteps

Fall tasks, undertaken at a fall pace. Leaves do not hurl themselves to the ground. Eternity is still surprised by a ladybug or late-season moth; admires armored Hemiptera lacing the sunny south wall; cannot resist caressing the buds holding next spring’s apricots. Her breath, the dawn calls clouds. November 2, 2019

Continue Reading →

Maybe on a Summer Day

Twenty-six degrees. I’m reminded of a similar morning in my mother’s old age, when the furnace stopped working, and how for the entire time during its repair, I chatted with the workman while she stayed in bed to keep warm, snug and unperturbed beneath her grandmother’s quilt, secure in the haze of her thought and non-thought, as if her dementia were a pair of soft comfortable pajamas. Now my wife […]

Continue Reading →