William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Aging’

Body Language

Perhaps the oldest language is the one spoken by the body to its conscious inhabitant. And all that is needed to understand it, is a willingness to listen. To habitually ignore or purposefully misconstrue what the body says causes an unnecessary battle that cannot be won. The body speaks only the truth, and cannot be fooled. Its memory, moreover, is perfect. And yet, at every turn, its kindness is revealed. […]

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Friendship, Devotion, and Care

Our recent walk through the fog near Goose Lake seems like something that happened ages ago — a lifetime, maybe more. I study the calendar: is it something I really know how to read? Upon our arrival, we met a man and a dog who had just finished their walk. Standing beside the open door of his small yellow pickup, the man was gently blotting moisture from the dog’s head. […]

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The Page and the Moon

The rising sliver of the waning moon is good company. So is a blank page. I have seen many of the latter dawn and fade over the years, very nearly one each day — fade into print, into scratch, swirl, and scrawl. But if I had to choose between the page and the moon, I would keep the moon and let go of the page. And while it is one […]

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Gray October

Our garden space is small, but this year we were still able to give away dozens and dozens of cucumbers and many baskets of cherry tomatoes. Now the garden is on the wane, with a tomato here, a cucumber there, and as many sunflower seeds as the birds can hold and the squirrels can tuck away. Whole heads, their spiny necks broken, jays squawking, squirrels chattering and scolding — we […]

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Shall I Tell You of My Former Life?

Slow verse, dry stones, the river shows her age. Kind nurse, soft tones, her smile full of maple leaves. August 20, 2021 . Shall I Tell You of My Former Life? Shall I tell you of my former life? It happens in the strangest way, today, not yesterday, before tomorrow begins, and where my new life ends, over, and yet over, again. Like smoke, it rides the wind, and as […]

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Thinking of You Out There

Ripening grapes, the first crickets, and a few dry leaves. Light. Dark. Tired in the way of a warning. August 6, 2021 . Thinking of You Out There Thinking of you out there, deep in the dry grass and summer smoke, steady as a blind-cricket time-piece; how want is a dry well, and truth the tale of windmill blades. Recently Banned Literature, July 10, 2014 . [ 1189 ]

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My Childhood Self

In terms of imagination, joy, and wonder, I am as much my childhood self as ever. I am a dreamer, and the world passes through me as a dream. That is my reality. There has been an accumulation of facts, of knowledge, yes — but as useful as some of these are, or seem to be, they are only superficial adornments. They are not mine; I lay no claim to […]

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Proverb

A very warm afternoon, outside and in. It seems logical, natural, inevitable, that, as I age, I am moving steadily, inexorably, towards silence. The season holds sway, but the conclusion is the same any time of year. Towards word silence; journal silence; poem silence; grave silence. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust; silence to silence. Emerged from silence, proceeding unto silence; never having left silence, forever part of silence. Loving […]

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Canvas 411 — Helpless

You — the dawning of the age and the greatmoral argument — disarmed by beauty — the turningof the page and the precious life you have spent. “Helpless”Recently Banned Literature, September 27, 2014 Canvas 411 August 3, 2014 . [ 1180 ]

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How You Bury a Butterfly

Imagine a future museum that preserves the furniture of today — the overstuffed chairs, the massive sofas, the acre-wide, bottomless, bloated beds — and its lean and agile visitors looking on wide-eyed, shaking their heads. Why did they torture themselves? How did they live that way? High in the mountain wilderness, John Muir would use the scented branches of conifers to make a bed for the night. The crystal waters […]

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