William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Beauty’

Crude Approximations

The little mimosa by the cedar has six leaves, a rich orange, leaning towards red. The tiny birch less than two feet away also has six — the top three are green, the fourth is yellow-green, and the two near the ground are yellow. The color references are crude approximations. Set in the wilderness as they are, among grasses, ground covers, mushrooms, and a scattering of needles, cones, and other […]

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Body, Breath, and Bones

Does my life matter? I am part of life. If life matters, I matter. If life does not matter, I do not matter. Either way, I live: I am part of the miracle, even if it is not a miracle. The rest — the years, the words, the little personal details — is simply my way of saying how beautiful life seems to me. It would be self-centered to assume […]

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The View from Here

An early-morning walk, with the full moon setting behind the firs, the tops of which are obscured by a rapidly accumulating fog. The grass is heavy with dew. And now fog is forming in the street. The beauty of this world, as I love, know, and understand it, would not be possible without the ongoing, ever-renewing cycle of birth, death, and decay. Why, then, would I think of my own […]

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On the Precipice

Little by little, the ocean is breathing life into the valley. The air is still dangerous to breathe, but now it contains far more moisture, which is helping to slow the spread of the fires. Yesterday afternoon, there was a lot more bird and squirrel activity — the birds bathing, splashing, and scratching for seeds and worms, the squirrels with nuts in their mouths, scurrying along the fence tops. Humans […]

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A Feather on the Scale

We’re told this morning that more than 900,000 acres of Oregon’s forests have been burned or are in the process of burning. We’re also told that ten percent of the state’s population has been evacuated to safer areas. The valley we live in is dense with smoke. The air quality readings are well into and beyond what is deemed hazardous. Yesterday evening our youngest son brought us two air purifiers […]

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In the Beginning

Light is relentless. Darkness is sin. But which is which, my friend? Where does one end and the other begin? Sorrow is beauty. Humor is sad. But in the beginning, that wasn’t my plan. And Job said, Begin again. [ 815 ]

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Kindred Spirits

Kindred Spirits — January 30, 2009

Some of us see ourselves as damaged goods, and wear that image as a badge, or a kind of shield against the world. And even in this stage, we are beautiful. But we are beautiful in every stage; for instance, we are beautiful when we foolishly think we are above all that, and that we are the only ones who know. We are beautiful when we think ourselves insignificant and […]

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Love, Look at the Two of Us

A seed, breaking through hard ground. Human seeds, all around. What this poor poet has so long tried to say, is expressed far more eloquently by the beautiful virus in our midst. Beautiful? Yes. For this is how a mother reminds her children when they heedlessly, carelessly forget — that we — are all — connected. For this, and for all things, she has my gratitude. Seen by my wife […]

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Counting Corners

Somewhere in the 444-page doorstop that I affectionately call One Hand Clapping, there’s an entry in which I am preoccupied with counting all of the corners in the house we were renting at the time. It ended up being an absurd number — but of course all numbers are absurd — at least I have always found them so. But that didn’t stop me from counting. The big rooms were […]

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