William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Childhood’

Curious Symbols

The recorded voice of a long dead relative and the old associations it stirs. How the first fall rain wakens mold in the yard. Leaves in his eyes, moss on his arms. Then you realize that all those years he was alive, you witnessed only the talking version of him, and never, not once, the solitary, the silent. Or, perhaps, that was his silence. As this is yours. Pages and […]

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Sweet Yellow Lanterns

Fifty-eight degrees. Standing shirtless on the grass at dawn under a steady rain, face to the sky, I was surprised at how warm I felt. Twenty minutes later, inside, while finishing my shower with the water turned completely to cold, I was surprised again by how much colder the water was coming from the city well and up through the pipes that run under the house. What, in degrees, is […]

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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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Apricots, Finches, Plums

Found early this morning, fallen from the tree: a very ripe, very sweet apricot — I know, because I ate it right after washing off the ants. The house finches prefer drinking from the shallow glass water dish that we have hanging from the fig tree. The main birdbath, it seems, is a little too large and too busy for them. After watering the barrels, planters, and pots behind the […]

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Lullaby

Someday, when you’re a dragonfly standing on air, And your transparent blue wings are all that you wear, I’ll be a gravestone with a waterfall near; Now sleep on, child, sleep without fear, Sleep, my love, my sweet, My dear. Recently Banned Literature, January 10, 2018 . [ 1147 ]

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Death Sentence

A poem of a sentence from Emerson’s journal, written 19 June, 1838: A young lady came here whose face was a blur & gave the eye no repose. The story behind it? Gone. Or is it still to be written? Mass shooting. I wonder how old I was when I first heard or read that term. No matter — now it is commonly used in plural form. It was certainly […]

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A Book and Boy

The first verse is a faithful telling of something that happened which my eldest grandson has likely forgotten, and which I had forgotten too, until I rediscovered the poem. The verses that follow are still happening. . A Book and Boy A book and boy in his lap, a farmer tellshis grandson how a big combine cuts the wheat,and loaves of fresh-baked bread come outthe other end. They compare hands. […]

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Under Our Hats

I found an ancient pair of worn out jeans and cut them off a little above the knee. I’m wearing them now. I wore them early this morning while working barefoot in the garden and watering our assorted plantings and pots. Dirt, water, sun — childhood. We bought half a crate of strawberries yesterday. They’re called “Ruby June.” For whatever lucky reason, I’ve had more close-up meetings with birds. As […]

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Mint

I’ve started a new bed of mint between the apricot tree and the blueberry. It’s from the mint that grew on our old farm, behind my childhood home, where for a time near the edge of the bed there was a small, well-shaded hole in the ground, from which, in the cool of the evening, a fat toad would emerge for a meal and a peek through the mint at […]

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