William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Consciousness’

Swallows

Early most mornings, past the big oak where the street bends, I see swallows — usually a pair, but sometimes one or the other is out alone. I say one or the other, but they move so quickly I can’t tell them apart, or even judge their relative size. It’s possible, too, they’re not the same swallows — just as I’m not the same person who sees them from day […]

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We Are Our Own Lens

In light of the sheer immensity of things, any endeavor, however well executed, is bound to seem trivial and small. We write poems, build bridges, send rockets to the moon; yet within this vast expanse, the page is small, the earth is small, the moon is small, the galaxy is small. How powerful, really, would a universal lens have to be to even show we are here? One partial answer […]

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Paradise is Paradise

I seek no other heaven. If this vast wonder-garden is a perfect god’s creation, what improvement would it need? Paradise is paradise, as far as I can see. And if it isn’t perfect, if it happened of itself or is here by some other cause, my judgment of it is bound to share the same imperfection, because I am a part of it. In this garden, the grasses come and […]

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Just Enough Blue

Clouds moving in different directions, the upper layer in wisps from the southwest; fluffs of cotton beneath them, drifting from north to south — and if I were a cloud, the breeze here at ground level would carry me ever so gently from west to east. Somehow — and this is another miracle — there is just enough blue sky to hold this all together. The clouds move, but they […]

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Cloud Paintings

Lines arranged in such a way as to suggest a face but they’re not really lines and not arranged the way flesh holds us together one might almost see cloud paintings if they were there and we were here as we imagine ourselves to be where the sky and river meet                                 oh it is such vanity to speak! [ 747 ]

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My First Summer in the Sierra

The myriad components of this universe may be seen as varying expressions of one grand intelligence, an intelligence itself perhaps still evolving and ripening. No part is greater or lesser than another, or better or worse. Each is indispensable as long as it is needed, and plays its part in the great drama, whether star, waterfall, or blade of grass, elephant, bird, man, or mold. This includes the universe itself, […]

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In the River Remarkably Still

Will the doves choose the fig tree for their nest? They were back again yesterday afternoon, settled peacefully in the same place, which would safely support a new home. Maybe if they are left undisturbed long enough, they will decide to stay. Then again, considering the way they watch us through the kitchen window, they might also be angels. Earlier in the day, I rode with our eldest son up […]

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As the Crow Flies

Lower than the lowest cloud — higher than the highest tree — Brighter than the brightest sun — darker than the deepest grave — What are these thoughts — but almost — not quite — all — or none — of me? What are these things — but imagined — distinguished — company? What are these wings — but the wind’s — divine — philosophy? [ 680 ]

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