William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Flesh and Spirit’

Canvas 990 — The Finger Sketches

We are the only beings intelligent enough to drug ourselves, poison our food, wear synthetic shoes, stay indoors, and breathe foul, recycled air. Poor birds! Poor animals! Poor dumb creatures everywhere! March 22, 2021 Canvas 990 August 6, 2017 . The Finger Sketches The finger sketches. The thumb hums along. Suddenly the thumb stops. What is wrong? The finger stretches. Is it the palm? The breath catches. The mind fetches. […]

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Suburban Sailor

It’s still too cold for a barefoot walk through the wet grass. And yet I’m tempted. Let it be a short walk, across the yard and back. Hands on one of the broad limbs of the fig tree, I listen to the neighbor’s firs creaking in the wind. Lines; grooves; the pigmentation of aged but youthful skin. It’s not that I’m afraid to let go; it’s the earth’s grounding force […]

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This Morning the Sky Is My Beloved

Only upon waking does this body form. What need is there otherwise? March 9, 2021 . This Morning the Sky Is My Beloved This morning the sky is my beloved and she beseeches me to take the earth from her hands for just a little while the earth heavy but so small and the rain is how her wept love falls. Recently Banned Literature, March 9, 2017 . [ 1043 […]

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Light In Your Body

Observe, listen to your body. It always speaks the truth, sometimes loudly, sometimes softly. In every muscle, wrinkle, and cell, it shows, demonstrates, reminds, proves. The mind is a storyteller. The body is the story’s meaning revealed. The mind says, I need coffee, I need pills, I need eight hours of sleep, I need gravy, I need meat. The body replies with aches and pains. It gives you clouds. It […]

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To Live in Such a Way

Of this window, two things, knowing they are one: your breath on icy glass, bright spirits as they pass. “Of This Window” Recently Banned Literature, January 4, 2016 . To Live in Such a Way To live in such a way as not to break this sweet silence. Cherub on a limb. Fluffy wren. Snowflake. Winterwake. If you ask her where she’s been, she will sing again. Make that your […]

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Let Me Fix That For You

In its romantic aspect, Plum Bun is a lumpy little package with a very pretty bow. Everything fits, but after you have opened the package and taken out the gift, it is impossible to restore the contents just so; they now rise above the rim; the lid atop, askew, will fall off at the slightest bump or cough or sneeze. Let me fix that for you, someone near might say, […]

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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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Summer Advice

At ten-thirty this morning, the sun makes my arms feel like they’re about to become wings; the shade is the spirit of cool and quiet things. August 24, 2020 . Summer Advice Kiss each other in the shade after you’ve eaten a juicy ripe peach. No shade, imagine the tree. No peach, imagine the taste. No one, no one with a heart out of reach. Poems, Slightly Used, June 1, […]

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A Few Nasturtiums

Through an open window in the dark, you imagine what you’ve seen before. Then you hear an owl, who-hooting in the firs. Coffee’s ready. Scarce past four. You imagine not a thing before. And the owl concurs.   A Few Nasturtiums A few nasturtiums where nothing else will grow. Fir needles. Who can count them all. And the tales they tell of galaxies in dew and dust. A calligrapher’s turn […]

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Wild Carrots

Seventeen years — hyacinths are there now, shaded by a rapidly growing volunteer cedar. My mother is gone. We live in her house.   Wild Carrots It just occurred to me that wild carrots have sprouted only once on the slope near the sidewalk in front of my mother’s house. That was about three years ago. My sons and I noticed them while working in the area. The roots were […]

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