William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Grace’

Or Should I Say

The strawberries are blooming again. During the past few weeks, with my encouragement and approval, they have sent runners in every direction. Joint by joint, new plants are tacking themselves to whatever bare ground they can find. And where they are growing over rocks, they are rooting in the gaps in between. The secret? Water, along with the understanding that every inch of this wise old earth is a sacred […]

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I Love the Flower Girl

Politics is a filthy sponge. Do you want it in your sink? Do you want it in your mind? Yesterday evening, after two warm days, a cleansing ocean wind rushed into the valley once again. This morning the air is sweet and still. And I sense something else, which makes me say these words aloud: autumnal understanding. If I do not return your wave, is the loss not mine? For […]

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The Hurry-Up Side of Your Face

You are not happy. You want nothing more than to be happy. You are willing, even, to think you are happy, and to tell everyone how happy you are, even if you are not happy. But doing so makes you sad, and it saddens those whom you tell. Thinking you are happy, you are not happy. You are sad. You are sad, until, one day, a miracle happens, and you […]

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Just Long Enough

I love moss — its color, its texture, its immediate response to fog or the slightest hint of rain, and how it thrives on thoughtful compression and familiar touch, growing thick beneath footsteps on sidewalks, in lawns, and on forest paths. In some ways it is almost human. Or maybe we are almost moss. This time of year, the retaining walls, the stone steps, and the wooden borders of the […]

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To French Vanilla and All the Other Flavors

Someday, perhaps, the unhappiest and most destructive of our kind will simply be loved by the rest of us into grace — caressed, as it were, by the whole human race. Now, look at the face. Look, and then ask yourself: Am I willing to love? Or am I above such tragic disgrace? And: If I am above, how came I to be so unlike the truth I proclaim — […]

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When I see ignorance in a face, or anxiety, or arrogance, or fear,
I see the road that brought me here.

When I see compassion, grace, and love,
I see sweet rain on distant fields. I see where I was born.

When I see my fingers on the keys of this strange machine,
I see an entire species on the precipice of itself.

Canvas 1,132 — January 12, 2018

Canvas 1,132 — January 12, 2018

 

Less a Tightrope Walker

Less a tightrope walker or juggler, more a snowflake or butterfly.

And then, when you least expect it, a man, in a grave, at the end.

That’s when his bones dance without help from his skin.

Don’t think it sad. Be a friend. Look in.

And don’t think me mad, if that’s what I am.

Think me flower, or ball, or pin.

Think me weightless.

Or melting.

Yes. Think of me then.

Recently Banned Literature, January 12, 2017

Canvas 1,132 — Less a Tightrope Walker