William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Imagination’

Reason

It’s probably no more insane to imagine reason, than it is reasonable to imagine insanity. Still, I feel compelled to ask myself: What is my insanity, reason, and imagination to make of such a statement, even though I’m the one who made it? Also: Am I merely being clever, or am I serious? Am I a model student, or a class clown? Either way, or all — I am reminded […]

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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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The Mad Artist

Fifteen years. Do I really remember this, or does this remember me? . The Mad Artist Yesterday I was waiting at a light when a mad artist quickly sketched a little girl in front of me in the crosswalk. The girl looked up and gave me the prettiest, craziest smile — a smile of freedom and recognition. I replied with a silly grin. This made her eyes shine, even brighter […]

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Sweat the Gold, the Place You Kneel

I moved two tiny oak-sprouts from the garden into clay pots today. One was growing next to the six-foot redwood stake at the end of a tomato row; the other was near the base of our vine. For now I’m calling them the vineyard oak and the tomato oak, the latter at the risk of a little clumsiness for the double-o vowels. The main roots on both were surprisingly deep. […]

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Past Present

The apricots are coloring. I remember early mornings on the farm when the smell of ripening fruit filled the atmosphere — to breathe at that hour meant taking the combined scent of apricots, peaches, and plums deep into the lungs and into the bloodstream. The magic I felt, balanced my practical concerns with the infinite and set me working at a soul’s pace. And though I left behind that life […]

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No Small Thing

Even after a thorough washing, the fingertips of my left hand wear the strong scent of marigolds — this from having plucked three mostly dried blooms from their plants. On each side of the marigolds, we have lobelia in two clay pots. The pots and the marigolds are on an old mossy concrete bench. The bench looks like it belongs in a cemetery. Bees love the lobelia. The lobelia love […]

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I Go Sparkling

I know someone who has a beautiful garden, with a barn, a path, many squirrels, and a broom. In the garden, she moves rocks around. And the rocks respond: they summon light and shade, night, rain, snow; and they hold each beyond the winking lives of them. I do the same with small smooth river stones. Today, near our jade plants, at the east end of the flowerbed by the […]

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Imaginary Cigarettes — Writing Smoke

Writing Smoke — 2009

Dear one, you asked me how I feel. I’m smoking imaginary cigarettes in a cloud of imaginary smoke with imaginary ashes in my lap. My coffee is almost real enough to coat the tongue and conjure the sound of clattering cups as dreams flash by the windows. Pshhhh — an old man opens the door, smiles at the bottles of ketchup on the counter and at himself for being here. […]

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Vigil

A day for tea. Not one cup, or two, but three. A trinity. Prophecy? Too, it well may be. An acute form of language, Or memory. Imagined, or worse. A blessing, a curse. A death, a truth, a fiction. A doorway. A wise oak. Surrender. Confession. Birth. March 31, 2020 [ 712 ]

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Four Old Canvases

Four Old Canvases — March 10, 2011

I see myself rattling along sleeplessly in a train at night, through unnamed towns and across the wide prairie, alone in my compartment with a large battered trunk full of canvases. I’m on my way to a one-man show in New York. When I arrive and step out on the platform, someone informs me, in an astonished whisper, “New York, sir. It’s gone. Something happened to it, and we’re trying […]

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