William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Knowledge’

From Wing to Wonder

The dragonflies are out again. Yesterday two landed on stakes in the dahlia bed to sun themselves. Each, after resting for several seconds, would lift off, hover briefly, then land again. They did this three or four times, until one finally decided to change stakes, flying up near my face before landing. The dragonflies were small and of a reddish color. As easy as it would be to find out, […]

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Among the Living

Early morning. Cloudy. Quiet. Owl acoustics. Most birds don’t mind singing in the wind. But owls prefer a hushed auditorium. Dimmed chandeliers. Hills sloping downward, soft carpet leading to the stage. A voice captures the audience. Hear it once, and you will wait forever to hear it again. Owl heartbeat. Owl meditation. Owl silence. Hear it a second time, and a third, eternity in between. It comes from the south. […]

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Something Between Us

I scratch the surface. It laughs, and scratches back. . Something Between Us It’s natural that we probe the universe for signs of life, but remember: the universe itself is a living thing, and the seeming nothingness we call space is as vital to our existence as that which, to our perception, we find it contains. We may classify space as nothing, or call it emptiness, but it’s the medium […]

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Religio Medici

In the latter pages of his Religio Medici, Sir Thomas Browne mentions in passing that in addition to several regional dialects, he knows six languages. He does not write so to impress; it strikes me more as an expression of his generous, liberal nature: he sees himself not as the center of the universe as it was then known and understood, but as a fortunate participant in everything it has […]

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Out Like a Light

The day will come, if it hasn’t already, when my notes about living in this world will seem quaint, if not childish. I like to think that I assume nothing; that my observations are my own; but this is far from the truth. In terms of knowledge, I have inherited a working farm, the ground of which was well broken and planted before me. The great astronomers have given me […]

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Whales and Wild Grains

The affairs of humans, certainly — but not exclusively. The stars, the birds, the flowers, the wind. Mountains. Whales. Insects. Worms. Wild grains. These things are all to be considered, and each has something to say. A mountain range publishes glaciers and snowstorms, rivers and forests; it does so simply, reliably, and without bias — it tells the complete truth, and nothing but the truth. This is the claim of […]

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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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All Together Now

Do I know you as well as I know those I know in the flesh? Yes. Because in both ways of knowing, it’s really my imagination that creates you. Is this a way of saying I don’t know you at all, or that I know you ever so little? Yes. And that, too, is beautiful. Do you know me? Is that something I can ever know? I don’t know. Do […]

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My Father’s Shoes

My Father's Shoes

I will never consider myself educated; the idea is laughable; and if the time ever comes that I honestly can, it will likely be too late to serve much purpose. As it is, I’m not even sure I know what I know, my life being the dream that it is. I confess a school boy’s understanding of the alphabet; and I’m fairly certain that if I go at it slowly […]

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All of the Dance

What exists is imagined, and what is imagined exists — our demons and gods, our presents, futures, and pasts, our truths, our errors, our facts. Observation, reason, instinct, fear, madness — these are all of the dance. This is my experience, and so this is my guess. It is the ultimate solitude — there can be none greater than my knowing, and none greater than my not knowing. It is […]

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