William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Lilacs’

Stay

I spent part of yesterday afternoon weeding the front slope. Leaning against the mossy retaining wall, I did the work by hand, one weed at a time, my right hand pulling, my left planted firmly on the ground. As I went along, I also used my right hand as a rake, massaging every inch of the moist, aromatic soil, my hand being massaged in return. This went on for an […]

Continue Reading →

Lemon Sun, Pomegranate Blood

Dream, memory, and the written word — in my experience, these overlap to such a degree that it would be useless to ask which has the most powerful influence on the others. Imagine three very old, sympathetic sisters. Finally, one of them dies. The surviving two follow her to the cemetery, and the conversation between the three of them continues there. . Lemon Sun, Pomegranate Blood The little unpainted house […]

Continue Reading →

Mushrooms and Mildew

Mushrooms and mildew — so much mildew, it’s possible the mushrooms have mildew. The alyssum and dahlias in the front flowerbed are white with mildew. Even the lilac has mildew. But the peppers don’t. Neither do the apricot or fig. I have mildew, but thus far it affects only the cerebrum, so I’m not worried. Such fogs we’ve been having — dense, dripping fogs, street-blackening fogs, window-streaming fogs, leaf-shimmering fogs, […]

Continue Reading →

Letters

Late each evening, the male towhee comes out from the rhododendron for one last look at the world and a little something to eat before bed. He is done singing for the day, and still mindful of the nest. Under the lilac, he finds something that intrigues him in the moss, and starts scratching like a chicken. The motion propels him forward several inches, then he hops back and pecks […]

Continue Reading →

Doorway Poem

A hummingbird stands in place, eyes upon my face, looking in. The cedar — moves a little closer — and then the lilac, grass, and breeze. We all live here — for now — and we come and go as we please. [ 731 ]

Continue Reading →

Sunday’s Child

At long last I can say I have read Leaves of Grass — every word, in the poet’s final edition. I can also say that I have read each poem aloud, phrase by phrase, line by line, slowly, patiently, thoughtfully, carefully listening all the while. I had read Walt Whitman before. I had read his 1855 first edition, and many of his poems at random. And about fifteen years ago, […]

Continue Reading →

The Budding Lilac

The budding lilac isn’t concerned with my memory of last year’s bloom. All is abundance, even in dearth. There are dogs I see every day which no longer bark when I pass. I see a fairly large white one through a living room window; he sits upright in a chair like a human, his right paw on the armrest. He watches and makes no comment. At dusk I meet a […]

Continue Reading →

When Last In the Dooryard

Bury me with the old gray hat. Let it rest on my chest and cover my hands, that each new spring may imagine them.   When Last In the Dooryard Now the lilac’s in bloom. Have y’noticed how flowers use their voices, And how some need only whisper To be heard? Recently Banned Literature, April 26, 2018 [ 364 ]

Continue Reading →