William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Memory’

Honeysuckle and Lemon

When a young man rhymes, we smile and nod. When old, he is forgiven. When in between, we shake our heads, and think we understand him. Or do we just pretend? Fool that I am, I can never tell. But I wish him well. I wish him well. For that is love, and this is heaven.   Honeysuckle and Lemon Paneled wall in oaken hue, piano in corner near wood […]

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Understandable

We live in a world inhabited by giant sequoias thousands of years old. This is true wealth. If I had not grown up near them, visited them, gazed upon them, put my hands on them, and taken their very breath deep into my lungs, I would not be this person; I would be someone else. Yes, we can, and should, say this of all living things, great or small. We […]

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Canvas 444 — Jerusalem

Canvas 444 — October 8, 2014

Though he doesn’t look like him, he reminds me of someone in Jerusalem, chanting in rooster’s voice behind the tomb, ’mid incense-cloud in cage-like room, Spirit moored in tattered robe, soiled well along the road, with dandruff, food, and candle wax, a kind of holy grime and filth, or prophet’s gold, Where I met him in the gloom, when again I was as now, not quite young and almost old, […]

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Canvas 1,040 — Evening

Canvas 1,040 — September 28, 2017

The longer I live, the more like a dream the past becomes. I look at what were once the looming figures of my childhood, and they seem shrouded in mist; the mist is kind to them; it softens them; their bright outlines are hidden; the light has changed; it is as if, relieved of their bodies, I have been given their souls. October 7, 2019. Evening.

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Afternoon Nap

You love this mirage, this idea of yourself looking out on the world, when, all the while, the world is within you. And you love the sanctity of what you imagine is your private space, when that same space is outside you. And if what is outside is in, and what is inside is out, where are you, and what are you? Just what becomes of the who of you? […]

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Ladybug Light

We have never seen such a wealth of mushrooms. The entire neighborhood is covered with them. They have sprung up along borders, beneath hedges; they have erupted in flower pots and lawns; they crowd the sidewalks like bubbles on the rim of a glass. At the same time, as if to reveal their darker side, the older ones have already begun to rot. At a glance they look like stranded […]

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Hoh Rain Forest

Hoh Rain Forest

Rain, in such volume, with such force, and the cedar, unperturbed, a solemn drinker at closing time — yes, what is wisdom worth in this leaky house of mine? September 18, 2019 Hoh Rain Forest July 20, 2010 One saw swans back then. Another, fingers, hands. I saw faces. I see them again.

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Country Life

He’s kissing a girl who’s been packing peaches, elbow-deep in fuzz. She’s damp with sweat and has tired breath — it’s hot and the hours are long. In the house, the old farmer almost sleeps through lunch. His wife watches through the window — she knows the boy — but of course it’s his parents she really knows. And anyway, it’s not her daughter, the pretty girl from town, just […]

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If this is the letter O,
I can only wonder about the rest of the alphabet,
and what brings on these spells.

The Letter O — August 26, 2019

The Letter O — August 26, 2019

In a Vast White Space

A little boy, with a little apple and sticky hands,
busy the spirits about him, busy the wind,
many the voices, solemn, joyous,

in a vast white space,
written in plain white words,
a white ball chased by a wide white hound,

an alphabet of snow,

and you, with your funny little arrows,
ink-tipped, turned upon yourself,

in a vast white space, an apple,
turning red.

Recently Banned Literature, June 2, 2014

(written on the nineteenth anniversary of my father’s death)

The Letter O — In a Vast White Space