William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Spirit-Health’

Smoke in the Canyon

How proud we are of the useless nonsense recorded in our brains — jingles, slogans, brands, styles, and trivia of every kind — none of which truly enriches our lives or helps us survive. That these things have replaced a dependable catalog of natural wonders, such as bird song, the habits of insects, and the subtle changes in our environment and signs in the weather, is a sad commentary on […]

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In Simplest Terms

A little before four this morning, it was cloudy with only one star briefly visible; then, a few minutes later, between the birches and firs, through a break in the clouds just above the neighbor’s second-story roof, we caught a sustained glimpse of the full lunar eclipse, as the shadow passed and the moon began to emerge. Now there is a robin singing from the chimney-top. It comes to mind […]

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The Spirit-Hand

What would I do with the time I spend adding to this collection of poems, notes, and drawings if I were to stop doing so? The first answer that comes to mind is, More of what I already do when I am not doing this. But I think a more inspiring answer would be, Find out. Or maybe even, Find out, and then, do not record it as I usually […]

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Canvas 398 — I Will Be Wise

Yes, I will be wise when I finish this clover chain;when my heart’s hands and my mind’s thumbsbind my tree’s limbs to my joy’s roots,my sun’s rain will beordained. “I Will Be Wise”Recently Banned Literature, July 2, 2014 Canvas 398 July 5, 2014 . [ 1100 ]

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Inside and Out

It’s our very good fortune that every window of this house looks out on lush green growth: the maples, pine, and cedar; the birches and firs; the garden, vine, apricot, and blueberry; the juniper and the dense, tall arborvitae; the fig, the lilacs, the rhododendrons; the ferns, moss, grass, and volunteer oak and hazelnut seedlings; and in the distance, the trees of the neighborhood. Each view changes from hour to […]

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The First to Sneeze

A healthy body wants only what it needs. A healthy mind acts accordingly. The stars were still bright at four this morning. Even then I could hear robins singing up the street. No shoes or socks: I was listening with my feet. Red, purple, pink: three big barrels of geraniums, three plants in each. They join us at each meal. Being geraniums is an art: sometimes we are in the […]

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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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Love You Too

The ego wants a safe place, and plants a thousand flags. But the spirit — oh, the spirit, has wings. We were married in January 1976. Our first summer, we had sweet peas that flowered to the top of the fence. Today we have some in a vase. And through the open window drifts love’s fragrance. A bright-yellow tanager sits high atop an open sunflower; a fuzzy black-and-yellow bee lights […]

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Our Lives Outlive Us

It’s a contradiction to speak of progress, spiritual or otherwise, and then complain about having to do the dishes. The little things one resists, once seen in their true light, are understood as blessings, death included. Our lives outlive us — by one smile, one poem, one soothed pain, one axe, one gun, one malicious stroke of the pen, the present flesh recoils, and mortal breath is thrilled again. June […]

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Wild Carrots

Seventeen years — hyacinths are there now, shaded by a rapidly growing volunteer cedar. My mother is gone. We live in her house.   Wild Carrots It just occurred to me that wild carrots have sprouted only once on the slope near the sidewalk in front of my mother’s house. That was about three years ago. My sons and I noticed them while working in the area. The roots were […]

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