William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Spirits’

A Few Nasturtiums

Through an open window in the dark, you imagine what you’ve seen before. Then you hear an owl, who-hooting in the firs. Coffee’s ready. Scarce past four. You imagine not a thing before. And the owl concurs.   A Few Nasturtiums A few nasturtiums where nothing else will grow. Fir needles. Who can count them all. And the tales they tell of galaxies in dew and dust. A calligrapher’s turn […]

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Canvas 902 — Irises and Dreams

Canvas 902 — May 16, 2017

  Irises and Dreams The tomato plants are growing like weeds in the rain. This morning I walked in a dense, heavy mist. The robins were out. Some starlings. A towhee. Silence emanated from coy-hidden crows. Crow silence. Black-ink silence. The atmosphere, it seemed, was deep into the process of paper-making. A calligrapher’s dream. A mark here, a mark there, and thus a new language is born, and is off […]

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Song as Summons

I wonder how old I was when the idea first reached me that our departed loved ones might still be near and looking on. I don’t remember having thought of it myself, or it ever being suggested by my parents. I might have read it somewhere. I did a lot of reading in my youth. I find the idea poetically appealing, but I’ve never thought of it as either definitely […]

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Canvas 824 — Patience

Canvas 824 — January 17, 2017

I wonder, is it possible to cultivate a patience so gentle and profound that it outlives the flesh? Or is patience a pond we bathe in, and cannot defile with our death? We were greeted by a friendly, talkative woodpecker yesterday near Goose Lake — a young bird more intent on socializing than carrying on its regular craft and trade. Watching us from a bare trunk not five feet away, […]

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In Tune

A few days ago, a wonderful little girl named Ella came to the door and said she was helping to raise money for her middle school band, and that I could aid her in this effort by purchasing a poinsettia for fifteen dollars. It happened that I had that much cash on hand, and so I happily gave it to her and put my name and address on her growing […]

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Whispers

Dahlia leaves, intensely green after a thunderstorm. Ferns and moss, a fertile, humid prayer. Cleaning the iris bed — old, worn mothers with their fearless children. The scent of mushrooms soon to sprout. A friendly neighbor says a spirit haunts his house. Books — Walt Whitman and John Muir. Melville and Thoreau. And how strange Emerson, if he’d had a beard. September 12, 2019 [ 510 ]

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This One

If there is a spirit world, why not this one? Late yesterday evening, the crows half-flew, half-drifted every which way on the southwest breeze, which was strong enough to make their frequent treetop landings a challenge. This one? No, this one! Here? No, over there! Haw! — and yet the grand and glorious silence was never broken. The clover was drunk on sunlight. Now it’s snoring in the dark. And […]

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Curious

If thoughts left visible trails, then perhaps more of us would see how we are bound by them. Imagine a web at once dangerous and beautiful, so dense it darkens the sky — cloud rooms, passages, caves, precipices, dungeons, veils — and that this is not only between us, but between ourselves and a deeper understanding of how we really can fly.   Curious When I open the blinds, spirits […]

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Your Love’s Return

Winter is the perfect time to start a regimen of cold early-morning showers. I begin with water that is lukewarm. Then, as I wash, I steadily move to cool. I finish in cold. I enjoy the cold phase for three minutes or so. The result? Any soreness, stiffness, or sluggishness I might have had is gone, and I am ready and raring to go. Best of all, the mind is […]

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Morning Coffee

As always at this early hour, I’m drinking coffee. I love coffee. I’ve loved it since childhood, when the aroma of it perking would invade my bedroom. Yes, I had a bed, and a room. I still marvel at it. At night, the sliding closet door, painted the same color as the walls, had to be closed. If it was open, the things hanging in the closet came to life […]

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