William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘The Earth’

For All Things

Is it possible to love someone — to love each other, to love anyone — and not also love and care for the earth on which we live? Imagine human history if, each step of the way, we had first said, What of the land? What of the sea? What of the sky? What of the rivers? What of the animals? What of all living things? For all things do […]

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The Annotated Proverbs of Hell

Once upon a time, a very long short time ago, I “annotated” William Blake’s Proverbs of Hell. Written in 2007 during the months of November and December, my sixty-nine mostly odd, somewhat awkward, likely absurd poetic responses to the Proverbs comprise the entire sixteenth volume of Songs and Letters. The Proverbs are from the 1994 Dover edition of Blake’s The Marriage of Heaven and Hell. Here is the sixth: The […]

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With Or Without Us

Three vultures atop a dead tree at the edge of Goose Lake. The water has receded; the surface is crowded again with lilies. Around the edge, a dense colony of Sagittaria latifolia, the potato-like tubers of which, according to Lewis and Clark, were prized by the natives and filled their canoes during their watery harvest. Wapato. In bloom and attracting bees on the main trail, the fuzzy pink spikes of […]

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Mortality: Three Short Poems

The rain isn’t falling in huge amounts, but there’s enough of it every day to keep things glistening and drenched. There are piles of ice storm debris to attend to, but getting to them leaves deep footprints, where miniature lakes form, not in the shape of Italy’s boot, but in Oregon’s mud-and-moss-encrusted hiking shoe. And so that work waits — or, rather, the worker waits, while the debris does what […]

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Or Should I Say

The strawberries are blooming again. During the past few weeks, with my encouragement and approval, they have sent runners in every direction. Joint by joint, new plants are tacking themselves to whatever bare ground they can find. And where they are growing over rocks, they are rooting in the gaps in between. The secret? Water, along with the understanding that every inch of this wise old earth is a sacred […]

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