William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Wants and Needs’

Inside the Egg

When we expect or fear the worst, we increase the chance of it happening, and of making ourselves the instrument that helps bring it about. Observe; go into it carefully; the evidence is all around us. The same can be said of expecting the best. Of course, it’s worth asking if we can always, or even possibly, know what’s worst and best. The most sensible approach is to leave that […]

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Cracks in the Sidewalk

In light of our ancient, wild heritage, it’s interesting that we imprison ourselves in flat, stale, climate-controlled boxes filled with every convenience, where we grow sicker and weaker with each passing year. We’d be better off climbing on the counter than cleaning it, swinging from the chandelier, and chattering from atop the nightstand and dining table. Such precision. Such order. Such safety. Such security. Teams of professionals trimming our bushes […]

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To Have and Have Not

The world owes me nothing. It gives me everything. I can claim that I have what I have through my own effort, but it simply isn’t so. I have what I have because life is in me and I am in life. I have awareness and breath. I need nothing else. And when they leave this body, they will take that need with them. The sudden arrival of about a […]

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Peacefully Ignorant

Tiny towns and crossings on the west side of the river: Amity, Hopewell, Eola. Lincoln. Zena. Bethel. On this side: St. Louis, Brooks, Mt. Angel, Bethany. Churches. Barns. Cemeteries. Oaks, firs, winding roads that give way to gravel. Smoke from fireplaces and stoves. Deer. Wild blackberries. When was the last time I wanted something I didn’t really need? It must be the forthcoming Richard Wilbur translations of Molière. And the […]

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Resting on the Rim

Insects, resting on the rim of a wide blue flowerpot; a bird, eating them one by one; each is acting according to its need, until the need is no more. No greed, no poverty, no depleted resources; no waste, no alleys lined with overflowing garbage cans. Good fortune: in times of plenty, all are filled; when times are lean, all are lean. Gratitude: to be here now, in joy and […]

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Dry as Dust

A short dream: Without questioning its odd location, I realize that the bookshelf outside on our front step would be more useful inside. There are only a few books on it, while in the house there are enough scattered and stacked about to fill it and more. What strikes me most, though, is the near absence of dust. Why is there so much more dust on the other shelves inside, […]

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Variable Gravity

Two and a half miles near, but not in view of, the river. A silence that is scent, the scent silent in silent assent. The ascent of this idea or thought: variable gravity. Let us suppose that on this earth, instead of gravity being a steady, predictable thing, it varies from person to person and day to day; let us know, through experience, that we cannot always count on having […]

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Matins

What can I possibly want in a world that has already given me everything? August 27, 2020 . Matins Oh, how he loved the bell in the garden, rusted, silent, cool — and when the first leaf fell, he laughed, and wept, like a fool — and while he sat, on a stone, with his white hair, his old hands let go of the world. . [ 851 ]

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