William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Writing’

The Page and the Moon

The rising sliver of the waning moon is good company. So is a blank page. I have seen many of the latter dawn and fade over the years, very nearly one each day — fade into print, into scratch, swirl, and scrawl. But if I had to choose between the page and the moon, I would keep the moon and let go of the page. And while it is one […]

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Curious Symbols

The recorded voice of a long dead relative and the old associations it stirs. How the first fall rain wakens mold in the yard. Leaves in his eyes, moss on his arms. Then you realize that all those years he was alive, you witnessed only the talking version of him, and never, not once, the solitary, the silent. Or, perhaps, that was his silence. As this is yours. Pages and […]

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Crossing — My Father’s Side

I didn’t learn to type in school. With the help of a book from the public library, I taught myself when I was in my early thirties. Prior to that, I used the time-honored hunt-and-peck system. I’m a fair typist, not a good one. I can type these lines without looking at the keys. But if I need to incorporate numbers, I have to look down. Once many years ago, […]

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You Are Here

Pen and claw — old friends scratching out their autobiographies. August 15, 2021 . You Are Here As intimate as you are with yourself as imagined by others, imagine imagining yourself as you are, when imagination itself imagines changing course — that is, imagine a river, imagining an ocean, imagining an imagined star — as intimate, as you imagine, you are. Somewhere, there is a familiar old coat on a […]

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Last Leaf Wanting

To spend a lifetime moving words around, only to find, in the end, that they have moved themselves back again, is one more reason for gratitude. . Last Leaf Wanting Last leaf wanting of a letter that you wrote, and I, a tree, in a dream, unclothed, beside a street, lined with honeycomb. Recently Banned Literature, August 30, 2015 . [ 1193 ]

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Standing and Crawling

I am on my feet; the laptop is resting on four sleeved volumes — two containing the work of Nora Zeale Hurston, and the others, nine novels from the Harlem Renaissance. The left side of the computer is above and partly hides my old Royal typewriter. To the right, The Life of Langston Hughes. Behind them, Plutarch’s Lives. Behind them, the complete writings of Robert Browning. And behind all that, […]

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Moving Day

This morning I saw a hairy spider crawling on the edge of the counter in the bathroom. It was in no hurry. I found the small plastic jar we keep for such situations, guided him into it, covered the top, then released our surprised friend outside, where he trundled off through some dry moss. I try not to sit very often or for very long. I feel better when I […]

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A Safe Distance

After writing for so many years, after devoting so many pages to pixel and print, it’s only right to ask myself what, or how much, I might be keeping hidden — not from those who are kind enough to read them, but from the one sitting here, tapping away at his keyboard. It’s not simply a matter of confession. Even if I were to divulge the most private and personal […]

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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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