Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Bargaining

(Paul Gauguin, "In the Waves" or "Ondine")

I can't write horror.
I can't write resistance.
I can't write our way out of this, I'm sorry. I'm useless.
The world, overnight, betrayed our trust, becoming nakedly monstrous (without turning serious). Artists raged, felt the pull toward truth, spitting nails from their mouths, tasting blood at the roots. Minds were distorted, preconceptions split up. And I know, I know. We ought to fight evil with all the words in the arsenal. Every writer worth her salt should be screaming, "Look out!" and "Fire!" Remember your history? The hellscapes of Bosch, the Germany of Weimar? What power! (Drop your illusions, Sarah: be a truth-teller, finally.)
But I can't do it.
I am petrified wood in the face of this fire.
I need beauty.
I crave it.
Turn my back so to save it.
Giddiness! Upsweep! Poetic indulgence. Oh, I seek awe in the marriage of molecule and light.
I will have it.
So spring—do your thing. Swamp my soul like Ophelia's.
I want his eyes synched to mine, heart foolishly reeling.
Oh God but I'm tired of caring so much.
Atlas—that's it!
Shrug off that burden.
Sit with me. Stretch. Watch the mayflies grow older. 
A tulip. A daisy. The arc of the heron.
All I'm asking for—please—is the grace of a moment.  

And I will make of it a monastery.
At the top of the waves. 


6 comments:

joaquin carvel said...

huh. quiet around here.

i feel like i'm wandering around a neighborhood i lived in a long time ago. recognize the houses, but seems like everyone i knew moved away. can't tell you how good it is to find that you're still home.

"the marriage of molecule and light" though - yes. you (we) absolutely need beauty. that is the resistance to monstrosity, isn't it?

Sarah Hina said...

It is.

Your being here again is grace, and beauty. Even if "here" is a bit of a ghost town now.

I gotta run and tell Aniquez. There's life in this place yet. And joy.



Aniket Thakkar said...

OMG. OMG. OMG.
I'm having a fan-boy moment out here!

@Joaquin Where have you been?! I haven't been writing much lately, and when I do, it's always at a different place - thinking I would get it right with fresh start.

I'm always around though.

I'm married now. Whowudathought!

I made my wife read some of your poetry and told her how I owe the little I know of rhythm and rhyme to you.
She's a fan too. :)

Hope you'll stick around this time.

@Sarah - If this didn't brighten up your day, I don't know what will.

Sarah Hina said...

Aniket--it really, really did.

I only wish the old blogging community were still around. I miss it all.

joaquin carvel said...

annnnniiiiiiiiqqqqqquuuuuueeeezzzzz!

congratulations! that is fantastic. please don't make her read my poems though. just, you know, offer. (sorry-couldn't resist) saw the pic down below - she is lovely and she married you, so she's obviously smart with great taste.

missed you. it is so great to hear (read) your voice again.

Aniket Thakkar said...

I've been using variants of your 'Simpleton' to impress ladies for quite some time now. :)
So when Siddhi (my wife) asked - 'How do your poem sounds better than the ones I try to write?', I showed her the mail you sent about basics of syllable counting and rhymes. That lead to reading some of your poems online, and then moved on to your book.

I've "made her read" Sarah's work too. A copy of "Plum Blossoms in Paris" was the first gift I ever gifted her, so she kinda had little choice but to read it. I'm sly like that.

You've been terribly missed. Hope you are in good health and open shop at 'Lyrics and Maladies' soon.
I want to get back to writing too. I'm afraid, you folks will have a tough time beating me back into shape.