Sunday, February 28, 2010

when you awaken in the morning hush

For some reason, I really appreciate when abstract ideas and feelings are attributed to corporeal entities. Particularly things in nature or parts of the human anatomy. It makes the feeling more immediate, and it seems to connect what's going on in my head with something tangible. I know that material existence is fleeting, and ideas can go on forever without having a physical manifestation, but that often seems to make them less accessible to me. Saying that I feel something so strongly that it has left a visible impression appeals to me; as if the gravitas of the feeling could not really be articulated verbally.

The Portuguese call it 'saudade': a longing for something so indefinite as to be indefinable. Love affairs, miseries of life, the way things were, people already dead, those who left and the ocean that tossed them on the shores of a different land - all things born of the soul that can only be felt.

Anthony De Sa

I think that the natural world is the only place these things can be conceptualized. In the oceans, in the trees, in the ground, in gardens all wet with rain. In really powerful storms and desert heat. I try to acknowledge that my existence has been given to me by the earth, and that I am of it, and at some point I will go back. One of my favorite sentiments of the Bible is 'Remember you are dust, and unto dust you shall return.' I remember reading something about every part of your body being a loan from the earth that you will pay back in death. It sounds kind of morose, but I remember reading it and liking it, and how it put everything in perspective. It also makes it sound like people never really leave, they just become less of themself and more of everything around you. I can't remember exactly what it said or where I read it, but I tried to rewrite it as best as I could.

i have taken from the ground
my skin and my bones
but i wanted to say
as i slowly pay it back,
i thank you for the loan

I know there are many other sentiments written about that idea. My favorite is by Mary Elizabeth Frye.

A few nights ago some of my friends and I were talking about books we were required to read in grade school. The first substantial paperback we could remember reading was The Giver. We started talking about how the Giver put memories and feelings into the boy, so he could pass them on. I would like to be able to receive the memories of other people and nature. Then I would be less of myself and more of everything around me.

The other day I was trying to think of the most beautiful way to see things I was walking by. My favorite was the snowbanks, because I could think of them as inverted tidepools of frozen stars.

And your very flesh shall be a great poem.
Walt Whitman


  1. Hands down this is my favorite entry that you've posted. I think I may have read it atleast 15 to 20 times.

  2. Thank you thank you thank you means so much to me