Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I Feel a Poem Coming On


For reasons I only partly understand, and am not entirely in a state of regret regarding, I don’t do much poetry anymore.  It is a way of remembering that has always taken a lot more out of me than simply being in the right mindset and place at the right time to snap a photo and then let the picture tell the story. But every once in a while a set of circumstances presents itself that makes the writing of a poem unavoidable, like death and taxes, except hopefully with a happier outcome.  

 Raw Materials

Last week, Australian blogfriends Barry and Fiona (whose prompt accounts you can read here and here, along with Brian’s here) took a break from their New York City holiday to visit us in Vermont. It was a thoroughly enjoyable and enriching 38 hours that left me wanting more but at the same time grateful for even this tasty morsel of an opportunity to connect with two creative spirits both witty and wise. I found myself wanting to do justice to the strangely concentrated depth and breadth of this visit in words, (and what better way than poetry?) thereby typically setting myself an impossible task.

 Park and Mark

Fortunately, I am not too proud to concede that the poem below tis but a scratch on the surface of the emotions and inspiration left in the wake of this brief encounter and offer it as my friends fly back home and I gaze out my windows at views made better by their having shared them. Thank you, B & F.

Give and Take

Some things take time
like gray clouds that prove doors to blue skies
on the one side of horizon unaccounted for
or overnight snow that lifts hearts
and lowers voices.

Art takes time.
We try to name the things we make
when it’s the naming makes us.
The best answer is a question
black on snow-white stone.

Some things make time
like distant music played
on strong ties stretched between two faraways
that sounds the same when suddenly
effortlessly near.

Love makes time.
When I was young nothing
had room to grow so none was taken.
Now the world and I are older and wide open.
I feel a poem coming on.

Written in Stone


  1. BEAUTIFUL. Always glad to read you.

  2. I feel doubly blessed today. Your photos are poems in their own right, and this week you have given us both. Thank you so much.

  3. Love makes time.

    I'm feeling a paradigm shift coming on,
    thank you for this!! :)

  4. some of my favorite images of yours, gabriella. they seem effortless, as though the world wanted to tap you on the shoulder and say, hey, these are for you.

    "We try to name the things we make
    when it’s the naming makes us."

    this is perfection, this and the last line, "I feel a poem coming on" which draws it all up so wonderfully.


  5. Many thanks Luis! It makes me happy to know you are out there reading.

  6. EC - Poems have been few and far between for me for many years, and this one took great pains but would not go unwritten. Who knows that another benefit of this move to Vermont will not be more poems emerging? It's nice to have such immediate positive feedback! Many thanks - and enjoy the week.

  7. Matt D - yes, that line does some strange things to me too, and I wrote it! I love when my own creations know more than I do! Thanks for stopping by.

  8. Dear Erin - yours is a lovely description of the effect images (visual and verbal) can have - as I said to Matt, this poem had its own superior thoughts before my words were even properly formed. I was a mere secretary and student, and a slow inaccurate fretful transcriber of what was dictated. I'm so happy you enjoyed this post - after all, you know a thing or two about the labor pains of poetry! All the best to you.

  9. Gabriella all of them are very intresting but my attention goes at the last pic... this is for me a great job, remaind me an the late Mondrian... take a look...

  10. Laura - of course, Mondrian! I was thinking exactly that when I saw this strange structure made of different colors and textures of stone - it was as if the sculptor was trying to do a Mondrian out of marble! Thanks for seeing this.

  11. Thank you for posting this wonderful poem, Gabriella! And the photos are unusually beautiful ... they have this great sense of just-right convergence of light and form.

  12. wow, i read your poem aloud, a few times, it felt like a caress, x

  13. JMG - I really appreciate your description of my photos. That convergence - I felt it when I was lucky enough to be in just the right spot and moment to take these. Each one felt as if it were approaching me, and not the other way around. Have a great week!

  14. Renilde - I'm so glad you read the poem aloud! I have always thought of poetry as a written form, to be read to oneself silently and privately, like a remembered conversation played back in your head, something humbly arranged on a page and not arrogantly filling the room with sound. This is probably a reaction to experiencing too much bad "performed" poetry where the emphasis is more on the stage presence of the reader than the substance of the words! But in recent years I always read my poems aloud while composing, and hope that there is something in the way they sound that supports the sense of the words - or just sounds pretty! Like a caress, you said - high praise indeed! Many thanks!

  15. G....this is beautiful way to commemorate that special time. I'm still amazed that you all got to spend time together....I love the poem....eloquent. Thanks for sharing your vision in words and photos! P.

  16. Thanks Patti - I was a bit at a loss after the other three members of the Fabulous Four posted their photos and impressions of our brief time together - wanted to do something special, but of course any gesture was entirely unequal to the experience! So it's good to know I didn't entirely miss the mark! I am so pleased all the stars aligned properly when so much could have gone awry in terms of timing, weather, dynamics etc.

    By the way, you were not entirely absent from the proceedings as your name did come up in conversation more than once! Apparently I am not the only one in awe of your daily disciplines from artwork to tea conoisseurship. The consensus was that we could never do it, but are happy to live in a world in which we know someone who does - for which we are both grateful and amazed! All the best to you.

  17. Lovely photos you have and great fingerless mitts in your Etsy shop! :)

  18. Thanks for the comment Corrie and welcome to my blog! Thanks also for the circle add on etsy. Plus, I'm always interested in creative souls who serve two very different muses and look forward to knowing more about how you divide your energies!

    I really do dig your cosies - such an imaginative use of crochet, which can sometimes seem a bit humorless. That's


    in case anyone out there is interested.

    Have a great week.

  19. G/TT - I loved it, and smiled at moments remembered and fine threads over distance, strengthened. Its interesting how words are sometimes harder than images - yet they are so worth the effort. The photos support the words and yet the words paint pictures as well. Quite magical all round!

  20. Fiona - so glad you liked this poem especially being one of its muses! All the best to you and B.

  21. Such a beautiful and meaningfully worded poem.

    The pictures have depth too.

  22. Hi Kass - it's been a while! I gather from your blog not for the happiest of reasons. We all got our butts kicked a bit in 2011 in one way or another it seems. Glad to see you here, and especially glad to know you liked my poem, which is only as meaningful and beautiful as the sympathetic readers who engage with it. And for that I thank you.

  23. HiG/TT - a tear comes to my eye as I read the words that reflect snippets of our experience and even a few of the thoughts and images shared - but so beautifully expressed in poetry. I am so glad you felt a poem coming on a didn't ignore it. And of course the images mean so much more - the marks in the park are such a metaphor for coming and going and coming again. I think the four posts from the four amigos not only tell a tale of connectivity but also the different ways we experience and express the experience both in words and in our art. Thanks for sharing your home. lives and creativity. B

  24. Very cool! It's so nice to meet other bloggers in person.

    Beautiful words and photos. For a long time I've thought that your photos where poetic, sort of like visual verses.

  25. Barry - it brings a tear to MY eye knowing my words made such an impression on you. I thjnk you perfectly capture what these artist friendships are all about - we four each create in such different ways but the basic urge to experience and engage the world around us and transform it is a strong common bond. Thank you for being such ideal guests! We will meet again I know.

  26. Thanks James! Visual verses, eh? Might make a good name for a collection...