Thursday, January 22, 2009

Memory Of The Garden, The Work

Here's a mythological piece. It's a while after that trouble, but that time is definitely not forgotten...

Memory Of The Garden

I have just eaten.
I hear your voice calling me
And I want to hide.

I thought I got over this
Way back, but hearing your call
Sends shivers through me.

You call, "Where are you, my love?"
I answer, "Absent."


At this time in my life, I've been called to poetry. How can I tell its a call? It's so frickin easy. I wrote five today and I'll bet three stand as is. I revise some of them, like the one that appeared at Breathing Poetry, I revised the last line of that one. Like the two here. Both received revision today to get them into posting condition - final condition.

Even these small revisions are easy, go according to fairly simple rules. If nothing else governs, then simple sentences. If nothing else governs then the active voice. If nothing else governs, avoid participles, even here. But sometimes participles save the syllable count. There are others.

It's so easy for me to write this poetry and that leads to two stories about it. In the dark story I am engaging in something wrong this time around because I have done it so much in other lifetimes. In this story I am regressing, missing the mark, sinning, the sin is sloth, because there are other more difficult tasks that are actually mine to do. I am avoiding.

In the light story I am commanded and the way is made straight through grace. As ever in these matters, I am left to choose between the extremes for the story, the mythology. The activity itself is rather simple like cooking eggs or something. And I do it for the same reason really. I frickin love doing this. So I am called, like my hero, Hafiz. I have decided to choose the light. Occam's razor suggests that the simpler story is the truer story. This is the simpler story, and I sleep better that way.

Like all the other times in my life like this, times that I decide I am called, there is a beginning, a middle, and eventually an end - or rather a new beginning. Sometimes the path is short, sometimes long. I was married twenty years and would be still if it was possible. But we both failed, and then she died. Here I say that being called to an activity is being hired on for road repair.

The Work

Talking to my friend
I heard with my other ear.
That sparked wordless thought
Of the oddity of life.

Shards of continuity
Force me. I will rush
Around gathering pieces,
Glue them together.

But not left and right,
Not stiff or pliant, deeper,
Deep shining places.

You've put me on road repair.


  1. That first poem is very intriguing. Reading it made me wonder, were you hiding from yourself, or the person who was calling you so lovingly?

  2. I deny it. Heh. How else ya gonna deal with it when your ears burn with shame?

    But wait. This is a poem, right? A poem is not the poet, at least not the whole poet.

    The character in this poem is not named Christopher. Or not directly. I deny it.

  3. Just found your blog via Stone from my heart. Enjoyed my first visit and will return to the old hippie and your poetry that feels like things we have all felt but never put into words like you can. Might sound funny, but it's like seeing a Far Side cartoon and saying "I've been there"...

    Teri and the cats of Furrydance

  4. You're welcome here, Teri. I and my old part Siamese welcome you. Well, I welcome you. I don't think Lynne Redgrave Cat cares that much about human things or people. Mostly she likes her food and her very own parabolic heater.

    And you are right some of this poetry has a kind of weird twist to it... ;)

  5. when will you learn to use english Chris? it's "friggin" not "frickin".... with all your other visitors fawning over your poems i wouldn't want you to get a big head...... odd looking marine animals..... oddity of life

  6. No worries, mate. Every night when it's time, I take this head of mine off my shoulders and put it in this shrinking chamber I got on Craig's List. Quite a little gadget, sized just right (that's really important as it is almost impossible to time it right without that) for my normal aize. You might notice I wear hats. If I over shrink then I have to get a whole new group of hats, and that's already happened one time.


The chicken crossed the road. That's poultry in motion.

Get Your Own Visitor Map!