Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Magician’s Wish

Bajo Aqua by Elena Dudina

Bajo Aqua means "under water" but there are rich under and overtones, and this is a poem of a title...a Spaniard might also think of a lowland or hollow, a shallow like a shoal or sandbank, in music bajo voz is a bass voice, or a bajo violoncelo is a low cello, and in idioms bajo figures in ground floor, underskirt, the cuff of pants, or a slum neighborhood. There is the idea of below in many forms, even a low or soft voice, or secretly, or with a voice low enough that it is almost a whisper, as we use undertone. It figures in thinking about under in many contexts, under contract, under oath, under lock and key, on parole, under penalty, under protest. All this figures in the Spanish, the cloud of connotation, water as metaphor tied to under in all contexts. Thus it is an expression of limit.

In the Western United States we know bajo in the feminine form, as in Baja California, Lower California

I live in that solitude which is painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity. - Albert Einstein

We accumulate our opinions at an age when our understanding is at its weakest. - Georg C. Lichtenberg

One of the signs of passing youth is the birth of a sense of fellowship with other human beings as we take our place among them. - Virginia Woolf

To get back my youth I would do anything in the world, except take exercise, get up early, or be respectable. - Oscar Wilde

I have turned 65 today, the official date of American old age, marked by strongly urged medicare enrollment. I could have refused but only at a punitive price. My social security base rate retirement age is 66. I will be as full time as possible for five more years. I am arranging my life as best I can to accomplish that. It is however a race against my health which shows real signs of faltering. These are my current limits.

There are always limits. Limits may vary from day to day or from context to context, but even improvisational musicians know, even atonal musicians, arhythmic musicians know there are certain ways you can and many ways you can't. So a man of power will still be forced to say, "if I had (sufficient) power."

There may be ways a person can say, "there are no limits." One sure way that is true is to say, "at God's pleasure and with His assistance, I can do anything He permits." Even then, there are conceivable changes that I cannot achieve because He will not ever permit those. Think on that one, think how God permitted Nazism to flourish for decades. Yet there are limits. This will ever be true, no matter how much creative power I amass.

The Magician’s Wish

If I had power
I would weave your new life path,
stud it with fortune
flashing in the light
left above us as the sun
sets in the true north
of this brand new world.
Sun rising in the south and
setting in the north,
how we know it worked.

August 29, 2009 7:30 PM


  1. happy birthday and many more. my 55th is approaching.... i am looking forward the the reflection that such shifting of world view brings. i really like this poem, its sweet subtlety and power... what it takes to notice how magic has changed something, no matter how big or small the magic or the thing.

  2. Happy Birthday, my friend! I wish for you many things, among them health and fulfillment.

  3. Thank you both for your birthday wishes. I am blessed this year with the numbers of people wishing me well.

    Perhaps the perspective the time brings is worth the losses that also come. We shall see about that, I expect.

  4. I hope I can wish you a Happy Unbirthday today, as I missed the proper one! I think I will light a candle for your unbirthday cake, in a minute, and imagine singing the traditional song wile I watch its flame! LOL :)

  5. As an alternative birthday song you might try the Birthday Dirge, sung to the tune of the Volga Boatmen...


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

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