Tuesday, March 20, 2007
"Only he who can expect anything, who does not exclude even the mysterious, will have a relationship to life greater than just being alive; he will exhaust his own wellspring of being.
We have no reason to mistrust our world, for it is not against us. If it has terrors, they are our own terrors. If it has precipices, they belong to us. If dangers are present, we must try to love them. And if we fashion our life according to that principle, which advises us to embrace that which is difficult, then that which appears to us to be the very strangest will become the most worthy of our trust, and the truest."
-Rainier Maria Rilke, from Letters to a Young Poet
(copyright New World Library, 2000)
Sunday, March 18, 2007
Also. Apparently in Boston, Saint Patrick's Day lasts the whole weekend. I went up to Davis Square today, and the T was packed both ways, with people who were dressed in various stages of green, and/or clearly racking up consecutive hours of intoxication. I was standing in the snow and ice of the square waiting for my friend, and noticed a lot of other people standing around, even though it was very cold; then I noticed Holland Street was closed. And then all of a sudden: a huge mass of runners, most of them in green, just appeared: no preliminary sound or anything. The people standing around were cheering them on, and I guess I'm writing about it because I happened to be somewhere at the exact moment something happened, something I never would have known about otherwise (apparently, the Ras na hEireann USA).
Couple this with the bushes and trees that were tentatively blooming last week (before the six inches of snow), and basically, they equal the light at the end of (or along) the tunnel for me. I always think of the Richard Wilbur poem "Winter Spring" in this interim, and I love the last two lines, so I'll post it. I'm not sure what book it's from, otherwise I'd give that credit. (p.s. Speaking of poetry, as a preview to National Poetry Month, check out the Academy of American Poets' poster here. And yes, it took me forever to see the shape.)
A script of trees before the hill
Spells cold, with laden serifs; all the walls
Are battlemented still;
But winter spring is winnowing the air
Of chill, and crawls
Wet-sparkling on the gutters;
Walls wince, and there’s the steal of waters.
Now all this proud royaume
Is Veniced. Through the drift’s mined dome
One sees the rowdy rusted grass,
And we’re amazed as windows stricken bright.
This too-soon spring will pass
And doubtless it is dangerous to love
This somersault of seasons;
But I am weary of
The winter way of loving things for reasons.