Monday, May 14, 2012

That Morning Magic (Sestina)

Those birds ask nothing,
nor demand we listen!
But the flowers—pink, yellow, and open—
may be feeding off their sound! And that dazzling light
on the water this morning
strikes me as tiny  diamond  fish  jumping.

When I was young, I’d often feel fearful, jumpy
inside, and usually over nothing!
But I was always more confident in the morning
so sat up straight at my wooden desk, listening
to the teacher, and was not distracted by light
until a seductive shadow beckoned if the transom opened.

Life can flatten joy. When older, it may take a jolt to open
our ears to song, or a door slamming shut to make us jump –
unless somewhere deep inside we sense a soft light
with rays like a humming voice, asking nothing
but that we pull the curtain on all that din and simply listen
to the sea grasses singing, “It’s morning!”

But why take the leap into “then,” when this morning
holds a delicate power that may open
our eyes and hearts; birds nudging us to listen
to their love-sounds! I, for one, jump
out of my normal DO routine, and nothing
can make me stray from their musical light!

Dark-gray and a harsh voice saying, "Turn off that light
and not another word until morning!"
Of course, I fought back with more than nothing,
letting chill air into the room, windows wide open!
That rush of bitter wind always made me jump
out of bed because I simply refused to listen.

Now, if you stay with me all night, dear child, listening
to the cricket-rhythms pulsing like light,
you can almost feel green faeries jumping
through those quavering leaves until morning.
We’ll just leave this little window open
to see if we can catch a glimpse of their magical nothing.

Will you just try to listen this morning,
then open your heart to that soft light?
It’s like jumping from nothing—into grace.

Kay Weeks 5.13.12 

With thanks to Melody Gough, Wally Shugg, and Mary Berglund for reading and commenting in earlier drafts. 

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