Archives of Our Lives

{a narrow and broad look into the lives of people I love}

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

O, Poetry!

I have struggled with poetry all my life. I don't really like it. Don't really need it. Nevertheless, my teachers in high school and college seemed insistent that I familiarize myself--but I think it is basically bogus. I can make anything poetic. And if anything can be poetry, why does the word "poetry" even exist?


--cps Fairbanks--

I have struggled
With poetry
I don't really like
Don't really need

See? Poetry. And yesterday when I was tending my nephew, I happened upon a collection of Emily Dickinson's "masterpieces," just the sort of thing my English teacher sister would stow away in her son's diaper bag. Fully prepared to mock her every word, I opened the book and was shocked to find myself actually relating to a poem she'd written about snow:

"It Sifts from Leaden Sieves"
by Emily Dickinson
It sifts from Leaden Sieves --
It powders all the Wood.

It fills with Alabaster Wool
The Wrinkles of the Road --

It makes an Even Face
Of Mountain, and of Plain --
Unbroken Forehead from the East
Unto the East again --

It reaches to the Fence --
It wraps it Rail by Rail

Till it is lost in Fleeces --
It deals Celestial Vail

To Stump, and Stack -- and Stem --
A Summer's empty Room --

Acres of Joints, where Harvests were,
Recordless, but for them--

It Ruffles Wrists of Posts
As Ankles of a Queen --

Then stills its Artisans -- like Ghosts --
Denying they have been --

I took these photos last month, long before I ever knew Emily Dickinson had found similar beauty in the snow. Of course it's good and well to talk about the beauty of the snow now that I don't have to deal with it. Tomorrow's high for Phoenix is 66 degrees...

If the Canadians
Are lucky--
It will
Get up

--cps Fairbanks--

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Blogger Kristi K. said...

To answer your question: Shred- To ride with speed, style and skill.

As for your post, Your are quite a poet and you didn't know it. Lame I know, but I had to be the first one to post it.

January 23, 2008 at 7:00 AM  
Blogger Aimee said...

You won't know me but I wanted to comment on how lovely your post is. My husband actually stumbled on your site and thought you were quite hilarious and so we check in every once and a while. I've had a similar experience with cold and snow with moving from Mesa, AZ (where I'd lived ALL the days of my life) to Michigan 18 months ago. I hated my first winter, but this winter I've actually been able to look past frozen fingers and toes and scary driving conditions to enjoy the beauty that is around me after a snowfall. Thank you for putting such beautiful words with such beautiful pictures.

January 23, 2008 at 9:18 AM  
Blogger LetterToKayleen said...

isn't anything you find to be poetic considered poetry? i think so. i'm not a huge fan of poetry in "poem" form. but, i do enjoy a well written passage or verse, a pretty photo, and an insightful film. that's my poetry.

i think the definition of poetry is subjective, and the word exists to explain what it is that moves you.

(pretty pics.)

January 23, 2008 at 7:14 PM  
Blogger Molly said...

I have never seen snow falling. haha born and raised in Sunny mesa. but I am sure that it is wonderful.

My only problem with poetry, is being that I have written my share of poems, I don't like how teachers tell you that it has to MEAN A CERTAIN THING. I am sorry but Emily Dickinson's poems were found in a drawer after she was dead, she did not tell Mrs. Johnston that this poetry is definitely about a certain subject and not at all about something else... I think poetry should be up to interpretation of the reader not, wrong or right, etc. sorry this is probably a dull whiny comment..

January 26, 2008 at 4:48 PM  
Blogger lindser-lou said...

Mrs. Walsh would be so proud!

January 28, 2008 at 3:10 PM  

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