Tuesday, November 25, 2014

freeze frame

Inside the ice cave, we are blind, and home-bound.

We scrape furiously at the thick glaze on the windshield.

With difficulty, we make our way out into the world. 

We watch. A dark-haired man enters a cafe, surrounded by several children. He sits. His youngest daughter clings to his hand. They eat. They speak a language which makes use of round vowels and playful syllables. His smile takes its slow time to emerge over the horizon. His mustache curls approvingly. She has come at last, Mamacita, her raven-locks piled high. A few stray curls escape strategically from her coiffure. Her arched, plucked brows. The light in his glance. A murmur. She turns to us and smiles, imparting to us a wordless secret of utmost importance.

___________________

Fancy, filigreed thoughts arrive at random, and depart on dragon-fly wings:


Pierrot is drunk on moon-wine
after the tedious masked ball.
He stumbles on a feathered fan,
as perfumed with lavender
as his lost love, Columbina,
and crushes it to his heart.

The beloved darkness murmurs.
Beneath his ribs, the pulse
Is a throbbing behind bars,
seeking an unseen filament.
Slumber and dawn approach.
In his grip--a Firebird glimmers.

___________________

Dear Inner Child,

Yes, you are correct. I've strangled her again. Stifled, once more, her moans of agony, her groans, her endless sighs, her countless tears, her wasted years, in some seemingly senseless, repeated noir script, in favor of the status quo. 

And yet, what is it that she most wishes to convey in this moment?

Sketch it out briefly,  as if in silken sand:

The trees --

a frame --

a pair of eyes --

a soul -- a flame --

May all who know what it is to be cruelly crushed lead the way to Love --

let nothing keep our feet from this path -- we surely know where we do not want to go --


Natalia Goncharova, 1912


Sunday, November 23, 2014

O Ignis Spiritus


During this time of year, the midday sun is a pale phoenix circling just above the mountain-ridges.

How grateful I am, now, for the gift of flame and warmth; for all fires, inner and outer.


Illumination, Scivias (Hildegard of Bingen)






O ignis spiritus paracliti,
vita vite omnis creature,
sanctus es vivificando formas.

Sanctus es unguendo 
periculose fractos,
sanctus es tergendo 
fetida vulnera.

O spiraculum sanctitatis,
o ignis caritatis,
o dulcis gustus in pectoribus 
et infusio cordium
in bono odore virtutum.

O fons purissime,
in quo consideratur
quod Deus alienos colligit
et perditos requirit.

O lorica vite 
et spes compaginis membrorum omnium 
et o cingulum honestatis:
salva beatos.

Custodi eos qui carcerati sunt 
ab inimico,
et solve ligatos
quos divina vis salvare vult.

O iter fortissimum 
quo penetravit omnia
in altissimis et in terrenis
et in omnibus abyssis
tu omnes componis et colligis.

De te nubes fluunt, ether volat,
lapides humorem habent,
aque rivulos educunt,
et terra viriditatem sudat.

Tu etiam semper educis doctos 
per inspirationem sapiente 
letificos.

Unde laus tibi sit,
qui es sonus laudis
et gaudium vite, 
spes et honor fortissimus 
dans premia lucis.


___________________


O fire of the Spirit, the Comforter,
Life of the life of all creation,
Holy are you, giving life to the Forms.

Holy are you, anointing
The dangerously broken;
Holy are you, cleansing
The fetid wounds.

O breath of sanctity,
O fire of charity,
O sweet savor in the breast
And balm flooding hearts
With the fragrance of virtues.

O limpid fountain,
In which it is seen
How God gathers the strays
And seeks out the lost:

O breastplate of life
And hope of the bodily frame,
O sword-belt of honor:
Save the blessed!

Guard those imprisoned
By the foe,
Free those in fetters
Whom divine force wishes to save.

O mighty course
That penetrated all,
In the heights, upon the earth,
And in all abysses:
You bind and gather all people together.

From you clouds overflow, winds take wing,
Stones store up moisture,
Waters well forth in streams --
And earth swells with living green.

You are ever teaching the learned,
Made joyful by the breath
Of Wisdom.

Praise then be yours!
You are the song of praise,
The delight of life,
A hope and a potent of honor,
Granting rewards of light.


--Hildegard of Bingen

(Adapted from Barbara Newman's translation by this source.)


En plein air - in memoriam Andrew Bellon

A dreamless sleep falls from the shimmering leaves. --Sappho fragment, tr. Andrew Bellon I changed, thickened, ...

popular on this site