Poetry Wednesday: Mudlucious Spring

Sometimes, when you search idly for poems about Spring and mud, magic happens.*

In Just

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*And sometimes, that magic is followed by half an hour of swearing at Microsoft Paint and Picture Manager because WordPress and the brainchildren of e. e. cummings aren’t interested in playing well together.

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Image of Miguel Prima, who is just clearing the last hurdle at the Young Marines Mud Run in 2009—and who has one of the best grins I’ve ever seen—is in the Public Domain.

Poetry Wednesday: Two Decades of Marriage

It’s difficult, after twenty years of marriage, to find an anniversary card that says what I want to say without inducing sugar shock or referencing stereotypical jokes that don’t apply, or blatantly propositioning my husband where my MIl might catch on.**

I need  something that encompasses knowing someone for over half your life, meeting, loving, and learning each other, and staying together anyway, through three apartments, two houses, four cities, three states, four cats, two kids.  Through colleges, careers, in-laws, weight fluctuations, annoying hobbies, lies, silence, tears, fights, hugs, backrubs, communication, dependence, independence, acceptance,  change.

That’s a tall order for a folded piece of cardboard.

It’s a tall order for a poem.

Because love isn’t what you think it is when the ring makes its big appearance and marriage is a lot more than not being alone anymore—sometimes it’s a lot less.  But not always.

It’s complicated.  Except when it’s the simplest truth in the world.

Luckily, there’s one poet who always has those nebulous paradoxical certainties covered:

love is more thicker than forget
more thinner than recall
more seldom than a wave is wet
more frequent than to fail

it is most mad and moonly
Imagination Sphereand less it shall unbe
than all the sea which only
is deeper than the sea

love is less always than to win
less never than alive
less bigger than the least begin
less littler than forgive

it is most sane and sunly
and more it cannot die
than all the sky which only
is higher than the sky

—e.e. cummings

Happy anniversary, honey.

I love you, mostly, sane and sunly with a touch of mad and moonly.

Wanna go for twenty-one?

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*Except for the toilet seat thing, which always seems to apply, but never sets the right tone.

**That’s for birthdays.

Poetry Wednesday: e. e. cummings

I liked sharing my favorite poems during National Poetry Month this past April, so I thought I’d keep going until the stats start dropping to zero around here on Wednesdays.

I love e.e. cummings.  He plays on the page with pain and joy and sex and sarcasm and love so deeply set its expression brings tears.  The placement of each word is so important, the spaces, or lack, expressing just as much—or as little—as the words themselves.*

Everyone knows “i carry your heart,” and despite its recent Hollywood-inspired use in every wedding, graduation, bat mitzvah, and retirement party I’ve attended in the past couple years, I’ll freely admit that I get a lump in my throat every single time I read it, which is why I rarely try to read it out loud. I don’t think it should be read out loud—not just because of the phrases-within-phrases that English speech can’t adequately parse, but because this kind of music wasn’t meant to be understood by external ears.

But, having said all that, my first encounter with mr. cummings was his poem,  “If.”    This was the poem that made me search for more of his work, because I suspected (hoped, knew) they’d speak to me, too.

My daughter of the lovely freckles hadn’t been born yet, but the rest still holds true:

I still cling to this on certain days, when fairness  seems like the curse of hope.  It reminds me, gently, that life isn’t perfect for a perfectly good reason.

And because I simply can’t resist:

And there I go.  Would you please excuse me for a minute?  I  need a tissue . . .

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*Placements and spaces that WordPress chooses to ignore.  Since my archaic html skillz aren’t up to fixing this in the time and patience I have, I chose to bypass the headache with images.  It’s not a graceful solution, perhaps, but it works.