Search This Blog

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Moving back

Remember the 1340s?  We were doing a dance called the Catapult.
You always wore brown, the color craze of the decade,
and I was draped in those capes that were so popular,
the one with unicorns and pomegranates in the needlework.
Everyone would pause for beer and onions in the afternoon,
and at night we would play a game called "Find the Cow."
Everything was hand lettered then, not like today.

So here I am, back at the old digs.  They look a little different.  Good for you, Blogger, for making things a little less the same.  Still, the familiar is so familiar.

Where has the summer of 1572 gone?  Brocade and sonnet
marathons were the rage.  We used to dress up in the flags
of rival baronies and conquer one another in cold rooms of stone.
Out on the dance floor we were all doing the Struggle
while your sister practiced the Daphne all alone in her room.
We borrowed the jargon of farriers for our slang.
These days language seems transparent, a badly broken code.

2006 I started this thing.  Four plus years and lots of changes.

Two jobs come and one gone for me.  One gone for Honey.  New trajectories for us both, to be sure.

The 1790s will never come again.,  Childhood was big.
People would take walks to the tops of hills
and write down what they saw in their journals without speaking
Our collars were high and our hats were extremely soft.
We would surprise each other with alphabets made of twigs.
It was a wonderful time to be alive, or even dead.

I moved the blog to its own domain late summer of 2007.  We were over at treecup's house.  She and sly were together then and they helped us both buy domains, set up blogs on them.  They both worked generously well into the night.  By the end of it we had our own websites, our own virtual spaces.

Now, they're both gone from the place I call my own.  The sprawl in which I have lived more of my life than any other.

Sly doesn't need on his server.  I don't need it there either, I realized.   Still, thinking about that night makes me sad.  Best to let the website go.  The past doesn't come back, or so I understand.  Sometimes it also doesn't go away.

I am very fond of the period between 1815 and 1821.
Europe trembled while we sat still for our portraits.
And I would love to return to 1901 if only for a moment,
time enough to wind up a music box and do a few dance steps,
or shoot me back to 1922 or 1941, or at least let me
recapture the serenity of last month when we picked
berries and glided through the afternoons in a canoe.

I don't reread this blog much.  There was a period when the blog had community.  Reading it reminds me of that, too.

More recently, I write when I feel moved.  Curling, it seems, was the last thing that moved me.

Even this morning would be an improvement over the present.
I was in the garden then, surrounded by the hum of bees
and the Latin names of flowers, watching the early light
flash off the slanted windows of the greenhouse
and silver the limbs on the rows of dark hemlocks.

So, I'm back.  And determined to post more.  We'll see what happens.  Using the blog to move forward rather than look back seems an ambitious goal.  I'll count it as one at which I might succeed.

As usual, I was thinking about the moments of the past
letting my memory rush over them like water
rushing over the stones on the bottom of a stream.
I was even thinking a little about the future, that place
where people are doing a dance we cannot imagine
a dance whose names we can only guess.

I'll see how it goes.  But moving back is not necessarily about moving backwards.  It's just about moving.

No chickens this time, which is fine.  The next thing is always just a guess.

The poem is by Billy Collins and is called "Nostalgia."

If you don't know Collins (even if you think you hate poetry), check him out.  You won't be sorry.

Look, a link to buy the book:


Oh, and welcome back to whatever (on fire).