About Me

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Poem Reprise: Give a Thing

Give A Thing

Trust is a curious thing
You toss it forward
and it bounces back
in surprising trajectory,
knocking you backward
down a basement stair

You grab for the banister
Rearranging your outfit
you climb back up with
shaky steps, considering
the ways you may shorten
your skirt and reappear

© 2010 Annie King


Give a Thing first appeared here. Thank you all, for your comments then, and any new comments, now.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Poem: Stillness


I know why I am drawn
to statues formed of bronze,
or alabaster, marble white —

The wall plaque won at the age of ten
for a 4th grade spelling bee, an ivory Madonna,
calm child enfolded in soothing arms, the curve
of cheek, the fullness of lips that purse
to kiss, the contemplative love —

The coldness cloaks a warmth,
a figure cast or shaped from life —

Yet hollow are the sockets, with sight
beyond what eyes can see, an airy space
contained within that defies the solidity.

And when I see it, I am folded, too,
into that peace and formality, that death
in active sleep, a space for dreams.

© 2012 Annie King 4-7-12

When I wrote this poem, thinking of that little plaque, barely six inches tall, smooth and unseamed, with a hole in the back to place upon a nail, and the face of the Madonna and her young child with his bare arm, and the curve of the faces and the folds of her cloak and mantle, I think of how many times through the years, when I find it in a childhood box, I want to touch it, and how the same feeling is evoked when I see a statue, or even a photograph of one. There is something about an image captured in a tactile manner that differs from a painting. And yet, I do not touch it. I gaze upon it, like a piece in a museum, and cup it in the palm of my hand.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

My Peace I Give to You

I heard this song, played and sung live last week, and the tune and the words, convey, with sincerity, a simple thought: All I have to give is peace, and I give that peace to you.

I heard this song with my family and my friends at an Arlo Guthrie concert. He told a wonderful story about his father, Woody Guthrie, as a preamble to one of the last songs Woody Guthrie ever wrote. It was the final song in the concert and we all sang along.

Arlo says it's about the peace we feel inside, that makes dogs lick us and babies like us, and that if we give that little peace, the big peace will start taking care of itself, and that singing together, we're fixing things we didn't even know was broke.

If you click into the YouTube video, you can hear the whole story preceding the song, for a total experience of over 8 minutes. Fast forward to 3:42 to hear only the song and just a snippet of Arlo's intentions in singing it, as a gift to you and to me and to all of the world. Fast forward to 5:10 to hear only the song, recorded lovingly, by Arlo's wife, Jackie.

My peace is worth
a thousand times more
than anything I own...

My peace, my peace
is all I've got, that
I can give to you.

I give my peace to you.