Thursday, April 1, 2010

1945-1985: Poem for the Anniversary - April 1, 2010


walking for hours through the woods,

I don't know what I'm looking for,

maybe for something

shy and beautiful to come

frisking out of the undergrowth.

Once a fawn did just that.

My dog didn't know

what dogs usually do.

And the fawn didn't know.

As for the doe...

dreaming that everything was fine...

The way I'd like to go on living in this world

wouldn't hurt anything, I'd just go on

walking uphill and downhill, looking around,

and so what if half the time I don't know

what for-

so what if it doesn't' come

to a hill of beans...

In the films of Dachau and Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen

the dead rise from the earth...

while the rest of the world

did nothing...

My dog and the fawn

did a little dance...

Oh, you never saw such a garden...

A many sits there...

He is finishing lunch...

A bottle of wine...

He fills a glass...

He lifts it to his mouth and drinks peacefully.

It is the face of Mengele.

Late the doe came wandering back into he twilight.

She stepped through the leaves. She hesitated,

sniffing the air.

Then she knew everything.

The forest grew dark.

She nuzzled her child wildly.

I am the gentle dog, fawn, doe, and Mary waiting in innocence for beauty to come before us, never dreaming that horror waits for me and mine. Is in me and mine. For just as easily that Mary's dog doesn't know what to do, other dogs do. I myself do not keep dogs in the home. I have heard too many stories of gentle dogs going hunting, singly or even more dangerous as a pack, and killing cats and birds they share homes with, or going in search in neighbors yards. Life is like a stroll in a garden, be it woods or the ordered loveliness of a German country estate. Who doesn't yearn for beauty, and in that searching forget the violence within and without, which invites the dogs of war not to dance, but to scrape away the shy hope of our kin and kind. In response to who we are, primates on the verge of anticipated genocide, may we look for beauty and sniff the air for the whole story, and wildly embrace who we are and the love we are capable of giving, and the lives we are capable of taking.

If you could, what would you wildly embrace today?

1 comment:

  1. I would literally wildly embrace my grandson today. I have a lot of love for him, but he is a thousand miles away. He has suffered from anxiety and depression which is exhibited by anger which he has trouble controlling. He was on a medication that helped until suicidal ideation and an attempt around Christmas time led to taking him off the medication. The anxiety of school was just too much for him to handle, so he has been at home and this week is vacation time. The old medicine should be out of his system now. But then what do you do? Today he had an MRI of his brain to rule out any malformation, etc.. His brother has a Chari I malformation of the brain for which he had surgery to relieve the pressure. The brother has gross and fine motor difficulties as a result. With accommodations such as computer use totally for notes, assignments, tests, etc. he is getting along fine. He is a ninth grader taking AP biology. (LoraKim - This is the one my daughter has always said would be happy going and sitting in the rain forest by himself and discovering a new species to be named after him. I'm sure he'd love to join you.) I would love to wildly embrace the other one. The problem is that when he is most anxious, frightened, depressed, and angry he doesn't want anyone touching him, not even his mother or father. He turns it all in on himself and tries to keep from exploding. He isn't even a teenager yet. He is fortunate to have wonderful parents, so they may be able to get through the rough years ahead. My son-in-law is a wonderful father and my daughter has the knowledge, resources, and ability to guide their learning such that they will be successful.