Tuesday, February 8, 2011

metempsychosis




.


.

Some stories last many centuries,
others only a moment.
All alter over that lifetime like beach-glass,
grow distant and more beautiful with salt.
.
Yet even today, to look at a tree
and ask the story Who are you? is to be transformed.
.
There is a stage in us where each being, each thing, is a mirror.
.
Then the bees of self pour from the hive-door,
ravenous to enter the sweetness of flowering nettles and thistle.
.
Next comes the ringing a stone or violin or empty bucket
gives off --
the immeasurable's continuous singing,
before it goes back into story and feeling.
.
In Borneo, there are palm trees that walk on their high roots.
Slowly, with effort, they lift one leg then another.
.
I would like to join that stilted transmigration,
to feel my own skin vertical as theirs:
an ant-road, a highway for beetles.
.
I would like not minding, whatever travels my heart.
To follow it all the way into leaf-form, bark-furl, root-touch,
and then keep walking, unimaginably further.

.
~ Jane Hirshfield
from Given Sugar, Given Salt: Poems


photo of the Socratea exorrhiza or walking palm
which can move itself up to about a meter per year

.

0 comments: