Tuesday, January 31, 2012

paying attention to the melody





All right.  I know that each of us will die alone.
It doesn't matter how loud or soft the sitar plays.
Sooner or later the melody will say it all.

The prologue is so long!  At last the theme comes.
It says the soul will rise above all these notes.
It says the dust will be swept up from the floor.

It doesn't matter if we say our prayers or not.
We know the canoe is heading straight for the falls,
And no one will pick us up from the water this time.

One day the mice will carry our ragged impulses
All the way to Egypt, and at home the cows
Will graze on a thousand acres of thought.

Everyone goes on hoping for a good death.
The old rope hangs down from the hangman's nail.
The forty-nine robbers are climbing into their boots.

Robert, don't expect too much.  You've put yourself
Ahead of others for years, a hundred years.
It will take a long time for you to hear the melody.





~ Robert Bly
from Talking into the Ear of a Donkey




2 comments:

erin said...

Bly is fast becoming one of my favorite poets.

(dean, i don't say often enough how grateful i am for this gathering and offering that you put together for us. thank you~)

xo
erin

smilingheart said...

yes, he's one of my favorites too.
glad you enjoy it, it's no work, it's a pleasure to share it.

thanks for your great comments.

dean