Sunday, May 24, 2009

Between The Night & Its Shadow

Gentle reader:

I know, these essays are coming with less & less frequency. There's no particular reason for it, except that I get busy with other things & don't get around to doing the research that I need to make them substantial. My first rule of judgment on the prose of others is that I must learn from it; if not, it was a waste of time. I want to post things that I can reasonably suppose you'll learn from.

I am a poet, although I'm not so very prolific there either. Of course, you learn from poems in quite different ways from the learning of prose, as William Carlos Williams so famously stated in his Asphodel poem. Poems teach your intuition, your heart, your head much less. So I promise that when I have no essay for two weeks, I'll give you a poem that I hope you'll find worth reading a few times. This one's a little dense, though audiences have surprised me by enjoying it. I've been told that it helps to read it to yourself aloud.

--A. B. Spellman

between the night & its shadow is the music
between the music & the night is the song
between the song & the music is the voice
between the voice & the music is the self
between the self & its song is the mind
between the mind & the song is the melody
between the song & its melody is the rhythm
between the rhythm & the melody is the mind
between the mind & its song is the word
between the word & the mind is the voice
between the voice & the word is the thought
between the thought & the voice is the self
between the word & the self is the shadow
between the shadow & the self is the light
between the light & the word is the music

(the song is the melody in the word in the rhythm
the self holds the mind to the word & the thought of the song
the voice in the song sings the self to the mind
the light lights the shadow of the voice & its melody
the rhythm moves the self through the dimming night’s song
the thought in the song is of night’s shadows without music)