The whole kerfuffle woke the stars

tilted galaxy
This image of a tilted galaxy appears courtesy of http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/pictures/space/tiltedspiralgalaxy.html

For World Space Week last October I wrote “On the declaration of the first day of the Year of Our Light.”

There are some wonderful lines in this poem, such as

“The swirling spheres in proclamation”,
“Light of more silver bright”
and the bit quoted for the headline, “The whole kerfuffle woke the stars.”

Sometimes I just like poetry for the way it allows words to sound.

For more about my fascination with words, see
Nice Words #1
Nice Words #2
Nice Words #4
Nice words of the moment (from autumn)
Cast them together

Twitter: @BeadedQuill
Facebook: BeadedQuill
Books:
In the Ocean: a year of poetry
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys
Shining in Brightness: Selected Poems, 1999 – 2012

Transition/ Disclosed

View of the Riiser-Larsen Ice Shelf in Antarctica
By Ben Holt – National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) (NASA (Image galleries)) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

From night’s horizon
sweep in yowls and howls
across the polar plain.
Glacial blue dims.
The sharpest window opens above:
stars minted by the chill.


Today’s prompt for A Poem A Day October was, “Write a poem incorporating the concept of being ‘frozen,’ whether literal or not.”

All day I have been mulling over the idea of ‘frozen’ as a transition state of water, rather than a state of matters set. In preparation for my idea doodling, I found a recording of Sinfonia Antarctica (Vaughan Williams) on Spotify. An image search online yielded this Guardian photo-essay about spending 9 winter months in Antarctica at the Concordia Station. In the article, the clear view of the stars above earth is mentioned.


Twitter: @BeadedQuill
Facebook: BeadedQuill
Books

Ordinary

Our eyes cannot see
through the polished cufflinks 
and clean underwear put on that morning;
over the same legs that walk past you
and sway in the train when it breaks;

the same arms that hold groceries 
and hand them over at the till;
the usual pleasantries made with the cashier
whose body is later found in the field.


After reading this article written by the husband of a woman who had been murdered, I have been thinking about the topic of ordinary killers. I’m not beyond imagining that we’re all capable of extremes of harm and violence. However, I wonder how it is that there are ordinary men who walk among us, who put on their clean clothes, take transport, buy groceries and – at some point in their existence – take someone else’s life.

It’s gendered manifestations of such ordinary violence that bothers me. And that in many instances the perpetrator is often known by the victim. And, indeed, by a wider community in which they both exist.

This is not a cheerful topic, and not one on which I wish to dwell – least of all write poetry. But it’s a situation in the world that’s really on my mind.

Twitter: @BeadedQuill 
Facebook: BeadedQuill 
Books:
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys
Shining in Brightness

Do engineers dream?

Do engineers dream
of eiderdown chairs
and perhaps a world
without gravity?
	Do they poke
	with soft pencils
	at yesterday’s dreams
	and the monstrous dark
	in the bedsit?
Do they skilfully rush
to the day’s blasting rays
at the stretch of a morning
which never delays?


I know a few engineers and they are interesting people. Many of them have a creative side or an interest in the arts. However, in profession binaries engineering (like those other sensible paths: law, medicine, business) is often set in opposition to creative professions in art, music, dance and writing.

The engineers in this poem are, of course, a one-dimensional group set in opposition with an understood, yet unmentioned artist. These engineers cannot imagine a world where chairs are made of feathers or objects to do not respond to predetermined scientific givens. With an assured, strategic and rational understanding of their lives and the world, they choose to neither entertain nostalgia nor awaken melancholia. In new experiences they are guided by caution, or even attempt to avoid change. But change, like new mornings, proceeds with its own regularity.

To all my engineering (legal, medical, business and scientific) friends who carry artist’s souls, please indulge the binary. To my artist friends – I know full well that many of us are interested in scaffolding, load-bearing walls, the chemistry of glazes and neuroscience research. It is a great pity that in the myth of professions we are set against each other by the monies and social prestige allotted to our disciplines.

Under those blasting rays, may we all sit together on eiderdown chairs, poking at our dreams with soft pencils.

I have written a few other poems about professions and work:
Professions
An Artist Works
A Bequest of Wonder
At the Right Age
A Definition, Notably for the Cloud-Dwelling Artists

Twitter: @BeadedQuill
Facebook: BeadedQuill
Books for preview and purchase:
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys
Shining in Brightness