Thursday, March 24, 2011

To Reteach a Thing Its Loveliness

 I feel like this poem knocked me over this morning.  So good, particularly that line from my post title: "sometimes it is necessary / to reteach a thing its loveliness."  Feels like a message for spring, like the whole world is relearning its loveliness.  Especially, hopefully, me.


Saint Francis and the Sow

by Galway Kinnell

The bud
stands for all things,
even for those things that don’t flower,
for everything flowers, from within, of self-blessing;   
though sometimes it is necessary
to reteach a thing its loveliness,
to put a hand on its brow
of the flower
and retell it in words and in touch
it is lovely
until it flowers again from within, of self-blessing;   
as Saint Francis
put his hand on the creased forehead
of the sow, and told her in words and in touch   
blessings of earth on the sow, and the sow   
began remembering all down her thick length,   
from the earthen snout all the way
through the fodder and slops to the spiritual curl of the tail,   
from the hard spininess spiked out from the spine   
down through the great broken heart
to the sheer blue milken dreaminess spurting and shuddering   
from the fourteen teats into the fourteen mouths sucking and blowing beneath them:
the long, perfect loveliness of sow.


Mike and Emily said...

Wow. Gave me goosebumps. So very very very lovely. Thank you for sharing.

Terry Earley said...

I love it, but then I am getting Spring fever. "Reteaching" seems to be what Spring is all about.

belann said...

Very much a silk purse out of a sow. Loved it.