It is by a professor and writer who I met last week named Erin Bertram.
In fourteen lines, this poem, to me, says pretty much I’d like this blog to be all about.
I know that poetry isn’t for everyone. It’s usually pretty obtuse. Yet, I’m glad to be reminded that I like really, really good poetry because it slows me down. Most writing spells out the authors message and doesn’t make the reader work hard to understand what the writer hopes to impress on the reader.
The bold and italic marks are mine, not hers. They highlight what I first heard when Erin read it at a gathering. When I asked if what she was saying was – “life’s in the here in now, so grab it if you can,” and she smiled and said “yes!”
Lucky me, she gave me a whole booklet of her poems the next day. Thanks Erin! And thanks family for nudging me down the sidewalk and saying “go make some friends!”
[We Are All Of Us Adorned With Crowns]
~ Erin M. Bertram
There are five forms of lightning:heat,ball,ribbon,forked,
Sheet. We are all of us adorned with crowns. Take my hand
& consider it tender, consider it, slack-jawed & open palmed,
Most days entirely capable.When you leave for work mornings,
Leave your necessaries strewn across the dresser as leaves
Mid-November & wanting. Sundry nights disrobe wildly & call me
By my given name, the one everyone knows but few harness
Into use. Make my parents proud. This life in all it’s tattered glare
Offers up more than I can chew, a fact I’ve come slowly,
& not without fight or requisite scar, to accept. Scattershot,
Lift your head to the sutures of exhaust in the sky & recite
All the things your hands have moved gently over. The fault lines
Of our all but sullied hands. To body the many shifts of an afternoon.
To be the thing which in the distance does the vanishing.