How The World Engraves Itself Upon Our Being
I do not know how one writes poetry
or how bright stars shine only at night-
Although there are theories to be found, in certain writings
that say stars may be seen in the bottoms of the deepest wells
during daytime- if one stares long enough, without blinking.
I do not understand how the sea
may be heard in a conch shell one has stolen
from the bosom of the ocean,
however I have seen children, listening patiently at the open end;
And also, I do not understand how pearls may arise
in some hidden place, simply from an irritation.
They say the earth is round, not flat-
though I have found only the flat parts, in all my wanderings.
Still, I feel sure there is poetry enough left over in the world
that stars and wells and seashells-
And even the occasional irritant-
can write their story in the sky, the sea,
and in granite and oyster-shell, leaving it safe there
so that our children's children, and even their children, after them
can someday find and read again old tales, reborn.
Patti Masterman's Other Poems
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