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04 April 2008

Poets help us inch forward

Inchworm_2 A Measuring Worm

This yellow striped green
Caterpillar, climbing up
The steep window screen,

Constantly (for a lack
Of a full set of legs) keeps
Humping up his back.

It's as if he sent
By a sort of a semaphore
Dark omegas meant

To warn of Last Things.
Although he doesn't know it,
He will soon have wings,

And I, too, don't know
Toward what undreamt condition
Inch by inch I go.

-Richard Wilbur

Maybe on the darkest of days, we are actually inching along a brilliant pink flower, but are on that part of the journey that holds the flower together, the black under hang of one petal beneath another, dark enough that we can no longer see the pink unless we continue inching along. And suddenly we emerge into sunlight, onto bright pink again, inching toward that center sun. We, too, will soon have wings. This is where trusting the journey means everything.

[Thanks to Stefan "Bob" Rennix for pointing me to this poem.]


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This is exactly what I needed to see at this very moment. Thank you for the lifeline.

No more-clear, yet oft-forgotten, instruction means more to me than this: my responsibility, right now, is simply to take the best next step I can.

All the rest is oderiferous mist swirling inside my head. Not real, and not actionable.

I loved this . thanks for sharing it.

I heard a wonderful poet read from his first full length chap book last night: Corey Mesler, owner of Burke's Books here in Memphis. We need our poets! Today I read your essay, "Bust Your Toast Rules" in the April issue of skirt! and loved it. Followed your bio info to this blog and what a great space. Can't wait to see your new book this fall. I'm working on a book proposal to send to an agent soon... what a journey this writing life is! Nice to "meet" you, Patti!

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