Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Thank You....


Sarah, for pointing me in the direction of his poetry.
I had never read any. I love this one....

Penumbrae

by John Updike

The shadows have their seasons, too.
The feathery web the budding maples
cast down upon the sullen lawn

bears but a faint relation to
high summer's umbrageous weight
and tunnellike continuum—

black leached from green, deep pools
wherein a globe of gnats revolves
as airy as an astrolabe.

The thinning shade of autumn is
an inherited Oriental,
red worn to pink, nap worn to thread.

Shadows on snow look blue. The skier,
exultant at the summit, sees his poles
elongate toward the valley: thus

each blade of grass projects another
opposite the sun, and in marshes
the mesh is infinite,

as the winged eclipse an eagle in flight
drags across the desert floor
is infinitesimal.

And shadows on water!—
the beech bough bent to the speckled lake
where silt motes flicker gold,

or the steel dock underslung
with a submarine that trembles,
its ladder stiffened by air.

And loveliest, because least looked-for,
gray on gray, the stripes
the pearl-white winter sun

hung low beneath the leafless wood
draws out from trunk to trunk across the road
like a stairway that does not rise.

Isn't this lovely? Oh, to be able to stitch such beauty together with word and intent.
Aren't we blessed to have such loveliness to read? Each stanza (is that a correct word for what I want to say?) fills me with gratitude and, what..I cannot explain it. I love all of this, especially: "And loveliest, because least looked-for..."
Perhaps, we should all seek the "loveliest and least looked for, and the shadows that have their seasons, too".

Best

6 comments:

Sarah said...

Amazing! Thank you for sharing!

maggiegracecreates said...

"the pearl white winter sun"

that is a beautiful phrase to me.

have a great day

henny said...

Beautiful words, Ellen...as always!

weebug said...

That was truly lovely and it hit just the spot this evening. your package has left the house and is now on it's journey to you!

jackie said...

Oh, his words and your words they bubble up in my mind and then they saunter down into my soul!

jackie said...

Love your picture too with that bit of color in the middle!