I have never blogged before. Journaled, yes. Bindings and notebooks and artsy covers and real ink pens were my modus operandi in the past. This is my first peck out of the shell, seeking light as a baby chick ready to re-create what has been latent in my heart and soul for quite a few years now, due to the busy-ness of life and the tamping down of my creative spirit, dying to leap out as it once did.
High school began my poetic heart’s journey, when my English teacher, who was a John Denver look-alike, told me that the poem I submitted for an assignment was “sensual.” As a 15-year-old, that freaked me out, since I had merely been writing about basking in the sun and enjoying its warmth laying on my bed, in an innocent teenage fashion. That drove a tiny little spike in my virgin heart and made me wary (since he was a little creepy about it) about sharing that kind of intimacy in writing. We shall overcome. I find myself almost on the brink of tears just now, because I went to look for my self-written book of poems and most recent journals (which aren’t recent AT ALL) and cannot find them. My past, usual spaces of introspection where they once were is stuffed with personal training books and notebooks of choreography and movement ideas. My heart is sinking with the realization that the neglect of my writing and artistic soul has been lengthy and complete. I intend to remedy that, thanks to the inspiration of the blogging community that I have had the privilege of discovering because of graduate school.
My “life poem,” just as some people have a “life verse” from the Bible, is the one that I clung to at the University of Northern Colorado. I have a vintage poem book, which includes British and American contributors. I have a purple and yellow pansy from circa 1988 pressed between the pages in a kleenex. Louise Bogan’s “The Alchemist” touched the deepest parts of my soul to the point where I had it mostly memorized, and with that college girl angst, would moon and swell to its beauty by reading it over and over and trying to understand each line and how I should interpret it for my life and passions. Here it is:
I burned my life that I might find
A passion wholly of the mind,
Thought divorced from eye and bone
Ecstasy come to breath alone.
I broke my life to seek relief
From the flawed light of love and grief.
With mounting beat the utter fire
Charred existence and desire.
It died low, ceased its sudden thresh.
I had found unmysterious flesh~
Not the mind’s avid substance~ still
Passionate beyond the will.