Wednesday, December 13

narrowing

I forgot that the days were getting narrower. It explains so much--in the absence of snow or the very cold temperatures I am used to--about winter when I stop and realize the days have been shortening for a long while now, and we approach the midpoint of the year. And they will lengthen again.


A long time ago, I mentioned my writing, and some of you kindly expressed interest in reading a snippet before the book came out. Well--I've seen a lot of Santa Lucia today, and it reminded me of this poem. It's for my friend L.D., who is also a poet and writes beautifully, amazingly.

SANTA LUCIA

(I dreamt you)

(I dreamt you were a little girl in a flannel nightgown shoveling snow)

(I dreamt you were shoveling snow)

(You)

(I dreamt you were shoveling snow, the snow falling around you, your white nightgown, your black hair)



On Hmong New Year a little girl waits on the train platform
in a pink pleated skirt with jingles

(I dream)


Crows have been flocking every night for a week to the trees nearby
there is still no sign of you

(I dream
you)


You are passing just outside the window
Your black hair
your white nightgown

Your dream


Finally the days lengthen, at first
such small increments I don't notice (north of here: candles)
In my dream you ride a horse by the window every night

Your black hair the white snow

The white horse, the black horse


(I dreamt you)

(I dream a white gown against white)
(The night rides closer to us

black on snow)


* * *

So there's a taste. Of course, it's not all like this--bony and spare and wintery. But here we are on Santa Lucia's day, and it just occurred to me to post it. The formatting might not show up quite right--it ought to have line-internal spacing in some places--but that's just another reason to buy the book when it's released, right?

And of course, please do credit any reposting or pasting you do. I know photos go astray and how much easier it is, in this ethery online world, to take words and then forget whose they were! But these are my children and I would be very sorry if they were lost.

* * *

Here's to more light, more peace.


17 Comments:

Anonymous Nancy said...

thank you for the beautiful Saint Lucia day gift. what a treasure. i can't wait for the book to come out!

4:43 PM  
Blogger beth said...

this is beautiful, eireann.

5:06 PM  
Anonymous Casey said...

Beautiful. I love how "sparse and boney" it is--it makes me think of those grey, windswept days around this time of year. Everything seems bleak and yet there is an aura of dreaminess about the world that no other time of year posses.

Anyway, thanks for sharing that snippet! :)

6:02 PM  
Anonymous lisa said...

stunning poem. wow. what a gift you have. and i got your package last night...more on that later!! xxoo.

6:54 PM  
Blogger Austen G. said...

A bright spot in a long, dark day...thank you Eireann!

9:20 PM  
Anonymous amy h said...

Beautiful! Thank you for sharing.

11:11 PM  
Blogger sarah said...

beautiful!

1:02 AM  
Blogger eireann said...

thank you all for your kindness.

5:17 AM  
Anonymous Lisa | eots said...

Flannel, horses, candles...I love the wintery spareness or your words.

10:19 AM  
Anonymous laeroport said...

Lovely. Thank you.

10:26 AM  
Anonymous Meiko said...

I thought that Santa Lucia was only known in Italy (where I come from). I'm not religious, but I still remember my grandma giving me gifts on that day when I was small...
Now I'm in Paris, by the way, and the perennial dusk makes me feel down too.
P.S. Your journal is so delicious.

10:51 AM  
Anonymous blair said...

just beautiful, I love that you call them your children. be well dear friend.

4:29 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

eireann,

i like your weblog too; have been a secret admirer of it, and you, for a couple of months. just put you in the sidebar today, 'hello another way' always makes me happy.

julie

5:42 PM  
Blogger shadowsandclouds said...

wow, your poem is sooo beautiful and atmospheric! really evokes the images in my mind! we want more poems! :)

4:36 AM  
Blogger Shari said...

eireann, hi!
you are amazing. what a beautiful poem. thank you for sharing. xo shari

8:05 AM  
Anonymous Alicia A. said...

wow. that's amazing!

10:24 PM  
Anonymous sally said...

So.beautiful.

11:21 PM  

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