Often what interests me in poetry are the nuances, the description of something that is not easily expressed in words but that you can recognize and feel in your gut. Poetry articulates the inexpressible.
Perhaps when it’s the stage of the process, or a particular object, that we take to be fundamentally beautiful, then momentarily we forget ourselves and the differences between us and the object, empirical or transcendent, that seem so transparent after the experience of beauty.
Everything that exists has a unique mysterious element embedded within itself… The process of understanding the key ingredients of beautiful things comes from an obsession to create something similar. Long after admiration begins an abstract traverse of the mind. We first try breaking the crust of superficiality and then attempt to get beneath the intricate layers, all in the anticipation of touching the core of things that fascinate us.
Think of discovering how one object in nature can shape-shift into the character of another person or thing, such as the silhouette of a tree (in the moonlight) that becomes a Hopi flute player, an old woman with a cane or whatever the mind allows itself to see; this is the beauty of being aware, connecting the human soul to that of the natural world.
Our human vocation is to notice and respond to beauty, to the Great Beauty, which both calls us home to itself and out again into the world which we are called to beautify in our particular ways.
We first try to understand others’ view of things and then find openings in them where our own ways of seeing can fit, creating in the observers the same stirrings that the thing of beauty had first inspired in us.
Poetry has saved my life at least six times – and I do not mean metaphorically – I mean literally. How beautiful and unlikely a truth is that? And so I have a debt to pay to the art that has kept me alive. That is almost more beautiful than I can express.
Beauty is found in synchronicity, in meaningful coincidences, in the similarity of patterns in feathers, snow flakes, ice crystals, whenever veined leaves and butterflies’ wings echo the lines inside our palm.
I raised my hand and asked, feeling I was probably revealing myself as a poetry-bumpkin, What about beauty? Everybody looked a little embarrassed. Didn’t I know the days of skylarks and cloudy climes were past?