Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Frosted Roses

It was 28 degrees at 8:30 a.m. in my woodlands area of California yesterday morning. Ice was thick. I had heat in the house, thank God. Hot water, too. I enjoyed the rose buds frosted over; imagine, roses in December.

I'm on a magazine deadline this week, and researching like a mad dog, writing like a person typing with a pencil. Finished a piece on greenhouse gases and personal choices in the afternoon. Thank God Copenhagen is in session and the EPA made its announcement about, surprise, carbon dioxide is harmful to Americans (in the very least), because I had been searching for story lead, and there it was in the morning paper.

Fighting stress is an exhausting business. It can be fought, though, with remembering to breathe, remembering to pray, remembering just to focus on the next indicated thing. My friend didn't want to stay sober, but I did all I humanly could to reach out and remind her of my love and her choices. The rest is in the hands of Man Who Made the Water, as the old song says.

My radio debut of last week has been archived. The topic was "Ears on Art: the Gift of Art." The link here takes you to the local NPR station's archived program. It takes a few moments to download, but I'm five minutes into it, the second reader, and the first is a woman friend of mine with a lovely poetic voice. The KCBX radio link:

My reading is of the experience of writing poetry while in the psychiatric ward being treated for major depression. It was a gift to find the poetry within me at that time especially.

One of the poems I read is this:

The Visitor

When you came to me in the mental ward
you appeared like an angel to tell me
I was pregnant with possibilities.
Redemption was mine at that moment
when a power greater than you and I
flowed like a spark of creation through
your fingertip pressed against my own.
In that hallowed instant I ceased
to be wretched and became a woman
ripe with life.


RNSANE said...

We were freezing here, too, in the San Francisco area this morning! Brrrrr, not used to this cold.

The poem shows healing and a new beginning. It speaks of hope!

Shadow said...

the poem is inspiring. a pleasure to read and savor..

Karen said...

I love this poem. I haven't had a chance to listen to your broadcast yet. If this makes any sense, I'm saving it like a treat that I'll give myself when I can sit down with a good cup of coffee and time to savor.

the walking man said...

I downloaded and listened to the whole podcast. You and Dianne did well.

You just keep that cold ass weather on your side of the big hills thank you very much.

I am beginning to think that the release of Methane from the thawing tundra is going to be a greater ecological problem than Co2 emissions.

Lou said...

Your poem is powerful. And from the heart of someone who has been there.

Dianne said...

oh yeah, so sweet. I love this poem, it gave me goosebumps when I heard it on the radio and I am glad I can re-read it. Thank you for the compliment as well.
I totally agree with the breath and meditation. I cannot keep breathing metaphors out of my poetry.
Your voice is strong and sensuous, in a live reading!

Scott said...

that was a very kool radio deal Chris... anyone who hasn't listened, ought to!

I am feeling the deadline thing as well... got a newsletter to write and release and a newspaper editorial/article to write as well lol

it's great to be working :-)

Tall Kay said...

It was really cold down here too...but not that cold! I still have roses in full bloom.

I love it when the information I am seeking 'suddening' appears right in front of me! Is it odd or is it God? I seem to work better under pressure :o) Best wishes for a productive God-inspired day!

Brian Miller said...

i am glad that you found your voice again after so long...beautiful reading...and thank goodness for those sparks...hope you have a wonderful day!

Poetikat said...

I find the roses almost a metaphor for the poem - ripe with life, only requiring that spark.

It was even better the second time around!


Julie said...

This is such synchronicity, because I was coming today just to tell you how much I enjoyed listening to your work on Saturday evening. Door bells and telephones ring, people need, and life sometimes interrupts the important things I want to do, so please excuse my slowness in coming to tell you how much I love both poems. I was so touched.

First of all, you have an awesome reading voice! I didn't hear any nervousness at all. It was very clear, strong, and beautiful.

"The Visitor" is excellent and ties in wonderfully with the theme, "a gift of art." I will always look at Michelangelo's painting in a new light now. I can feel the love flowing from the visitor into the narrator.

"Your Name Is Good" touched me on so many different levels. I won't go on and on here, because I feel like a gushing idiot again...ha! If you have a chance, I'd love to tell you what I mean off the air. Suffice it to say that I love both poems. If anyone hasn't listened, it's a beautiful experience.

Anonymous said...

I just read your poem and it has left me tingling and with goose bumps. It is a perfect "O", a circle traced with a finger in the sand. The circle contains everything you will ever need to know. It is so beautiful. Thank you.
My two year old and four year old have been hard work today and this evening I am sitting in the eye of a storm. I said to my husband I don't feel like I am coping with everything. Thank you for this perfect poem arriving at the perfect moment.

Akannie said...!


Poetikat said...

I have a little something for you at "Keepsakes" (under the "snow" poem post).

Syd said...

I really enjoyed the reading on the radio. You are inspiring. I am glad that you are ripe with life. It's an awesome thing.

Poetic Shutterbug said...

What a lovely shot. I hit the low 30's here in San Francisco this morning and it can't be much higher than that today. Lovely poem.

lakeviewer said...

We're all freezing! Glad to see your poem here.

sarah said...

this is really beautiful. Sarah

~ Tabitha ~ said...

Ya,the whole fighting stress thing is just creates more stress and harm on to our bodies.It's easy to get swooped up in - but daily reminders in our readings and writing keep us centered I think.
Mediations of the inner self kind.
And our blogging can help stress too sometimes ;)

I really respect that poem.
Telling and empowering to any of us who have had to accept we are powerless and to truly let go and embrace new possibilites.

Another great post,Enchanted.

(Now get back to

Anonymous said...

Beautiful poem, Chris! ... become a woman ripe with life, with so much beauty that you share with us lucky peeps :)

Gabriella Moonlight said...

Amazing are amazing!

Oh the fighting of always leads me to feeling worse, like you I just have to breathe, meditate and remind myself that this too shall pass!

Love you,

Jess Mistress of Mischief said...

Beautiful poem! I love it.

The radio program was really awesome too!

Nessa said...

Beautiful poem. It has gotten very cold here, too.

Car Goes Boom