Friday, May 05, 2006

like currents through my head

letter g
Originally uploaded by suttonhoo.
I haven’t traveled to Italy, but I’m told by friends who have that they love the wide open passionate love of life expressed by the Italians they’ve met and observed on their travels. The being unafraid to say it out loud -- and loudly -– to care and ache and weep and love.

Having just returned from Dublin I feel an appreciation a little bit like that for the bald love that I saw there for language and music and melody. As an American I love these things in secret; I finger them in private; I share my love with a few friends and when we’re together our conversation shifts in pitch like initiates sharing a secret handshake. In America to be too fond of words is to be a little too precious, a little effete -- and we’re nothing if NOT that here in America, goddammit.

So here’s a treasure, from the poetry of Brendan Kennelly, found this last week while traveling in the lovely Éire. Here is what I’m fingering now in the quiet of my room at night.

and in the dark to lean across
like a bridge over a river on whose bed
stones are untroubled by what passes
and kiss the sleep in your body
with I love you I love you
like currents through my head
that is closer to deep water now
than at any time of the day

Brendan Kennelly
A Time for Voices: Selected Poems 1960-1990

1 comment:

anne mcq said...

that poem. that is exactly what it feels like to kiss Joe-Henry when he has just gone to sleep. Thank you for sharing that, my friend.

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