Friday 8 April 2011

The Reader

The shapes of my days
are glazed
by other people's walks
and ways;
I hold my pen so
 and ever thus
Shakespeare's quill, or
Woolf at her desk,
or Blake beside his printing press
or Austen stealing time, away,
from household chores, and bores
and sisterliness.

We write to know
we are not alone,
We read, because
we know
they lived and breathed
and fought and scored
in petty, churlish wars.

And won their way
through life and love
while being just as afraid
 as me, today,
as I, who write
but read more,
so much more,
to re-assure my lonely heart
that I can never stand apart
from those that went before me.

- Shaista, 2011

Anne Hathaway in Becoming Jane, 2007
Rudolf Ernest, 'The Reader', 1854-1932

April is National Poetry Month and today, Terresa Wellborn, poet blogger at The Chocolate Chip Waffle, is celebrating my poetry at her waffle house. You met her once before, when I did, last December. Here is one of her creations - she writes in a way that impresses and absorbs me; when I read her I am back at university, awed by my reading of Poets who truly craft and graft into the sublime, and never did I imagine she would cross an ocean to arrive on my doorstep, and wander the cobbled streets of Cambridge with me...


The sky darkens in notes,
I wade into pines gathered like quills,
their evergreen feathers,
their infinite houses. 

They speak nothing of
their windowless wisdom,
their stretch of days,

of standing so long on the same legs,

arms held out in prayer.

They absorb the shock of seasons,
the hail of years rocking down.
I know nothing of their clock tick,
their inched climb, their roots
pulling like a hymn,

--Terresa Wellborn

© 2010 by Terresa Wellborn. All rights reserved.


Sherry Blue Sky said...

A beautiful poem and lovely post, Shaista. I popped over and saw you featured at the Chocolate Chip Waffle. Like Terresa, I see you as a being of light.........keep shining, kiddo! May folk swarm in with spring to banish your loneliness: perhaps even a shining knight. But only one very worthy of someone so special!!!!!

Elizabeth said...

I'm visiting from the Chocolate Chip Waffle and know that I've been here before. Your blog is so beautiful -- your poetry, the images, everything -- I know that I will be back!

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Elisabeth said...

That's a stunning poem, Shaista and I can only endorse your support for Terresa. For those who come before us and for those who accompany us along the way and keep the loneliness at bay.

kelvin s.m. said...

Hi Shaista,

I came here via Terresa's The Chocolate Chip Waffle and i'm really glad introduced you with us... I just wanted to tell you that you are a very inspiring individual for all of us who at times feel life brings no good at all... and by simply stopping here and reading your poetry i know that life's still a better one to waste with by just not doing something or sharing something... may you continue to inspire many in the world...(:

God Bless.


Ruth said...

You know how I feel about you and this sanctuary. Your poem today has the perfect cadence and lady lilt that I've come to expect from you. You're a candle, and I quiet myself when I come and light you here.

Terresa's spotlight is lovely, and I'm thrilled for others to find you and pull up their chairs for a listen to your soft, strong voice.

I hope you are well today, poet-sister-heart. xoxo

Lisa said...

So beautiful Shaista. It touches me because sometimes I do wonder why I blog. But I am a reader too.

And what amazing experience it is to visit with a fellow blogger and one that shares your passion for writing beauty.

I wrote a poem too today Shaista, title Home Sweetest Home, hope to be as original as I can be;)

Aayushi Mehta said...

Both the poems are so beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

erin said...

this is a wonderful marriage! your poem is perfect, i think, in form and message. and your endorsement of terresa is well measured.


ds said...

Ahh, two beautiful poems (though I saw yours first at The Waffle House). Thank you.

Mark Kerstetter said...

Discovered you at Terresa's place. It's true, so much of writing is reading; we write because we want to respond, because we want to, finally, dive into the sea of discourse and swim with the others. Isn't that why we poets blog?

Steven Cain said...

Wonderful poem, Shaista.

ShannonAnn said...

Hi Shaista, Your poem is beautiful. I just found your blog today, thanks for sharing.

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