Disclaimer one: I don't write that much poetry, and I sort of cringe whenever I do. I don't think I'm particularly good at it, and I usually feel really embarrassed to share it with other people, and in general I like to leave its creation to the greats (or at least my favorites): cummings, Rilke and Eliot. But sometimes I feel inspired to write a poem, and when that happens, I do.
Disclaimer two: I have never published a poem on my blog. This is the first time this has happened, and will probably be the last.
Disclaimer three: I wrote this on the plane from New York to Alabama, when I was depressed and pining away for something that turned out to be living in my own heart. I missed home, yes, but I also was starved for a love I thought I could only find in the South; turned out, it was inside me all along. I read back over these words and they seem like something I wrote years ago, when in reality this poem is only two weeks old. I wanted to convey how I was feeling about home at the time, while also painting an accurate picture of what life in the South is like. I hope someone besides my mom thinks I may have accomplished these goals.
Disclaimer four: I am not leaving New York.
The air hangs thick, the silence thicker,
And above dewed grass that's slick like molasses,
The darkness is a welcomed relief.
No buildings, no lights, no human graffiti,
Just stars, stars, stars,
And still, still, still-
I can actually feel my heartbeat slow.
When life demands a pause,
This place can deliver,
A twangy release from the push, from the go,
Like a rocking chair swaying in time.
Not just a place - it's a way of existing,
A real way of life, honest, strong and fulfilling,
The South just keeps calling me, "Come."
I'm reminded of youth, of driving and kissing;
My heart lurches backward, and stings in the present,
Because I desperately miss what before went unnoticed.
The smell of the wet,
That dew on the grass,
How impossibly, quietly, the wind stirs the trees -
But mostly I miss what no one can see:
The Southern life unexamined,
Worth living, and more,
Worth exulting and
Worthy of me.
Disclaimer five: I took that photo from the window of a plane from Birmingham to Memphis. On that flight, I saw the entire sunset from above the clouds and the South and all the rest of America. It was stunning, and more appropriately poetic than I could ever hope to recreate.
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