Friday, March 15, 2013

Forward!

Though I do not believe that a plant will spring up where no seed has been, I have great faith in a seed... Convince me that you have a seed there, and I am prepared to expect wonders.
~Henry David Thoreau


Sometimes I play with prose, turning it into a poem. This week, I did that with a bit of Walden by Henry David Thoreau:

AFTER A STILL WINTER NIGHT
by Henry David Thoreau

After a still winter night
 I awoke    with the impression
 that some question
  had been put to me,

which I had been
endeavoring in vain
to answer in my sleep,
   as what —
    how —
     when —
      where?

But there
was dawning Nature,
in whom all creatures live,
looking in at my broad windows
with serene and satisfied face,
and no question on her lips.

I awoke to an answered question,
to Nature and daylight.
The snow lying deep on the earth
dotted with young pines,
and the very slope of the hill
on which my house is placed,
seemed to say,
Forward!

  Nature puts no question
  and answers none
  which we mortals ask.

from The Pond in Winter (Chapter 16, Walden)


photo by Lynn Friedman

Thoreau at Walden, a graphic novel by John Porcellino

*********************

Fun coincidence: I was thinking about the new pope being chosen when I posted about St. Francis on Monday, and it turns out he took the name Pope Francis I!

Jone at Check It Out has the Poetry Friday round-up.

8 comments:

Betsy said...

His words and your line breaking of those words was very enjoyable to read.

jama said...

Nice job, Tabatha. Beautiful words just perfect for this time of year.

Robyn Hood Black said...

So interesting to read this way, Tabatha - thanks for sharing!

And though I'm not Catholic, I was happy to hear about the new pope's name, too, of course! :0)

Author Amok said...

Hi, Tabatha. This is beautiful. Would you consider it a found poem?

You must have had your sixth sense working when you posted about St. Francis earlier this week. An admirable saint to be named for, I think.

Katya said...

Breaking it up like that really forces you to slow down and hear the words. Thank you.

Bridget Magee said...

Interesting take on Thoreau's words - I like the flow. Thanks for sharing. =)

Mary Lee said...

Love your interpretation of Thoreau, and isn't the quote in that photo the truth??!!

Linda at teacherdance said...

This reminds me to read Walden again, Tabatha. The way you presented it is beautiful! Thanks for sharing that you do this. And, yes, I saw that "St. Francis" appeared once again, although from what I read, they are not similar.