Thursday, August 10, 2006

"Ghost Walk" by Laura

for B.

The feet must move beneath the earth
and slow, this trust of space will widen soon.
Fold your hands inward to the heart, this bird,
this rock, inhabiting an edge for longing
and this is how you move, this earth below
you moving up, inside you as you go, now,
toward, this earth below shall hold you,
all your weight, your heart’s core its core,
the beat of grief, the hard, dark beat of hope.

You must walk as though you are not moving,
for only things discover themselves, illumine.
No call, no breath, these cannot lift you from your
step. Only what you know moves you, these words
close at hand, these words on your tongue, sweet
and lost once spoken. You are in your home most
when you are here, this honest. So, trust the dark.
Trust the cuts the trees make across the stars.

No one can hold you here. Your body only moves.
Here the closing opens with your breathing, allow
loss to hold you still. Bring nothing. Want nothing.
Hope for nothing. What this is is what’s beginning,
slow breath turns the air into singing only the soul
can hear and listens back to you, pawing you into the
still, the dark, the wild in you. The soul leans back
on its haunches, licks the wounds the body caused.

Here, let there be cicatrix. Here, allow for carapace.
Here, what’s wrought are the bones of the hollow
body waiting to be counted and remade into a man.
Wait here as the bones begin their singing, as they
remember the first assembling, a map of home.
What they know of love is the taking, ossuary
wisdom of the bones, so generous, so knowing what
thieves we may take of them. So knowing what we leave
behind us as we move to love, this walk away from
loss that always calls us back, teacher, to this life.

Literary Radio

One of the most intriguing qualities of WordPlay is its embrace of the borderland between literary and oral literature. In a literate society, the beauty of being read to leaves us as soon as we outgrow our toddler beds. But programs such as this bring the voice back into reading, enriching our relationship with the books we read. I recall reading that Afghanistan has a remarkably high "illiteracy" rate, something like 80 or 90%, but I also know that the people of Afghanistan know their nation's poetry by heart, its stories by heart, and celebrate them in long tellings and festivals.

Not to romanticize illiteracy as it certainly has economic benefits in the technological world. However, as a writer, does it matter to me whether my words are read by mind or recited by heart? No. Literacy of the heart, that achieved by listening and carrying the words in one's body as opposed to one's bag, has a beautiful warmth for me. Perhaps when we share writing on the air, perhaps it goes directly to the heart.

Warmly, Laura

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Welcome to WordPlay's Blog.

We'll be posting here to provide listeners of WordPlay, WPVM's program by and about poets and writers, with additional materials to expand and enhance their listening experience.