Purpose and Perception

"Quilting Time 1981" by Romare Bearden

“Quilting Time 1981” by Romare Bearden

I’ve been facing inward big time over the past week or so. Sleeping more than usual, emailing/texting the bare minimum. I’m not ghosting you, I’m just weird and purposeful right now, and really present where I am. I have this quote by Romare Bearden written on a piece of watercolor paper that leans inside my window frame:

I think the artist has to be something like a whale, swimming with his mouth wide open, absorbing everything until he has what he really needs.

I am making big changes that feel increasingly right but require a new sort of navigation, and I can’t quite find the words to talk about it, or my mouth/brain are otherwise occupied.

Here’s the poem for this week, “Song” by Adrienne Rich.

“You’re wondering if I’m…” is your prompt. She sort of takes “lonely” and reclaims it. What words could you reclaim? Hungry? Afraid? Disappointed? Satisfied?


by Adrienne Rich

You’re wondering if I’m lonely:
OK then, yes, I’m lonely
as a plane rides lonely and level
on its radio beam, aiming
across the Rockies
for the blue-strung aisles
of an airfield on the ocean.

You want to ask, am I lonely?
Well, of course, lonely
as a woman driving across country
day after day, leaving behind
mile after mile
little towns she might have stopped
and lived and died in, lonely

If I’m lonely
it must be the loneliness
of waking first, of breathing
dawns’ first cold breath on the city
of being the one awake
in a house wrapped in sleep

If I’m lonely
it’s with the rowboat ice-fast on the shore
in the last red light of the year
that knows what it is, that knows it’s neither
ice nor mud nor winter light
but wood, with a gift for burning

One thought on “Purpose and Perception

  1. Farida

    This is so beautiful

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