Sunday, October 31, 2010

Dia de los Muertes

Poets and peacemakers
along the way
before me, behind me -
me in between.

No better than any, nor worse -
simply walking, begging
Your pardon for the curses,
Your indulgence for the slips.

In Your continuum I tread -
the lines, etched into my palm -
stepping with the pulse
echoing since dawn.

We will carry it through
round and round again,
generation upon generation,
until the dreaming is done.

Barbara Butler McCoy

[[Photo: Barbara Butler McCoy;
Bee foraging for pollen; zoo,
Columbia, SC; September 2008]]

Two candles I lit this morning after Mass, for the Ancestors and Ancestresses. Since then my thoughts have been with those who have gone before and those who are to come. This, my acknowledgement, my tribute, is how those thoughts resolved into a coherent piece. I was inspired in part by William Butler Yeats's poem "Pardon Old Fathers" (from Responsibilities, 1914), in part by a line from Prospero's epilogue in William Shakespeare's "The Tempest" ("let your indulgence set me free") and a quote I found from Thich Nhat Hanh which is as follows: "If you look deeply into the palm of your hand, you will see your parents and all generations of your ancestors. All of them are alive in this moment. Each is present in your body. You are the continuation of each of these people."

Blessings and peace to them.

No comments: