I began writing poetry when I was about 12 years old.
Instinctively, from the beginning, I consciously tried to shape the flow of my words to match a sound I heard within, a vibration. I did not know what that inner sound was until years later when I visited a Japanese Garden. I hit the big bronze bell hanging there with the wooden mallet provided. When I heard the sound, I knew I had found the location of that inner vibration.
When I read my poetry aloud, people often remark that they love to hear my voice because it is like a lullaby or relaxing bath. I once spoke into an oscilloscope and saw that my voice forms a sine wave. A sine wave is symmetrical in a “smooth periodic oscillation,” a graph of the sine function (it occurs often in pure and applied mathematics, physics, engineering, signal processing, and other fields). It seems that the sine wave also appears in poetry and my voice. I wonder what pattern the Bonsho is tuned to? I wonder, also, whether “concert A” is a sine wave. (“Concert A” is the sound made by the A string on a violin if it is correctly tuned. Symphonies tune to concert A before beginning to play.) Do East and West meet there? I do not know but I wonder.
From My Window This Nest of Birds
I Spring comes slowly, carefully leaves reluctant, cautious When will they accept the change in seasons? Japanese Willow with delicate pink luminescent reach stands tall pauses awaits rain an amendment to the soil occupies her inner gaze Cardinal, Robin, White-throated Sparrow Chickadees, busy beneath the grapevine But the ants have scarcely stirred my words, like these ants rise fitfully, still asleep What inner horizon waits to shift from far to near - or near to far in them? In me? What change waits where hope lies dormant lost between anger or forgiveness, burning or renewal advance or retreat? Seed turns toward blossom. Winter frost approaches spring release. Hope vanishes into the Plane of the Possible where all things wait all leaves sleep where buds open with courage once again but not until morning not until the world turns evolves one more time II When I was a child I knew sound could heal everything broken anything wounded I knew to listen bend my words toward inner sound, a faint Bonsho waited for me to come, to strike, make it ring, sing. . . I heard the echo of the Bosho’s heart among other hills remembered willows an open voiced great bronze bell that inner music, lost waiting to return to mind when it was time the sound of Perfect Unity Love wandered toward silence leaving mind behind sought cathedral bells of long ago, a singing inside an open heart bells meant to heal mend the pathway of intention by intention Somewhere yellow daffodils emerged from winter snow calling to Willow singing to that bell in gardens waiting within each of us echoing our very distant sleep “All shall be well again, I know” gathering words together as the known world wakes transforms tenor, tone, timbre, melody shifts near moves outward finds the edge of wonder returns. Again. And again. Infinite solitude waits within Willow comes home into the throat of Sparrow dreams within our sleep as ants in chilled, unripe soil when soil warms with springtime Willow stirs. . . a nest of tiny birds appears in a small wooden box the door not much bigger around than my thumb
Tenor: the main sense of something; the general meaning; prevailing character; Tenere:, middle English (from Latin, French), “to hold”; the voice given the melody, to hold the melody;
Timbre: the quality of a musical pitch distinct from pitch and intensity; Tone: a musical or vocal sound with reference to its pitch, quality and strength;
Plane: in mathematics a plane is a flat, two-dimensional surface that extends infinitely far.
Point: Zero: dimensions represented by a dot; a hole an object, a topological structure that prevents the object from being continuously shrunk to a point.
Emily Dickinson: “Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul – and sings the words without the words – and never stops at all.” And, attributed both to Hildegard von Bingen, Benedictine, b1098-d1179 and Julian of Norwich, Anchorite, b1342-d1417: “All shall be well again I know” and “All shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well”