Saturday, May 1, 2010

Poetry Weekend: Blackbirds by Julie Cadwallader

I am 52 years old, and have spent
truly the better part
of my life out-of-doors
but yesterday I heard a new sound above my head
a rustling, ruffling quietness in the spring air

and when I turned my face upward
I saw a flock of blackbirds
rounding a curve I didn't know was there
and the sound was simply all those wings
just feathers against air, against gravity
and such a beautiful winning
the whole flock taking a long, wide turn
as if of one body and one mind.

How do they do that?

Oh if we lived only in human society
with its cruelty and fear
its apathy and exhaustion
what a puny existence that would be

but instead we live and move and have our being
here, in this curving and soaring world
so that when, every now and then, mercy and tenderness triumph in our lives
and when, even more rarely, we manage to unite and move together
toward a common good,

and can think to ourselves:

ah yes, this is how it's meant to be.


"Blackbirds" by Julie Cadwallader-Staub. © Julie Cadwallader-Staub. Reprinted from The Writer's Almanac

10 comments:

Theresa Milstein said...

That's beautiful. I'm going to read this aloud to my husband.

Jen said...

Thank you for sharing Beth, how beautiful!!

Anonymous said...

This is such a beautiful poem. Thank you for sharing.

Carolyn V. said...

That is what I would call a thinking poem, making one reflect on its true meaning. Thanks for sharing Beth!

Jemi Fraser said...

What a gorgeous poem - I got chills as I read. Thanks so much for sharing :)

Paul C said...

'..instead we live and move and have our being here, in this curving and soaring world so that when, every now and then, mercy and tenderness triumph in our lives and when, even more rarely, we manage to unite and move together toward a common good,.. This is a wonderful poem. Thanks.

Karen Lange said...

Enjoyed this, thank you:)

Marcia said...

I'd have quoted the same section Paul C did. Lovely.

Lady Glamis said...

This is lovely! Thank you for sharing poetry with us. It's a good choice.

I like the new look of your blog. I've noticed it for awhile and just didn't say anything, but it's very nice. :)

Terresa said...

Beautiful poem! It's a keeper.

PS: In case you're interested, I'm hosting a little Spring Poetry Contest over at my blog. Contest ends May 3rd @ midnight.