I'm getting ready to go on a silent retreat, so I turn to poetry to quiet the soul in preparation. Here's a poem by Miguel Gonzalez-Gerth, from his bilingual collection of the same title:
LOOKING FOR THE HORSE LATITUDES
(after the painting Rooms by the Sea by Edward Hopper)
Something unseen weighs heavy.
on the resilience of the mind.
The usual apparitions
have all been exorcised.
The sea that seemed at first
to hesitate has come
at last into the rooms
leaving in the dark a wedge of light.
It's there -somewhere-
a spectral springboard
from which one might jump
into the sea.
and yet drown in the sky?
Or else fall to the ocean floor
where unconfessed anxiety
can find oblivion?
So many things are heard
and yet are never said.
What solitude! What endless prize
of isolation that is not,
Such silence can be seen.
It begs response and scatters
glimmers of reflection.
Here lies the telltale vacancy,
the vacant compass.
The emptiness that lures and cries
with mirror-like precision,
the essence that absorbs all substance,
inverted vision turned aright
past the axiometer's reflection.
Could one fall into color
and dissolve in sheer liquidity?
Is space the pure and primal
ruler of our eye,
so that no surge can lead
to anywhere but there,
to preordained discovery?
Those people, yes, the crowds
who are not here, they are so lonely
they crave the mystery
that can present the future of the past.
They are so lonely, and thus a door
has been left open quietly
that they and we and all can gaze
into the sound and some day,
when weary of the walls of time,
set sail and ride the wind toward the night.
I think my soul is now more alert than ever...