Sunday, 2 May 2010

Talking of Poetry... Ghazal 3

I started writing this after meeting with a small group of Quakers last week. I keep using the same form (roughly) - the Ghazal - as I used in the two previous poems I posted. Each couplet is supposed to stand alone as well as forming part of the whole - not sure I've really got this completely but anyway, I'd like to share it. The last couplet has this 'poet's voice' that comes in - I use an alias instead of my name - my 'takhallus' - I use Llew, the nickname of my maternal grandfather, the sort of family uberpoet!

Jane's rug!

Friends. When we sat together pleased to rest,
from listening our hearts pleased to rest.

Between us on the floor a woven rug,
where my eyes did linger seeking rest.

My thoughts wander the patterns on the rug,
unsettled, I find there's no place to rest.

Specular chemistry ignites the rug,
whose threads, fused, smoulder in their place of rest.

Between us, like some ancient test, this rug's
a whirlpool, dizzying the pace of rest.

I read the weaver's cosmic map, the rug
chaotic, helps me fly, to chase off rest.

Llew laughs: Such Grand Plans! laid out on a rug!
The whole universe in the face of rest.

4 comments:

Nadine Wills said...

I had to think about this poem for awhile before I could respond. I'm glad you're exploring them, they make me think and Google. They also make me curious about Jane's rug although I don't think that's the point really. I find my eyes trace the flowers perhaps in a similar way in Meeting. Using the ghazal opens up lots of food for thought on the connections between Quakerism and Sufism (sp?), mysticism and the potential for ecstastic experience in both the spiritual and everyday. Thanks for sharing this.

Tim said...

Thanks Nadine. It took me some time to decide to post this - while I like the poem in some way it also feels very contrived - however it does manage to carry something I felt strongly. It emerged from a long discussion about ideology I had early last week - I was thinking about ideology as the 'thing that knits us together' - a warp where we are the weft - a warp we can't do without. A warp that holds us together in human being. I had in my mind the (perhaps this is a sort of urban myth!) story whereby the weavers of eastern rugs always made one deliberate mistake in their design - as only God could be perfect. Anyhow thank for taking the time. T.

Nadine Wills said...

I rarely share what I write so understand the hesitation. But have wondered why write, if not to share? Why live, if not to engage? This is extrovert in me talking to the introvert. We'll see who wins. Grand Plans indeed.

I'm a big haiku lover and think all poetry is about contrivance and becoming fluent with new vocabularies that both constrain, make us feel awkward but then allow us to express new and different things as well.

Nice thought about that deliberate mistake...like Cohen's cracked bell. In Japanese culture and with the haiku, this is an artform/religion/highly ritualised practice as well and it intrigues me so much. The concept there is called wabi-sabi: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wabi-sabi

Sharon Langridge said...

Thanks for posting this, Tim. I'm glad you decided to share it.