Sunday, March 10, 2013

guest post: Naomi

An introduction to Naomi.

I could have called this: "guest post: poetry from a version of my future self." You've read, more than once, about my struggle with balance. I often cite the things that keep me from what I should be doing, or the things that keep me drawn because I should be doing them. Sometimes I can't tell which is which; these days, life is made up of
all good things, so even my distractions have purpose and value. As I examine my life, dreams, and expectations, and then factor in the worlds I now love to call my own, I worry that I won't get anything done. What of art, if the schedule beckons? What of solitude and study, if relationship is also joy?

In response to the questions, which have come through in both specific sentences and unspoken threads in the fabric of all I write about, I received a wonderful email from a cherished friend of mine. Naomi had taken the time to reflect on these things, had been reflecting on them already, and wrote a stunning poem.
Here is a woman - an artist - who has managed to find the balance; in her home, in her artistic endeavors, in her relationships. Here is a woman who gets things done, while remaining honest about the journey it takes to do so. Her words are for her children (who are all, by the way, exact replica cutouts of wide-eyed dimpled fairytale creatures), and I found comfort in the things she said. As I look toward a future filled with all-good-things, I am less nervous, knowing that it is okay to love a craft and a diversion at the same time.

Poem by Naomi Pahl.

You look at me and whimpers shake you
Even though
    right now
I am trying to unburden my soul
by trying to express everything within it

You need
    (more than my need)

And even though I feel stifled-
   in that moment
that world
      that revolves in your eyes
           that revolves around you
Pulls me into its orbit

I don't make you wait any longer
I make my will bow
     to your will

I bring you your bread and your milk
no thanks
no words
     just hungry satisfaction

I return to my resolve to CREATE
Trying to steal time

You appear under my arm
       and smile
Crumbs falling on my lap
    create a mess I choose to ignore

Lift me
Hold me

Your blanket appears
in a pile on my leg
You clutch my knee
trying to climb the mountain
onto the soft oracle
    The one who
makes everything feel safe

I put my art aside
relegating it for another moment in time

I bring your face close
and smell your sweet milky breath
          Your eyes nod into mine

And I stare
And I marvel
And I stare
because you're the one perfect SOUL EXPRESSION
       I made
     without even trying.

Watermelon Juice. Photo by Naomi Pahl.

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