Thursday, October 3, 2013

Home: A Sorted-book Poem


Home

Paths to the heart,
the immense journey.
The way of a pilgrim,
given
the unforeseen wilderness;
the dispossessed garden;
the trail of tears
back to Cain.

The heart of man,
the hidden wound.
A world lost,
far from the madding crowd.

The way of the heart,
mountains and rivers without end.
Reaching out . . . .
Remembering:
you can’t go home again.

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For dVerse FormForAll. Sam Peralta has given us a project to complete—sorted-book or spine poetry. The idea is pretty simple: take a number of books and arrange their titles in some kind of coherent order. It’s a whole lot of fun. I’m all for any project that ends up with books scattered all over the living room. I started out with about 50 interesting titles, finally whittled it down to this. I was delighted to be able to use the last title, since today is the birthday of Thomas Wolfe (earlier today I posted a little excerpt from Wolfe). Interesting how many books I have with the word heart in the title—you’d think I was a cardiologist or something. I also have a hell of a lot of Wendell Berry titles represented. I figured that would happen.


48 comments:

  1. The way of a pilgrim,
    given
    the unforeseen wilderness...cool line...and you wrap all the emotions in...the ups and downs...and hopefully, hopefully we do get that chance to go home....

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    1. Thanks Brian--once I had some titles in front of me, I quickly saw a common theme.

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    1. Thanks Anna, I'm happy you liked it!

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  3. You bring out that life is a journey, rarely repeated, never going back to the initial place particularly as we are not only going forward in time but millions of miles through space every day - blasted by weather and time's deteriorating effects.Well done!

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    1. Thanks Gay--I should do another one with a more positive ending. I do believe there is some joy mixed in the journey as well!

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  4. This seems so natural: a great collection of books.
    I'm beginning to feel quite illiterate, browsing what people are reading.

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    1. Thanks Aprille--I spend too much money on books.

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  5. Love this stack,very nicely composed! :-)

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    1. Thanks Shanyn, I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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  6. What an ending... this is awesome, Nico!

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    1. Thanks Laurie--before I ever started arranging, I knew what the last line would be.

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  7. I love the stacked up books specially these :

    The way of the heart,
    mountains and rivers without end.

    Good work Nico ~

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    1. Thanks Grace, those are also two of my favorites.

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  8. Absolutely loved that ending - so powerful. And what a cool way to separate the title from the verses :)

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    1. Thanks Shaista--I took the idea of separating stanzas from Sam's own stack!

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  9. "paths to the heart, the immense journey." Sigh. Fantastic compilation!

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    1. Thanks Sherry--yes, immense. Better pack well for that journey.

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  10. It's amazing what you were able to create out of your book titles. I could feel the journey..

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    1. Thanks Truedessa--thanks for journeying with me!

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  11. It is all about the heart here. Nicely done.

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    1. Thanks Sharon, I'm happy you liked it!

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  12. You have a big heart Nico. ..very moving poem. One of your best!
    PS
    Love your new header.

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    1. Thanks Cress--that parrot lily just started growing in the backyard, who knows where it came from.

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  13. Wow, Nico, it was nice to see an insight into your library and into your 'self.' And yes, sometimes one really DOES have to remember that a person can NEVER go home again.

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    1. Thanks Mary--going home again is like stepping into the same river twice. We are never the same person, and the river is never quite the same river.

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  14. the you can't go home again in the close hit hard... the journey... trail of tears back to cain...wow... a moving piece you put together...and you stacked high.. kudos nico..

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    1. Thanks Claudia--Back to Cain is the title of a poetry book by a friend of mine who teaches at the local college. It's a great title, and a great book.

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  15. Beautiful poem Nico! I particularly enjoyed the last stanza.

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    1. Thanks Gabriella, I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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  16. This is very good.. a sad poetry of loss - the middle stanza is perfect.

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    1. Thanks Bjorn, I'm happy you liked it!

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  17. Wonderful--I also wanted to use the Thomas Wolfe==I have not read Wendell Berry, so must amend that.

    You chose great books and use therm in a distinctive way--really well done, Nico. K.

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    1. Thanks Karin--the books chose me. And I think you would enjoy Berry. I enjoy him well enough to have purchased some 35-40 of his books!

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  18. Love how you are able to invoke emotion through your choice of titles. Especially love that second stanza.

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    1. Thanks Kathryn--those four titles in the second stanza just fell together like familiar friends.

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  19. Wow. This came out beautifully. This collection of title really flow well together.

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    1. Thanks RMP, I'm so happy you stopped by. It's been awhile since I've seen you around; I'll head over to your place in a bit to see what you've been up to!

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  20. Henri Nouwen and Thomas Hardy - that's a library I would like to get to know better ... smiles. In skilled hands it has produced a fine poem.

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    1. Thanks Tony--yeah, I think its a mistake to keep the religious writers separated from their more doubt-filled counterparts. Both Henri and Thomas spoke knowingly of the human heart, I think. At any rate, Jude the Obscure is one of the most heart-searching books I've ever read!

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  21. You wove this seamlessly, including the title. Wonderful!

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    1. Thanks Beth, I'm glad you liked it!

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  22. Hey Nico, you've crafted these together so well - a journey with no destination or home...such is life.

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  23. This is an amazing example of what can be done with the sorted-book framework, turning the constrained vocabulary into an exposition of thematic power. Bravo!

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    1. Thanks Sam--this prompt was just what I needed. It gave me an excuse to touch some of my books that have been neglected for a long time!

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    1. Thanks M, I'm happy you liked it!

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