The secret of poetry is cruelty, kindness, suffering, redemption, transcendence. But when the boat comes ashore, at which mooring will you anchor? You may find many paths or metaphors conducive to the search that puts more body into your mind. (Though words, I have heard, have silent modes mysterious as vibrations felt across space.) Yes, you tell me what this means, I’ll tell you what this dreams–for the dream-making apparatus wants meaning out of the way in order for images to play and word energy healthily to enter your body.
When you open a book, the world is like that. Forests of all-you-see shapes that, squinting, you slowly make out the names for, and pronounce, word by word, line by line, page by page, each sound a menagerie of relations you never knew was there and is not, no not, bound by covers front and back.
The incoming messes–the choice is always yours–that must be dealt with, dispatched willy-nilly, and other messes kept from spilling over, gods willing, struggles for love, energy, power, you name it–creatively transformed by artists and poets to the tune of outgoing messages to the culture, this universally the case, always is and has been, for as long as culture has been wrought, and wars been fought, and love been sought…
If the truth of poetry is not the truth of history, as poet Philip Levine has said, the dark bruise of history painful to the touch–living more fully in the wake of that ache?–like the wound’s line between fatal and vital still must be walked in order to say what we can, in order to be what we can, in order to write what we can, in order to love what we cannot bear not to, as the moon looks in through the open blinds to give comfort, and more than that, to reorient the sleepers’ dreams–for to be starry-eyed is to be unblinking in whatever you face, but not unmoved by what you see.
So stay tuned for the world, from the bottom up. In dreams, as with everything else, there’s wheat and chafe. Not everything speaks to you. But when it does, it speaks out loud and clear of the nature-named world once inhabited by antenna-ed (not attenuated) human beings below the roof-topped skies heard across multi-channels, spectrums late and early of makings from tree-bark, stardust, vital signs under the breathings, the containments, numbers felt not amassed, facts searching not accumulated, music re-grounding not recorded.
Poetry accomplishes its work thus. It knows all about sparrowdynamics in the jet stream, high and low, of imagination. The moral web of the universe is spun by poets after all.