Sunday, October 5, 2008

Got some 'splainin' to do...

(Pre-script: To get the most out of this post, read it while the song "The Eleventh Hour" by Jars of Clay plays...go down to the playlist, click it on, then come back and continue reading. I'll wait...)

(...still waiting...)

When I was 21 years old, I used to go for regular 7 mile runs along a fast highway, and I was often surprised by butterflies that would stop to rest beside the road. They would lay sideways. The contrast between fast cars on a clear, straight mission with their noise, exhaust, and smog, and the beauty of the butterflies laying still, sideways, with no particular pattern or concerns about time, and me, running fast towards my own personal speed and endurance goals, always the middle man observing, interpreting, and balancing these two extremes. I didn't know how to explain the effect this had on me, so I did what I have done since I was 5 years old; I wrote a poem about it. Here it is:

Butterfly Shoe

Beautiful creatures are napping sideways
along the sidewalks of this
one track fast lane life,
catching their breath each time
another one sails by.
And you would think them vain
as they light upon flowers,
and you would think them proud
as they suck and flutter

like elegant lovers,
but all they are thinking about is nectar.
And the draining drains them,
so they float back down.
And one would land on the toe of
my sturdy black shoe if I
were still enough for long enough.
And seeing it there
would tug hard on all of those precious chords
inside of my memory
until I knew that my body could no longer contain it.
But I am not still enough.
They are sleeping now, and I
have not been watching my step.
(-M.L.B., age 21)

If you are a particularly astute observer, you will notice that the first lines of the poem are now posted on my header. This is because I like them so, so much, and I think they are very fitting in more ways than I can ever explain.

A writer is always at a loss for words; Always.*


*More so than anyone else.

1 comment:

Brian said...

I'm always astounded that you notice so much of Gods creation and beauty. It's all around us, but we rush by like cars on a highway...unobserving, oblivious. I pray that some day God will bless me with your powers of observation and your depth to convey those observations to the rest of us, in ways so creative to actually enhance their initial beauty.