Fits & Fugues

Education can be so much more.

National Poetry Month 2009 4.2 A Book

In response to Bud’s prompt 1

A Book

A book
Full of words
Line by line
The story revealed

A book
Pages numbered
Turn by turn
The story told

A book
Letter by letter
The story crafted

The page
Contains its lines

The lines
Contain their words

The words
Without their links
Before and aft

Each word hangs on the next
As each breath mists into another
Each grows
As the days grow to weeks
And the weeks to months
And the months to years
And the years
A lifetime

The letter second
The word minute
The sentence day
The page month
The chapter year
The book lifetime

Authored artfully
Made meticulously
Crafted carefully
Composed consciously

As randomness contradicts purpose
So does meaninglessness life

The chapter complete
In its number
Fails the book
In its sole telling

The sentence powerful
In its wholeness
Fails the story
In its only completeness

The word essential
In its purpose
Fails the sentence
In its isolation

The letter necessary
In its formation
Fails the word
In its scrutiny

The letter makes the word
The word makes the sentence
The sentence the page
The page the chapter
The chapter the story

To disentangle a sentence from a book
May reveal a morsel
The sentence hangs in the air
But a brief moment
Revealing itself
Hinting at its purpose
In the grand design

But it falls
Lifeless as a petal plucked

Its purpose lost in the extrication and isolation
Pointless parsing
The whole lost
On one


April 2, 2009 Posted by | poetry | , , , | Leave a comment

Fits & Fugues Part 2

My “fits” flow from my passions, sometimes through the fugues, sometimes because of them. My passion spectrum seems to have inspiration on one side with desperation on the other. I find the tensions created between the two working on me all the time: each seems to be a source of and a kind of a fugue. That’s desperately inspirational.

I feel compelled to write a few words on inspiration and desperation. Inspiration is built on the Latin word meaning to breathe or blow into, or to inflame. Desperation comes from the latin to lose hope or to have given up. In initially writing this post I had used annoyance as the other end to inspiration, but behind annoyance I realized there was something more. When reflecting on why I get annoyed by some things it becomes immediately clear that it springs from a loss of hope, a form of desperation as it were. Why do red lights annoy me? Because I lose hope that I will get to a place on time or that I will always have to stop while others go. Why does the extremely slow pace of change in education annoy me? Because I lose hope that we will be effective in preparing our kids for a nearly unimaginable future. Often times it’s those annoyances or pockets of desperation that lead to inspiration and sometimes the reverse is true. Strictly, speaking they aren’t quite opposites, but neither are red and violet.

The spectra of these and many other seemingly dichotomous array of entities that show up in my personal and professional lives create a tension that needles creativity and prompts responses. Like the light spectrum where it’s nearly impossible to discern where one color ends and another begins, it’s often nearly impossible to pinpoint the end of desperation and the beginning of inspiration.

The two Latin verbs that form inspiration and desperation are spirare and sperare. No one word in English really encompasses our purpose as educators as those two Latin verbs: to breathe hope. I guess a new word is needed: Inspirsperate. Doesn’t really roll of the tongue. Oh well, multiple words it is. We must simply breathe hope as educators using all the tools available to us in the time allotted to us for benefit of the kids given to us.

October 6, 2007 Posted by | Education, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment