Saturday, April 15, 2017

Within My Reach

Within my reach!
I could have touched!
I might have chanced that way!
Soft sauntered thro' the village —
Sauntered as soft away!
So unsuspected Violets
Within the meadows go —
Too late for striving fingers
That passed, an hour ago!

Wow, how did Emily Dickinson in that poem know how I felt yesterday morning as I waited for the day to warm and the bloodroot blossoms to open? I had to leave about (I'm guessing) thirty minutes before the ones in the warmest spots in the woods were fully open. Just missed.

Just missed. It would break our hearts, to know all that we just missed. It would also inspire billions of poems, for this "just missed-ness" of life is the key to poetry (perhaps music, too)—more so, it seems, than any other of the arts (although dance would capture it, as well).

Is every poem, in some way, about what was "just missed"? What was within reach but not reached out for; what was there but passed by, overlooked, taken for granted? What was seen once and then searched for again, a lifetime's desire never seconded?

The rare bird at the feeder. The wildflower on the forest floor thirty minutes from fully open to the sun. The thing you saw an hour ago, or almost saw...

...The thing you missed while looking...

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