Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Cinco de Mayo

In celebration of the holiday, and before I hoist myself out of this chair and head off to the gym, I offer this poem, which I wrote in Mexico, in the shadow of a pyramid.

Woman's Work

"I am a potter's potter,"
she smiled,
"or so I have been told."
Her eyes
remembered the green
of summer leaves
while the bowl she proffered
tangerine in pale
autumnal light
cool in my hands,
and beautiful
And she was small
her practical hands
dry stained grey
as weathered stone
of churches where
sacerdotal alchemy plays out
in silence
and the swing of censers
in the offering of beads
and the ringing
voices of children
and the high singing of bells
She carried possibility
and cured it
in a kiln
that she built herself,
brick by brick.
She smiled again through
tired lashes, leaf-brown hair:
"We do what we have to do."

Palenque, February 13, 2009

©Sandra Leigh 2009


John Hayes said...

Hi Sandra:

I really like this-- a nice motion throughout & great colors-- I'm always big on colors in poetry.

Sandra Leigh said...

Thank you, John.

René Wing said...

that is a beautiful poem. I love the spare feeling to it, and the way that it feels like a good pot.

Sandra Leigh said...

René, I'm glad you like the poem. I wanted it to be clean - yes, like a good pot. ;>)

mouse (aka kimy) said...

happy cinco! a beautiful and vibrant poem! makes me want to go immerse myself in color and play!

Sandra Leigh said...

Mornin', mouse - and thank you.

foetoe said...

I love poems that demand that they be read again.

Kathryn Magendie said...

I loved "She carried possibility" -- this is very nice....wistful...

(I am so glad you are donating a copy of tender graces to a library! I love that! Thank you!)

Sandra Leigh said...

Hi, Marty - Did you read it twice? Thank you!

Kathryn, I want as many people as possible to read Tender Graces. It is a treasure.

Brian Miller said...

nice. here's to "practical hands". happy cinco de mayo, a day late.

Sandra Leigh said...

Or, to misquote President Obama, "Happy Cinco de Seis!" Thanks, Brian.

Dominic Rivron said...

I enjoyed this: if I get it right, the idea that the doing is inseperable from the understanding of what is done.

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