Friday, October 28, 2011

Poetry Friday: Machines


Another week with no posts between Poetry Fridays. I've been doing better about posting during the week, but what a week this was. We had our accreditation visit, a fire, electrical problems. But we're coming up on a week with several vacation days, so we will have a chance to recover.

Meanwhile, today's poem compares a beautiful piece of music to a bicycle. I read that Steve Jobs wanted to call the first Mac computer the Bicycle, because a bicycle is so elegant and simple and perfectly designed. I love the way the poem acknowledges that in creating beauty, "so much is chance," and I love the phrase, "effortless gadgetry of love." I'm just posting the first two stanzas, and these quotes are from later in the poem, so be sure to follow the link to read the rest.

Machines

Michael Donaghy

Dearest, note how these two are alike:
This harpsicord pavane by Purcell
And the racer's twelve-speed bike.

The machinery of grace is always simple.
This chrome trapezoid, one wheel connected
To another of concentric gears,
Which Ptolemy dreamt of and Schwinn perfected,
Is gone. The cyclist, not the cycle, steers.
And in the playing, Purcell's chords are played away.

Here's the rest of the poem.

And here's today's Poetry Friday roundup.

4 comments:

Diane Mayr said...

Thanks for the little tidbit about Steve Jobs--he had an incredible way of looking at things.

teacherdance said...

And if I may further the connection to Steve Jobs & your poem of connections. What if Jobs hadn't returned to Apple, and pressed forth his views? He was amazing. The poem brings up ideas I'd never have thought. I had to look at a piece about harpsichords first. Thank you for the interesting post.

Joyce Ray said...

Thanks, Ruth. I love the last paradoxical lines:

"Who only by moving can balance,
Only by balancing move"

Mary Lee said...

I agree with Joyce -- those last two lines really have me thinking!