Friday, April 01, 2011

Poetry Friday: April

I am writing this post on the Monday before it will be published, since I'm home sick today and have the time. (Oh, I do hope I'll be back in school by tomorrow, let alone by the time this appears.) While lying in bed I have been reading Emily Dickinson poems, and this one seemed particularly appropriate. In spite of earthquakes and tsunamis and radioactive contamination, the cherry blossoms are coming out, writes a Facebook friend in Tokyo, and this poem celebrates that reality.


Emily Dickinson

An altered look about the hills;
A Tyrian light the village fills;
A wider sunrise in the dawn;
A deeper twilight on the lawn;
A print of a vermilion foot;
A purple finger on the slope;
A flippant fly upon the pane;
A spider at his trade again;
An added strut in chanticleer;
An axe shrill singing in the woods;
Fern-odors on untravelled roads, -
All this, and more I cannot tell,
A furtive look you know as well,
And Nicodemus' mystery
Receives its annual reply.

Nicodemus' mystery? Nicodemus was the teacher who came to Jesus in the night and asked for an explanation of the concept of being "born again." "How can a man be born again when he is old?" he asked. Springtime every year really is a picture of how that can be, how God can bring new life out of deadness.

The video below, also about April, tells you how you can sign up for a daily poem this month from Knopf. Of course, you can always sign up for the Poem-A-Day too, here.

Here's today's Poetry Friday roundup.


Janet said...

Perfect April poem. And it gives me hope, as it is snowing outside my window. :-/

I love the "flippant fly upon the pane." I won't be able to resist tossing that phrase off from now on when I see one. :-)

Andromeda Jazmon said...

Ah, I don't remember that lovely poem from Emily. Thank you so much! Yes April is that rebirth shown to us!

Amy L V said...

Life returns! Even to these snowy Buffalo hills... Your poem makes me think about how "Hope as the thing with feathers." In nature, we breathe again. A.

Diane Mayr said...

An added strut in chanticleer

This is my favorite line. All the birds are strutting and singing their little hearts out--at least they were until we got half a foot of snow last night!

Mary Lee said...

LOVE this! She captured so many of the slight shifts that April brings...and that give us hope after a long winter...

Julie said...

"A deeper twilight on the lawn" - such a strange line for a poem about April. What I love about Dickinson is how simple her poems seem on the surface, yet how they stay with you and make you think. Thanks for posting this one.