Thursday, October 28, 2010

Green Violin

green violins are drifting near the sun
I think of clouds as Marc Chagall
tipping his thick fingerpaint colors

it runs together in my mind
with oil-spun opals on the concrete
or mirrored puddles I walk by-

concocting always other skies.

and Bella, with hidden lilies in her eyes
composed and bridal as before
and the confetti roses raining.

and rising over rooftops after rain
is a corsage of lilac...

her last tear.

it's living through these shifting rainbows here
springing up again - I know that

I'll survive:
holding my pitcher's terra cotta
up to the fountaining sky-

reading the holograph upside down while
hoping to catch one green violin
with spiraling music rose rose red

or the flowing parachute moon
as it sails down
the clockface of the clotted
clouds and citadel,


the sequined-velvet pear just ripe
from ever and ever the
tree of night

and sewn like a charm
at riddle's end unraveling,
shaken out of a dream you

won't remember
you'll be reminded
by a torn-out scrap
so evident to you then
as the tear-stained apple-green scrawl

of the Pirate's best hand with
one tiny diadem's cornered clue remaining:

for the almost perfect fingering of the blue viola-
or a single silver day-

mary angela douglas 28 october 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


I am fully commited to the beauty of the English language: both to the lyrical tradition in English and American poetry and to the English-speaking world, in all its mythical and infinite variations, as well as to the beauty of translation into English of the world-wide lyric from other languages: from the beginning of poetic and literary history through the present age.

For inspiration, in terms of setting the bar for the model of perseverance and spiritual courage, I cannot find anything higher than the Russian Poets of the Silver Age of Russian poetry: specifically, Anna Akhmatova, Boris Pasternak, and Osip Mandelstam (as well as countless others, known and unknown) who continued writing under the horrors of Stalin despite public humiliation, scorn and never-ending shame- only for writing non-political, singing, anguished and lovely poems; proving beyond any shadow of a doubt that what threatens dictators the most is the simple, individual soul and voice of the artist - something that may be overlooked in a highly technical age -

and should - not - be-

I dedicated my poetry blogsite to them as a way of promulgating this understanding - but I am continually looking for other examples of this in all other cultures and time frames as near or far as the motif of the rose in Persian poetry...

In an age that often skewers (unknowingly, I believe) and obscures this, I want to remind myself of the value of Seeking unashamedly, and with no apologies - the values of Beauty, Truth and Goodness-

In this most positive sense, the ideal of the poet-warrior must not be abandoned in any generation. No matter what happens, it must transmitted and carried forward.

I know that this is the truth and I will never believe anything but this to be true. People have died for this. They must not be allowed to die for nothing.

I stake my life on this, frail and imperfect as it is-

Mary Angela Douglas
in the Year of Our Lord 2010

in the United States of America, forever - under God and with
the freedom to say this and for those whose works perished with them to be published in Eternity.

copyright 2011

To A Young Artist Anywhere

to a young artist, anywhere and to the poet, George Herbert fill the sky with stars, your very own: rose arias, soft green galaxies- a periwinkle moon no matter what they say inlaid with a mango music always on beneath the surface of your matchless dreams believe the dark green stains of the moon on so much dewy grass you must walk barefoot in! any weather- any distance- I tip my rose-tipped hat to you! through roads not strewn with moonlight read psalms, not tea leaves- don't despair- pray in every color all the time survive all disrespect- tending the stark bright lilies of your mind as Christ when all alone did- flame on towards the true-hearted bier of your last words on the subject- working out the inward scarlet drumming of your soul, fight your fear as others did, before you- God willing may you rise on your own Easter day with brand new things to say- in Gold- mary angela douglas 26 october 2010

A Un Artista En Cualquier Lugar

llena el cielo con las estrellas
sus propias-
arias rosas, galaxias suaves y verdes
la luna vincaperivinca
digan lo que digan
incrustada con una musica de mango
siempre playando
debajo de la superficie de sus suenos sin igual
creen a las manchas de color verde oscuro
de la luna
sobre la hierba humeda de rocio tanto
hay que andar descalzado-
cualquier tiempo-
cualquier distancia-
me quito el sombrero de rosa adornado
a ti-
a traves de las carreteras no sembrado de luz de la luna
lee a los salmos y no las hojas de te
no te desesperes-
ora - en todos los colores todo el tiempo
hay que sobrevivir a todos la falta de respeto
como Cristo lo hizo cuando solo-
queda usted llamando
hasta la andes del verdadero corazon?
de tus palabras ultimas al sujeto,
hacia el interior escarlata de tu alma
de tambor
lucha contra su miedo
como lo hiciero otros antes de usted.
si Dios lo quiere, puede resucitar
en su propio dia de Pascua-
con cosas nuevas que decir en oro.

mary a. douglas translation 28 june 2011

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Kitchen Maid Remembers The Emperor's Nightingale

once more I stand
before the palace wall
my chores half-finished

to hear the nightingale singing
as if it were
the last time at the dim window
and all the little griefs compounded

and the storm clouds
above the Emperor's chamber
turn into fields of
white violets before my eyes.

and there is somehow a liquid
ladder of jewels near the veranda
I could climb to anywhere and
no one could call me back;
then I look down at my
embroidered apron in surprise.

the Emperor hangs onto life,
his every tear worth half-a-kingdom,
and the hidden trill is everywhere now:
it settles slightly in my heart
as if it mattered that a
twig could break.

color washes back into the scene
well-played - down and down the cherry sought
orchards on towards the riverbank of lost delights

the fine-edged iridescence
of a small departure only I noticed.

I never heard music like that again
though I lived on:
sifting the snapdragon shadows
on gold-dimmed afternoons;

calling to God when the willow-ware dusk
poured into porcelain skies-
bidding the firefly angels all, goodbye-

mary angela douglas 22 october 2010

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


standing before the space where
poems may come
you dodge the thrift of

ravens overhead the blue ribboned kind
of wounding competitions
seen and unseen

the withered branches

it is
held in the heart like snow
almost appearing-

very near
in the shade of ghosted apples
they can't pick

in the frost-

tipped syllables backstage
or in the hold of a ship
they'll never sail the
blue crystal distances
you understand-

without being told

and the next gold radiance you
hear will slip, alas! from view

down down and down the dead words
told to much applause by vague
passersby who live to silence

who can say what as long as they're ahead:
the jeweled watch unjeweled
the sentries astonished-
the gnashing instant the
rose is tipping so ivoire into

ceaseless light
you catch in your weeping hands-

mary angela douglas 26 october 2009