Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Tuesday Poem: Translucent

Crossing the Rimutakas, going home,
and the scraped landscape is in the thick
of it – although thick isn’t the word, really
– tender the cloud stroking the cut earth,
tender the light as it feels its way through.
All is gauzy. Filtered. The blue
of the sheep truck we lose on the bends
the only colour. See, Helen, you can
touch clouds. Live in them, even. Tenderly,
we make our way up and over. So
light, so lit, we’re luminous. It’s like flying,
and all we talk about on the way down. 

Mary McCallum

Flax by Mary McCallum
On this, Tuesday Poem's second birthday, here is the final poem in my book The Tenderness of Light which, I am delighted to say, is fast selling out. You can watch me read it in the video at the top of the left sidebar here. It's right at the end...

I like this poem. I wrote it quickly but had been thinking about it for weeks - the best sort, really. They have a lightness of being these heady devil-may-care poems. The others - written slowly after a burst of inspiration - can do your head in. 

The Helen in the poem is mentioned in the first poem in the book, too. She's crazy about clouds, makes them, wants to live in them, and curated the fabulous exhibition Translucent Landscapes of which my poetry was a part. 

What I love in Translucent is the feeling of joy and family and nature and home. 

Now do go to the Tuesday Poem hub to see the excitement of the global birthday poem unfolding over two weeks. The first line is up this morning and others will follow. Very exciting! 

We're two! And it started here! I can't quite believe we've got to this. But we have. I am so grateful to all the Tuesday Poets who join me each week, especially Claire Beynon - artist, writer, angel. 

Finally, Happy Birthday to Melissa Green Tuesday Poet, and to little Carter who is one today and sometimes comes to play. 


lillyanne said...

What a lovely, lyrical poem - and how extra lovely to have the video of you reading it! Happy 2nd birthday Mary.

Tim Jones said...

That's lovely, Mary - and a most fitting way to bring up the second anniversary of the Tuesday Poem. What an excellent thing you did in setting it up, and what a fine job you've done to oversee its growth!

Elizabeth Welsh said...

Oh, living in clouds - what a fabulous desire! I love the lightness, the suppleness, the ease with which these lines express something not possible. Beautiful, Mary. Thank you for all your hard work with the communal poem and with Tuesday Poem as a whole - we are all so grateful!

Helen McKinlay said...

-tender the cloud stroking the cut earth,...how beautiful...and reassuring. Cut earth can be so painful to the senses. Lovely to think the clouds are up there healing it!
Congratulations on TP's second birthday :-)