This month the Poetry Sisters have been listening for poetry in the air. We agreed to create "found" poems from something overheard. It's harder than you might think in these pandemic days! I am afraid the most important thing I heard this past month was at the memorial service for my brother John, who sadly passed away at the end of the year. I couldn't get anything else out of my head, thinking about him and his life and all he gave us. I was able to listen to the recording of his memorial service, and I pulled out the lines quoted and comments offered that had tremendous impact on me. I put the text on top of a photograph of John in the mountains, where he loved to be.
My found poem is for two voices. The left column of quotes from service readings and music alternates with the right column of family and friends' comments in a call and response style. Click to enlarge the image for easier reading.
I wrote another poem for John back in 2015, a sestina based on memories of fishing with my brother in childhood. I shared it here.
I hope you will go to the blogs of my Poetry Sisters and read their poems too:
Oh, Andi. This poem in two voices is achingly gorgeous, and a tribute to your brother in all the best ways. You've woven the threads so carefully, and they make a picture of a man who lived his own thoughts, in his own world, according to his own heart, but who was more seen that perhaps he knew. May his love for you and yours for him comfort you.
Oh, Andi. (((Hugs)))
This is so intricate and elegant and soaring and heartfelt and true.
Love this and love you xo
Thank you so much, friends. Those are sweet and comforting comments.
"Speak tenderly. Lift up your voice..."
That's what the voices in the other column did - speak up, and speak well. And so did you. This gift will be received in the spirit you give it, and I know your family will treasure this memorial. Lovely.
That's beautiful, Andi, and I am so sorry for your loss.
Andi, this came out so beautifully. It's an honor to read it and be there with you in your loss and with John's family and friends in their memories of him. I love the repeated, "Who knew all his thoughts?" And I get such a taste of your brother and his way of being in the world, reflected through others' words. Sending love your way...
What a gorgeous tribute! All the pieces work perfectly together -- the image, the voices from the service and from John's beloveds. Thank you for showing us how to work through grief and make something beautiful out of loss. Hugs!
Andromeda, your tribute to your brother is beautiful. I send my sincere condolences to you. May your poem become a dear memory of love, life, and living to the fullest.
What a powerful way to process the intensity of emotion that comes when we use a loved one. I feel that I got a glimpse of your brother through these words. Thank you for sharing this with us. Wishing you comfort as you continue to walk through grief.
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