Monthly Archives: April 2015
In praise unceremonious
birds sing to greet the morning.
In liberty they make their voices heard.
Each separate tune a secret speech upon Creation’s ear,
an intimate awakening of love. What expression can I give you
to welcome your affection,
to place myself within your waiting arms?
The murmur of my scattered dreams,
the sigh of lonely longing,
a wish for lasting closeness on my lips.
Hear in my stuttering, open heart,
Oh, lover and companion,
the grateful, private music of the dawn.
Happy Earth Day (one day late) and Happy Poetry Month! I am also happy to report that I am now employed in my first environmental job – as the office manager for the Cedar Lakes Conservation Foundation. I feel very fortunate to be able to use my time and energy toward preserving habitat, safe-guarding watersheds from pollution, and halting development and building in Washington County, Wisconsin. It was Wisconsin senator Gaylord Nelson who founded Earth Day 45 years ago; the natural beauty of this state has been an inspiration to a number of prominent environmentalists: Aldo Leopold, John Muir and Sigurd Olson, to name just a few. I celebrate the spirit of the land and the people who love it, and I invite you to join in! Write me a comment and let me know how you spent Earth Day!
© 2015, poem and photographs, Priscilla Galasso, All rights reserved
Weekly Photo Challenge: Early Bird Curiosity Eclipsing Fear
There is something in me that craves a sunrise. I’ve known this for a long time. It’s an exhilarating feeling, a feeling of adventure, of anticipation, of freedom. Perhaps it’s because getting up early means you have a special mission…to board a plane or set off on a journey or explore a new day. I think I first experienced this adventurous feeling when my sister and I set off cross-country on a road trip when she was 20 and I was 16. She was going back to college in Ohio in her newly purchased car. We set off from our home in California, and I was along for company. Unfortunately, we never made it to Ohio because we crashed in Nebraska and she was killed. That rather put a damper on my adventurous spirit for quite a while. But I recently discovered that I still love a road trip even though I can never put disaster completely out of my mind. Learning to embrace that perceived conflict, that life is exciting and wonderful and not entirely safe all at the same time, has been a great journey in itself.
It’s like the feeling I get when I’m camping ‘far from civilization’. The nights seem very dark and very long as I lie awake in a tent with howling winds or other unidentified sounds surrounding me. I feel aware and a bit afraid and very alive. When the sun begins to rise, I feel eager to rush outside and see the light dawn on all those things that felt so mysterious and vaguely threatening. I realize then that a sense of curiosity is eclipsing my fear. That is what I want to develop more and more. Perhaps that’s a return to childhood; perhaps that’s what maturity is.
Weekly Photo Challenge: Afloat, temporarily
Afloat: borne on the water, free of difficulties.
Not exactly the same as ‘adrift’. You can be anxious, being adrift, afraid you’ve lost your bearings, veered off course, or abandoned your purpose. Afloat is the feeling of being supported gently, effortlessly. It’s a kind of dreamy state, I think. Last year, the day after my birthday, I treated myself to a sail on the Denis Sullivan, a facsimile of a 19th century lake vessel owned by the museum where I worked at the time. The day was completely calm and foggy.
There was a very quiet, gentleness to the water. It was very relaxing. The crew still went through the activities of raising the sails, and we helped (a little), but mostly hung around idle.
It’s nice to be afloat, but I wouldn’t want to do it every day. I like being engaged in a stimulating effort to take responsibility for myself in my life. I don’t want to expect an easy ride, and I don’t want to complain or blame some other entity for not supporting me. I appreciate resources, but I don’t feel entitled to them, and I’m very willing to go without a lot of things. I think this attitude is very simple and useful.
© 2015, essay and photographs, Priscilla Galasso, All rights reserved