A Poet is Born

Posted on 01 July 2005


A Poet is Born
Originally uploaded by Barbara Y.

Happy Birthday Vaughan,

Hope your day is wonderful. Do something just for yourself. Do something out of character. I’m thinking about you. Here’s a poem by James Tipton:

THE DAY I WAS BORN WAS THE DAY
I began to fall in love with everything,
and particularly with the light,
with how it waved to me at dusk,
with how it rose after a summer rain
into the heart of that little [girl].
with how it curled deep
in the centers of flowers,
how it lived in little jars of honey.

I remember the day in the abandoned orchard
when the Angel of Light stood beside me;
and I remember the wild and lovely light
that wrapped itself around certain women,
so bright I could no longer see them;
I remember the light that lurked in language,
and I remember how much I loved words,
wanting to know them well before I spoke,
although I did not speak until I was three years old.

I remember how painful it has always been
to appear to be like others, how hard
I have had to work to dance in that world;
and I remember how much I loved
to be alone, and I remember
new leaves in late spring,
and corn smiling, and bees,
and the little creek I carried home
and tucked in bed beside me.

Even now, I find a few certain strangers
who come to me with light lingering
around them before they speak;
and when I leave them I remember that light,
and sometimes a piece of conversation,
with you, for example, about Costa Rica, and Peru,
and Spanish learned outside of schools.
I had to stop talking with you then,
or I would have given you everything I have.


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