Solitude – March 2015

 

This poem reminded Nancy’s daughter Kate of the solitude Nancy needed to write her books.

 

Solitude, from Spirit Walker, 1993, by Nancy Wood

 

Do not be afraid to embrace the arms

of loneliness.

Do not be concerned with the thorns

of solitude.

Why worry that you will miss something?

 

Learn to be at home with yourself

without a hand to hold.

Learn to endure isolation

with only the stars for friends.

 

Happiness

comes from understanding unity.

Love

arrives on the footprints of your fear.

Beauty

arises from the ashes of despair.

Solitude

brings the clarity of still waters.

Wisdom

completes the circle of your dreams.

Reaching back from here – January 2015

 

This seems a good poem for the end of one year and the start of the next.

 

Reaching Back from Here, from Many Winters, 1974, by Nancy Wood

 

Reaching back from here

All that I remember of my life

Are the great round rocks and not

The unimportant stones.

I know that I experienced pain and yet

The scars have healed so that

I am like the tree covering itself

With new growth every year.

I know that I walked in sadness and yet

All that I remember now

Is the soothing autumn light.

I know that there was much to make my life unhappy

If I had stopped to notice how

The world sings a broken song.

But I preferred to dwell within

A universe of fields and streams

Which echoed the wholeness of my song.

Ten Million Stars – December 2014

 

Ten Million Stars, from Spirit Walker, Doubleday, 1993, by Nancy Wood

 

Inside each raindrop swims the sun.

Inside each flower breathes the moon.

Inside me dwell ten million stars,

One for each of my ancestors:

The elk, the raven, the mouse, the man,

The flower; the coyote, the lion, the fish.

Ten million different stars am I,

But only one spirit, connecting all.

Gathering Sunbeams – September 2014

 

Nancy Wood poem poster 21: Gathering Sunbeams
Poem broadsheet includes Nancy Wood’s photograph of Taos Mountain, NM, circa 1985.

 

Gathering Sunbeams, from Dancing Moons, 1995, by Nancy Wood

 

The way to gather sunbeams is carefully, making sure

they do not break or become

mere shadows of your uncertainty.

 

The way to gather sunbeams is hopefully, bending

to catch the light between your fingers

before storm clouds devour opportunity.

 

The way to gather sunbeams is crazily, putting

them in your pocket if you catch any,

laughing at their feeling of mobility.

 

The way to gather sunbeams is joyfully, keeping

step with the dance they do across the earth,

drawing you into their world of fragility.