Dreams beget words.
(Pedagogy) Philosophy and Nonsense
Thoughts about writing, education, and experience Presented by Forrest D. Poston
The first goal of teaching is to strengthen, deepen and refine our intrinsic love of learning. All other goals and all methods must stem from that idea. Any that do not support that goal must at least be questioned and adjusted, if not eliminated. Otherwise, we are not teaching but training.
Four Meanings of Life
Godot and the Great Pumpkin
A Major is More Minor Than
The Poetry Process (A look at 4 versions of a poem.)
Thoughts About Picking a Major
Quick Points About Education
Quick Points About Writing
Reading Poetry and Cloud Watching
Using an Audience
What Makes a Story True?
What's the Subject of This Class? (Being revised.)
Writing and Einstein (The Difference Between Information and Meaning)
Writing and the Goldilocks Dilemma
Links to Other Sites
Moon Moods and Night Poems
No Intent 1
Grant the moon no intent, yet
may it play upon the eye,
the heart, the mind; no dreamer but
inspiration for dreaming as words
inspire the mind to tell stories.
Grant the stars that move so slowly
no choice, their twinkling an illusion, yet
light and illusion flow to the mind,
and we yearn and reach out, but
the stars that fall, though not
stars at all, make us wish and
love, ache and fall.
Grant the moon no intent, though
cool and coy it may seem, slowly
dancing with the clouds, not
so distant as the stars, more
gentle than those that fall,
like soft words, melancholy
stories that let us dream
deeply, love slowly, ache
No Intent 2
Grant the moon no intent- this one
night perhaps I will dream
a different dream beneath her light,
dark but soft upon the skin,
a caress of night air,
a kiss of May fulfilling
April’s promise. This one night,
this one dream speaks of summer,
forgetting winter past, believing not
winter to come. This one night
beneath this silent moon,
I will dream a young man’s dream,
soft grass upon the hill, a caress,
and a kiss.
The moon has moved away, cool and small
The moon has moved away, more distant, cool,
dim and small in the midnight sky. The dream
fades, becoming a soft light, more a memory, moving
The moon will rise large and full another night,
but dreams that set are not so sure to rise.
The moon stayed through that night, not
for me but with me all the same, satisfying,
if foolish, perhaps because foolishness can
cure some angst, or treat the symptoms.
The moon is no companion, but the spirit
doesn’t care, the need reaches, sees,
and claims. Sometimes, that must be
enough, enough to wait, enough to dare
sleep, to dare the dreams that wait,
and those that wait no longer.
This rain fell before, on another night, the same
dark. The wet melody plays like a midnight piper,
and I follow to younger days, to dark asphalt rivers,
glistening beneath dim streetlights and flowing
into the mystery of darkness.
So many nights, that piper lead me, promising something could be found, never what,
never where, always beyond
sight, beyond the curving, wet, dark veil.
Each night ended with nothing more than
unanswered questions and wet shoes.
This night, I let the piper play. The mystery within hears and wonders, but age may bring wisdom,
or merely doubt and weariness.
Warm, dry, I smile at youth and foolish dreams
but wonder if perhaps I always stopped the dance
just a step too soon.
We followed the familiar road, clear
and known, choosing turns
with speed and abandon,
young, certain, and immortal.
We slowed little as the road changed,
asphalt to gravel to dirt, still laughing
as day faded to night, as dirt
faded to grass. And the road ended,
rising into the unknown
into weeds and briars and a high
horizon that made no promise.
Young, unsure, we left the hill
abandoned our youth,
to our imagined way,
each to our mortality, each
to our own harsh dark.
Beyond the Door
Night breathes beyond the door,
calling once more, waiting, knowing
I must come eventually, knowing mystery
and hope bring the hunger and the hunt.
And so, she breathes and laughs,
not so tender this night but tempting,
for the night is infinite, and where nothing
can be seen, all things become possible.
She laughs, and the hunt is on for secrets,
the secret of the grail, the door to Camelot,
the hidden end of a rainbow, the magic word,
the hope that this exhausted dawn breaks
the mind and lets in not light but revelation.
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Death, and Other Things
What May Come
Age enters sleep, catches up with dreams,
and childhood moves from memory to half-fantasy
and fantasy a satire. The child hides in the night,
not sure if daylight will ever come, or what
may come first.
The young man knows the sun will rise and dreams of the changes, adventures and glory to come. The gray man knows, too,
that the sun will rise, doubts
dreams, and though sure
day will come, wonders now and then
what may come first.
In the unreal hours of the night, he
is about. Before dawn begins to whisper
and weave again the fabric, when
the merest threads hold the veil,
he is about, this ancient, gaunt, ghost
to be, draped in flannel, shuffling
in darkness without and within,
crying and croaking names no longer
within our call, except, perhaps,
in these unreal hours.
And I lay in bed, wrapping my youth
and covers about me, listening
to the past, the present, perhaps
the future, shuffle and call as
the shrunken giant roams, mind
departed, spirit trapped
in the tar pit of his body,
struggling for release.
We waited in the gray morning, knowing
that no sun would break these clouds.
We waited in the solarium, knowing
that no sun would burn this fog.
We waited as nurses went up and down
the hall, in and out of rooms, white against
the stubborn gray, the sound of footsteps
coming and going, seeming to never stop.
This coming had always been known, though slow,
slower than any would have guessed, always
coming, always known. The night
had brought the end of knowing
for him, the silence of the mind, waiting
only for the body to admit what was known.
The footsteps went up and down, up and down,
and stopped at the door. Waiting ended.
A Call For a Father
Dawn coming soon, darkness yet holding
sway, when the phone rings.
“The doctor says you should come.”
Bags always packed, we leave
with practiced hurry.
Determined, stubborn, he wins again,
defies not merely death but doctors,
stymies tests, refutes statistics.
We have more time.
We have two years of defiance
we love, pre-dawn calls we hate,
knowledge we fear.
But another dawn has come,
a day sunny and safe, a day
for errands run slowly, knowing
when the phone rings, it will be
no worse than a bill collector.
Ginny met me at the door.
The call had come about 2PM.
There was no more need
Memory, Realization, and Wonder
She does not wait
upon the Mossy hillside.
The long climbs finds naught
but her name among the stones,
a reminder, slanted, low and gray.
Long it has waited; long
it will wait, but she is not
there, though, perhaps
she waits still, somewhere
other than memories, few,
faded, and fluttering along
the mist-teased edge
of an aging mind.
She has not spoken, but
she waits still.
She has not spoken,
but perhaps she watches
still and still.
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Other Essays and Poetry
Something Somewhat Vaguely Like a Resume
Being Like Children
Beyond the Genes (A Story of a Father)
The Blessing and the Blues
The Cat With a Bucket List
David and the Revelation
The Dawn, the Dark, and the Horse I Didn't Ride In On (an odd, meandering, semi-romantic story)
Ghost Dancer in the Twilight Zone
The Hair Connection and the Nature of Choices
The Mug, the Magic, and the Mistake
Trumpet Player, USDA Approved
The Poetry Process
Writing by Current or Former Students
Ms. Write Meets Her Match in Jr. Ms. Write Now
by Heide Perry
I'll Just Have Cats
by Cara Hummel
Toys to Toys
by Allyson Bowlds
Scribbles and Bits
Links to Other Sites