Writing my way through the A-to-Z blogging challenge, I’ve tasked myself with leading you on a meandering tour of the virtual garden of delights and curiosities and thoughts that make up my world – all through the lens of unusual, obscure, or simply charming-to-me words.
H is for…
Hippocrene: (noun) Poetic or literary inspiration
ETYMOLOGY: In Greek mythology, Hippocrene was a spring on Mt. Helicon and was created by a stroke of Pegasus’s hoof. From Greek hippos (horse) + krene (fountain, spring). Earliest documented use: 1598.
This word really delights me – what’s not to love about a spring created from a step of Pegasus? I’m doubly glad I get to mention poetry in this post as well, given that it IS National Poetry Month and I’m such a poetry devotee.
I think poetry is a powerful way to bring us back into our hearts, and frankly I think there’s never been a time when we needed to be more heart-based as a collective than right now.
Because I believe in the power of sharing poetry and I share it a lot, I often get variations on the questions “What do you see in poetry?” or “How can I understand/see/appreciate poetry?” or “How do I look at the world with the eyes of a poet?” I’m always a little perplexed when people tell me they don’t like poetry and offer vague apologies that they just don’t understand it. I always want to encourage them to simply relax and trust themselves – good poetry isn’t deliberately obscure, it’s simply an invitation to see through a difference lens.
I particularly love poet Carol Anne Duffy’s observation: “Poetry is the music of being human.”
While I read poety every day, I’m finding I’m turning to it even more frequently during this time of sequestering. And I’m returning again and again to Sarah La Rosa’s book Her Strange Angels.
I’m finding this particular verse of one her poems to be an especially poignant touchstone in these times.
“This beauty way these wisdom paths that open slowly These are precipice truths revealing treasures through mist and the unfurling petals of pain there in the open air of possibility fed by those who are unafraid to be bruised.”
I find comfort in these other words of hers:
"Even in the throes of deep fatigue It is comforting to know That our wild soul is ever on the lookout.”
Returning to today’s word, I played a little game. Knowing that treasures abound everywhere, I decided a little found poetry might be in order. So I tasked myself with creating a random list “found” poem based on the first word I found in four random books I pulled off a bookshelf. I suspect the poetry muses were delighted with my intention because I think they cooperated in the must amusing way.
circumstances breach puppet threads
I couldn’t resist adding the cookie fortune: “Nothing is certain but the unforeseen.” How true is that?
There’s no doubt I love poetry. If I had my way there would be no armies, only poetry academies. Our currency would be love letters, songs of sixpence, and poems. And everyone would look forward to April’s thirty days of celebration known as National Poetry Month. Sounds idyllic to me.
What do you think? What’s your position on poetry? Believe in strange angels? Did my found poem make you smile? Or wonder about what those circumstances are, or contemplate puppet threads? Have you played with found poetry? Do tell – you know I love to hear.