Thursday, June 23, 2011

Birth Poetry

I'm obsessed with a few poems recently. This is one of them. It's by Anne Stevenson. If I could draw a heart around her name right now I would. For now, here is my <3.

The Spirit is too Blunt an Instrument

The spirit is too blunt an instrument
to have made this baby.
Nothing so unskilful as human passions
could have managed the intricate exacting particulars: the tiny
blind bones with their manipulating tendons,
the knee and the knucklebones, the resilient
fine meshings of ganglia and vertebrae
in the chain of the difficult spine.

Observe the distinct eyelashes and sharp crescent
fingernails, the shell-like complexity
of the ear with its firm involutions
concentric in minature to the minute
ossicles. Imagine the
infinitesimal capillaries, the flawless connections
of the lungs, the invisible neural filaments
through which the completed body
already answers to the brain.

Then name any passion or sentiment
possessed of the simplest accuracy.
No. No desire or affection could have done
with practice what habit
has done perfectly, indifferently,
through the body's ignorant precision.
It is left to the vagaries of the mind to invent
love and despair and anxiety
and their pain.

I love the phrase: "ignorant precision." If you are poet and have some birth poems or poetry about motherhood, send them to me! We have a few poems we'd like to use in the book. If we can get more that we love, that would be fabulous. I can't guarantee we'll use anything, but if you'd like us to consider it, please send it ASAP to ldsbirthstories at gmail dot com.

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