As a feather


A small feather floats, flutters,
moves across the garden, hesitates above the sago palm.
Then she sees the clay Pelican, recognizes her kind in his folded wings,
and slightly dizzy with relief,
oscillates in his direction.

Is it sunshine drying the haze, the moisture on her down
or the wake of a careless butterfly that carries her off course?
She sputters, falters and disappears in budding oleanders.
She skids down a sloping leaf on landing,
and I find her stuck in a Y.

Small, textured, humble, an ordinary muddy grey
or even lighter than that, dirty white,
she blinks, dazed by the drop.
I hold her tightly since she weighs nothing.
But I don’t need to.

Because the hooklets of her down cling to the grooves of my fingertips.
She holds my hand.
A sweetness almost not there since I can’t feel her grip.
Perfect curves, perfect fuzz, perfect visible presence,
unfelt in any other way.

She tells me something but the thought is light and elusive…
My eyes wander through the fluffy bits, along the rachis and to the tip,
I turn her over in the palm of my hand but I still can’t feel.
I close my eyes….
Perhaps there is a faint warmth where my life line breaks.

Where do you come from I ask.
She doesn’t answer; because she doesn’t have to.
I can create an answer, multiple answers in fact, either true or false.
She is like those thoughts floating in the canyons of our mind,
hanging on to the grooves, snagging in the ruts.
Booby-traps exploding…

This disconnected feather in free glide is on an adventure.
She tells me that loose feathers often snag a lost thought or two between earth and sky.
Sometimes they are heavy, sometimes they’re light.
Sometimes they land on life lines, sometimes in a soup,
most often though, no one takes notice—
but it doesn’t change the adventure, she says.

And I can see she’s about to fly away again
as noises invade our space,
as the air begins to stir in the rising warmth…
Let me go she says, too many thoughts will make me still
and you think too many thoughts!
Give me just one light one and I’ll take it somewhere to grow.

Sounds good to me.
So in the jumble, in the hay stack
of my contradictions, conundrums, oddities, wishes, dreams, worries, nonsense, and useless bits of data, I find a wordless thought
and place it gently on the feather.
Then,  my hand open to a stray draft, I let her go.

And she rises…
and flies away a smile.



About emmylgant

Cloud watcher and dreamer sometimes wise, often foolish, but I am what I am.
This entry was posted in Conversation, Life, Poetry and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to As a feather

  1. Katalina4 says:

    Too many thoughts…
    Delightful, she is.

    Liked by 1 person

    • emmylgant says:

      I’ve been told many times that I overthink things, so what she said was not really a surprise! But yes, feathers are delightful, mysterious, infinitely rich in design, and most definitely magical. Thank you Kat.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. john zande says:

    This was well, well, well worth the wait!

    I was immersed with this: …or the wake of a careless butterfly that carries her off course

    Liked by 2 people

  3. arjaybe says:

    Maybe she’ll come over here, and drop that thought.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hyperion says:

    To be held by a feather. Now, firmly entrenched on my bucket list. The magic continues for which I am thankful. So, thank you, Em.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. ceayr says:

    Magnificent from beginning to end.
    I learnt a new word, rachis, thank you.
    (You are well aware of my near total ignorance of all things botanic).
    And I know now that you have been listening to Bob Lind.
    I love his musical poems, but he has never written anything this accomplished.
    An extraordinary creation.

    Liked by 1 person

    • emmylgant says:

      Always so generous with your praise!
      Rachis… well, I discovered it recently myself! Same word in French by the way, but it has none of the magic of a leaf or a feather! more like something you want to cough up and spit out, dont you think?
      Bob Lind is incomparable, really. I only scribble. He moves and captures imagination, heart and body in his musical poems.
      I think you’re a bit biased but I am not ungrateful!


  6. Suzanne Richmond says:

    Love love love this! You are so talented my dear friend. You have given feathers a voice!

    Liked by 2 people

    • emmylgant says:

      About time someone did, dontchathink? They have fueled humanity’s imagination since the days of Icarus! And look at all their symbolic uses…
      Anyway, thank you Suze,your enthusiam is much appreciated.


  7. tonyprance says:

    Yikes Emmy – feathers eh? Who knew – except you ? Be well…..

    Liked by 2 people

  8. PapaBear says:

    Only you could write a bit of “fluff” like this…, a light and airy touch of whimsy….., only you, Emm. It was a very nice read today in the still of an 89deg afternoon. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  9. oglach says:

    I didn’t have to read this more than once. But I did, because I wanted to. I’ll never look at feathers again without thinking of them as being thought couriers. Lovely, thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

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