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Low Altitude

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Where there is ruin, there is hope for a treasure.
————————————— — Rumi

 

I fly at a delicately-low altitude
You feel it viscerally in your soul
——and your wingspan lifts me
———–like earth’s breath
I empty myself of sadness
——–such is the power of storms
Some things are too sacred
——–to be uttered
Time slips away
I open doors
———–time stands still
Flying at a delicately low altitude
—–stalking music in a house of mirrors
———-I search for instructions
The key hides in the patterns
—— my magical thinking refuses to acknowledge
I can disappear
—— the way mountains turn bluer on the horizon
or a slow virga sublimes
————You listen to the silence
drawn on the ashes of ancient sacrifices
——-know the redeeming power
————-of beauty and goodness
and that to live is to persist in pain

 

From Life in Suspension, Salmon Poetry, 2016


Hélène Cardona is a poet and actor, the recipient of numerous awards and honours including a Hemingway Grant and the USA Best Book Award. Her books include three poetry collections, most recently Life in Suspension and Dreaming My Animal Selves (Salmon Poetry); and three translations: Beyond Elsewhere (White Pine Press), Ce que nous portons (Dorianne Laux, Éditions du Cygne), and Walt Whitman’s Civil War Writings for WhitmanWeb. She co-edits Plume and Fulcrum: An Anthology of Poetry and Aesthetics, and is co-producer of Pablo Neruda: The Poet’s Calling. She holds a Master’s in American Literature from the Sorbonne, taught at Hamilton College & Loyola Marymount University, and received fellowships from the Goethe-Institut & Universidad Internacional de Andalucía. Publications include Washington Square, The Warwick Review, Poetry International, World Literature Today, Irish Literary Times, & elsewhere.