To read a poem is to hear it with our eyes; to hear it is to see it with our ears. ~Octavio Paz
Few things are more peaceful than the calming surf of the ocean at sunrise when the waves from distant lands, waves traveling from the abyss gently caress the sandy shore while singing birds are dancing on air currents and fish are breaking water in a quest for insects, while I walk the shore enjoying the cool wet sand beneath my bare feet leaving imprints that disappear in the next few rushes of water. A wave hits the shore to my right and continues to spill onto the sand moving to my left changing intonation as it glides across the shoreline, natures pianist running her finger the entire length of the ivories.
Few things are more terrifying than a raging sea, an angry sea with a tempest churning in its belly, battering the shore with the force of a sledgehammer swung by muscled laborers crushing spikes into railroad ties in one strike, with the force of Thor’s hammer calling thunder and lightning from the heavens that shake the earth. Both personalities exist in one vast body, bipolar, Jekyll and Hyde one present one hidden below the surface.
Why does Sea rage? Why does Sea tempest? Why does Sea sing melodious notes, a cappella adagios, soul soothing rhythms in the afternoon when the sun is high, when the sun is painting the edge of the waves in glistening sparkles then scream shrilly, a cacophony wailing with the agony of hell’s demons while Moon hangs silently, passively faintly among the twinkling stars in the night?
Are the diamonds that dance on the lips of the waves the same stars twinkling in the heavens? Fallen stars? Did a jealous Sun cast the Stars to Earth where they ride the crests of the waves hoping to be thrown back into the night sky? Are they one and the same? Reflections of each other? The Sky yang to Earth yin?
These are questions residing outside the rational understanding of scientists, outside the convoluted scheming of the great philosophers. These are questions in the purview of the poet, questions about love, questions about the meaning of life, questions that require images to explain, images to bring a semblance of order to chaos. Heart renderings. Soul cravings. Reality personified. Ultimate meaning.
The poet creates new life by birthing irreconcilable opposites into a new being. The poet can hold two contradictory ideas in tension and harmonize them with a single thought, a single word, a simple word image. Understanding created from emptiness. Life explained by newly created awareness. Life created. The poet as a goddess.