“When you walk through the arch,” my teacher instructed, “imagine a change you want in yourself, in another person, or the world.” He made a ceremony of it, asking the class participants to walk through that silver sculpture, one by one, with purpose, with deliberation, with intent. We quietly, respectfully watched as each one gave “into the universe” that wish, that hope, that prayer for something broken to be fixed, for something ill to be made well.
This yogic thinking is outside my comfort zone; I was leery. It is “out-there” thinking for me; to imagine, for example, myself as a bird flying over my own life, or that the wind around me is Mother Earth breathing to nurture me, or that, my desire for change has in itself, any power. But I played along, and surprisingly, I ended up with the following poem:
By Ann Heyse
It is a big thing I want
that big black boys are no longer
taken down by guns.
It is perhaps ridiculous that I,
walking through a sculpture in a green wood
might hope that fairness reigns
that girls with dark, lovely skin won’t be pregnant at twelve
or their brothers, at age fourteen, aren’t incarcerated.
I taught them once, and am near hopeless
that arch in the green wood is silver,
as are my prayers.
Our class took place in the very lovely sculpture garden at Edgewood Orchard Galleries. ( A gallery one should not miss when visiting Door County).
The arch was created by Steven Haas of Green Bay.
What is one thing you’d want changed today? Write about it succinctly in a poem of 100 words or less.