A Poem: The Poets Teach Us

The poets can teach us,
can show us a thing.

Not from inside out,
but outside in.

Not from above
but from underneath,

Not from front-on,
but from corners overlooked

that we first arrive
slow to discern.

The poets can teach us
what they see from a distance,

or so close,
the eyes take time to adjust.

When light is too bright
the poets reveal

what it is like to see

That what is felt by feel
speaks quieter than language.

With words held and translated
by reverent touch,

but with grains of truth,

the poets speak to us
from a different perspective.

Seeking not agreement
as much as willingness

to witness from a lens
not always reconciled with belief.

The poets teach us
how the borders merge,

when seen from a distance.
How patterns emerge,

and features change dependent on
where the light hits.

How blacks and whites become greys
to eyes that soften their gaze,

and how absolutes interweave
to reveal bigger truths.

The poets teach us that all we’ve
hitherto learned

we can unpack and critique,
we can undress and lay in the sun’s light.

Not be afraid of a unique way of seeing
or a belief we deem worthy of standing upon.

The poets teach us to turn in
to the heart’s understanding

and out wide to embrace
the whole open sky.

Ana Lisa de Jong
July 2018

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