I am an arrow that a child shot through
An apple tree in bloom beside the sea;
A cloud of apple blossoms, like a swan,
Has shimmered down and landed on a wave;
The child is wondering, he cannot tell
The blossoms from the foam.
I am an arrow that a hunter shot
To hit an eagle that was flying by;
For all his strength and youth, he missed the bird,
Wounding instead the old enormous sun
And flooding all the twilight with its blood;
And now the day has died.
I am an arrow that was shot at night
By a crazed soldier from a fort besieged
To plead for help from mighty heaven, but
Not having spotted God, the arrow still
Wanders among the frigid constellations,
Not daring to return.
I came across this poem about a year ago. I didn’t know the title (Arrow in the Sky). I didn’t know the author (Henrikas Radauskas. Translated by Theodore Melnechuk). I just had the body of it.
I really used to love poetry in high school, and I wrote a lot during high school and college. Even for a while after. And probably for a long time before.
I kind of delved back into it throughout the whole of last year. More reading than writing. It’s one of those things that when you find the right author, the right poem, the right phrase, it just smacks you in the chest and makes you crumple to the floor. When you realize that someone could string together the exact words to describe what you’d been feeling all along. When someone just grabs your heart, pulls it through your ribs and skin, puts it on a platter between you, looks you in the eyes and whispers, “I felt it, too.” It’s stunning.
To go all Anne of Green Gables on you – it’s like finding a kindred spirit.
Something about this poem resonates with me. I’ve been meaning to express it somehow. I want to put it on canvas.
I bought a canvas.
I have a list of paint colors to buy. I can see what it should look like. The words surrounded by a painting. I don’t have any mad painting skills, but his art makes me want to try to find my art.