The month long celebration of the life and legacy of William Stafford continues. Last Sunday I attended the book launch for Ritual to Read to Each Other: Poems in Conversation with William Stafford. A Ritual to Read to Each Other: Poems in Conversation with William Stafford, published by Woodley Press. The collection doesn’t just offer poems in tribute but invites readers to write poems. This is a poem that I have worked on for several years based on a quote from Stafford.
“Only the golden string knows where it is going, the role for the writer or reader is one of following not imposing.” ~William Stafford
Discovered while cleaning out
at the remains of mother’s library.
One tucked in her yellowed yearbook pages.
A message jumped out- describing a scene I did not know:
roller-skating on the third floor of the dorm
telling ghost stories
until the wee morning hours.
Graduated as a nurse.
Ready to serve her country,
she married instead.
Dusky blue threads, remnants of her bridal gown
slipped in the pages of her Catholic Bible.
Six months later, Mom and Dad
climbed aboard the Greyhound bus
and traveled west.
Settled into the place of sunshine,
Together, they worked out the ups and downs
of married life beyond the whispers of family.
She tucked a baptismal dress thread into my first Bible,
Easter Sunday, 1953.
The air perfumed by orange blossoms.
These threads and others
her life – a puzzle.
I sort them
wondering how to weave them together.
~Jone Rush MacCulloch, copyright, 2014
Poetry Friday is hosted by Tara at A Teaching Life.