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A #mindful experiment with a #poem – Columba by Kenneth C Steven

Columba poem by Kenneth C Steven, the poet reads… (click on this link)

In Josephine Hart’s book Words That Burn – How to read Poetry and why, she begins her introduction with these words.

‘How do you possess a poem? Well, ‘same as for love’. Pay attention to it. Listen to it. It will speak to you on the page. Silently. Or you may wish, as the critic Harold Bloom advises, to speak it out loud to yourself…’ (p.1).

You can also (best of all) hear it read out, live with the poet, or a recording of it. As Josephine Hart goes on to say, ‘The poetry sounds out and I ‘trip..into the boundless’, as Frost described it.’ (p.1)I think the oral performance is the most primal form.

This is a poem by Kenneth C Steven called Columba. Click on the link and you can hear the poem sound out…and you may trip into the boundless. A perceptive person introduced me to his poetry.

The mindful experiment is becoming aware of where the poem takes you…

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miriam darlington luminous poem #poetry

miriam darlington luminous poem #poetry

Apricots luminously enfolded in words…read it and feel your mouth fill with anticipation.

A Mindful Experiment- read this Paul Kingsnorth poem

A Mindful Experiment- read this Paul Kingsnorth poem

In Daniel Siegel’s book The Mindful Brain the author talks about the mindful awareness induced by poetry, creating what he calls ‘a receptive presence of mind’ (p.161). By presence he says ‘I mean quite specifically the state of receptive awareness of our open minds to whatever arises as it arises’ (p.161).

Paul Kingsnorth’s poem ‘Vodadahue Mountain’ has just that impact. Follow the link to this poem, read it attentively and see what happens. Daniel Siegel argues that such poems activate the streams of awareness within us (p.162).

This poem won the 2012 Wenlock poetry prize. As I read it I had a moment of clear vision that there is, to paraphrase Luther, something important written on, trees, flowers, clouds and stars (and mountains, elephants and pumas). Something I need to track.