We Creatures of the Earth Must Move and Move Again—

. . . a matter of sense—the thousand-eyed,
thousand-eared alertness of a flock.
The strategies are given names—
I don’t know them. What sticks for me is how
the air itself is altered. The way light
bends back from bellies and wings as they turn.

migration image

This duck, called a smew, is taking off from a Finnish wetland. By Thermos (Own work;) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons 

Churchmouse is back home—only to ponder what it means to go elsewhere.

I was rooting around for material to share at the September installment of Churchmouse After Hours. (REMINDER: it’s the evening of Wed. Sept 27 — that’s, like, really soon!)  Our theme this month is “Migration & Journeys.” I came across Anne Reynolds Voegtlen’s “Migration,” from the September, 1998 issue of Poetry magazine. The poem itself is a “journey” toward understanding avian migration—and the longing it can call up in a lone person on the ground, looking up as a city’s worth of birds passes over.

As I ponder this happy discovery, I’m also making a stack of other possible poems and prose excerpts to read aloud—or offer up for others to read—that includes works by Homer; T. S. Eliot; two Polish poets (Adam Zagajewski and Wyslawa Szymborska—regulars at After Hours will know by now Szymborska is a favourite of mine); the marvellous Vancouver poet Elise Partridge; and Victoria’s own Patrick Lane and P.K. Page. Page brings us two exceedingly different, yet equally haunting, journeys—one a childhood flight of the imagination that leads to the deepest mysteries of existence, the other that of a small, determined, burrowing animal.

I hope the Churchmice out there are gathering their own morsels to bring to our humble literary & musical feast. See you all tomorrow evening at St. Mary’s, 1701 Elgin Rd., 7 p.m.

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Its Place Among the Elements

The latest from Churchmouse After Hours, in which we meet ‘Endings and Beginnings.’

790px-Halley's_Comet,_1910

Image: Halley’s Comet, June 6, 1910. The Yerkes Observatory. Public domain.

https://www.stmarysoakbay.ca/blog/its-place-among-the-elements

Bears tobogganed down the hills

512px-Black-bears-winter-snow-sleeping-cuddled-together_-_West_Virginia_-_ForestWander

http://www.ForestWander.com

I do have a new Henrietta & Me essay brewing (or two, or three) but meanwhile, here is the latest from Churchmouse After Hours, a report on our winter coffeehouse adventure—posted here just in time for winter’s last hurrahs…

 

https://www.stmarysoakbay.ca/blog/bears-tobogganed-down-the-hills

We Read and Are Read To

ParrTrailmouse

from Little Downy, or The History of a Field-Mouse, Catherine Parr Trail, (1822)

 

So, here is a way that, out in the world (well, the world of my own neighbourhood) I’m trying to act out the spirit of this blog. Out loud, with other people—

https://www.stmarysoakbay.ca/blog/churchmouse-after-hours-birth-of-a-21st-century-coffeehouse