Avant-Edge: Innocence and Experience

Sam challenged us to write about what moves and inspires us.   He also offered questions-which made us think when poetry opened its door to us.   It was fourth grade when my life  suddenly changed.  My teacher-Mrs. Moody read e.e. Cummings' poem the  'Day of Innocence'.  The final bell of the day had rang and everyone scurried gathering their coats, lunch boxes and books.  I was a walker and I wanted to write down the lines of the poem that had touched me.  My teacher looked at me, her cloud of gray hair tilted and she smiled, "Ellen, what are you writing, the bell rang you can go home?"    I shook my head no-I felt like I was in a trance.

"I know, but this poem paints spring and I want to take it home."  She told me we would be reading more of his work in class and she could make me a copy.   I was smitten with his insight.  The fourth grade was a defining year for me.  Poetry entered my world and I won an art contest painting a still life- bowl of fruit.  I had to compete with my class, the fifth and six graders-and won. This was when my parents recognized I had some talent.  The portal had been opened by luscious mud, a goat-footed balloonMan- and a bowl of fruit.

Thank you Sam-nature inspires me the most.

The Wedding

At night Topaz Queen mends her arch of blue
Grandmother moon perches kisses starfish 
their dreams- a mirror of silver
spiders weave Queen's diamond veil
until morning dew falls

Lone eagle soars to announce the union
Topaz Queen mingles with Cloud people
kisses her Grandmother goodnight
a line dance of wings squawks n' sings
Topaz begins her walk down the aisle
event hidden by divine law
her smile like honey melts hearts
up rushing wings gather her train
wind blows the Queen's family kisses
hills decorated with purple clover wink 
she holds her man's hand
caressing his velvet brown shoulders
staring into his lipid sea green eyes
his vest borrowed from a clothesline
of green fingers

 Rainfall mingles n' blends her gift- perfume
of Lily of the Valley, Sandalwood n' moss 
Something old, new, borrowed and blue
from the glaciers 
an Aquamarine bridge marvels 
Beargrass to bloom 
her bouquet

Queen whispers to wind: touch him, when I can't
due to meetings with  Cloud people
applause of leaves and arched trees bough n' sway
confetti cherry blossom cheer falls
Groom shakes his green mantle 
 they lock hands.

Witness their union's masterpiece
 of crimson, mauve pink and glowing embers
of orange. 
Passion dances until
indigo curtain falls
owl n' wolf clean up 
Mocking bird is reminded it's a secret
it's a secret
We celebrate with a slice of time's cake 
their sacred union-a gift for all. 

©Ellen Wilson


Dig the Indian theme.
Fortunate your teacher read that poem!
jo-hanna said…
This envelops my mind. I feel cloaked by the detail and uplifted by the feel of it. Your teacher would be so proud.
Kerry O'Connor said…
Three cheers for Mrs Moody!!!

Your poem is an amazing narrative with an effective use of pathetic fallacy in bringing nature to life and breath.
Anonymous said…
Beautiful. I love the mystical quality to this.
Sue Marrazzo said…
Awesome and inspiring post!
Sumana Roy said…
Nature pouring Her wealth in all the words...beautiful
Wanda said…
How neat to learn how you became enchanted with poetry.
Renee said…
You have such a magical way with words, your teacher would be so proud!
Anonymous said…
Love the story of how you were first captured by poetry. Your poem is a feast of images one laid upon another and another. delightful read and a myth worth making,

Sherry Blue Sky said…
I love you telling the teacher "this poem paints spring".......love your poem too, brimful of nature....love the owl and the wolf cleaning up!!
Brian Miller said…
thats cool that you were so captured by the poetry and that it started your journey...and that your teacher recognized that in you as well...some cool nature touches in your poem too ella...
Margaret said…
…"this poem paints spring and I want to take it home" I think you've taken many a spring day home with you since that day :) Lovely.
Susie Clevenger said…
A wedding...what a unique approach to nature...beautiful
Sam Edge said…
A great back story - I'm impressed to get ee cummings at that age - I was eating glue in grade 4. I really loved the poem it reminded me of a First Nations Alice in Wonderland.
Ella said…
Sam-Thank you so much! It was a beautiful challenge~ Mrs. Moody must of loved poetry. I agree it was rare.

Susie-Yes, fickle Topaz loves her man, but leaves him high and dry-for days. Thank you~

Margaret-You are kind. I have tried and a few autumns, too. Thank you~

Brian-Thank you! I know your passion comes through when you teach. Mrs. Moody would like you~

Sherry-I thought of you when I typed wolf. You also love owls-yes, Mrs. Moody looked stunned. Thank you!

Elizabeth-Thank you! I do love nature and why not?! I had fun with this one. Thanks for stopping by. I have been using Medicine Cards and remembered you used Tarot and Soul cards-to inspire.

Vicki Sheehan said…
beautiful...nature also inspires me the most. it is always surprising us with its beauty.
Ella said…
Hi Vicki-I was thinking about you!
Wow-I hope you are doing well. I fully agree with you~

Renee-Thank you! I can still see her in my mind's eye. She had a fairy grin- ;D

Wanda-Thank you! Yes, it is surprising how memories can open like flowers-

Sumana-Oh, I loved your comment-beautiful~ Thank you

Hi Sue-Thank you! I enjoyed your collage-I need to make one. I use to love to gather scraps and create. And I have plenty tucked away ;D

Thank you Razzle-yours dazzled me, too.

Kerry-Thank you! Yes, Mrs. Moody was one of those teachers you don't forget. I bet you are as well~

Kim Nelson said…
You have filled this to the brim with natural, native imagery, making it a dream-like read.
Stacy Lynn said…
i absolutely love this post...i think many of us begin to bloom as writers and poets during early childhood, particularly if we have good teachers. :) great write!

stacy lynn mar
Ella said…
Hi Kim-Thank you! I do love a good wedding ;D You are sweet~

Stacy Lynn-Thank you so much! Mrs. Moody was a remarkable teacher and insightful, too. I will be by to visit!