My Top Ten Poems: #8 “The Tall Firs Are Dancing Today”

     The holiday season has begun. Arriving with the season is the cold weather that will inundate the northern United States until the vernal equinox helps to brighten the landscape next year. Usually, I enjoy the relaxing nature of the long winter months, but this year I feel like hibernating until it is all over.

     I suppose it could be that I just want my leg to be completely healed, or that I’m getting too old to enjoy cold weather, or maybe it is something else entirely. Regardless of the reason, I know that I can’t wait for the next season to arrive. I imagine I should snap out of my melancholy mindset and use the long winter days as an opportunity to write more.

     Yes, that is exactly what I should do, or rather need to do. Still, though, something tells me I am in for a long winter nap. In the meantime, here is a piece that talks about the end of winter and the beginning of spring. It is number eight on my list of top ten poems, and I’m definitely feeling the mood that it lays down today.

The Tall Firs Are Dancing Today

The tall firs are dancing today.
The wind blows their foliage back and forth,
like a sea of hands waving at a parade.

Below, the just sprung tulips try to hide.
Petals sealed tight, they weather the storm,
like little turtles hiding their heads from danger.

Water drops fall from the sky.
Their pace is sporadic, but their onslaught is relentless.
Like warriors, they eradicate all that is dry.

Underneath blankets, I lie.
I want to dance and have a parade with the trees.
Like the tulips, though, I hide.

by Cody McCullough

green bud leafed plant

Poem Analysis: now i know

     Author intention and reader interpretation sometimes vary wider than the width of the Milky Way. Fortunately for me, the regular readers of this blog have proven to be very astute in their interpretations of my work. This helps me to breathe a sigh of relief knowing that my work hasn’t been misinterpreted.

        When it comes to reader interpretation, I’ve always taken the approach that a poem, or any other type of written work for that matter, has its own unique meaning to each individual reader. Personally, I love to see the different ways that others interpret my writing. Often, I purposefully create double-meanings as a way of both layering my writing and creating avenues for diverging interpretations.

        All that being said, though, I do have specific ideas in mind when writing any given piece. As I transition this blog to the focus of pulling back the curtain on my writing process, I figured it would be a good idea to analyze some of my previous work.

        What better place to start than at the end. “now i know” is the last poem of both the Lost in Time collection and The Past, Present, and Future collection as a whole. As such, I wanted it to be a piece that spoke for itself but also the entirety of the collection.

        One of the messages that I  worked to convey through “now i know” was the power of self reliance. Many of the institutions that surround us in this world want us to shed our own personal judgment and replace it with doctrine. Funny thing, though, I’ve yet to find the institution in this world that has been right all the time. Institutions make mistakes just like people. Their truths are not doctrine, their more metaphorical in nature. Metaphors can be useful and comforting but shouldn’t be relied upon wholly when making judgments.

        When making judgments, I believe that people should rely upon themselves. If you’re going to do this, however, it is 100% imperative that you educate yourself. Education and knowledge are the cornerstones of any self reliant person. After that, life is all about choices. The best way to make the right choices in life is to make educated decisions. Once you’ve figured that out, you can leave the doctrine and dogma of institutions where they belong: in the past. When you do, life becomes about living in the present. A place where educated people have the ability to make choices that will hopefully pave the way toward a brighter future for everyone and this small planet that we live on.

        Well, there you have it. That’s my poem analysis of “now i know”.  I hope this analysis helped to pull back the curtain on this poem and my writing process as a whole. Until next time, keep livin’ in the present people.

pile of covered books

 

now i know

i used to believe
in luck
i used to believe
in superstition
now i know
there’s only metaphor

i used to believe
in politics
i used to believe
in government
now i know
there’s only metaphor

i used to believe
in god
i used to believe
in religion
now i know
there’s only metaphor

i used to believe
in war
i used to believe
in patriotism
now i know
there’s only metaphor

i used to believe
in us
i used to believe
in humanity
now i  know
there’s only me

i used to believe
in the past
i used be believe
in the future
now i know
there’s only the present

abstract alphabet arrangement away