Thursday, July 19, 2012

Harvesting Pears and Poems

Dahlias in San Francisco, (c) 2012 by Maja TrochimczykThe dahlias are in full bloom. It is time to eat fruit fresh off the trees. Time to walk in the orchard, pick apricots and make smooth, orange, tangy and fragrant apricot jam. Time to climb up the ladder and pick the plums, split in half by a sudden rain shower. You can eat them straight off the branches, or pick and drop in the box to make plum preserves for filling in donuts, or to bake a plum cake, or, for the gourmet cooks, among us, to pickle them in vinegar with a touch of cinnamon and cloves.

Where is such succulent and luxurious fruit? On the trees? Somewhere, perhaps, but not very often on the shelves of our local supermarkets. The fruit made for mass production, distribution and transport long-distance is too often tasteless, dry and wooden. It is beautiful on the outside, but completely unappealing on the inside. Also: hard, very, very hard. To survive the thousands of miles on the road, of course, taste be damned...

I remember the pear tree in my grandma’s yard. How soft and fragrant and juicy were those pears! Called, incongruously "klapsy" ("claps"). The ones I buy now are often so hard, they are difficult to cut with a knife, let alone bite! Ah, the dangers of genetic engineering! Was all this technological progress supposed to help us make the world a better place, or just make life easier (and the profit margins greater) for those who sell fruit in "bulk"? What are the GM engineers doing to our fruit? Where are the pears and peaches of yesteryear?

Maja Trochimczyk and Anna Harley Trochimczyk eat peaches in San Francisco
A Pear in a Tree

In a fruit orchard
By the sandy path
I climbed a pear tree
To watch the road
Melt into the horizon

I ate a golden pear
Juice stained my dress
My day dream of white
softness cut short
by the buzzing of wasps

They, too, longed for
The fruity sweetness
Of warm summer pears
They, too, dreamed
Of endless sunlight.

(c) 2012 by Maja Trochimczyk


With lots and lots to do, I have not even noticed that more than a month passed since my last post here. There are some news and updates from the poetry front:

My Three Postcards from Paris was just published in the July issue of Quill and Parchment:

Anturium in San Francisco (c) 2012 by Maja Trochimczyk To read you need the username (july) and the password (salmon). This is a special issue with ekphrastic poetry, inspire by artwork. My three poems divide their inspiration between the real Paris I visited in October 2011 and the painted Paris from the lovely watercolors of Ron Liebrecht.

The journal's editor, Sharmagne Leland St. John reprinted the watercolors not only for my poems, but also throughout the journal. These "snapshots" of various European landmarks are seen with a masterly eye towards detail and in a novel perspective. In each of the images, there is something special to notice in passing.

The "Meditations on Divine Names" anthology has finally been published. In a divided world, this volume brings together poets of diverse spiritual orientations and religious traditions. Their poetry is inspired, luminous. I hope that the readers will enjoy this group effort.

The book is available on lulu and through other booksellers in print format. The digital edition will take a while to prepare:

The first reading from the new anthology is scheduled for Sunday, July 22, 2012, at 4:30 p.m. at Bolton Hall Museum in Tujunga: 10110 Commerce Avenue, Tujunga, California.



Little by little, we shall see the universal horror unbend, and then smile upon us, and then take us in its more human arms.
          ~ Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, The Divine Milieu, III: 3 B

everyone is singing around me

awash in their voices
I stand in the Melbourne cathedral

English vespers, communion
my heart races — I am still

I am taken — the bread circle
becomes my body — I am the bread

white manna surrounds the world
in a blizzard — dancing, falling

I fly with the spirit-wind
encircle the globe

I multiply like loaves and fishes
in the desert

I am eaten, nourish millions
set them on fire

snowing manna
droplets of light

sparks of cosmic
flames everywhere
blur of velocity
heights and depths

swirling whiteness
streams ablaze

on terraced rice-paddies
in musty stone cathedrals
in old wooden churches
shining like amber at dusk

serenity ascends
into translucence

I’m the blanket of light
that covers the world

I’m the song
love sings

(c) 2011 by Maja Trochimczyk

I saw poems on a sidewalk in New York, London, and now also Berkeley, California.

Here are two found poems I liked in Berkeley:

Sidewalk Poetry in Berkeley  (c) 2012 by Maja Trochimczyk

Sidewalk Poetry in Berkeley  (c) 2012 by Maja Trochimczyk

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