HUBRIS

the serious work of childhood
is play ....

urgent
irreplaceable
self-generating

possibly
it may do no harm
that a child is asked
to do a little work
in her spare time
- but playfully:
impulsive
impromptu
impassionate -
the concentrated
flickering intensities
of a child at play

it is lucky
no-one sets out
to teach the infant
language:
for sure
no-one
would ever learn
to speak

the body acquires
speech and thought and language
(the deaf retaining
detailed muscle memory
of speech)
and truly
I have no native tongue
unless
I gather it
and form it for myself
actively and dynamically
in my earliest years
fighting
     to understand
     to find expression
     to be heard ....

thus
does the body absorb
(the child secure)
the essential structures
phrasings and inflection
the rhythm and melody
the harmonies of
     my people
     my place and time
     my soul
and individual sensibility

the rest can wait

.... wait ....

wait for the bud
to open

for the summer's glory
the scent and sensuous colour
of the opening rose

22nd June 1990

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