The Necessary Art
(The Nature of Poetry)

Poetry is the unexpected utterance of the soul. Much more than the manipulation of language, it is a necessary art by which we live and breathe. It is the art of embodied perception; a braiding of heart and mind around experience. Consider how a simple fish inhales water and somehow, mysteriously and miraculously, extracts the oxygen from the water. In doing this, it turns that water into the air by which it breathes. This ongoing inner transformation—the turning of water into air by extracting what is essential—is poetry. A much deeper process than fooling with words. For us, the heart is our gill and we must move forward into life, like simple fish, or we will die. And the mysterious yet vital way we turn experience into air, the way we extract what keeps us alive—this is the poetry of life that transcends any earthly endeavor. All this while the Universal Ground of Being we call Spirit is working its unknowable physics on us, eroding us to know that we are each other.

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