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July 18, 2021

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Marvelous poem about divinity and mystery, "revelation" so easy to confuse with pain. Brava.

Jane Shore knows just how to put these difficult issues, whether in childhood or later. Ashes take on new meaning. Thanks for this posting. Beautiful poem.


Thanks for the comment, Anne.

“Our simple childhood, sits upon a throne / that hath more power than all the elements”. I especially love stanza 2. Thank you, Jane!

Finding things without looking for them (to paraphrase) seems like a good way to comprehend revelation. Nice poem, Jane!

Oh my. The conflict the deliberate blindness the reverence amidst the irreverence.,what a superb and revelatory poem. Peace be with us, somehow.

This is a brilliant poem, filled with wonder and majesty. Image and illusion penetrated by innocence.

Jane’s voice is what I love most about her poetry—straightforward, low-key, almost childlike—presenting what may be ironic or absurd so matter-of-factly and in piquant contrast to the wisdom she imbues in each poem. The one you chose really exemplifies her wonderful adeptness at evoking that contrast; it’s a pleasure.


Carole---thanks for that comment.

Totally delightful. Light and deep. Especially love the lines:

God was about the size of a bottle

of eau de cologne, light as a chicken bone.

And the way the last line shoots a philosophical dart into the core.


I love this poem.

This wonderful poem lets us hear the puzzlement and naivete of a child -- until the last line, when Ms Shore speaks as an adult, telling us what she rightly now holds true. One might think of Paul of Tarsus, blinded by his revelation, or, to stay within her tradition, the prophet Jeremiah, who lamented "I'm burdened with sorrow and feel like giving up."

The contrasts and contradictions described by Jane Shore in her finely etched poem underscore the fetishization of religious belief. Porcelain or plastic figurines adorn homes in the hope that their presumably salvational properties will rub off on or otherwise protect the occupants. Yet nimbly peppering Shore's poem are such equating images as “dime store perfumes,” “bottle of eau de cologne, light as a chicken bone,” “knick knacks,” and, more significantly, “ugly concrete yard” and “ashes stinging and burning.” The latter two are the harsh, obdurate truth arrayed against the hoped-for promise. “To be blind for the hour or so” is the penance. To “see again without hurting” is the remission. The revelation delivered by this poem is almost sacramental in what some might mistakenly call sacrilege. I’ll take an assured Shore to be my spiritual pathfinder any day—no matter how painful the journey gets.

Thanks, Earle, for another richly thought out response.

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