Thursday, June 26, 2014

your inner moonlight

You Have to Be Careful

by Naomi Shihab Nye

You have to be careful telling things.
Some ears are tunnels.
Your words will go in and get lost in the dark.
Some ears are flat pans like the miners used
looking for gold.

What you say will be washed out with the stones.
You look for a long time till you find the right ears.
Till then, there are birds and lamps to be spoken to,
a patient cloth rubbing shine in circles,
and the slow, gradually growing possibility
that when you find such ears
they already know.

"It's more important to concentrate on what you want to say to yourself and your friends. Follow your inner moonlight; don't hide the madness. Take [William Carlos] Williams: until he was 50 or 60, he was a local nut from Paterson, New Jersey, as far as the literary world was concerned. He went half a century without real recognition except among his friends and peers.

"You say what you want to say when you don't care who's listening. If you're grasping to get your own voice, you're making a strained attempt to talk, so it's a matter of just listening to yourself as you sound when you're talking about something that's intensely important to you."

- Allen Ginsberg

{The Allen Ginsberg project traces the quotation here}

I've been reading the Ginsberg lines over and over this morning. "Follow your inner moonlight; don't hide the madness."

I think this advice becomes more and more important to me as the internet takes over my life. I'm joking, but I'm not.

I've been more mindful of how I use the internet lately. I'm using my 'self-control' program frequently, mainly, truth be told, for Facebook.

I'm craving silence these days, a quiet mind. Want to boil myself down so that I can hear the moonlight and madness in me, the golden light that bubbles over and honeys the world.


  1. I totally needed to read this today. Thank you!

  2. Listening to moonlight, speaking to birds and lamps, a necessary counterbalance to living in 2014.


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