by e.e. cummings
It would be easy to dismiss this poem because we have to shift our method of gathering and interpreting information. Rather than streaming left to right, and relying on recognized collections of letters that become words by virtue of the space between them, we must be curious enough to find a pattern in the unfamiliar. There are two statements within its bounds. If we could envision the poem as framed art, the frame is
the expression is
a leaf falls
Among many other studies, this poem invokes inquiry thus
- What is a journey alone?
- What is a lone journey?
- What is a journey in loneliness?
- What is a lonely journey?
- What is a leaf without journey?
I thank Steve Matuszak for bringing this poem to my attention. He used l(a as a touchstone to speak eloquently about the study of “self” in a Dharma Talk at Dharma Field Zen Center. Teasings on this poem can also be found at Poem a Day.
© 2015 Bev Forsman and Letters from Emptiness. If you share this material, please include direction to the original content. Thank you.