Monday, March 15, 2010

Actually, it was closer to 1:00.

Priorities, 2009

Today a friend suggested an impromptu walk on the beach. I was just about to go off on my own, so I figured why not? Soon we were off. She drove the winding scenic route, showcasing the beauty of our sweet little city. We arrived at a long stretch of beach, so long the end was not in sight. The water was glistening spectacular and the birds were out in full force. Even the sand was putting on a show, seemingly saturated with streaks of midnight blue and sprinkled with the dust of stars. We strolled for a long while, dodging the taunting tide every now and again. We talked of so many things and each of us strongly supported the endeavors of the other. It was a fortifying walk.

Later I read this poem and thought of us, out on our sandy beach, words so urgently passing between us.

A memory only we will keep.

Two butterflies went out at Noon
by Emily Dickinson

Two butterflies went out at Noon --
And waltzed upon a Farm --
Then stepped straight through the Firmament
And rested, on a Beam --

And then -- together bore away
Upon a shining Sea --
Though never yet, in any Port --
Their coming, mentioned -- be --

If spoken by the distant Bird --
If met in Ether Sea
By Frigate, or by Merchantman --
No notice -- was -- to me --


  1. Transporting. I needed that. Longing for the ocean and less of the city life right now.

  2. Oh, I long for the days that the ocean was only ten minutes away. Now my impromptu walks with friends are in the mountains, which is wonderful, but different. The ocean brings out those urgent words from within us.

  3. oh....i wish i could do this. beautiful

  4. Yep. Beach + Emily Dickinson = Happy Moments

  5. Beautiful lines that transported me in an instance... Such important moments.

  6. What a seriously lovely day and you paired it so well with the Emily Dickinson poem. I have been aching to get to the ocean...reading your words have made me feel I will visit sooner rather than later. It's so wonderful how friends give us strength and support.

  7. I am always glad when come here. I like this post very much and will be reading more Emily Dickinson tonight.

  8. It's wonderful and amazing how walks clear and refresh your mind...with or with out friends with or with out words...though yours and Emily's were magical.

  9. ooohhh... this sounds like a beautiful walk. and poem to match.

  10. That sounds very lovely, and Emily Dickinson too - one of my favourites.

  11. What a lovely tribute to your friend. Maybe some day we'll share a moment like that and a poem to remember, too. :)


  12. How refreshing. I have forgotten how powerful poems can be.

  13. Love love love the poem - so pretty! And your walk sounds wonderful.

  14. as always when i read your inspiring posts, i go and look for a notebook in which to jot my own thoughts or a book that i'm reminded of. tonight, i just pulled the third printing of "A Murmur in the Trees" Poems by Emily Dickinson from the bottom of a pile of books. it's so pretty -the actual book and of course, the arrangement of her words too. thanks denise. hope you enjoy another walk soon.

  15. lovely reflection of your walk on the beach and your talk with a friend. i had a long talk with a friend yesterday at the park and am still thinking about how nice it was!

  16. Nice post, Denise! I smiled when I saw this poem because a) I love it and b) I used to try and teach it to high school sophomores which, as you can imagine, never went over well.

    Thanks for bringing it back...
    Happy (almost) Friday!

  17. Thank you, everyone.

    I just read:

    "Emily Dickinson is one of the world's best known and most widely read poets, though at the time of her death in 1886, only seven of her more than 1000 poems had been published."

    Amazing, no? Seven.

    I hope I've inspired a few walks and some poetry reading (and/or writing).


    Maria, I would like that, very much.

    Melissa, "A Murmur in the Trees" is such a beautiful title. Oh, I like it so much. This seems like something I should own. I'd love a copy as beautiful as you describe. The hunt begins...

  18. If you can yarn over you can knit lace! It really is that easy. Well almost that easy. You also have to be able to follow a pattern. There are some really easy lace patterns out there. I suggest you try it! There is nothing like a beautiful lace scarf or shawl. :)

  19. a butterfly always needs another butterfly and long walks on the beach with shimmering water and shimmering words
    lovely, as always