Monday, June 13, 2011

Poems of Acceptance

Well, I was going to talk about dandelion wine, but the Tony Awards have been handed out and life has been altered for me. Not in any truly noticeable way. It came in the form of  Mark Rylance. England born, Wisconsin raised (yes, he grew up right next door), and winner of the Tony for his portrayal of Rooster Byron in "Jerusalem," a play about life on the fringe, among other things. His acceptance speech came in the form of a prose poem by Louis Jenkins, who just happens to reside in Duluth, MN.

I've read a few poems by Mr. Jenkins and I've looked at Mr. Rylance photos, more than once, and I've decided to share one with you. One poem, one photo. It was hard deciding. They are all so good....

I decided to go with the acceptance speech, this years, as he also quoted one of Louis Jenkin's poems in his 2008 Tony acceptance speech. It was "The Back Country" then, and this photo will do nicely:

The neighbors and I have been threatening to read a play together. Perhaps I've found one that would fit.  I'll run it by them. Casting will be easy, as gender is not important in theater. That was determined a long time ago. In the meantime, here is the poem/acceptance speech:

"Walking Through a Wall"

Unlike flying or astral projection, walking through walls is a totally earth-related craft, but a lot more interesting than pot making or driftwood lamps. I got started at a picnic up in Bowstring in the northern part of the state. A fellow walked through a brick wall right there in the park. I said, 'Say, I want to try that.' Stone walls are best, then brick and wood. Wooden walls with fiberglass insulation and steel doors aren't so good. They won't hurt you. If your wall walking is done properly, both you and the wall are left intact. It is just that they aren't pleasant somehow. The worst things are wire fences, maybe it's the molecular structure or the alloy or just the amount of give in the fence, I don't know, but I've torn my jacket and lost my hat in a lot of fences. The best approach to a wall is, first, two hands placed flat against the surface; it's a matter of concentration and just the right pressure. You will feel the dry cool inner wall with your fingers, then there is a moment of total darkness before you step through on the other side.

~ Louis Jenkins

I'm just going to sit here a while longer and look at Mr. Rylance, perhaps read a bit more of Louis Jenkins. Maybe tomorrow I'll talk about getting sauced on dandelion wine.


  1. They talked about "Jerusalem" this morning on Morning Joe...

  2. I forgot about the awards and watched the birds all evening. I know two plays had over a dozen nominations.Perhaps i will look for replays today if it rains more.This is day six in a soggy tent.LOL It has been fun.

  3. Hello Teresa:
    For us, this most powerful 'poem' is a metaphore for life, particularly life's seemingly impossible challenges. But, just like wall walking, one only needs to perfect a technique and anything can be conquered. It is a wonderful philosophy but, rather like wire fences, one must lose a lot of hats in the process!

    Thank you for this most thought provoking post.

  4. "Something there is that doesn'r love a wall...." Sorry to mix poets this morning but this one got my head spinning! Lots to think about here!

  5. Ah yes, the walls and the wine, sometimes it takes a lot of whine to get through the walls.

  6. I totally looove Jerusalem. When I first lived there, several Isarelis said I'd find the city to be different from what I thought. Hmmm, I thought. A few months later, I began to 'get it' - I really wish I could see the play, have heard it's beyond fabulous!

    Took me a bit to figure out not to go thru a wall with wire...Linda hit the nail on the head above.

  7. Paul, I don't have cable, but if I did, MSNBC would be something I'd watch.

    Steve, Birds, Tony's, tough choice. Camping in the rain is not always pleasant, but fun is where you find it and being outdoors is fun, almost always. Enjoy!

    Jane and Lance, Yes, anything can be conquered, most importantly anything we fear. I'm one of those fools who believes walking through walls actually is possible, and has happened, perhaps more often than we know.... It is a thought-provoking poem.

    BB, I'm glad I got your head spinning... :) Happy Monday!

    Linda, That could be the title! Walls and Wine. Once I stop whining, and I'm not there yet, wall walking might become easier. ;)

    Kittie, You world traveler you! Never been, now it's unlikely. So, tell us about it in a post, please!

  8. Wonderful...possibilities are endless. I love the photo, he looks like a gentle man. I'm looking forward to hearing about your dandelion wine : )

  9. Ladycat, Poems with endless possibilities are really fun to soak in for a while. Yes, I found him and his presence very intriguing. Plus, he's kinda cute.

    Dandelion wine, coming up.

  10. Wow. Just lovely. Now, I find the need to sit and ponder it as well...

  11. Great post. I entirely love this prose poem.

  12. Joan (AFANM), Ponder we will, and I trust All is Well in Tennessee.

    Joan, in NZ, Walking through walls. And your mirror. Somehow, it all fits so perfectly.

  13. A clever and powerful poem, totally 'off the wall'.
    Not something you could come up with unless you had sampled a drop or two of the dandelion wine?

    Handsome chap, Rylance, have you got over him yet?
    Have another drop.

  14. Friko, Yes, and I do like a good pun.

    I can't be certain of Mr. Jenkins imbibing habits, but it does get awfully cold in Duluth in the winter time...

    re: Rylance. I'm working on it. These things take time. Or dandelion wine.

  15. Boy T-thanks for filling my head with such heavy thoughts...sometimes I just have to sit back and 'think' without reacting!

  16. Very interesting, Teresa. I think I need to walk through a few more walls myself. One must continue to practice in order to have instant access to this most vital of skills.

  17. George, It's so good to hear from you. I love all the possibilities this poem represents, both the physical and metaphysical. It certainly is a skill that would come in handy....

  18. Interesting to me on the quantum level/shaman realm. Our sun would not shine with out the phenomonon known as "tunneling". This is, lterally, walking through walls in the Quantum Cafe. Hmmm, I wonder...

  19. Cletis, I have no doubt that it has been done, is being done, and I think Rylance knows this, too. That poem was not randomly chosen.

    Perhaps walking through walls is a matter of dropping our fear and disbelief in order to make it possible. Life in the "Quantum Cafe."

    It's fun to recognize life at this level, not to mention all the possibilities it introduces....

  20. Harry Potter did some "wall walking". Maybe it's not just for wizards.

  21. Linda, I Love your comment. I think that is the great good that comes from the Harry Potter books/movies. It shows young people, and not so young, what really is possible, and not just possible, it is what IS. It's not magical thinking, it's science!

    Thank you so much.

  22. i have a wall to get through. i've got my hands on it, but i can't find my wall into it. i'm sure i have some crippling fears to drop.
    i'll let you know.

  23. I could tell, sweet friend... We all have fears to drop, but they are Never crippling, they just feel that way. You are strong! I KNOW that. You do, too. I have to learn over and over again to let go.... It takes a lot of practice...

  24. thanks, teresa! i need these words right now.