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Here you will find the writings of the poet Theodore Waterfield

Believing

If you ask what I believe,
I would reply,
none of what you believe,
and much more.
Because I’ve taken all my doors
off the hinges.
I have collected the world’s truths,
and lies, and whims in great boxes,
more than I can absorb at one time.
Every person leaves a deposit,
old pots, new tunes, longings,
lace for a table, a doll, a ball,
and I put it in my boxes.
Sometimes, one to a person,
sometimes a bag,
seldom a truck,
but I’m open and I collect their beliefs,
if for no reason than they are beautiful
to me, important.
Like a fire crackling with wood,
seasoned in its life,
full of salt and spices and mold,
and unless you include them all,
their picture is not complete.

Their mournings remain a mystery,
their tears simply water
dissolving in the air.
So if you ask what I believe,
that’s my problem.
I have no boxes.
Life comes like a torrent,
full of sunshine and rocks
that pile along the edges of myself,
here a place to stand,
marsh and grass, and lobelia
blue as eyes.
There a pile of granite stones,
firm and forthright and eternal,
and places where the trees themselves
fall in my river,
no moorings,
given to flood and quick storms.

And in my lifetime,
there will be no time for me
to know anything in its final truth,
to construct a house of ritual and shadow,
to bow my head or wave a flag.
I’m in the collecting stage.
There’s no time for the geology
of creating mountains,
something permanent and forever,
except I’ll sit on those owned by others,
and read their books before a flame,
casting each page to the fire,
as I learn who they are,
and what they believe.
Until sunset.
Until I am gone.

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