“The Press of Light”

Photo by Tilon Sagulu
Photo by Tilon Sagulu

A Cure Against Poisonous Thought

 by Annie Lighthart

Believe the world goes on
and this bee bending
in honeysuckle just one
of a mighty nation, golden
beads thrumming
a long invisible thread.

In the green drift of an afternoon,
the body is not root but wick:
the press of light surrounds it.

from Iron String © Airlie Press, 2015.
Reprinted with Permission. Buy now

Perhaps the best and only “cure for poisonous thought” is to get outside of the mind, and to go literally outside, where we can commune with nature again. The natural world constantly reminds us that the seasons go on, with or without our permission, whether or not we solve the seemingly insoluble dramas that plague us each day. It can help to take a walk, sit in the shade, and remember that we too are natural, “just one of a mighty nation,” like the bee Annie Lighthart sees, “bending/ in honeysuckle,” as if in search of the “long invisible thread” that connects us all one to the other. “The body is not root but wick,” Lighthart says in the end, implying that we don’t always need to strive and seek to find our sustenance on the creative or spiritual path. More often than not, we can sit as still as a “wick” that waits for the flame and “press of light” to ignite it.

—James Crews