What is that thing, that friend, that foe?
We can be on it, behind it and ahead of it.
We can be in it, or we can be out of it.
Sometimes we race against it,
or while it away,
waste it, kill it,
use it, spend it,
save it, or buy it.

It is a gift:
We can take it, or give it.
It comes. It goes.
It can be our prison. It can be our master.
It lets things grow. It lets things decay.
It does not change us—
but simply, unfolds, us.

It deserts us in glory,
but without it, a heart does not beat.
It is always there for us when we’re in pain,
letting us bathe in our agony.
But, it also lets us heal, and lets us forget.

We can’t see it. We can’t hear it.
And, no, we can’t eat it,
even if it sounds like we could.
We perceive it.
It is a dimension.
It came out of nothing,
and will leave when there is nothing left.
It reveals everything.

It is the space between the notes,
the canvas of the painting of music,
of seasons, of night and of day.
It only goes in one direction,
and it never goes back.

Copyright © Quirina Roode-Gutzmer 2012.
All rights reserved.

This poem is linked to dVersepoets Open Link Night, Week 37.
DVerse Poets Pub is a place where poets and writers gather to celebrate poetry.


34 thoughts on “It

  1. This is wonderful, Q. Lots of interesting levels all the way through, and some especially good ones like “..and no we can’t eat it, even if it sounds like we could” and “it is a dimension”. I think of herbs and physics in the space of a few lines. Marvellous!

  2. It speaks to me, but I get the feeling that the poem isn’t finished. As if there should be just a bit more. Well done Querina!

    • Thank you, Jerry. It is lovely to see you on my blog. Indeed the poem is not finished (like any painting). I wrote it many moons ago and kept changing it, just like “it” changes life. And indeed there is more to the poem … it goes to infinity.

  3. It tells me half forgotten things. It brings me songs to sing. It gives me poets wings, to soar above life’s incessent roar.
    It’s been a joy to read this. Thank you for sharing. James.

  4. This wonderful poem is a like a knot puzzle turning in on itself in the most graceful and positive way. It’s both and song and speaks of something that is probably too deep for us mortals to name, anyway. As I mentioned, your language is precise and light as air and flows beautifully around your rarified subject. Absolutely beautiful.

    • It is indeed elusive, and relative. Einstein grappled with it all his life. Thank you very much for your very lovely comment. I appreciate your thoughts always, Ben.

  5. Once in a business class (of all places!) I heard the most poetic reference to time. The professor was telling us how a company can invest money, and manpower, and effort, and whatever else companies invest towards success. All of these things, if you use them up, you can get some more. The only unrecoverable resource, he said, is time. I don’t believe he meant to be poetic, but I’ve always remembered it that way. So, like you said, ‘it only goes one direction/and it never goes back.’ Thanks for this.

  6. smiles…wonderfully penned…the space between notes…i like….the space between stars…it is the forgotten space we dont pay attention too until it is gone….this builds really well through out….

  7. Think this will be one of my favorites from you Q. like the others, that space between the notes really resonates A thoughtful, well crafted and beautiful piece! Brava!

  8. You know, in singing, there is a lot of music between things–between notes and in rests–this poem puts me in that space–I wonder how much of poetry is also between things–beautiful work–this is my first time reading your work and I must say that I loved it–

  9. What a lovely poem to come back to after such a long time offline! Thank you for that, I really needed it. I especially loved ‘It does not change us, but simply unfolds us’. And yes, it does remind me of high-energy physics.

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