Tag Archives: Michael Czarnecki

And if I don’t see white trillium this year, will I be here next year to see it? … we don’t know.

13 Feb

An exchange from our interview with Michael Czarnecki in December 2012:


When you’re surrounded by mortality and things that don’t even seem to be choices, sometimes you’re in the swirl of karma, either as observer or things are happening to you, and things are so far outside the blame/responsibility sphere. This concept of everything outside our control. And what is control, anyway. Why did we want it, and why did we think that was one of our happy human gifts.

And I’m seeing some of that in both images that you post and in your recent haiku. It’s not despairing work, but it seems to have at the center of it the sense that the noticed moment is the only thing we have. The only thing we can control.. I can control my 17 syllables. Or I can control my photograph. And as soon as I shot it, the bird flew away. It has a different resonance now. Am I misreading?



No, I don’t think you’re misreading them. And I don’t know that I’m writing or picturing that consciously.  But certainly it is there.

You never expect to have something like the total loss of your house. Obviously it is going to affect how you go forward. I’ve never been one to be overly attached to material things. I’ve felt strongly for a few decades that death is hanging there over our left shoulder. It’s there, it’s hanging there, and one never knows. And I think I’ve tried at times, not always, to realize that we have no sense of what might happen tomorrow. You know me, the natural world being so important, and the wildflowers and the birds and the experiencing of the life out there in nature. We keep track of the flowers on our property, when they bloom, and when we first see them. And if I don’t see white trillium this year, will I be here next year to see it? There’s that: we don’t know.

(You can listen to the Michael Czarnecki Interview121512 .)

on trying and the sublime: Michael Czarnecki

20 Jan


The whole thing about not trying, immediately brought to mind a Joni Mitchell song, and the times you impress me most are the times when you don’t even try, you don’t even try. It’s the same with so much of our life, when you don’t try that’s when you’re natural, when you flow with it, you don’t aim for the sublime, you just aim to put words out there and express your experience. And sometimes, it becomes sublime. But not because you were trying.

— the poet Michael Czarnecki, from an extended interview featured in the Winter 2013 issue

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