Being (After Denise Levertov’s “Flickering Mind”)

Well, November is running away from us and so far I’ve only managed one poem for my 12 Poets Project this month. So it’s time for another one, this one inspired by Denise Levertov’s wondering “Flickering Mind”, one of the best poetic expressions I have read of the human mind’s struggle with religious devotion. You can read Levertov’s poem here. Levertov’s poetic form is quite fluid, so I have gone with a looser interpretation of it here than I usually do. Happy reading!

Being (After “Flickering Mind”)

In this multiplicity,
this many-stranded, fragmentary
fold of life, I run
    and fly
and flee from You, my God,
   who Are
the constant in the changing whole.
I am absent, You are
the still point in this constant blur,
the first thought and the final Word.
   I sit
and yet I seldom sit. Martha-movement
takes my sight
and I evade Your searching eyes.
   To stop,
to rest, to be before You,
this is costly; nonetheless
I live not if not
   within You.


Published by Matthew Pullar

Teacher, writer, blogger, husband, father, Christian. Living in Wyndham in Melbourne's west, on the land of the Kulin Nation. Searching for words to console and feed hearts and souls.

2 thoughts on “Being (After Denise Levertov’s “Flickering Mind”)

  1. Very beautiful. I appreciate how you modeled this after “Flickering Mind” without actually using the author’s work. It dovetails very nicely with the model.

    I plan to read this poem often.

    Keep up the good work!

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