I found you once
like a raindrop on a window
that can only caress the extremities,
not the truth,
not the folds we fabricate
between our own fact and fiction.
I found you once and was folded
for a time
fingers running lines along skin,
folded into form unknown,
pressed into position
with little resistance,
pleats to bridge the gaps
between the unfamiliar
and more favourable.
I was paper
being played with
for a while, like the rain
running down the window;
falling, forming, falling into fragility,
reforming, falling, leaving lines already fading,
folding into another, other…
for a time,
for a time to pass the time
between the fact and the fiction,
between the transparency
of the glass
and an inability to hold the rain.
All words and photographs and mini shirt and tie origami by Damien B. Donnelly
Audio version available on Soundcloud
10 thoughts on “ORIGAMI”
This is really a wonderful poem. I read it to Nigel and then listened to your recording, finding that I’d spoken it in much the same way! I recall similar sentiments from some of your earlier poems but this one, to me anyway, is really special. Is there a story behind the origami analogy.. I’m just wondering what got you thinking about origami in the first place? Your paper shirt and tie look so clean and freshly pressed – how many iterations did you go through to achieve that?
Oh dear, just woken up to hear about the attacks in New Zealand, how horrific! My thoughts to you all! We need brighter days. Regardless of the religion, when people gather under ceilings housing hope should they not be able to hold on to that hope as a bright light and not blinding blaze?
Glad you liked the poem, it’s an idea that came from a few places; at work when I make a pattern (shape of a sleeve or front of a dress) I often print it out on paper and then fold it into form around a mannequin to see how it sits and what volume it creates, so I am often pressing lines onto paper to make forms that were not there before. My relationship unfortunately ended a few months ago and so recently I have been getting to know myself again and see how I changed, adapted, bended, folded. For the last 6 months I have also been dealing with muscle pain, coming from my fascia contracting and causing stress around my chest area as if my own body had wanted to fold in on itself as if to protect itself, as if to warm me to take a stand. These all contributed to these ideas of origami and being pressed into positions perhaps not always appreciated.
The little shirt and tie took a couple of pages to finally achieve it, especially because it was so small!
Big hugs to you and your country 🤗🤗
Thank you Dami, so much that’s contributed to the poem.. thanks for sharing, and it feels so bad to hear that you’ve been suffering pain. Here in NZ the latest I’ve read says 40 dead (it was 9 earlier) so really horrific. It’s actually really hard to comprehend. We’ve both just had or having flu so the current situation seems quite surreal – when I initially saw the headline I thought it would be, like, an emergency scenario practice but sadly its for real.
It is so shocking, it seems like the most unlikely place on earth for an attack. When I was a kid, terror and war where things that happened in countries you didn’t even know how to locate on the map. Now the whole world is that location.
You guys take care of each 🤗🤗
Thanks ever so much, and you also take good care of you! Hugs from down under 🙂 🙂
Hi again – I’ve popped back because I thought you might like to see this paragraph from an article by a columnist for Stuff (a NZ news org) – Jane Bowron. I read the paragraph and instantly thought of your origami poem hence why I’m back … “Ardern is blessed with a face that is an open book to her emotions. In the past week her features have unfolded in an origami of pain and compassion read loud and clear by the watching world.”
The origami is beautiful. That folding and unfolding leaves permanent lines. (K)
Thanks Kerfe, it’s so true, even the gentlest of folds leaves its trace 🤗
Some of those lines left behind are happy…
Beautiful, Damien. That folding and unfolding. . .the patterns and lines of our lives.