with Real Toads in Them
Process, Poetry, and Imaginative Feelings
This page is inspired by a poem called "Poetry" by Marianne Moore and, more particularly, by two phrases in the poem: "literalists of the imagination" and "imaginary gardens with real toads in them."
The page has two purposes. One is to offer an opportunity for you to experience and enjoy the poem on its own terms and in its own right, as read by Amanda Holmes below and as read on a screen. The second is to invite you to consider the possibility that having faith in God includes being a "literalist of the imagination" who experiences fresh possibilities for healing and wholeness as being as "real" in their way as are "imaginary gardens with real toads in them."
Our task is to bring the toads into actuality as best we can, knowing that they are already real as possibilities. Poets do this with words. We can do it with whatever actions are available to us, verbal or otherwise. Process theologians often say that God is the Poet of the world. Truth be told, we are poets, too. Faith is a kind of poetry. In our awareness of fresh possibilities, we meet God.
- Jay McDaniel