The Word 'Blue'

When you hear the word 'blue,' what do you think of?
Does your imagination show you anything?
A sky above a beach?
Your grandmother's coat, flecked with cream?

And if the word 'silver' is said, 
Do you have a bit of silver in your mind,
That you can imagine when you need to?

Do the words 'lost in a storm' mean anything to you
In the privacy of your mind,
Like a snapshot in a photo album?

You don't have my pictures in your mind
(This is true, isn't it?)
But if I say, "Elephants are running in the streets!"
Doesn't your mind show you elephants
Running in the streets somewhere?

They are not my pictures (Isn't this correct?),
Not mine.

They are yours. They are your pictures.
And these thoughts which you are having
As you read my poems,
They are your thoughts,

Brought up from within you, like water from a well,
Soiled or clear, from a spring that is there.

The ideas you are having as you read my poems
Are not my thoughts. They are not about me.
They are about you. And not just poems,
   but everything: music, art, life, it's all about you.
Like your picture of blue,
When you hear the word 'blue.'

by Robert Hampton Burt
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