Tag Archives: William Reger

Cicada by Will Reger

800px-Ants_eating_cicada,_jjron_22.11.2009

Cicada settles on the sidewalk
to wait the final embrace of
opossum’s maw or
the sweet reduction of ants.
The bulging eyes
fold in on themselves,
arthritic death clenches
once nimble wings, and
beetles rush to sip
the cooling ichor of life,
while dragonflies above
dance the wake.
And I walk by and by and by,
still humming the spiraling
summer song,
the siren call,
the joyous scream,
made agony in the short
pinch
of time.

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Will Reger was born and raised in the St. Louis, Missouri area. He has a Ph.D. in History from the University of Illinois and currently teaches history at Illinois State University. He lives in Champaign, Illinois, with his wife and two youngest children. He began writing poetry in the 7th grade and never quite stopped. He also plays the Native American Flute. He has recently had poems published in Fire in the Pasture and songs/cycles (and, of course, here on WIZ).

Photo credit: John O’Neill, via Wikimedia Commons.

Musical performance: Never Forgotten by William Reger

Photo by Will Reger
Photo by Will Reger

William recorded “Never Forgotten” in a classroom where he teaches. The flute is a Kuzin Bruce Low A flute. Like “In the Woods,” “Never Forgotten” is a spontaneous improvisation.

Click here:

Never Forgotten by William Reger

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To listen to another musical piece by Will, go here. To read his poetry, go here, here, and here.

Musical performance: In the Woods by William Reger

Photo of the inside of a flute by William Reger
(Photo of the inside of a flute by William Reger)

Besides being an excellent poet, William Reger plays Native American style flutes. William says that this piece, titled “In the Woods” was “recorded in the woods with the birds and squirrels and some unnamed individual crashing through the weeds on his way to somewhere.  It uses a High Spirits high E “Kestrel” flute.” “In the Woods” is a spontaneous improvisation.

Of his introduction to flute playing, William writes, “I was first introduced to the Native American flute in 2005 when my children gave me a Jonah Thompson flute for Father’s Day.  It was a small flute made of pine with a carved eagle on the block.  After two years of lessons and practice with the bagpipe chanter with its harsh double reed sound, the sound of the flute was so pleasing I could not get enough of it.  It led me to become interested in the history and culture of aerophones around the world.  There are surprising similarities in the traditions and practices surrounding flutes wherever they are played.  The Native American flute is unique, however, in its construction.  It is one of the few flutes that utilizes a second, slow air chamber which helps give it its more meditative sound.  Since picking up the Native American flute, I have also played around with the quena from South America, the bansuri from India, the zhaleika (not strictly a flute because it has a reed) from Russia (Siberia), the xiao, bawu (also a reed flute), and hulusi from China, the melodica (more of a piano you blow into), and the Irish whistle.  Of all of these, however, I would have to say that the Native American flute has been the easiest and most satisfying flute to play improvisationally.”

Click here to listen to “In The Woods”

Enjoy.

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Will Reger was born and raised in the St. Louis, Missouri area.  He has a Ph.D. in History from the University of Illinois and currently teaches history at Illinois State University.  He lives in Champaign, Illinois, with his wife and two youngest children.  He began writing poetry in the 7th grade and never quite stopped.  As this post demonstrates, he also plays the Native American Flute. He has recently had poems published in Fire in the Pasture and songs /cycles.

[Edited 11:02 am 8/13 to include bio]

Untitled by William Reger

It is pleasant
to drive in
spring light
so pure
it is not seen but
heard.

The shadows of
still naked
trees
are like flute
music:
frivolous,
momentary,
passing.

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To read William’s other Spring Runoff entries, go here and here.

*Competition Entry*

A Prayer to New Leaves by William Reger

New palms of life
Cup the swelling breeze,
Braided together with sunlight,
Clutching at vaulted
Translucence
And time unspooling:
Teach me to hope
Against the broken branch,
The gnawing worm,
The bitter wind;
Show me the comfort
Of moments
Enfolded and
Flowering;
Help me converge
The dark root,
The crystal dew,
The burning light;
Unlimber in me
The loveliness
Of morning, the grace
Of night descending.

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To read another Spring Runoff poem by William Reger, go here.

*competition entry*

First Robins by William Reger

Who strew the millet and sunflower seeds,
Attracting these red-vested jots
To the wintry paper of my yard?
Black and square in my overcoat,
I pass them by, an exact counterpoint
To their gratitude who left
The dark wind for this plenty.
Seek, seek, seek, they chirp,
And ye shall find the oil-fat seed,
The berry full and sweet.
Better to pass through sorrow
For a cracked kernel of corn
Than waste away in paradise.

_________________________________________________________________________________________

Will Reger was born and raised in the St. Louis, Missouri area.  He has a Ph.D. in History from the University of Illinois and currently teaches history at Illinois State University.  He lives in Champaign, Illinois, with his wife and two youngest children.  He began writing poetry in the 7th grade and never quite stopped.  He also plays the Native American Flute. He has recently had poems published in Fire in the Pasture and songs /cycles.

*competition entry*