Going under

Watch her drift beyond shore’s edge

Body half risen, half submerged

Observed by faithfuls on the bank

Robed white as if for rapture.

Watch preacher dunk her under

The cool, murky shallow & up

Into searing midday sunlight.

Watch sisters receive her with

A towel & embraces 

like a newborn damp & alive.

Watch her take to the road alone

At service end, returning

To her own sacred ground that 

Heals scars water alone cannot

Cleanse, that full immersion cannnot

                                                                  Undo.

Neo Psalm II

Because I am

The ancient

Rock fence

Winding ’round

Pasture’s edge

Because I flow

As a rippling

Current over the

Lake’s broad back

Because I am the

Blue dasher

On the limp

Blade of grass

Because I Am

Because I am present

Here, in all things,

Even when no one

Looks or cares to listen.

Exit

The following piece is an edited version of my contribution to a collaborative effort called Poets for Peace on the blog ForgottenMeadows. To learn more and to contribute to the fabulous initiative, visit forgottenmeadows.wordpress.com.

When blood
Is a river

Drowning itself
Rage a wave

Self-harming in
Violent crests

You & I forge
Solace in the

Dove’s Oak
Branch alto

The swaying dance of
Resurrected blossoms

Stone parishes chanting
Vespers & intonations.

Together we dwell in &
Out of time

A present exit, so to speak,
From reverberating blasts

On breaking news abroad &
Popping clips & sirens nearby

Our space is  collected
in ourselves

In the union of
Our souls

Where we hold close,
At least for now,

In growing pains of
Our times.

#PoetsforPeace

High Tide

The maroon crest curling in demolition

Gives voice to the crashing plate/

The roaring of a ruptured rock face.

Its furious burst & simmering decline

May hold the rhymes to a future verse.

But I won’t herald distant times;

Only the wide lapis lazuli plain &

The crest kissing my toes like

Bowing heads of the faithful.

Life Saving Station


Life Saving Station

Upon this shell-and-seaweed bulwark

I was an oasis reviving the wrecked sailor;

An ark holding victims of the deep

Before their final journey home.

Now I watch with boarded eyes

Waves advance and recede &

Tankers lumber across the horizon.

To restore life is my purpose, my faculty.

But in waiting, I neglect my own.

Bog Side 


Bog Side

Enough peat cloisters here

To last a dozen summers.

Faced upward in rust-brown robes,

It clusters at the viewing in

Spring coffins of morn.

___

I observe them bog side as

Every ode to life must do:

In reverence, at water’s edge,

Mosquito & dragonfly

Humming requiems & eulogies

To sparse congregants in

Sharp shades of lime,

Cognizant of time

Descending as a shadow,

Prepping for a Second Coming.

Boardwalk

img_0163

Boardwalk

An old plank road

Thumping underfoot.

Nailed curves twisting,

Stretching like the form

of your hips to some endpoint

Where allusions of you evanesce

Into a mess of thickets and brush.

 

After Poetry

After Poetry

We’ll bend stars into stanzas

Curve trees into ghazals

Erode stones into odes

& after the passing of all this

We’ll turn our bodies into a lasting verse.

Mercy

Mercy

The Light is a

Rushing water.

I’m swept along

Broken & dashed

Against jagged rocks.

My blood becomes

One with the water,

Crimson ribbons flowing

Against its ebbing curves.

I become one with the water,

Brackish body soiling

Its silk-clear surface.

My soul rises from the water

A sapphire washed of impurities,

translucent with the kiss of sunrise.

A Testament to the Hours

A Testament to the Hours

The tension in your womb bares no certain words;

only the voiceless sense of hidden hands

plaiting the future deep within.

 

You feel the formation of a sovereign seed––

a lily-of-the-valley destined to rise

in this wilderness of humanity.

 

Yet within your joy at the fruit of your loins,

you behold Isaiah’s prophecy

of that sacred flower shredded by the hour.

 

Right then you consider abandoning the seed

in a savage ecstasy of shock and grief

but persevere despite sin’s heinous pleas.

 

As conception’s reckoning prods and fades,

you foresee a lost lily recovered in the temple,

telling you with reverent irony:

“Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?”