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
Because I am
Because I flow
As a rippling
Current over the
Lake’s broad back
Because I am the
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.
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.
Is a river
Rage a wave
You & I forge
Solace in the
The swaying dance of
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 the union of
Where we hold close,
At least for now,
In growing pains of
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
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.
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.
An old plank road
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.
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.
The Light is a
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
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?”