I'd be Raven, but with an iron stomach to
digest tall milkshakes after a dinner of gin and tonics
and greasy fajitas, forget the flying and high kicks.
indigestion is what keeps one up at night,
although I guess Raven doesn't have to sleep;
I have noticed the ravens dozing
off mid-day instead of cawing in the trees along
the rushing creek, the tree trunks are groaning
all the way to their roots.
about radiator panels in space
and orbital debris, micrometeoroids,
asteroid cohesion and lidar technology.
let's talk technical, forget Jung and Freud,
Yeats and e.e. cummings, switch gears mid-stream
let the heart stop and the brain begin until
we slow and realize the brain, the heart,
the liver and spleen, the bowel and
intestines all move as one unified
body and mind and spirit
with the heart always
not the desire that everyone supposedly thinks about,
when man meets woman and supposedly fireworks launch,
but simply desire that stirs you to get up
and work at something ceaselessly because
somewhere it meets your soul mid-way and
you can't get enough,
often solitary, the mind, the body, the spirit
meld with this desire that makes life
worth living, gives meaning, but
finding it is another thing indeed
amongst the old papers blowing in the wind,
the cacophony of voices and rustle of ancient
strands of DNA echoing in caves,
find me desire and I will find
we all balance on planks suspended in space
our emotions whirling around us, our edges blurred,
the winds of history blowing through us, from cold to hot,
blustery, the calm pierced by the single note of a flute
vibrating all space, then time, then space-time
it carried a heaviness with it, a solidity then curving
south it picks up speed, changes key, our boundaries reform
and we find each other again, smiling across a shrinking abyss,
our hands can almost touch, I can feel the warmth of your
he was so casual about it,
showing a simulation of our beloved Milky Way
being ripped apart in its collision with the Magellan galaxy
in a few billion years, when our jewel of an Earth will be long gone
eaten by our swollen and dying sun, everything destroyed and
gone to ashes.
where will the ghosts reside, the temperatures will get too extreme
for any ilk, the good or the bad, angel's wings will fry or frost
and devils will toast their marshmallows quickly.
casually he continues his slide show, ending with the
statement that he'll be long gone in any case,
as will I, but somehow it strikes me as inordinately
sad that this beautiful world
will exist no more.
they save you from having to listen
when you know you are not equipped to help,
they save you from dumping your pile of debris into someone's lap
because the load is so heavy you can no longer carry it.
I'm not sure how they do it, but just as the large truck
arrives in the back alley, swinging its robotic arm over the bin,
so the carton of our history is swung over head and emptied
into another space to be sorted out, the metal from the paper,
the glass from the plastic, to be spread across a table for
examination and disposal, in this way are we healed.
usually I would rejoice to see a handwritten postcard
but I see the handwriting on the wall and stash it under a book
unread, but not forgotten, for how can one forget the
handwriting one has seen one thousand times, how can
one forget the quaking in the stomach at the emotional tsunami such
carefully formed letters can deliver, like the fine line of a needle
into a vein, pierced too many times, it is time to let it scab over
and heal, let this postcard rest under the book in another house,
in some other universe.
staying up late to delay getting up tomorrow,
to avoid the Meeting, to sleep in so I won't have to
hear the dog bark, or the birds sing, I will sing my own songs
in the dark and read my own books, I will sew my own clothes
and wash them before stepping into them dripping wet,
who knows how they will conform to my body,
I will see as I leave a trail of droplets from
shower to mirror.
let the rain meander its way through the pile of gravel,
the pebbles, the sand, the larger rocks in pink, black and green,
the minerals, the diamonds, the lichen and algaes,
the water will cleanse away the caked mud formed from
tears and impacts, from the pollution and debris
that mixed its way in somehow, rounding the sharp edges,
bringing air to long suffocating clumps, releasing fertile
soil to adjacent grounds, who knows what will grow there.
I was reading about the great mountaineer, Jeff Lowe,
a man of legend and myth, who found himself in snow caves
facing death, ice and cold, uncertainty and doubt.
in a wheelchair, he sings inside since his lips no longer work
and he lives each day as if his last, as it might be, with love
and me, I struggle against the embrace of life's smallest challenges as
I walk effortlessly up a beautiful hillside alongside my mate
or my dog or my friend, I am no Jeff Lowe in this life,
perhaps this is his 1000th life and I am in my 3rd, how else
to understand his depth and my own shallowness.
blood is thick,
stretching across time and distance
seldom drying, only changing color with the seasons
of ones life; sometimes one has to chip away at a narrow
section to allow the river of life to find a new bank,
for the grass to grow and the wolves to prowl
in the vicinity, for the deer to fade back into the
forest and for the new growth on the trees
to flourish, shading a nearby path
where we stop and rest our
I'm not sure where I put it and it says I owe them
seventy cents, the rest having been paid on time, the fine,
yes, the fine is seventy cents and I must glue three quarters
on a piece of paper, or will they not like that since it's not exact change,
so I'll glue 7 dimes, or 14 nickels, or 70 pennies, but then the postage
would be more than the fine, but the post office would be happy
as they usually are when they open my mailbox seeing yet another letter
heading out with a crisp first class stamp in the upper right hand corner.
yes, I could send you one if it would make you happy,
but she would smell friendship on the envelope.
Being a mother
you give and you give and then one day
gifts rain down upon you in form of clarity that you gave them,
unable to hold it for yourself, they show you how to do it, a bouquet of lillies,
or a special dinner that you don't have to pay for, ending with
a chocolate bag filled with fresh berries and whipped cream.
you could never know this present would be there, or this
clarity, you marched along day by day hoping that you were
doing something right and that love that kept pouring from
your skin and eyes and tongue was filling every pore
of their young bodies, that one day they would be
so full of it that it would overflow,
so happy that it did.
the wind is cold,
rain splatters on the pavement
and the trees bend towards the east
the wind always comes from the west,
heads down, jackets securely zipped, we
wish for warmth, our limbs no longer carry the
heat from last summer, it's long dissipated by winter storms.
the brutality of spring taxes us,
we wait impatiently for
the summer sun.
a graduated cylinder,
the opening like a test tube, offering a small opening
for chopped carrots, some raisins and a few M&Ms,
but then still narrow all the way down, to collect
some rainwater and bits and pieces of knowledge,
there is nothing graduated about it, no widening of the
area, just more of the same, from what does it graduate,
from where to where, from what to what and where is
there room to grow in breadth and width, I ask myself,
what lesson is there for the graduate in this simple
his flute case looks tiny in his monstrous hands,
his giant toes peer out of his sandals, he is a giant man in
a small man's world across the sea, peering at Chinese characters
on a sign, a look of complete bafflement crosses his face.
they swarm him, reaching up to touch his Buddha belly,
chattering in broken English, "I help you, you lost?"
ad his enormous hand disappears into his tiny flute case,
fetching out a small piece of paper covered in Chinese characters.
they read this and he is levitated towards a train platform,
the doors swinging open to receive him and and his collective bundle of
flute case and suitcase, this giant man and many small men disappear into the
car, the doors slide closed with a gentle swoosh
as the train pulls away from the station.
tonight it's five of us gathered around some candles on
the back porch, left-over BBQ and buns, a fresh green salad,
a few beers, comraderie amongst family, Sunday dinner.
she's the fifth tonight, usually too far away to join us,
yet today she dropped this hint that Sunday dinners may be
a bigger draw than I dared hope for, that pull of family that
loves you no matter what, in this way, I feel I have
succeeded if this, this thing called love, has a gravitational pull,
mixed with left over BBQ, a few beers and a fresh green salad.
when there is too much to do,
walk the dog, she'll ponder the bushes
and scents, consider the personalities and
energy of the situation and get back to you
wagging her tail, with recommendations like
there's some really good stuff over there, or how
about that trail on the other side of the water,
maybe you'd like to run through the water
like I did after my bath yesterday, splashing mud
all over myself to get rid of the shampoo smell,
it's super fun and relieves stress, and no, that
person doesn't smell right so I'd be a little wary
but that small person over there looks nice,
so just wag your tail like me; there's
never too much to do, only just