Monday, September 4, 2017

Untethered Inquiry

Art by Gustav Klimt


After Hurricane Harvey

*****

I’ve always kept certain questions 
tucked away like forbidden 
family secrets.

Yet, something has shifted,
these last few days.

what is this helplessness?
what is this vigilance?
what is this hope?

What is the source of these inquiries?
What is triggering them out of
placid hibernation?

Can this be?
Can it be I attribute inspiration
to the intensity with which the sky falls?

But, that is far too complicated for today.

Today. Today . . . I am happy
with the simple things.

I am happy with the wind in the trees
and the crunch of dry(ing) grass 
beneath my feet.

I am happy with the song of September
enveloping my waist like so many
curious yet subtle fingers.

I am happy with the trill of the bird,
imperfect and uncertain as it may be.

I have learned 
that the heavens 
hold enough water
to saturate the earth and 
make it plead with overwhelm.

And, I have cried, because
some forms of abundance
are cushioned with tears.

But, though I have been pounded by an
unleashed dam, today, my spirit
fills to the brim with a craving
that gushes from this world
into the far beyond.

The fallen blossoms from a crepe myrtle
scatter in the thickening morning.

Last night’s moon hangs 
from the clouds—an
echo, a remnant, a
revenant.

Like a thirsting willow, I unfurl my
splendor cautiously. Bowing down, 
I deliver, and I receive.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Cautious Renaissance

Beata Beatrix by Dante Gabriel Rossetti


I am a fallen angel, struck by
the thunderbolt of wonder and desire,
exiled to a destiny of solitary emancipation.

But, hear me, now:
I am also a woman of truth.

And so, I must, you know . . .

I must transport myself into
a certain willingness that embraces 
this brave new autonomy.

I must enact this deepest form of 
worship that knows not how to ask, 
but only to receive.

I must open, submit . . . believe.

I have wandered in a Dantean limbo
for eternity. And, I have fallen . . . 
risen . . . and fallen again.

I seek the promise of relief.

The sky will soon be evening-gowned 
in black silk and brilliant diamonds.

The oil-smooth river will ripple like mercury
beneath the milky glow of the moon.

The owl will weep once more.

And, I? I will fall 
like a lush tree in a postmodern forest.
who will witness this . . . ?
No one will hear my cries.

And so, I must . . .
I must this rebirth allow.
I must this Self redeem.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Autoethnography

New Nature, Christian Schloe


I do not need to turn and look back.
i have been here before

Some things are
just as they have always been:

The sky is fixed
above the horizon like an
O’Keeffe landscape.

The sun quivers like smoke
inside my eyes.

The dry leaves lie
sporadic and listless
on the ground.

The path follows
a swift meandering line.

I walk. But, now…
i’m so tired of pretending
This is as far as my feet will bring me.

I stand at the water’s edge—a fishhook
smoldering in my hand.

I cast. I bait. I switch.
The fish scatter.

I free my hands from all burden.

My fingers filter the sunlight—hook its
flames in a dance of latitude.

I sketch upon myself a raindrop,
a blade of grass,
a swan.

Bliss weaves my body
with movement and light.

My chest rises like an unbottled cloud.
  
I am twirling,
lifting,
airborne.

Look at me.
Look…

I beseech you.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Double Solstice

Art by Claude Monet


And, now comes the river, rippling 
like cobalt snakes across a
fresco of glistening hills!

Its fragrance parts the crystal breeze.

We lean our heads into its brazen reflection.
We press our fingers against its radiant blur.

now i see you, now i don’t

The birds fall silent—
only for now.

Summer leaps in, dappling 
the air with chirp and blossom.

i close my eyes to see better

We walk to the edge of the water.

my senses grow sharper

We lay our bodies 
upon the grass and drink
deeply from the river’s collarbones.

A cacophony of joy smudges
the air, stirring our lips and eyes.

laughter… oh, laughter!

Behind the river, the sun glows
bone-white and desert-dry.

Revoiced,
we move towards living things.