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Holy in the Infinite

Month

January 2015

Losing Sight

 

Losing Sight (1.17.15)

I am slowly losing

vision

in my left eye

Everything slowly gets

a little softer

brighter

white and gentle

If they hadn’t told me

I was going blind

I’d consider this easing

into glowing

tremendous luck

January’s Elegy

 January’s Elegy (For Joe, on Train Day 2015)

 

to me, january smells of earth in the cold damp

and it reminds me of how bones ache

 

with the insistent rain after they have broken

not quite unlike our fragile human hearts

 

and in some ways, always, takes hold of me by surprise

and leaves me ever sore and aching

 

for the train tracks, glowing forest paths, and for all the stars

that hold you here in my memory

 

in this space of disinheritance with cold crept window panes

I wish that it was me that was gone, instead of you

 

raindrops play cadent dirges on my subterranean

fraying fragments of recollection

 

and on these long winter nights I pen these laments

I find it easier to pretend

 

that was one of us has died, often me, and rarely you

because I always hope you are flying

 

for I pray that you will always watch the light

and feel cool wind on your face as

 

owls at night lure me forward with their high haunting calls

herons in the light reassure me all is well

 

and you

 

at dawn, you raise yourself in the shift between

the earth and coming light, ever touching

 

and I

 

knowing the reaching space between you and I

the same dawning shift between earth and sky

 

and now

 

crossing this icy bridge again with lonesome clarity

only elation in my elegy

Chasing Fog

 Chasing Fog (1.14.15) 

I am chasing fog

beating undercurrents

of the sacred

in mist

in hymnal measure

 

certain my soul is shaking

quaking

beneath my fingertips

pulling my center

with the tides

towards oceans

and moons

 

perhaps

as I study the lines of my palms

it is not learning

but it is remembering

that I am the keeper of lightning

 

my poems

spill like laughter

down the lonely canyons

hearing the echoes of my joy

the echoes of myself

Finally

 

Finally (3.30.14)

the sun came down

loosening the shade from my grasp

loosening you from me

finally

finally

finally

the relief caught me off guard

and I leaned in the doorway

of the bar while it was closed

you were closed

and I was both closed

and blown wide open

in the same instant

Overwinter

Overwinter (1.8.15)

when I was young

forehead pressed to the window

knees tucked under me

watching the world wrap itself in white

 

a strange sight

to see robins

noble birds,

dignified

all stuffy and puffed up like that

in their downy winter jackets

and red vests

and top hats

councilmen, really,

all earnest eyes

and talking just for show,

gathering on the patches of dead grass

to hold informal meetings

about nothing in particular

 

as if they are

making plans to meet

here again

same time

same place

tomorrow

yes

yes

indeed

 

as if they are

children

in hushed tones

planning secret missions

with cardboard swords

to vanquish

imagined enemies

away from the prying eyes

of parents

 

those birds

their wine-soaked vests

against the drift

comes back to me now

and I remember

 

one morning

seeing one

frozen

dead

face still tucked to wing

his bloody plumage

a shock

against the greying snow

and wondering

why didn’t he fly

to warmer climes?

 

why did they choose

to overwinter

in this forlorn yard of mine

with barren apple trees

and peaking stones in the dirt?

 

why not fly south

with the swallows?

why not return to me

and my yard

when your fortune has changed,

little red robin?

 

silly reader,

do not believe

this to be

a poem about me

 

I could never overwinter here

against the creeping darkness

and the draft that comes in

under the doors

I could never return to this place

with my coloring pencils

in the green case

I could never nestle into the warmth

of youth again

to slumber here

face tucked to wing

with the barren apple trees

and rocky soil

I could never come and go like little robin

for the truth is,

I was never here

My Sheets Uncreased

My Sheets Uncreased (1.4.15)

 

You were still beside me

telling secrets in your sleep

as I wrote this lonesome prayer.

 

We found ourselves

in foreign lands

with fiery trees and rushing winds,

rivers of rhymes and from your

flowing streams of words, I drank.

 

My words and whispers

as careless and tangled

as your hair.

 

Your melodies found the stars

on darkened shores

without intrusion,

and you sighed verses on my skin

as we lay together on the bank.

 

But morning came

and our song was gone.

You were never there.

 

I stoke this glowing stove,

my notebook left,

cast aside atop the bed.

the sheets uncreased,

my pages all still blank.

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