Musical Arrangement

When my mother turned her back

to play the piano, we

all danced and jiggled,

positive we were not observed.

Certain still, 

the child-closed heart

is exactly

why I can’t imagine

being heard by those ears,

even when it is my clear

assignment.  Write a letter.

Accompanied by the fidelity

of birds and land and water,

mating pairs revisiting their

own birthplaces, I open a spring

carnival of colors and splashes,

honks and quacks and silver

ripples and heads rosy in one

flash of morning sun.

The makeshift boundaries

of my childhood home

constantly revisited,

newly emerging as I unwind

the crude expedience

that I couldn’t digest.

The fierce punishments

to the bold spirit,

the cold indifference,

the longing

to be heard

to be loved

with as strong a heart

as mine.

I carry the weight

of things I cannot speak

and give witness

in the dark.

We are the same,

our wounds calling in secret

language-magnets

forcing us together

until our breath

is constrained

and our spirits are tamed.

I ignore the photoshopped

edits on your Instagram feed,

tuning in 

to what is constant

and unwavering.

A swallow dives down

and we are all here

and hungry, muscling in

to claim

our places.

Lonely and shivering,

will this cold never end?

And the buffleheads spread

the surface, diving in an

unfathomable syncopation

to tickle the lake,

and I have to laugh

along the lines of this

musical score, unexpected

symphony welling up 

a gift response

to our exquisite thirst. 

Inspired by Makeshift, Laugh, Fidelity and Bold.

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The Interconnection of Being

At three, he’s aware of no

division, calling up the

buffleheads on my computer

for a close-up of tiny ducks

far out on the lake.  Not just black

and white, their iridescent heads

like poems to color.

He greets them, frustrated

by my inability

to establish

a FaceTime connection

with these cousins.

He has no armor,

open, empty

here to enjoy

the ride and I bail

furious and surreptitious,

dipping and throwing

discolored clouds of

beliefs as fast as they

bubble up on our way.

In the dark, we trace

the dim light

of constellations

resonating to a calling

heart songs

carrying us through

this living water.

Inspired by Empty, Armor, Division and Bail.  Photo credit: hhltmaine.org.

Fertile Soil

Deep in the territory of despair

I find a tiny grain

of hope-seed.

I pause in my diurnal practices

directing the flow of chi

before sitting in stillness.

Even this action of folding

the map away

is a heart-sight opening.

I have been amending

this very soil

where I’m rooted.

Last year’s skeletons crackling

white reminders

to plant differently.

Seeking manure

‘cause shit’s gotta change.

I am rotating

to nourish

what feeds us all.

Pulling out the old

beliefs in the separation,

tinder for the burnpile.

Going up in flames

along with the sketches

on the papers

indicating here be dragons.

I sow treasure

invisible and minuscule

in your eyes,

yet tickling a

necessary earthquake

we create this new terrene.

Inspired by Action, Treasure, Opening and Diurnal.

I Need A Miracle

I’m huddling in the last

days of winter and how

do people stay alive?

When that dark wind

sprays madness,

do they simply nestle

under comforters

slack-jawed and snoring?

I wheeze until I rise

long before the sun.

The sameness feels

like shame.

My ancestors spoke words

that had no meaning

to the people they slaughtered:

money, value, property,

own, discard.

Propelled by myths

of separation, we settled

and moved,

dispossessed

and greedy for everything

we can’t see

and can’t say.

We’ve put a price tag

on the gift and how can we

continue this interest-bearing?

Once we blamed the regal

heads of state, so made

a single alteration

in our wealth

driven by war

consuming

consumed

consumption

our progressive wasting

away

and tell me, please,

how do we stay

when we can’t take it

anymore, screaming

through the birth pains

coming of age.

 

Inspired by Regal, Alteration, and Spray

This New Story

I remember laughing

— so long ago and far away

from this sea of pain

we float in oily

separation on the surface.

We polish words like zenith

and nadir to allow smug

disdain to flavor

our perceptions.  As if

we’ve forgotten our connection,

that contemptible, lamentable

big toe

down in the despicable depths

of a different

less-than galaxy.  Not our kind.

Quite isolated and useless.

When we peer with

bleary eyes

from the binging,

will it occur to us to tune

in to the child

picking through piles

of discards

our hunger

inseparable?

Willing at last to be labeled

crazy

as we affirm

these crumbling foundations

lie.

Lunatics released

from the narrative of denial

of the negative space

which illuminates

our unity.

We’ll laugh later.

Now is the time for the cleanse

of searing tears

just before we welcome

everyone home.

Inspired by Occur, Zenith and  Tune

What’s At Stake

The practical mathematics we explore

look suspiciously like witchcraft.

Silver-locked grandmothers dancing

around the family tree

measuring with diametric

precision while praising

the infinite always get a

bad rap from the likes of Big

Pharma.  Unmedicated, noncompliant

so he can learn the burning

love triangle, child and parents,

the long chains of ancestors

as visible as smoke

I teach him to see.

We both devour these moments

fully present in the is-ness

emerging

to be seen and celebrated

in the fullness we give each

other in these flames.

Inspired by:  Chain, Diametric, Infinite and Devour.

Thread and Thrum

We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

I’m ecstatic at his arrival

flinging wide the door

dancing as I peer into the car.

Released from the restraints

of his carseat, he is running

to leap into my arms — all 35 pounds of

sturdy love, a kiss, a fierce hug,

I missed you too, he sings.

It’s been two days

since he last flourished

under my watchful eyes.

Today we tuck a geode

into a secret pocket, a rock

in a heart pillow,

very much alive, receptive

to the waves of love

we conjure to bless

the ducks, the kissed trees,

the leaves swirling through

the celebrated breeze.

I guess later in his life

he might look back

and see how weird

his witchy grandmother can be,

but right now we are creating

a new world of mutuality

weaving these sacred

bonds alive together.

 

Inspired by: Ecstatic, Rock, Watchful and Guess.