“To dream of the universe is to know that we are small and brief as insects, born in a flash of rain and gone a moment later. We are delicate and our world is fragile.”
In June of 2019, I went with my family to New York City. (Remember when we could travel to other cities and visit museums?) While there, I spent a couple of hours in the American Museum of Natural History and found myself lingering in the Hall of Biodiversity which presents the abundance of life on earth and the factors that threaten it. …
A waning gibbous and rising sun
share the same sky,
warming light burnishes
leafless branches golden rose
lift toward heaven
still winter morning cold
the birds, quiet, landing and flying
leaning into backyard feeders
intent to sustain tiny heartbeats
a little while longer
and they will burst in full chorus
the maples tell us
with red flower buds,
formed in late summer,
swelling along thin winter arms
upturned in supplication
the sap within
in these sun shining
been running sweet rivers
in woody vessels
up and down
into hopeful buckets
these first gifts of…
I traveled west above clouds to see you,
toward the amaranthine glow of sunset.
Below, a dry February palate
of browns and blacks, vast earthy body
unfolding curves and bumps, scored by
the texture of ant-like enterprise
sparkling moments in low sunlight.
Landed in full night, amidst dark mountains.
Collected and dropped with my bag
at the constellation of tiny lights
around your welcoming front gate
your laughing smile brought me in,
telescoping me into your world filled
with the generous beauty of full presence.
We wore out the night with talking.
Alone in the quiet dark of morning, I…
A dove gray dawn morning rush
on dirty salt slush road
I see in each passing car
a bundled driver,
with a sky-matched face
bare or mittened fingers,
holding the wheel, eyes
fixed, as they should be
and maybe, inside, they think
of work ahead or last night’s
argument, the weekend’s plans,
a beloved face, or a dream,
maybe listening to news,
or silent, focused.
I am in my own car drawing a map in my head a road that may take a turn from this place, not this place, but a circumstance the way to choose a different sort…
The way the slender tips
of the maple branches curve upward,
red in the early morning sun
of late February.
The pottery mug that fits
perfectly in my hands
and radiates the warmth of what it holds.
How the hands of another
brought forth that cup
out of shapeless, earthen clay
and created something
beautiful and useful.
How you can be walking a forest path with beloved friends and, as you look down, in the center of a patch of bright, sunlit snow the delicate and spotted feather of a downy woodpecker can be found and then carried…
As a child, I lived in many houses, twelve in seventeen years.
I was accustomed to turmoil, chaos and reorder,
the rhythm of packing, carrying, unpacking
all of my winnowed things.
I am ever drawn toward containers:
painted boxes, baskets, bowls, empty shells and fossils
all with the capacity to hold
beloved things, soft bodies and time.
In college, a friend gave me a small wicker case with handles.
I carefully placed treasures in there, artifacts from my life,
a collection of talismans I could carry easily,
unpack in any hospitable space.
Name it “home.”
Many times I have held…
Bright flame, burning wick,
the warm beeswax carried by
paper lotus boat,
floats out, may shine dark water,
a short life, fades in distance . . .
Thank you for reading this little poem. Writers offer their work into the world and never really know where it settles. Historically, if we were good at what we did and also a bit lucky, the work would be printed, bound and distributed. This may still happen to some, but many writers now publish and are published in online forms, like Medium. There is a great freedom here and I am grateful for…