End of the Road (2002)
Neither expected nor sought, truth arrives.
One phrase, a minute turn of the
wrist, and the beginning reverses itself, becomes
vessel versus point, illuminating
the reach: one sign, two paths. The agave.
How far we’ve come to affect this place.
Last season the flowers were gray and we knew nothing.
Even the stones quivered with laughter.
And then it rained. And the creeks rose, and the bedrock
appeared as if to say your efforts lack
substance. Look underfoot. There lies the truth.
Neither expected nor sought, it arrives.
“End of the Road” last appeared here in April 2017.
My poems “Scarecrow Ascends,” “Before We Knew,” and “A Step Closer” have been published at Sleet Magazine. I am grateful to editor Susan Solomon for taking these poems.
Another untitled poem from the 80s…
wood and water
the wave of
fragrance so perfect
we seek to
obtain it as
if we could
be windows open
to a light
the gentlest cloud
would obscure still
spreading like one’s
final exhalation which
travels only to
disperse and become
at last another’s
This first appeared here in June 2017.
My poem, “Bone Music,” which originally appeared in Gossamer: An Anthology of Contemporary World Poetry, published by Kindle Magazine in Kolkata, India, has been reprinted on Vita Brevis.
I am grateful to editor Brian Geiger for offering a second home to this poem.
Right on left, or returned
what circles back, unbroken
Your mouth centers me.
Diminished, I rise, listening.
Grass rubbing against grass.
The lizard’s scarlet throat, swelling.
Not refusal, but denial.
Eyes the color of blood.
You practice your words carefully,
repeating each special phrase.
Blood the color of sky.
Sky the color of eyes.
And always the warm shade.
Thunderstorm Below the Mountain
Lacking humility, I take without thinking.
How far we’ve come, to look below for
lightning, the valleys shaken
with thunder, answers
like pebbles flung outward,
each to its own arc, separate
yet of one source, shaded into the question.
Is it for the scarcity of reach,
the reverse view through the bamboo rings
well out of sight, that
breath in the wave’s tuck or
smoke mingling with the clouds
and figures collecting salt,
that I edge myself closer, again,
to this place? To be nothing
presumes presence in absence.
Lacking humility, I accept without thinking.
“Thunderstorm Below the Mountain” first appeared here in March 2016.
What overwhelms is the fate
of our breath
moving from one mouth
to the other, a form of
denial flickering by
like the hummingbird,
impossible in flight
but moving despite our logic.
claims no intention. It waits,
and waiting, gives itself to us.
The gift we accept is of ourselves.
“Hummingbird (4)” was written in the 80s, and first appeared here in July 2015.