IT IS A SEASON FOR STRANGE DREAMS
It is a season for strange dreams:
The white elk who crashed through
the front window and stood staring
with pale blue eyes before dissolving
out the back door. The child
who offered to give me his tricycle
for my daily commute. The president-
elect as an audiologist who cleaned
the wax from my ears and loaned me
his denim coat because I said I was cold.
april 28 prompt
You have been sent to apologize to a foreign power on behalf of our government.
Do it in a limerick.
(Except I cheated and wrote it nearly a week ago while walking in the woods and when I drew another one, I put it back because I wanted this one today since I have to go to an all-day Tai Chi workshop again and call my mother’s old friend in Norway first.)
TO THE WORLD IN GENERAL:
AT LEAST WE’RE MODERATELY ENTERTAINING.
Here in this country called US
The system is all in a muss.
The rich guys control it,
Politicians extol it,
‘cept Bernie, who’s making a fuss.
Our fabric is woven so tight and fine,
garments stitched up with pride—
gunbelts and helmets and gold—
We have the combinations,
watches, buttons, colored shoes.
This hat will keep you safe.
This cloak will end your pain.
See us in parade, wearing
mirrors of our own devising.
But where is the little child?
Around the next corner
on the street of clowns?
Down by the river
where improbable ducks dive
below the ice to feed?
Beneath your coat,
under your itchy skin?
Somewhere in your throat
they’ve worked so hard to close?
How much it is like death
to hear your fear exposed.
BERNIE’S ALL-STAR KAZOO BAND
~July 4, 2015
Ask anyone who knows me–
I am not famous for waving the flag.
But this year, on the Fourth,
marching down Main St., USA
with a band of friends,
reflecting many cheers,
deflecting some silences,
absorbing a single obscenity,
passing under the big Old Glory
hanging above the street
as we played “This Land is Your Land”—
well, for once I thought,
just maybe it is.
THE HOLY SEED
Isaiah 6: 9-13
I am listening over and over,
and looking. Still I do not comprehend.
How long? How long? I have no country here.
Vast the emptiness in the midst of the land.
Snow clings to everything. But for the wind
the forest could be a Christmas card.
Jays and chickadees crack sunflower seeds;
the cat in the window watches the birds.
Hew and burn and the stump remains standing.
What is required to open closed eyes?
Under the whiteness and wildness of winter,
garbage and excrement, treachery, lies.
Turn and be healed. Turn and be healed. Turn and
be healed. Turn and be healed. Turn and be healed.
December 10, 2014
. . . you, beloved, are not in darkness..
for you are all children of light and children of the day…
So then let us not fall asleep as others do, but let us keep awake…
~I Thessalonians 5:4-6
Stories grow in the night
like flames reaching upward.
I am old and small and dry,
but the seanchaí says that
I shall bear a child.
The white flower bloomed
after the frost when every
other thing was dead. I could
smell its perfume in the dark.
Under my father’s hospital gown,
the work clothes he was wearing
all along. Where does the good
news begin? Why is every
one so afraid? I know of an orchard
overgrown with thorns. Yellow
birds nest in the broken trees
and deer come at twilight to feast
on fallen fruit. Once upon a time
my grandmothers flew
into my kitchen as I measured
cinnamon into the dough. My hands
are not my own. All those black
men shot are my sons; their mothers
cry my sisters’ tears. The raven I moved
to the side of the road arose
and circled my head three times.
Only some of these things are dreams.
December 8, 2014