Saturday, May 25, 2013

These Three and Me

Within the morning dove’s lament
across the line of sky where time stops,
in the bend to light of tulip face,
I feel embrace of love
not stab or wounded wide
in cry, no,
at peace from misery’s last sigh
and hallowed by the places it has been.

A mother's grace of smile to child
in open arms now warmth displays to little me,
so fragile strong in run across the lawn of time
to grasp her skirt again
and feel some safety there at last from past.

And father young and captured in
the sandy beaches of my heart, still ebbs, is gone
yet flows to teach the steps to take past fear
with open arms the beacon, into the depth so lit,
to experience beyond the fear, the joy.

Even winter with love just broken
and child by death newly taken from me,
I knew the white light around the place,
this corner of grace was where to go
to hold myself within my arms
and know even past my sight
that everything would be all right.

And so those three with some of me
have stayed
in places they knew not,
to break the chain that held me tight
so I could fly
within the mourning dove’s lament
across the line of sky where time stops
to meet them once again.
5-26-02 (In memory of my mother, Marian; my father, Vincent, and my daughter, Michelle)

Sunday, May 12, 2013

From the Bathroom Window

The old hose ran through it like a river
creasing the meadow grass of the back back yard
blooming wheat weed like last year’s candles
and a butterfly took root on the smallest pale flower
weaving light into the movement of air.

I am little and climb on the clothes hamper
to see the acacia tree
for it is spring from the bathroom window
and the yellow is like a smudge of joy
caught within the plum’s prolific fragrance  
and I clamor for the time of bare feet.

Flutter flap the sheets are sunning
and mother is a flowered skirt that twirls
although I don’t think she did really
except only in my gypsy feelings from this high place
looking down on her arms bare then and brown
a clothespin in her teeth and the wind her sail.

Was safely far upstairs hanging out there
as if I could see secrets
little dart of blond brother grim with starched legs
and some old dusty car with running board
posing there on the oil slick of the driveway.

It is so like a photo
what I've captured here in mind
from perhaps a Sunday of a long ago April
where the creak of the porch swing
the steady rhythm of it like time itself
is following me or has stopped long enough
for the click of the shutter.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

For My Mother


She left her mark within my cheekbones
as sure as summer her shape is mine
I even think within the lining
of my heart she left her sign

The shaded place of back yard peace
like open book is where she stays
sometimes she is in the humming
of mourning dove upon her grave

I see the skirt of many colors
circle round her sun tanned legs
I see her reach across the chasm
place four leaf clovers on the page

So fragile is the lip of time
that death has left upon my heart
in the evening dwells the perfumed
evening breeze her fragrance’s part

Gather round her all the wild flowers
oceans place her in their fold
captured are the star night feathers
that fall upon her heavenly stroll

I see her in my mirror smiling
she shades her eyes within my own
and in the sand of summer’s footprints
she is not walking all alone

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Dawn Comes Dog Day Wars to Evening Peace Rightly

Quiet the morning takes the birds to sing
and strings the leaves a fallen
in sound of autumn’s approach and more
the cool is coming through some door
within the sky a change

Walking the Precious sniff-a-long good leash
along the path so often ours  
another sound tore the air with sudden rip of fabric
unto the fur and gentle ankle bare it gnashed
a surprising growl and teeth attack

A dog with black lip curled back
leashed to terrible
the back gate come loose
in ripe voice of rage it screamed
at us a peaceful walking

Avocado torn in mock toss of thought
too smashed and gone the green away
into the angry gravel I cannot throw
or find a weapon save in me
though in fear I hear the crunch
of teeth and slash to air
I cry my louder thunder

Hold the safety breast-side carry
not torn oh wag come shelter
like some wild woolly alpha song
I hear the heart a pound then kick
and see how I am strong

Dog follows us with a lonesome war
my back I turn and growl me too
I’m holding reverent good I say
along the alley home don’t dare
disturb the place where we abide

Come afternoon
the very same of day
a tarrying with some friends
with a gracious lick and saunter
came another smile so gentle dog to yard
with playful good that even the Precious-good-leash
came from off her doubt and gave good chase

and the sky came dark though lit in me
was the warm again to good-sleep