Archive | February 2012

Migrant

You and I,
We see these
Different landscapes.
Feet firm on earth
Or branching predominance.

Still,
Whether through erosion
Or growth,
Or death —
There is change in both.

From below I watch
And wonder what calls.
And when.
And how.

Down here,
The frost
Turns discarded leaves
Into treasures.
How must these diamonds appear
From 30 feet
On the wing?

All these gems
Rolling beneath
As the sun shifts,
Making everything fluid again.
In every season,
It loves this pasttime,
Of turning the mundane
Into gemstones.

And this morning —
Bound in pain,
Solitude
And the weight of stones,
I wish to be this:
One sighted feather
Rising to join you
In flight,
Then falling,
Falling —
That in one
Span of years,
I might kiss them both,
Heaven and earth.

Grasp

It happens like this.
And,
As much as I’d like
To slow it
To stall it —
Suspend it in amber
Until there is time
For scrutiny —
It is always escaping
Like the treetops
That slip in and out
Of the fog.

The days wear on us,
And it is not the winter,
But the lack of it
That leaves me
Like the riverbank —
Gone soft at the edges
And missing solid ground.
Slip under a current
That should not be.

You’re doing it again,
She said.
I know.
You should not be here,
She said.
I know.

But it happens like this.
And I wish you were here
But hidden.
And I wish you here here.
And I wish you were not here.

The butcherbird traces circles
‘Round the hawthorne.
Someone calls from the fog,
But I can’t place his voice.

You chose these chains,
She said.
I know.
It is all wrong, wrong,
She said.
I know.

Still,
It happens like this.
Let me learn
To hold my tongue —
To embrace silence —
To hold my thought —
That this fog
Might encompass
What I will not confront.

See the water?
It rolls between
Thin ice edges,
Emerging from cattails
That whisper winter’s secrets.

Immersion —
So cold,
So tempting.
I can already feel it.
The ice edging my lungs.

You belong with us,
She said.
I know.
But still, you must wait,
She said.
I know.

And it happens like this.
Geese emerge in gray lines.
The harrier haunts the overgrown hedgerows.
Light grows and color reinforces itself daily.
It is a chaotic season,
And out in it,
I can’t tell anymore
If it is thawing
Or freezing.

Bound

I have complained
About bonds and chains —
But always,
Always,
I was lost in ether.

And so, my bones chose
That the lip service paid
To the search for roots
Both physical and non
Deserved a lesson
In what it meant
To be severed
And truly bound.

The obliteration of all
But pain,
And waiting for,
And staving off,
And locating,
And enduring,
And placating.

Through it all,
His song cut —
That cardinal on the branch
Outside the window
That hid my weeping.

Always before
I had longed for winter dreaming
Until I became a statue —
And stoic I watched
As the floodwaters
Of the changes we could no longer stop
Rose up
And eroded my foundations.

A fox,
Ragged in his end-of-winter coat,
Suffering unseen injury,
Stops there.
Wounded and wary,
Timid, hurt,
We face off on the trail.
And who will be first
To turn tail
And disappear in the fog?

These unanswered questions,
We must remember.
As we leap the season,
Hold onto these
Hard lessons.
And don’t forget
The time has come.
The time is always coming.
So,
Now,
Make it manifest.
And don’t forget.