The Song of Cardinals

Image courtesy of Will’s Company
An early morning, dogs walked,

Time to sit. Read the news.
Enjoy a cup of coffee and listen to the birds sing.

A twenty-two year old woman falls into a coma,
dying later at the hospital.
The police say she suffered a heart attack,
claiming their goal was educational only—
to teach her the proper way to wear hijab.

Now in Iran, women
bravely cut their hair and burn their hijabs
in protest of Mahsa Amini’s death.

I listen to the songs of cardinals
as they come to peck at the seeds from feeders
swinging from tall shepard hooks in my neighbor’s yard.

My hands shake as I lift my coffee cup to my lips.
No power. My hands hold no power. My body holds no power.
No power to help the women of Iran. No power to protect them
from the brutality of the “Morality Police.”

I can not help but think of my own daughter of twenty three,
only a year older, just a year.
A moment of gratitude for her life,
For a moment, a sense of relief
that here in the U.S we have no “Morality Police”
Or “sharia” law— for my daughter’s sake….

But the moment of relief drifts away
on the song the cardinals sing—
We live in the state of Texas,
Which now holds dominion over her body.

My hands shake
Powerless at the moment
Only at the moment.
Power rises as does anger.

The state, the nation, the world counted on fear to make us powerless.
Yet now, injustices kindle the flame of power within us
And nothing can stand against us once we unite.

The Promise of a Nation


Photo by
@caldwellkelsie

Anger paralyzes,

I search for words—

Pour what I feel

Into them—

But my anger

Melts them,

Turns them molten metal,

Defiant to the forms,

The constraints,

The molds I attempt

To use to shape

This gob of white hot liquid metal

Into meaning

For feelings

Overwhelming me.



Paralysis crushing,

Submission—

It is what they want—

Make us heavy once again

With chains and shackles,

Place and close the Master’s padlock,

A designation of second class,

Something much less than they,

Round our necks once more,

Making of us an example,

So others live in fear

Of what they come for next

And so acquiesce—

Staying silent, eyes lowered,

Hoping to escape notice

By allowing them to feel smug and safe.



My anger burns bright white stripes,

Others will not die bleeding the red.

Remember the stars provide the light

Of what we know is right.

We will not live on our knees

Or on our backs, being beggars

For shredded scraps

Of what is the promise of our nation.



No Lexicon

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

There exists no lexicon

For the echoes of emptiness here–

Where the azaleas bloom

Purple, pink, and white,

While dusty looking

Lavender sends up

Multiple spikes,

As roses yield up

Open, thirsting mouths

To the sky.

Though the soil here

Nourishes color and green

Growing things,

While life appears

Apparently abundant,

Although neighbors smile and wave,

The soil remains absent of truth, of meaning,

Of love—of a spirit—of a soul.

No lexicon exists for the emptiness

Echoing throughout the soil

In this place.

 

Spring Melting

image courtesy of southernexposure.com

Spring threatens to melt into us. 
Summer follows soon enough.

Birds will return, seeking seeds and worms,
Building nests for the young to come.
Will the birds remember the songs they sing?
Songs of summer, songs to mate?

Flowers will emerge, warming their petals 
And leaves under a brilliant sun.
Will they remember how to open
Their blossoms?
Will they remember how to dress themselves
In glorious color?

How can the birds or flowers remember
When the world walks a tightrope
Over the abyss
And sunflowers may never grow again
Tall enough to bow their heavy heads to God?

A Cave We Build

Photo by Erika Osberg on Unsplash

https://sammiscribbles.wordpress.com/category/weekend-writing-prompt/

Close the blinds 
against the grey light.
Prepare a cave for the soul 
in cold January
as the wind rages.
Contemplation, prayer
like John of Patmos?
This cave
readied, awaits
the apocalypse
devils wish.

Lilith’s Daughters

image courtesy of lilithandlavender.com

https://godoggocafe.com/2021/09/21/tuesday-writing-prompt-challenge-tuesday-september-21-2021/

The daughters of Lilith condemned
To chance a gory laden death once again,
All the while, standing vilified as they
Who wear the mantle of Lilith’s power have always been.

Tomorrow and all tomorrows after,
The daughters of Lilith will rise 
With the glory and power of their mother,
Breaking the chains men make
Seeking to steal the power of Lilith residing in her daughters
Thus, breaking their spirits to subservient acquiesce.

But each of Lilith’s daughters will remind
Such fearful little men
Their mother was made before Eve
And fashioned of the earth as well.

Beauty of His Work

Image is my own

High in the air,

Buffeted by the strong winds,

Yet navigating the narrow beam

With a grace and strength of Baryshnikov 

Or the great Nureyev

As I, his audience awed by his performance,

Stood and watched,

Wondering if everyone who looked

Could see this man’s artful grace

As he seemed to defy all laws of gravity,

Bending to hammer,

Leaping to rise,

Prancing to walk.

 

Then bending once again,

Hammering, rising, walking.

Never thrown off balance

By the winds or heavy hammer

Or the weighty leather tool belt,

Carrying the long nails off to the side.

 

Who else saw the grace and strength

In the rhythm of the dance

This man did perform

In the building of that house—

A dance that held something,

Some paternal element of David

As he danced entering Jerusalem—

 

How many would see the beauty in the performance of his work?

How many would only see a Hispanic male and question his legal status?

 

The Wayward: The Tale of Peace, Love, and Charity

Such wayward children were Peace and Love that their mother, Charity, put them to bed supper less every night for many years. But Charity, you see, had been microchipped by Reverend Serpent Woman, who made the ground holy where she walked and planned to destroy Charity and her children.  For she believed them enemies of the true Christian state, and thus, abominations.  However, Reverend Serpent Woman needed money and appealed to viewers’ righteousness, using the 1-800-LET-EM-STARVE campaign.

The Second Commandment

image courtesy of daily verses
https://sammiscribbles.wordpress.com/2020/10/10/weekend-writing-prompt-178-asinine/

I take the truth

for it is mine,

rolling myself in it until

protected from the acid of the asinine

that drips from the pens, the tongues

of many and power,

of those we call elite,

of those we once called—

friends.

 

I grieve the words spoken

by asinine tongues

and actions taken

by hate filled hearts

that do not comprehend the words

we were taught—

“love your neighbor as yourself”—

The second commandment.

 

We Didn’t Care

Image courtesy of VectorStock

Dreams came,

Dancing for a time

While arrogance grew.

We were better, best–

With nothing left to prove

Glorious above any others–

God’s chosen led by the chosen one,

Or so they claimed  

While people died in the streets.

We turned our fingers orange with Cheeto dust,

Stuffing our mouths,

And didn’t care who died.

It was all for our entertainment, anyway.

We watched democracy die

With Lady Liberty and Justice

Beaten bloody in the streets.

But hey, Walmart had toilet paper and Doritos–

And that’s what really mattered.

We screamed about white, black, blue

Red, and all the rainbow colors

Until our screams and colors bled

Into midnight blackness

Then the lights went out

When God’s Grace got up and left.