Wild and Tame

My own image from Provincetown, MA 2015

Originally written in July of 2015.  Revised 2020.

My friend, the squirrel, sits at my feet.

I wonder perhaps should I be sitting at his.

He is tame

Unlike me.

I have peanuts for him.

He knows.

He is willing to wait

And teach me

All the lessons he knows

Of a heart

That is wild

Yet tame.

I marvel at all

That is contained

Within his tiny heart.

The joys of peanuts and sunflower seeds,

Being unafraid in the face of strangers,

And making friends so easily,

Of finding a home among things lush and green,

Knowing no fear to leap

Into things unknown.

Will he instruct me

In the ways to live once again

And move on?

Tell me to remove these rings

Linked to a grief buried beneath grey granite?

Can he share with me the lesson

Of what to do with all things circular,

New and old grief– link upon link of chain?

Teach me the ways of letting go?

The ways of living without fears

To staunch the bleeding of wounds

Both new and so very old?

Is this the meaning

Of being wild and tamed?

No Winning

No winning in this loosing.

Chunks of soil eroded,
Carried away by this freezing rain.

No artifice found in storm winds,
leaving an icy slush of blood
In the veins,

Or the heated words you
Coated with never melting ice.

The fire you set
Left forever unkindled.

How you must love your
Barren winter landscape,
A frozen revenge,
A frosty meaningless game.

A Tree in Winter

Getty Images vandervelden

My hope is
Different now,
Changed, evolved.
Once a verdant green
Of fresh, newborn spring.
Now evolved into this chilly thing–
Brown, dried husks,
A few barely clinging
To a tree in late autumn.
Seems something, someone
Sucked the hope out,
Fed on it as if it were life’s blood,
And I am left drained, a leftover hull
Of what once was. But I go on
As if all is the same and nothing
Is gone. A tree in winter,
Hoping enough green
Is left to grow, to live in spring.

Earth

Rend the earth again.

Tear, rip through miles of rock and soil

Till the swollen, rounded, glowing core

Of bubbling liquid lies exposed.

Note the flow,

Time the pulses of heat,

Beating with undulating life seen and unseen.

Then watch the viscous liquid cool,

Solidifying against the pain

Of each cold breath you expel,

Stilling the beat of life

Within her.

The transformation to cold, hard stone,

The breaking of her spirit,

She weeps stone tears

For us,

As thus,

Her mother’s heart is torn open.