The Friction of Salt

 

woman at sea

Image from Shutterstock

 

Pieces of her broke in the waves,
Searching for wildness
In this place she always went to be alone.
She walked along this shore a thousand times
In the dawn and the dusk
As if they were quantities unknown,
And thus, in them, she could discover some truth,
Some faith, some charity, some hope for herself.
Who knew? It had worked before.
She’d walk toward the town with something—
Some small bit piece replenished.

Besides–
She’d always heard salt was healing,
So she figured she’d rub it in her wounds.
But bloody red and raw
She walks still wounded, broken,
Along the wildness,
Yet not touching it.
Freedom elusive.
She can not find what she lost.
Her wounds chains,
Binding her still
To things she knew illusions.
She waits for the friction of salt
To rub away the chains.
She walks toward the seals in the surf
And on toward the whales in the deep,
Searching for truth or faith or charity
In the wildness of the sea.

 

The White Ones

I wanted to run among the wild ones.
Live with them among the mountains.
Rub muzzle against muzzle.
Eat sweet grasses.
Enjoy golden warmth upon my back.
Let my soul and spirit rest
Among the trees with the wild ones.
But it was not to be.
My heart could not slow enough
To contain their peace.

And so, I sought the white ones at the sea.
They crashed about restlessly.
Truly wild they were, as they raced continually.
Their cacophonous pacing furious, relentless.
Yes, these wild white stormy ones were in keeping
With my heart, a raging irregular and brutal pace.

The Mechanics of Flight

magnificent-hummingbird-costa-rica-flying-40067390

Image from Dreamtime.com

 

The science of flight
Broken, stripped down
Into the realism of words.
The dryness of what happens:
Lift and torque,
Drag and propulsion—
All things the ancients
Dreamed of mastering.

And so, we moderns have:
The smallest of Cessna,
The most enormous Airbuses,
The cavernous military transports,
Such technology and science
To destroy the magic.

Until watering the garden
On a summer evening
And turning to see
A tiny green hummingbird
Stick out his chest in pride
At having mastered
Standing still
While flying.

The Moon and Narcissus

narcity.com

Through wisps of thin streaming clouds,
The last full moon of the decade
Looked down on me and seemed to nod.
Why? I’m not sure.
I thought and tried to puzzle it out.
The decade? Perhaps.
Did this last full moon wish me
To think about this decade?

What ten years can bring:
A wife battling ovarian cancer
For her life and loosing;
Loosing myself along the way
And finding me and loosing me
All over again; A profession left in disgust
For the pleasure of retirement;
A daughter nearly lost and then regained.
Talk about water swirling slowly down the drain.
But it swirls no longer. The ground leveled.
The tub fills. I have finally grown into my skin.

I look to the moon again and she seems to nod
Once more. From somewhere, I smell a faint
Scent of narcissus. Yes, it would be easy.
Play the fool once more and return to that place,
find beauty and comfort In blue skies
And soft grasses by mountain lake,
Breathing in the sweet narcissus scent,
Pretending for a little while
That everything offered was true.
But brimstone to my soul would it be.
Leave the blue skies, the soft grasses, the mountain lake,
The scent of narcissus behind.
This I must do or my soul I would lose.

Every Thing

Changed, evolved.

Everything

Used to be a verdant green

Of fresh, newborn spring.

Evolved into a chilly thing,

Brown, dried husks,

A few barely clinging

To a tree in late autumn,

Early winter.

Seems something, someone

Sucked the hope out,

Fed on it as if it were life’s blood,

And everything is drained, a leftover hull

Of what once was.  But everything goes on.

As if all is the same and nothing

Is gone.

Washed

ptownchamber.com

At sunrise over water,
Remembering a dream
Of finding ecstasy
Within tears,
Things neither given
Nor felt in years,
Linked by all the fears
To form decades of a life
Lived like a stranger
In my own skin.

I have stood
Since the dawn
At this ocean’s edge
Waiting, waiting.
And now at noon
The rain begins.
Fierce pelting blows
Washing me clean
Of all I know
Or dare to dream.

For living continues
Within my own skin

Autumn

If only these colored leaves
Of red and gold and orange
Could be caught,
Snatched gently
By careful hands
To be savored, arranged
Somehow preserved,
Rather than fall, lifeless
Torn from their limbs
By careless winds,
Shoved to the ground
With murderous violence
To be trampled and ground to dust
Or raked and bagged for trash
Or better yet,
If only these colored leaves
Of gold and red and orange–
Could stay filled with life
And be always green.

The Passing of Summer

 The wind and rain stopped by last night,
 Had a few minor temper tantrums outside
 As I stood watching from the door.
 They slapped the trees limbs around a bit
 And kicked at bits of loose trash in the street.
 Nothing more violent than that.
  
 No pushing down trees.
 No pummeling hail.
 Rather calm for a storm.
 Yet it killed the heat of summer,
 Murdering it without a hint of passion
 And ushering in a cold windy day 
 To begin the fall to winter.
  
 At dawn,
 I stand here,
 Warming myself 
 With this cup of coffee,
 Mourning a summer
 That passed without passion.
   

Red Heart Cedar

This red heart cedar stump,
With its dark crevasses
And holes where bugs had homes,
Was sanded smooth.
A urethane finish added for shine
And protection.
The rings are visible still,
Rings that count the years
Until the tree fell in a storm,
Twisted from the earth
By tornadic winds.

Thus, I found it
In the yard.
Took the chain saw to the tree,
Cut it into chunks,
Along with the others that fell
That day while the dog and I
Sought shelter from the storm.

Now I sand and chisel away.
Routing out some hearts concave,
Bowls to be used for filling
At some future date,
Now standing empty.
Sanding some hearts level,
Tables to be used for holding things,
Yet these are empty too.

All this red heart cedar,
Once stood filled with life,
Now stands empty.