24 Jul 2016

The Running

See him on his way
and ask, where to tonight?
Take a murmur, take a smile and watch
the river move on—first in anxious trickle,
pacing before the long,    smooth    flow.

Man in the valley feels a warm wind
on breezeless, cool days that send him back,
first mind in daydream before body in sleepwalk,
the weak following the weaker.
Man in the valley is deepened by his host,
knows his place there, before which the crude path
that strays and leads astray.
For all the sense of home, every visit finds him at loss,
memory sparse, dotted along the way
or gone, gone, taken by the thicket.

Blame the mind, this mindand not the molecule.
The ritual is of a pilgrim
without a god. He carves these channels
with drops all counted out—listen, you can
hear them—ticking softly
in gentle rhythm, clock of the poor:
the sound is wish minus means.

Just as before, gliding
down and around, he sinks on,
down into the sea.
Roll, run as blue suns do.
Shimmer, glow and burn out
until the next comes along.

What Reaches

Keep among us, will you? Stand here
where these hands that reach from every side pull,
pull you away as something lurks beneath, looking to lunge.
There are no answers, no words, nothing
but another grasp—just another
silence, only separated by breath
captured in cold air.

The road only goes on. Bridges welcome gaps, and soon
buildings begin to fall, their stone returned
to frame these fields, give teeth to hills.
It opens up only as it should do—as it pleases,
at length, cadenced in coarse song.

We begin to see,
like that axe the poet mentioned breaking
down the wall, tearing open a gap
to let light pour in.

Then:
brother, here's that lake.
Its edge seems to expand
up and out the valley,
drowning us gently after all
but the final few words are shared,
before night commands silence, more silence.
The weary can only obey.

See the sun off, shedding cobalt
veils over a sky still moving,
and yes, the reshaped clouds chase new prospects
as if in soft reminder. Just stay
until the golden wake, stay
and keep watch until the warmth returns,
warmth resting in oblivious wait

—for the coming of that restless
blind hunter we always speak of,
owning a thousand and one speculations
and people we used to know.

20 Jul 2016

J.

You left this strange cold
before I entered. Voiceless,
you taught me silence, a stillness
children seldom feel.