THE ROOMS OF NIGHT

9A3B849B-A6CA-43C5-8E7A-C6F0F31F80A6I walk through the rooms of night
and arrive at a dawn clipped
with forgetfulness

With moons and death
in my pockets
and full of winter shred

I notice my bare feet are numb
and without purpose

Yet my tracks in the snow
mark my path from somewhere

And though it feels cold
a trickle of blood melts into
the stark white
evidencing its warmth
convinced it is life

Some big heart must be leaking.

I’ve even forgotten the premise
of yesterday’s grand feast

And tomorrow is so far away
I cannot even feign to paint hope
on my eyelids
scarred from memory’s frost

Why can’t I find today?

Did they even put one on
or have they too forgotten?

Have I misplaced it
or did the storm steal it away?

No matter, the time has come
to empty my pockets
and join the ranks
of the zombie parade

To have succumbed, finally, not
to some bold virus,
but to the utter
mundane

Not having a mirror, I cannot see
but if I were to guess the shape of my eyes
the left would be nowhere
and the right would be an empty cup

Have I misplaced them
or did some sly storm steal them away?

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That Tide Your Heartbeat

e7b97da6-241e-4aad-87a1-81c7107decbdRemember when you doubted?

Back in the season of smallness
when the Big Trust
was a secret password
known only to the society of saints?

Remember when your narrow
Image looked back at you
from the Distorted Mirror of your tiny house?

And when you smashed that mirror
with a mountain heart
and used the shards to carve an Image in the sands of time
that even the Mighty Ocean could barely contain

the sun and moon
became your peers,
the tide your heartbeat.

And now—
now you dance
sometimes as the shoreline
sometimes as the sea
sometimes as the raindrops
on granite peaks

inhaling hardness
exhaling softness

with starlight falling
through your finger tips
and whole galaxies underfoot.

The Flashes Buried Here

2CC49FE5-E6ED-44F1-B17A-E0D70ED16A01There are flashes buried here
in the hot sand of this poem

Some are mirages
others are mirrors

Who put them there
is not for us to know

Some say it’s not a place
for people to dwell

but sometimes you must
cross the desert
to find your freedom sunrise

even though it’s been shining through that
ache within an ache
the whole time

If the rabbit has it
and the sagebrush is lush
and the moon shower
brings the cactus flower

you have no right
to just lie down
and bury your feet

What if the cactus
abandoned the moon
before it’s bloom had bloomed?

How would the bat makes his way?

So keep walking
Keep drinking in what feeds you
Keep gathering the shimmerings

buried beneath your feet

Some are mirages
some are mirrors
and some are red-hot miracles
awaiting the eye of your heart

The Down and Up of It

descentBetween the building up
and tearing down
there’s a canyon thin
as laurel leaf
wide as Turtle Island

I used to flail in the gorge
nearly drowning in dark waters
cracking my pretty head on rocks
collecting bruises like bees gather pollen

Then I learned to leap across
or build a skinny bridge–
a fast but dishonest way

So I relinquished shortcuts
and learned the down and up of it
and joined the ancient apprenticeship
of descent and ascent

hopping boulders like some
drunken wizard of the mountain
jackrabbit of all shades, master of sun

I’ve lost track of how many times
a day I carry water between
my letting go and claiming–
thirsty in equal measures

But sit here satiated on lichened stone
walking between the horizons
of all my risings and settings

The puddle’s muddy,
and sometimes the muddle’s puddy,
but the surface is a mirror
that doesn’t lie, reflecting

a sun that’s ripe for plucking
like an unlikely winter plum
drifting like a scent in the wind
and a moon that’s always sliding out
from between her prison bars
ever flowing her unfolding

Seven Shadows and Eagle Worm

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The first of these
a shattered mirror
shard to shard
eyes of fear

The second of these
the noise forlorn
brought me to my knees,
my lord

The third of these
the lies reborn
from truth it flees
that awful morn

The fourth of these
a memory torn
the images retreat from
storied storm

The fifth of these
I couldn’t trust
it fled forever from my grasp

The sixth of these
a midnight scorn
a venom seethed
and deeply born

The final shadow
stopped me fast
I could not breathe
it was my last

and left me on the edge of things
until I found my roots and wings

what could save a shadowed man
but eagle worm with rainbowed hand?

Beautiful Commotion

lakeCan I be as still as this lake
mirroring the rising sun
the cloud parade
the stoic granite face
with a beard of pine
and water-streaked cheeks?

I try
but now, just as it is whispering,
“See all what you have together”
my skin heats up
along with the 1001 desires
of a world not content
merely to be still

the Great Stirring commences:

ducks splash
dragonflies buzz
the fat bird drinks
frogs plop
the Nutcracker croaks

and I, once a mirror of the mirror,
birth words on my tongue
and a longing in my muscles
to move and join
the beautiful commotion
and make my own ripple