08 February 2010

birch and grasses alone on the snow, grey sky indistinguishable. the flat world falls into the edge of time, lifeless, dull wedge of horizon and soundless quiet, not only forgotten but unremembered in the silence, absent where we hope some time will pass without cold, without remembering how lost the time was, lost and alone on the pine needles, the falling leaf floating, buffeted, falling in the wind the time the graceful fall, the wondering if time ever changes, if time lies still on a blanket of snow, tracks barely press or imprint, tracks or the sound of your voice calling across the time, and when I hear the call calling I reach and almost forget to look or remember or hold and we fall, fall deep into the time where your eyes look past shadows, past the tree silhouettes, the birch bark close to the snow, falling and silent in time stretched out, forgotten in the loss of time, the only memory of time and still we wait, hovering above time like you remember. and all this time we wait, the hills and trees fall and fade and all time forgets. and still you come back, you and the memory of walking, falling, rolling in time, and now is what we know, this ever present beginning of time, chance, forgetting. as if each one, each look a miracle of this small sense echoing across the sky, the undissolved border a boundary that brings you into time, this moment’s light a forgiveness that isn’t needed, a voice you almost hear and push against the way we call when each small thing is alive like a rock, forged in time. wait

06 November 2009

Fall through the sky

frost begins to heave clods Hail Mary, full of grace
bank grey sky the Lord is with thee
shrouds cut corn stalks and drizzle blessed art thou among women
confounds the rest and blessed is the fruit of thy womb,

Cows, you say Jesus. Holy Mary
breath clouds in black-nailed mother of God, pray for us sinners
stub-fingered styrofoam cup now and at the hour of our death
need milking Amen.

29 May 2009

or blue. Cottonwood dust floats up and a breeze, a spring one, greens my smell and falls me down. No time like this to remember that time dulls me old, blunt green against the blue, no memory of anything but this, a soon-gone touch just wanting your lips to brush my touch, a riffle as pine, oak, and aspen pull earth to eye as birds light on trembled limbs. but hold this breath

23 April 2009

in spring, in life, arugula, beets, children. Always life, always growing, inexorable life we want to nurture and cherish, hold its tendrils and lips and small breath still. Pollinators, flying to flowers, carrying, dripping, trails of pollen. Always we think about life, the heave and sway of life beginning, growing, words I hear when we talk about the holy the sacred the unknown, the certainty that beyond this skin another life breathes. Yet yet yet we resist the pull of life, the full sun meadow humming with birds and breezes, swirling smells and heat thick against each sense, every touch another assurance that this life is no other. My science my God my doubt and my faith fall beside the bee-rich prairie on a morning in June. To lie forgotten.
If we ask this question staring into the infinity of night stretched across the sky when the air smells sweet we know mercy, and plum blossoms, coax this last urge past our last questions, as still air holds each cupped hand, soft cheek, lips next to mouths and words and your love keeps pulling me into the clarity of utter connected sacred indivisible whole life, this life which is mine is yours, the agreed upon edges have no meaning in the dark, and we puff small breaths against new tender life, call it miracle, life, holy God. And we dance, glorious,

03 April 2009

and if it's just this once, the turn or bend of each petal tapers toward nothing, into a fine emptiness framed by memory, a moment – of one thing or another, a time to decide if each moment is the time you consider how perfect it is in the infinity of choice but if we suffocate because our choices stifle our thinking then why do we try so hard to make memories of moments that shiver with perfection even when my still thoughts entwine this budding tree and witness the slow burst of god-science expressed in time
as time too forgets its own immensity in this plum blossom intoxication. Keep me riveted and alert each spring as winter falls and the hush of mud damps my nose, breathes me alive,

25 February 2009

This time it's a question. As we attempt to be unique and different and push the boundaries of our disciplines, we're still part of time and being who we are in time, and I wonder if it makes more sense to try to become myself rather than someone unique. I've watched you and I don't know if your professional life is all you need. It seems that our need to have friends pushes us further than our accomplishments, but we stay in a close circle and rarely stray.

The idea of becoming myself seems a weak effort to diminish the inevitable and sad fact of our essential aloneness, even though it's mitigated by marriage and hobbies and real passions for whatever it is we care about - we're still standing by the bus stop in old age, bewildered by the immensity of it all, wondering if anyone noticed.

13 February 2009

one day nothing changes. that's all that happens and it changes you because you see for the first time how extraordinary your life is, how every breath in and exhalation should be nothing but praise for the wind and the rain that falls evenly on us all, soaking us eventually through thick wool sweaters that generate heat the longer they're worn, and the pillow in our bed carries still your smell and a few long hairs curl right next to the indentation that marks how perfectly your head rested here, where I now stand almost numb, frozen almost with grief, wondering if standing here will dissolve the time we spent doing nothing.

02 February 2009

and again. every year we close the cottage on a day that reminds us why we close the cottage. grey raw wind and old shutters splintered, worn at the edges, beaten some years with hammers to make them fit into sagging porch window frames, still settling after seven decades. an urge to walk along the beach once more, bundled though, so cold since the last late September Indian summer day with stillness and warmth pulsing through the water, now stormed over, sleet destroying warmth, hoods, jackets, rain shuddering heaves and time passes and seasons tumble before the next. we'd rake leaves, too, into the cement island in the center of the yard, where in summer we'd open the big shade umbrella and drink cold Canadian beer but come fall we put the table, chairs, and every piece of outdoor furniture indoors on the hope of summer, and we burnt leaves and dampness smoldered in the pile until a small flame cringed a leaf into a curl of clear flame with no smoke no memory, no trace that it grew at all.

we played bocce after dinner, watching my dad with his one good arm and short temper caress a ball with a backspin arcing high through the mosquito-rich early evening, still sunlight but softly fading toward dusk and darkness, and in time we'd flip the heavy switch and two outdoor 500 watt floodlights prolonged the thud of heavy balls on grass, the clink in humid air of bocce until mosquito bites and victory for some would bring us in to sleep, to wash off the day's sweat, accumulated stories and layers of time,

but now, as we burn the leaves, or I remember them being burnt, it's always November and today is the exception and the sunlight bathes us in tones of harvest and memory and celebration of our annual rite of remembering and preserving for future time this time now unearthed. but what about the rain, the lashing rain, side bent and sleet driven,

now is before and in this way I return home to share the chores, carry screens into the shed and bring out those heavy boards, some that still I cannot carry alone, and it's always a day that windblown as it is good spirits prevail because we clean our hearts on this day, letting all the summers of our lives come through the smell of sand, damp towels, potato salad and worn bowls and remembered times and we mourn our parents' deaths and wish they were still alive to continue with us in this tradition of summer after summer we face the fall.

22 January 2009

we ask and no time passes before each word each thought pulls against taut skin waiting hands stuck lips still
hoping no time passes
and your every thought still pushes tight against earth and ice and frozen sky trees wings and branch by branch etched sky fills space once thought once told and nothing but memory holds and waits and carries thought after thought which still, though every dream now is tempered by time and fragile, still too you and I reach into this moment and skin wraps around my head, my each thought, but once thought only voices fall across early cold sky as heat slowly begins to rise

16 January 2009

Before words in the night the snow the distance each flake falls and the way we remember if God or no God and nothing matters in the soft gentleness of fall fall and wind without end we fall and each time time forgets we remember the litany of words and memories and words before we spoke them or thought them and somewhere again we're alone and the waves recede and pull, the time before Hail Mary crossed your lips again and again and even as you age the words remember the shape and touch and feel of your lips and holy sounds erupt or echo or moan this time you feel each word and each word sounds clear distinct itself and still the memory of time after time just the beads dangling your hand holding strings of beads black and smooth against the quiet sins and time you wore lightly on each finger crossed bands of gold shining pale against a setting sun.