Daily Archives: March 9, 2015

Disguises

Originally posted 4/1/2011.

A single bird over the church
at the top of our hill.
His fingered wings
say he’s a buzzard, he of the tribe
of naked head and a taste for death.

Seen from here,
he soars.

I have an urge
to cover the daffodils
that are just emerging
from the snow-compacted mulch
beside my front walk.

It passes.
They’ll be fine.

Later, in the dark apartment,
the fears and concerns of the day
slide around me in bed
like eels — they come close,
my skin pulls back.

I sleep,
and they move away.

In waves upon waves
the disguised and dissembling
cover the earth.  From where I stand
there’s nothing out there but
a danger of drowning.

I bob to the surface
and see the sky every time.

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Stone

Originally posted 12/10/2012.

I hold great love
for stones:
the ones I climb,
the ones I throw. I try to listen 
to their gray whispers, I try 
to follow their directions.  

Maybe you feel that too.  
Maybe you are meant
to climb the largest ones,
freestyling up
past ever-present death
without making
a mark upon them;

maybe you’re destined to build
garden walls, fortress walls, paved roads;
prisons, temples, or something
that serves as both;

maybe you are supposed to cut them
until they represent another thing
in its heaviest incarnation.  Maybe
you are fated to release
the deities inside them, or maybe 
you were built to hurl them.

Will you recreate 
in your brief life 
all the millions of years
we’ve already spent 
learning to do these things?  
It’s hard to avoid when the big love
we have for stone carries us there.  

For now put your face on the boulder in the path, 
cheek to its cool black nubble.  Pick up
a piece from the ground and slip it 
into your pocket.  

Carry it around with you,
worry it with your thumb and maybe
after a long time it’ll be a touch smoother 
than when you started — and still 
it will look not much different
than when you started.

If you lose it or toss it
it will wait patiently
wherever it lands
for the next pocket,
the next slingshot,
the next place it is needed.

Or it will not. It may disdain us
or ignore us.
It may not have registered much, 
if anything, 
of you or of any of us
who have ever touched it.

It may tell anyone who finds it
nothing about you

that you would recognize
as being your story.

Your story isn’t singular.
Neither is mine.
There’s no grand need
to recall them or us.

We are just part of the story
of Stone, part

of the Record Of Time
that began long before we did
and which will only end long after 
we do 
and are forever forgotten.