I look at my hands.
They look nothing like my mothers hands.
Hers were small and china cup delicate
though powerful enough to create our universe.
Her fingers, slim and incandescent, resolving into perfect oval nails.
She scoffed and dismissed those fingers as not enough,
lacking the reach for that next ivory key
reserved for the true concert pianist.
That not good enough created all the sounds of my childhood-
Schubert and Haydn,
tin pan alley,
Lennon and McCartney,
I miss her strong hands, pale and translucent,
I miss my mother’s hands holding my hands.
Blowing hot and cold, angry lovers
rush into each others arms, sparking
into existence their lightning filled
children, giants towering over the land.
Cumulonimbus pillars roiling with winds
and voices of thunder deep
shaking the still naked trees, pounding
aprils warming ground with vernal
tantrums and hailstones, cold and blue.
All this begatting and begetting
awash in the fundamental forgetting
of winters just passed
and springs just springing.
April’s hallelujah of re-creation intones
warming air saturated in pheromones.
Shedding my skin, casting off
the detritus of all winters,
I scrub the windows of my eyes
to reveal what was once true.
Marked by a blue streak
across my forehead, tattooed
no more by the past,
with merlin, I grow younger
I am spring!
lets watch the birds
as they swirl in the darkening air
sinuous, spiraling, undulating,
arabesque (from Italian for the Arabic style)
from the bowl of the sky
as night enfolds its light
incorporating the bright sun
into moonshine’s glimmer
bells should peal
tolling the moments between one day
and the next
but loon song is the only crier
all is well, all is well
I was in a small boat on a river,
The water swift and clear
But my little boat and I
Steady in the rushing current.
I watch the waters flowing past
Without me and my small vessel.
We are left
As if moored
Or caught on a hidden shoal.
How quickly the days have sped.
Already a year nearly gone
And I remain
Waiting for the tide to rush to lift my boat
And propel me forward into life.
Snatches of lullabies from a distant long ago room
Strains of the old rugged cross from dusty hymnals
Or maybe loud mellencamp from a car radio
Thumping across dirt roads
I never know if its real
Or made up
The sound of tires on the singing asphalt
Or the growl of gravel
Humming harmonies rising in clouds of dust
They’re the songs of wandering angels
Sixteen miles from the Arkansas line,
Following the roads through hills and hollows
In the Missouri moonshine,
We are riding tonight on our dreams
And the sound of rivers rushing,
Thru the thick Ozark night.
The stars dance in their own constellations-
Brightwater and Big Sugar Creek
Spin with the Seven Sisters
And Orion as he makes his tracks
Across the thick starry Ozark night.
Mists rise from the deep hollows
Mixing with melody and woodsmoke
As the miles harmonize
Across spring creeks and ancient stone,
We sing of the thick Ozark night
Under the misty Missouri moonshine.
Sixteen miles more, we are flying low and fast.
Ridge running high and bright,
Down to deep hollows low and dark,
Chasing our dreams across the thick Ozark night
Under the rising Missouri moonshine.
A stone is made smooth
with the least bit of pressure,
a constant and maybe thoughtless rubbing
between thumb and forefinger.
As tarnish from a piece of old silver,
maybe your grandmother’s knife made bright,
Or the wind’s insistence against snowcapped mountains
Or water-made canyons
Of deep hollows, fern filled and green,
Hiding the shy deer and red fox den.
I keep that pressure steady-
Rubbing the memories deep into my skin.
Tattooing the years tears on the lines of my face
Until I see your eyes
Look into mine
From the bathroom mirror