sweeping the kitchen floor –
the remnants of living –
rushing to work –
contemplation takes a backseat-
scattered in the last autumn leaves –
flock of small brown sparrows take wing –
will not the waters come
and then recede
all manner of grace restored
We have had record flooding in our area of the Ozarks. I think 10 inches of rain fell in just two days. It was really unbelievable to see so much water rushing past the house.
We are thankfully on high ground, though we do have water in the basement. But that is so minor considering what others in the area experienced. Houses were lifted off foundations, homes floated away or were torn apart by the waters.
The pictures are taken from our bedroom window. The lake has come up into the meadow and onto the road we walk Theo each day. The boat docks are tied to the trees to keep them floating away.
We keep those affected by all these Christmas storms in our prayers.
How do I explain the rupture
between Then and Now.
When no Safe was Unsafe
and a September morning wasn’t filled with
Cremains and loose paper,
when only Bird Wings fluttered in the blue sky.
How do I tell you of the Fear and Grief,
Personal and Communal,
of people spirited away in dust falling from the sky
mixing with Tears that streaked on all our faces.
I wish I could explain how
our Country’s shifted Foundation
was filled with that Ash and then with desert Sand.
How we were all struck mute
as Doves became hawkish
and Hawks became harsh Patriots.
We all averted our eyes and covered our ears
as Rendition and Enhanced Interrogation
and Warrantless Wiretaps
were wrapped in Patriotic bunting.
I wish I could understand how the new normal
is now just NORMAL –
the shoeless shuffle in airports,
the suspicion of brown skin,
the lilting accents that are now ominous.
And how that September morning,
‘The War against Terror’-
(And it was our TERROR)
is now just another chapter
in high school History books,
dry as Ash and hot desert Sand.
*** A reposting from several years ago. 9/11 still brings me to tears.
Great gray stones leave the bank of the river,
stacked with their brethren
between the old cedar trees.
One upon one,
they stand together, shoulder
in deep, masculine force.
Over decades, they settle.
Some, restless, move again
toward the river.
Most hold fast, remembering
*** We went out after the last storm and our old rock wall had fallen. The chipmunks had loosened the soil, giving the rain a place to wash out behind the stones. And it just gave way.
We will restack and make it whole again, but who knows how long ago those stones had been carted up from the river and stacked with their brethren.
One by one,
the evening stars ignite,
torched by dusk’s retreat
The celestial lamplighter whistles,
sweet and low,
his lullabies to the evening stars
as he makes his way across the night’s sky.
Sweet and low,
he croons his twilight tune
as the stars hover,
Come, take my hand,
we will race the stars
to the ridgetop
and sing his lullabies
to the moon,
sweet and low.