Whispers

They whispered to me
As a child in dreams
Or over simplistic meals
They repeated in screams
The things I cannot unlearn

And it burned my ears
What I learned by rote
I don’t scream. I don’t sing,
But I learned every note:
All things are being shattered

At once or in slow-motion
It’s hard to build on bits of glass
To look at the things you can’t take back
And build anyway- it’s crass
But I tried.

I haven’t cried in years
Because grief gives way
To acceptance, I guess
What is left to say?
To unbreak a broken thing
Takes more than an ability

To cry, or scream, or sing.


Hiding Plain

Shh…

It isn’t safe to talk here
The walls have ears
But not a heart
They’ll hear you and turn
And tear you apart

Shh…

Put them in vases
Hide their faces
Underneath and in between
Dress them in layers
Safest yet is still unseen.

Shh…

The constant dripping shocks
A solid system, eroding rock
In volatile, violent increments
Of dull constancy
Surgery under fluid instruments

Shh…

Rearrange my little stones
Until the rain finds me alone
Carrying me downstream
With mad intentions
I do not flinch. I cannot scream.

Shh…

Lullabies echo from the belly of the beast,
It beckons the cradle come to the feast
I have stared it down before
Hallways like extended arms
Fingers flexing like flapping doors

Shh…

Who will pay the man what’s due?
Who can afford the bills accrued
Under all the stories told
Under these riddles hiding
In corners dark and cold

And seething

Shh…
They’ll hear you.


Bloody Pilgrim

The Pilgrims ate the natives
They invited in to feast
In snarling chomp and salivation
After they eat
They refuse to clean up the mess.

There is no protection
No way this side of the bar
To keep the Pilgrims starved
Or the sharpened teeth held far
From the little ones they carve.

How uncaring blinded eyes can be,
And ears that cannot hear,
Napkins to protect their visage
As they chew through salted tears
And swallow down the least of these.


No Shadow of Turning

Morning wakes
From before it sleeps
Perfect Power, Love, and Purity
Hovers over shapeless deeps
With a glistening dream,
A secret to keep,

In His eternality, it is complete
Before it begins.

Morning wakes
Man stretches into the ultimate gift:
His Maker’s image
He hurtles toward the rift
Of rebellion and graffiti
And The Maker sifts

Through the timeline complete
To scour away the sins.

Morning wakes
Unspeakable Light coos
In baby gurgles and gasps
Perfect Power pursues
In powerless flesh
Those who choose

To leave their altars incomplete
Laying themselves before Him.

Morning wakes
From the garden kneeling tender
In blood-soaked perspiration
To the host of jagged timber
Cutting into the fabric of time
All creation to ever remember

The sacrifice required is completed
Restoring the intent of the beginning.

Morning wakes
As a baby grown ascends
Above death, above what remains,
He prepares for our end
Sharing His Dear Spirit
Who teaches us to mend

Until the hour is complete
And we again dwell with Him.

Morning wakes,
Every breath pulls us nearer
To the Hovering God
Whose plans were dearer
Than our sabotages
And I can hear Him

Whose song in the shapeless night
Echoes through every waking morning.


Joy Replete

I love to live where it snows.

Where I tuck my cold toes
Against my husband’s warm legs

And we can stay in bed
Watching the snow, in wispy flurries,

Bury all our reasons to hurry
In graceful drifts and banks of white

Sleeping soundly through the night,
At first light baking bread, scrambling eggs,

Brewing coffee hot and stout, laced with nutmeg,
While some pork crackles in the cast iron pans

Calling forth my offspring better than I can
In peals of giggles and visions of wintry delights

My husband and I drink up the sights
Black coffee kisses by the kitchen stove

He is the fullness of man: an endless trove
Of potent strength and character- his able hands

Built the space wherein I stand
Safe, cherished, with ample provisions:

His life is a million noble decisions
For which I lay a million kisses on his beard

I love living here
In a space none has torn asunder

Where the work itself becomes the wonder.


Of a Monday

Fast, another day breaks new
More tasks await than I can do
Thus I engage, in the historical sense,
Searching for the significance,
Sifting the vital from the inconsequential
Assigning value to inherent potential
By the framework of my worldview

As every human is prompt to do.


Antiphonies

Along some rocky bank
Of wave-bleached stone,
Threshed sand, tangled strands
Twisted weeds like strings of
Ransomed pearls
Where brave men stand alone
And weary women glean
With spines like wilted stems
Both holding hands
In the ebb and flow
Salt-licked gusts the
Howling metronome of the
Foamy churning of days-
Along this bank
I broadly face the sea
Echoing the sirens’ call
In soft falsetto tones
Harmless in humility
Helpless in my humanity

And out upon the vast expanse
The Great God hovers
So I send my call,
My love song,
Across the misty-tided
Ocean of evidence

He called for me first.


The Derelict Palace

Pursed Doors,
With disuse,
Become wall hangings

Parsed Stories
From inside
Eventually stop rapping

And the bare knuckles
Of things that have been
Fold across the still lap
Of inert chronos

Wrapping over the lips
The muffled mouth
Of closed doors.

Framed art
Oft passed by
Neglects to capture
The incalcitrant eye
It fades into flat spaces
Of cobwebs and refusals

The day breaking impotent
When the mouth reopens
To finally loose
A foreign tongue.


Evicted Verses

Where shall I keep my secret thoughts?
Scrawled in ink on fallen trees
Whispered to the roving winds
Migrating on the wayward breeze
Folded thrice in covert deposit
In the cupboard hidden beneath the stair
Buried in a vacant coffee can,
Etched in ash against the night air
Swirling upward in funeral dirge
A final surge of flicker and flight
Where might I discover the habitat
To keep these little thoughts aright?


Rising Tide

Toes again
In the virgin soil
All the running,
The years, the misplaced faith
In our irrevocable brokenness
And I return to wade in the waves
Of the great unknown

A great secret
Hidden all these years
In the plainest sight:
Everyone’s broken.
Our existence
Is an inalienable right
And blessed privilege.

And the standard
Is to breathe
Toe the ebb and flow
And fail
And believe
And live on.