Way back there in birthing bed
alone again she’d weep.
Year after year, new flesh, new bone,
pushed out like temporal teeth.
Ripped from its sockets by the roots,
life gasped and screamed for air,
then quieted down in perfect peace
to rich maternal fare.
Grandmother soil, warm and fertile,
the perfect garden spot.
She was Eve in efflorescence:
Black-eyed Susans, Blazing Stars,
Snow-drops, Spring Beauties,
Ragweed and Clover.
She was Eden, perennially pregnant.
Wildflowers, we speckle the landscape,
earth’s laughter, we nourish and flavor the land.
Spawned one by one in darkened rooms,
loosed as fledglings from cradling hands:
we explore, we discover,
we dance, we sing,
Last night the dogwood bloomed,
splattering white all over the woods.
What magic transpired while I soundly slept,
to lighten their previous mood?
Give me the wine that frees the mind,
the nectar sipped by Eve.
Just let me taste one sparkling drop
to counteract this sleep.
Let Inspiration’s sweetest juice
remove this misty veil,
so I can see the mystery
Eden could not conceal.
Once, a poetic woman
found the heartbeat of God
beneath a blade of grass.
She simply pulled the leaves apart
and felt the ancient pulse.
When she pressed her palm against the living earth,
and felt the power pounding,
she surely was compelled
To lay her body down.
Breast to breast,
heart to heart,
Words are garments
which clothe my thoughts,
like fabric woven from threads.
They can be worn loosely, letting my spirit breathe,
or, bound so tightly, the thoughts are never free.
A few thoughts, essentially unspeakable,
I must wrap warmly in dark, heavy wool,
dressing them carefully for discretion’s sake-
But the majority can be draped in transparent lace,
and exposed to the world.
Stains on sheets of paper,
flowing from my mind.
Words spilling onto pages,
written down in lines.
Minutes fill the hours,
stretching into days.
Time will go on passing,
Til there are no more words to say.
My rolling pin turns as silently
On its axis as the earth.
Rubbing my palm along its smooth, wooden shaft
Sets my teeth on edge,
For its abrasiveness disguises itself.
The surface reveals nothing
But perfect uniformity.
Natural etchings of amber
Swirl and speckle in the grain,
But remain two dimensional
Under my touch.
Water spots mar the raw pine blondness,
Splotching with smudges of gray,
Like ancient fingerprints.
This piece of wood belonged to my grandmother.
When I grip the handles,
I feel the warmth of her touch,
And the heat of it spreads up my arms,
Into my heart.
Love waits by the gate,
Where roses cling and climb.
It also waits beside a stream,
Near rambling blackberry vines.
Love waits in a crowded room,
Where laughter congregates.
And it waits in a single look,
To stun and captivate.
She sat, reflected.
Locks of silver trembled in fingers reluctant,
The brush stroked indulgently,
One hundred times.
She sat, reflected.
Strands of silver shimmered in attraction,
Crowning highlights bristled in ritual.
Hair, alive and crackling, flew,
She arose, retreated,
Locks of silver tightly braided, pinned down,
Hair, alive and crackling,
On a Texas August day
Back in 1948,
Daddy took me for a ride.
How well I do remember there was no interstate,
Just a dusty county road,
One car wide.
Riding in the front seat,
All the windows down,
I sang along with the radio.
As the wind blew the music and the sweet gum scent around,
Daddy whistled softly,
Sweet and low.
On the banks of Running Creek,
We stopped by the bridge,
Free as the music and the wind.
Bending and swaying, we bowed to the breeze,
And Daddy took me gently
By the hand.
On the banks of Running Creek.
Me and Daddy danced,
In the middle of the dust and heat.
The woods gathered round us, ancient guardian trees,
And rustled with the rhythm
Of our feet.
ice on water
cold blue freeze
glittering light, like glass
cracks like knees
beneath my feet
fire on metal
hot red flames
licking tongues, like whips
burns like shame
beneath my hand
mist on air
cool gray haze
insidious fumes, like gas
hangs like death
around my head