Sunday, August 28, 2016

the blade

do not mistake me,
for that child
that woman

do not see me
as the one who turns away
who runs
who hides.


do not mistake me.

rather know me 
the one who cries out
falls, broken
to the loving earth

i am a light in darkness
a wall against the floods
the last battalion
a strong maple

do not mistake me
for one who turns away

when the blade comes
cutting air and sound

do not mistake me
for who will flinch

know rather:
i stand until i fall
and fall where i have stood

Friday, August 19, 2016

lady of perpetual solace


ave maria
those were my first words
lying in the incense cloaked dark
i didn't know you then
but still i whispered to myself
ave maria
and sent up my sighs, 
mourning and weeping
morning and evening
i didn't know what i was saying

on the first day of my life
there was light and there was darkness
the heat and sun mingled in the quad
and the cold stone dimness of heaven
i sat, second row from the back
far corner, and did not understand
didn't see the queen's shining face
amen amen, i murmured, 
and did not understand

you heard me then, 
when i was silent
and later, 
in screams and sobs
your face was perpetual
veiled as moses
compassionate yet staid
like the icon on the altar

you hear and do not speak
my lady of perpetual solace
the deep well of my pain
you drink it down
reflect back stars,
night and day
day and night
and keep your peace
your peace and mine

the angel of the lord 
declared to maryam
and thus spoke maryam
be it done to me
according to your word
and according to your word
it will be done

my lady of perpetual solace
hearing and not speaking
loving and not touching
interceding without ceasing
and wounded for my wounds
ave ave maria

Thursday, August 18, 2016

hungry ghost festival

hungry ghosts.
i imagine
mouths like chasms
breathing in the meat of this world,
not pausing to chew.

my ghost
he has his hungry moments

not today
not hungry ghost festival day

today the sun catches
in the pool blue glass of my goblet
and the heat soars to the cerulean sky

my ghost walks in the garden
shakes his head at the weeds
to stoop or reach 
inspecting a fading rose here
a rabbit chewed leaf there

he is hungry maybe, for the heat
he doesn't seem to feel it,
in his red wool jacket

at night, though,
in the bitter air conditioned room
he slips between the sheets 
hand neither hot or cold against my ink kissed thigh
but heavy, present, 
hungry as he moves across my skin