To some poetry can seem a crime,
secrets disrobed, unmasked souls
paraded in a staged accounting of heresies
and heroics. There is little that is modest,
mannerly or regrettable about words that speak
for or against a reality possessed
by a poet with will made fearless by a pen.
It’s a poem; it arises, takes hold and lives.
The offerings can seem a crystal ball cupped in hand
or jewel trembling through the tawdriness,
or trails of dreams sketching maps to
other worlds before mysteries erode.
It can be a signal for revolution
or like bread for the hungry; a poem morphs.
But neither crime nor prophecy,
not even prayers clothed as verse
are enough to wake dazed sleepers or
the bitter turned away from life,
a poem like a useless feather drifting by.
Still, it takes but one to sense the cadence of
telling language, to hold it close
to ear or eye then heart.
Either way, the poet doesn’t mind;
the lines given move to another
or fall like a curtain dropped
to once more cloak life’s wizardry.
There are other words and visions,
other visiting spells for living in full color
or fading into seep of grey that
runs to darkness, shelters
a passel of shadows and lights.
And by sunrise these may render clues
to a meditation or fledgling poem–
another human declaration,
a forlorn sigh, rageful crying out,
a kiss on hands too tired to move,
a bliss that frees a smile,
a truth that finds the wound, then heals,
another human hope that will not be silenced
and somehow finds its way.