Friday’s Poem: Life of a Poem

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.

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