Friday’s Poem: Loosening Again

Photo by Cynthia Guenther Richardson

Bits of me have loosened, come away
like birch strips, so thin they curl, flutter,
litter earth where unseen creatures trod.
It’s the peculiar renewal of nature,
losing this and that, cells sloughing
with nary a shudder, everything
an invention, old making way for newer.

I dreamed once of an entire heroic life,
believing it likely but the person
I am is not made now of that heart
which floated in heaven’s boat,
soul vibrant as fluty chimes.
I have become other than imagined.
Deepened perhaps but a layer less substantial,
working toward brave transparency.

Opacity and clarity, how they surprise me with wisdom.

Yet I seem more diminished as each one I’ve known
passes through the eye of storms
and into an evermore, far halcyon place.

I am not yet invisible but missing parts-
her laugh that sustained, his silence that
taught, smiles that unlocked extra life,
that brilliant blue eye of family which held the world.
One offered poetry as necessary bridge.
One came ashore to find me,
then we dove right in from high places.
Now only I stand here, putting on my courage

while bits of me have loosened
like fleeting, downy petals,
revealing a tender center
where– despite fiery tears,
the blush of regret and delight,
all sorts of love which defy naming–
you and you still roam inside this sphere

I yet inhabit as I call out, seek more grace

Friday’s Poem: What Can Happen

I see again what may happen in the worst of times,

even as life draws from the heart

a toxic sludge of pain,

then wounds it with silent

hours choked with loss:

I see this puzzle of a world promises nothing

and turns not for my needs or whims

but it well may for yours and yours,

and everything I need to know I can learn

from you and you.

When not even looking

revelations come out of hiding.

I see through smokey ruins

that love is possible still,

transferred by slinging across chasms

its good swinging bridge–

and made with a smile, a look,

a step forward with no motive

nor burden of demands.

Made of little to fuss over, still it is

as if a radiant dove flew down from heaven

and roosts there in sacred power of

your beautiful open hands,

and so flutters close to me–

because of you, you

my darlings

you

Friday’s Poem: No More Lost at Sea

In the beginning it is impossible,

the moments infused with

ache of emptiness offset by nothing but

the lost one, the lost one

at night, in morning, in every breath.

You: bright and witty–small words cannot begin to

say the story you wove–

and anger shaped of fear,

and proud and exquisite, anxious

to absorb every moment, gifted or stolen.

That you longed to be a mermaid

so swam in the ocean, all deep bronze skin,

freed hair, iridescent tail.

I remember and sight blurs with sorrow

but there is also this: I understand

how it is to forget that everything

rises from and gives off light, even darkness shines

— even a soul prey to lies, crushed, bitter–

but we must discern it without looking away.

I forgot to look, too. Through the overdose tunnel

I sped only to be stunned by illumination,

beginning to end, and the other way

was destruction, the ruin of surrender to nothing.

Asked to choose before death claimed me,

I chose love, chose light with all the risk,

everything exposed, living human with no guarantees.

I came back. Here I remain.

But you have floated out to a great, faraway sea,

a dance of brilliance flaunting, embracing the waves

as I make my way to one more shore.

I will always look for you here

in my dream explorations

in my simplest living

I am walking toward you

and into the sacred that flares

in all that remains

and is yet to come.

I see you

(for my granddaughter, who passed 4/16/2021)

Friday’s Poem: Lux in Tenebris (Light in Darkness)

Sliver and orb, flash and streak,

rising and flowing across the earth

the quality of light is migratory,

transitional, dynamic as it pervades

our lives like breath, like heartbeats.

Omnipresent as every human need

and rife with potency, nobler than imagined

it spills over rotund or knife-sharp horizons,

an unstoppable beam inside thickets of dark.

It arrives as torn lace aflutter among branches,

shifts and skips between arms and legs

and rides manes of wild horses,

flicks ears of wolves and sleek-backed snakes

as sunlight ’til moonlight ’til starlight joins life to the finish.

The body cannot keep it from coming, nor forget

even in grief, even in blindness.

Light lays itself down, follows us faithfully

then embroiders worn edges of shadow.

Such volume of light in cup, in heart, in hand

has no form to define as it sizzles and dances

but here comes warmth and illumination

that arise from the deep of all mother-father eyes–

but, too, rests itself on mossy log and feathery bloom.

It roams alleys and walls of the city when few are watching.

Suffuses even the cave and recess no one wants to find.

It wends its way to tenderness of lovers’ fingertips,

and skin how it glows, it gleams in pulse of stars,

shimmer of moon and sun let in by window or fissure.

The earth, air, water know such wiles, how magic accumulates,

what means a spot of luminescence at play on brook, leaf, stone.

It changes what is seen, becomes a compass for a map of movements,

a truth telling, a magnification of vagaries of life.

This force is a constancy of inarguable beauty,

a mystery and surprise in the midst of aching and

creating, and in our welcomes, our refusals.

Seeking or not, there is always lux in tenebris

born in homes of the cosmos, released to earth

and still working, undeterred by tremulous times.

May we be bearers of such light,

and brave bearers of life.

(Apologies for accidentally posting two Spotify.)

Friday’s Poem: A Call to Spring

All photos by Cynthia Guenther Richardson

The vast drape of land calls us,

its undulation of tilting trails and spread of green

over density of earth teeming

with unseen things. There is genius

of growth beneath while horizon’s blue

offers a new comfort of light, empty of rain.

Today it is a genial drama, spring’s arrival,

and to be a witness is to feel the spirit stir, rise

with a deepening breath that carries

silken perfume of cherry blossoms

that startle the air with innocence

and shy resplendence.