Was there a word,
Plain or shimmering,
Cast of gold and mercy,
In the bathing light of forgiveness,
Tempered with down and feather,
Wrought of worthiness and pride,
The mellow flame of tenderness
And shearing morning sun,
One tabulation of saving flesh,
The tapping root of the knowledge
Tree, the forge of stainless metal
And touch, stone direction,
One healing humour, cardinal
As blood, forceful as the salt
Journey bearing the pines
Of lodestar coordinates,
Spotting the Xanadu ex
Of the lost lovers?
Arbiter of sun—
The dogma of run on days,
White, seductress moon.
Startled ends, the consummation
Of hours, last days sparkle, begin,
I was made and I, was cast away,
Unsaved, born of oceans drowned
Pressures unwaved, unfounded
Yet strung alive, blood draining,
Torn inside and your voice, supple-
Clarion, your little hands roping mine
Subtle vines, tangled in unrest
Provisioned, sweet song, poison
Wined, what sorcerery, what shame
To forget ones grounded name,
To live, now only in shadow, sun
Only in shade where every room
Empty, the golden light washed
Out in the seeping tides of ruin.
Though I was spent open, betrayed,
Always waiting, deaf hope listened
For deaths' floating midge of feathers
Drop, wish I never knew, never ran,
Came by you, never saw the mirrors
Ends, only wish for peace, day lights
Dull untold innocence.
Snowy egrets, pure,
Stoic, white statues of grace,
Digging in the muck.
In the briar patch—
Little birds circle and chirp,
. . . Even sun confused.
Seashells and castles,
Imagination, holy as the skies,
Sea sprayed our faces.
In order the heart, keep running without knowledge
Of the living torch, of the soiling fires that wipe
Hopes memory, the boiled blood must breathe
In a sea of borders, of waves and rushing tides.
In order the heart, beats time, though it knocks,
Near breaks, as the wind that swoons is divining
Treasure, the jewel in the box of flesh must hold,
Must shore the rivers of the branching bleed.
In order the heart, is closed, and dry of touches
Towering keep, let the eye know mercy, let the seas
That travel with the bones never feel the marching
Desert, the hollow caves of the discarded lovers.
One day gone in the long great forest
Of the ancient world, wolves alone
And mighty hungered with true kin
Stalking the tundras of the snow drifts
And all their prey, with cautionary eyes
Moved in heards and flocks swaying
With the sounds of the forest floor
And the spearing grasses. The wolf
Was his own master, free, unbounded.
A great spirit, brother to the moon.
One dying day, when the bushes burned
They came upon the garbage dumps
Of early man. Their smoke was laden
With the smell of fresh kill, small skins,
Animals, ended trail, and salted death.
Many wolves circled in fear, their pits,
Only one or a few tasted the left overs
The easy scraps and bones, tailings,
The elder pack would not stoop for.
These few unguarded wolves morphed
And mated with each other, their mane
And fur, soon was tamed, soon became
Mottled and brown no silver remaining.
This was the fall of the wolf, not man
And the moon turned white, when wolf
Dimples on her face,
Walking long miles without her,
Pebble in my shoe.
The lone stark bugle cry—
Horn of the great mountain elk,
Ripples down cold through morning
Dusted wood as the mushrooming dews
Drop into dearly waded pools under
Fawning toes of forage and cool
I feel the shrug of the passing winds,
That gather beyond my solemn place,
Where indifferent birds fly to and from,
With only lost dreams, real as her face.
High sails kill doldrums,
Late sun shrouded in white clouds,
. . . Eagle low in sky.
Beyond the massif peaks of Europa,
Above the ancient pillars of Heracles
Where rain and ocean are weaving,
Lays a fabled kingdom born of waves
And noble strands, my beaten hearts
Haunting, the lost, lush sylvan lands
Where Incomparable, dark
Haired women, mythic, of Amazonian
Fairness, side the valleys and moors
Of soon forgotten dreams and secretive
Wolves slide amongst warmed runnings
Of the ram and moans of ewe, where
Way bountiful seas are over spilling,
In octopus and pearly gemmed shells,
The scalloped pilgrimages unfolding,
Where incense burns with under stars
Encased, the lost Atlantean temples
Of Egyptian sands and storied Gaels,
The clad forests of wandering Titans,
Where snow white beaches end forever
Unmapped in told footsteps, castaway,
As was the magi gift of treasured yards,
Enlightenments, of old and golden isles
Pearling the coasts, sailing the sweet airs
Crossing Iberian gates, to Elysian, eternal,
November leaves falling—
Blood red backs, salmon cresting,
Eagles rake cold lake.
When she touches me, I feel her touching
Herself, though she circles my shape into
Oneness, I sometimes feel detached
Within those arms. In her startled-fall
To sleep, imperceptibly, she gathers
The room from her childhood. Drawing
The air and curling in waves —
My hair, as if she were weaving some kind
When I touch her, it is with desire.
My reach untangles the very dream
Which took thirty five years of dull
Existence to unmuddle, to imagine,
My soul's other.
Ten fingers envelop her body
Like splits of lightning, rippling skyward
From a bone-dun-desert floor and
In that rose journey of touch
The shock of thunder makes a mother
Of the sky. When she breaks her water
The blighted earth that was given
My name, becomes her awakening
Petals of flower—
Impossible freshness, breaks day,
Her eyes opening.
Last words with her,
So indifferent, so short,
The spoken tongues lashed
Doom, whitewashing the truths,
Forgotten blues of California sky,
Abandoned in that glean, garish glare
Of yellow sun,
Fearing naught, the dark moon
Would soon arrive, taking place of all
Our glazed, lost, light.
Coastal mist and mountains blue as ache—
Troubled waters in midair, streaming across
Such mirage of openness and tangled range,
When will the gathering skies sing me aloft?
Tender, round and dimpled,
Framed with gilded, carved, tawny curled
Whirlpools of hair, long, lighted, and sparkling,
Your face is the face—
Full, moist and deathly deep,
Are wells, not well for me, not safe, taboo,
Tantric, tall told tales of brave Odysseus
Under Circe's alchemies
The zenith of blossom in fabled
Elysium, gateway to the forbidden gardens
Of sage and sinners, warrior-poets, Aphrodite's
Envy, Poseidon's drowning
And smoldering Zeus.
Cold sun reminds me,
Her forgotten voice in dream,
Her breaths in the wind.