Trees Ring You With Watchful Silence

Hands pause—you whistle between.  White bridge slips through your fingers.
Who can number the space of days?  To cross them, you must open.
The gate shapes all beginnings, all answers, to equal zero.

This is a black & white image of an ornate pond & garden from the Felt Estate in western Michigan
© Lisa Fox, Felt Mansion

Lisa, at Tao Talk, supplied Colleen’s #TankaTuesday image, above. I wanted to try a sijo, which is the Wombwell Rainbow’s form this week. I think I’ve done one before, but it was a long time ago. I like the way it encourages the writer to think about different aspects of the same thought.

I’ve used some embroidered circles I did for a Kick-About prompt as illustration–the Eames Powers of Ten film, a barrage of images, made me think of zero, Lisa’s photo reminded me also of crossing the circles of space and time.

This week’s Oracle 2 words from Jane gave me a starting point–whistle. Which made me think of whistling in the wind. The human condition. Nevertheless, we continue.

You can read the story of the photo at Tao Talk here.

A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall

“Oh, where have you been, my blue-eyed son?”
“To market, to market, to buy a big gun.”

we confuse
omniscience and
in our habitual
failure to protect

we collect
wealth, polluted with
smothered in
waste—we admire and support
incompetence, greed

we spend time
staring at our screens–
glowing with
motionless, a shadow of
imminent demise

Jane Dougherty posted some randomly generated words this morning for us to use to make a poem. After seeing “blue-eyed” I could not get Dylan’s song out of my head, and the word “market” provided the reply, mirroring both the news and my continued distress about it.

I struggled to go somewhere else, but ended up with the above depressing and not-very-poetic shadorma chain.

Dylan (as always) says it much better than I.

I’ve stepped in the middle of seven sad forests
I’ve been out in front of a dozen dead oceans
I’ve been ten thousand miles in the mouth of a graveyard
And it’s a hard, it’s a hard, it’s a hard, and it’s a hard
It’s a hard rain’s a-gonna fall


I’ve lived many places
in the same location—how
many deaths are contained
in those serial lives?  And what
of the try-outs, the short
visits that only caused
chaos from beginning to end?

Not all remain empty–
I can still hear them rattling
the corners of memories
born in dreams.  If
I didn’t fit into every
context I passed through,
I still left parts behind—

Words I wrote that make no
sense now that I’m no longer
there—echoes that still
linger around the edges
of every song I sing.  Perhaps
they live in the parts
I can’t quite recall—

Or in all those apartments
that populate my dream
world, the ones I return
to again and again, traversing
dark streets—it is always
night—eerily quiet
with noirish cinema light.

Every one contains stairs
and phantom rooms, windows
in hallways and former
inhabitants—not quite ghosts–
but there, there, as much
as I, in what is called real
life, keep moving on.

This may have some relation to today’s NaPoWriMo prompt of the road not taken. Maybe.