windward

the bridge to night,
hushed and wakeful,
asks me questions–
the words cast spells,

hushed and wakeful,
delicate and cobwebbed, into
ice—a sudden snow

asks me questions,
but I remain cloistered–
self-contained, undreamed—

the words cast spells–
maps sailing silent
unknown boundless seas

Boughton, George Henry; The Lady of the Snows; Walker Art Gallery

I started to construct a quadrille for dVerse, using the word ice given to us by Mish, and words from the Random Generator which Merril posted on Sunday. When I saw Colleen’s Ekphrastic prompt, above, it gave me a focus for what I had begun. I used the trimeric form.

harbinger

I had a long and complicated dream about Sue Vincent last night. I’m still trying to disentangle and figure it out. But the Oracle always knows what’s on my mind. After I visited Her, I looked for some art I had done for one of Sue’s prompts to accompany it. I knew immediately this was the one to use.

above
the rain do dreams
swim on light?  is that how
moon music recalls the language
of sea shadows
singing?

the blue of
darkness is
a blank canvas

from translucent music
comes
the shadow
of hope

moonbird rising
toward
the center of deep
light

night, owl, moon

observe the owl,
illuminated with shivering shadows
cast between branches
by the moon—

is it a sign,
an initiation?
or simply a reflection
of the enormous mystery
of a journey
whose path can never be
foretold?

When I saw Jane’s Random Word Generator list this week, the first word that jumped out at me was owl, which of course reminded me of my moon and owl painting that seems to go so well with so many poems. I was thinking about it when David published the W3 prompt for this week, which invited us to respond to Denise DeVries’ poem “Generation Gap” using a computer aid, such as a Random Word Generator.

In Denise’s poem, she and her granddaughter look up in wonder at the night sky.

The words I used from Jane’s list were: observe, owl, illume (illuminated), shivering, cast, sign, initiate (initiation), reflect (reflection), enormous, foretell (foretold).

Denise wonders if using a Random Word Generator would be cheating. But words are just words, no matter the source–why would it be cheating to take any word from anywhere as inspiration for a poem? It’s the poet who must make them sing.

Unraveled

A current of remembering simmers beneath the surface, on the edges, seeking awareness.  Everything I do is stitched with its color.  But I see only its reflection, outlined on the other side of the mirror.  My core, my being, is threaded, waiting, but my mind is lost.

Holes fill my reasoning.  My synapses are confused, the connections severed.  As the navigable landscape grows ever smaller, all my maps lose their meaning.  Transformations multiply, and life becomes unrecognizable.

The world now exudes a silent numbness, a freezing intensified by the coldness of wintered minds.  We refuse to enter into a relationship with what is real lest we become reshaped by its mystery, its extremes, into awakening, opening.  We cling to our tiny virtual selves, unable to see beyond its confines.

Where is history located?  I search the fraying patterns for a place to begin mending.

The phrase from W.S. Merwin provided by Lisa for this week’s dVerse prosery, Everything I do is stitched with its color, fit well into the earthweal prompt, where Brendan asked us to respond to an interview with poet Jorie Graham about how her writing has come to be intertwined with environmental concerns. He also provided a poem from Merwin as inspiration.

Remembering 2022

This house has
time–
it wanted mountains,
morning songs, shadows,
happy screams.

We are all sailing
another grey sky,
clinging to tattered
margins.  Move, expand–
you can hear the universe–

Sing.  Ask the wind
if the moon cried
when the universe was young.

Laura at dVerse asked us to take the first lines of the first poems we published each month in 2022 and make a new poem. Three of mine were haibuns, so I used the first line of the haiku part. I’ve also included art from some of those posts. If it sounds Oracle-like, several of the poems were from that source. She always bleeds into the rest of my writing as well.

embraced

I decided to do something a little different with Jane’s Random Word List this week–I cut out all the words and combined them with a few from my own collage box oracle on a painted postcard, as I like to do (but haven’t done often enough lately). The image was inspired by Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday prompt, the photo by her friend, Terri Webster Schrandt, below.

gentle
vagabond friend–
the countryside extends
great distances—opens
time to welcome
you home

My Dream About Dogs

The dogs were here first.
You think you own them, but no–
they lead, you follow.

Other dogs, other
people, entangled within
a rocky landscape.

It’s always winter.
You must work hard, struggle
to get anywhere.

Where is it?  You no
longer even think you know–
the pull of the leash.

You’re cold and you need to feel–
breath shortens—leaves misty trail.

Ingrid at dVerse asked us to write a poem inspired by a dream, and Sarah’s W3 prompt asked for a poem of 14 lines or less about dreams.

I remembered these sketches I did of a dog–I think it was from a photo Nina sent me of one of her dogs, but I’m not totally certain–and found them in an old sketchbook from the early 1980s. The collage is from one of Jane’s prompts I did in 2016.

I often dream of dogs–I’ve lived with them, but never owned one. Clearly they have a secure place in my mind.

wingspirit

“Away, come away:
Empty your heart of its mortal dream.”
–W.B. Yeats

I circled around with the Oracle this morning, rearranging the words, paring them down, but ending up with the same message I began with. When looking for images, I thought right away of the birdlings, and these collages I did for one of Jane’s Yeats prompts way back in 2017 seemed to fit perfectly, along with the quote from Yeats.

I’m trying very hard to ignore how our government is selling its soul for the trappings of power. How long until we listen to the universe, and remember who we should be?

to belong to blue
open sky music
into wingspirit

full of soundlight
listen together
with the universe

as every voice
remembers its song
and soars

the turning of the year

I visited the Oracle the last two Saturdays as well, but just printed them out and put them aside. After I printed out today’s message I looked at the other two, and was surprised (although I shouldn’t have been) that they overlapped and repeated themselves.

Because of the word “fiddle”, which always reminds me of Chagall, I looked for the collage I had done long ago for one of Jane’s prompts with a Chagall painting. Although it doesn’t have a fiddle, it has the moon, and fits well with the day, New Year’s Eve.

Here’s the moon yesterday, afternoon over Central Park, and at night out my window.

It’s always a good time make some art with the birdlings.

12/17 the secret between if and why 

behold deeply
listen

the spirit of the wind
follows
a riverpath of everafter

be
who you are inside
always

the ancient wild world
covered
with birdsong and treelight

12/24 windswept

amid oceans
of life born from this
universe–
sailing skies
of color–remembering
how always just is

12/31 the turning of the year

beneath dream fiddles whisper
the cries of shadows–
a blue language of faraway
moonships, swimming through watermusic
that we can almost recall

sing with the wind
and be who you are