equinox

summer s

gather well
in preparation
for winter

give good thanks
harvest the sharing
nature’s gifts

day then night
opposite equal
complete whole

wheel turning
the waning of light
enfolding

birdling center s

I’ve borrowed this birdlings collage from the archives to illustrate Frank Tassone’s #Haikai Challenge this week, autumn/spring equinox.

seasons lg s

I haven’t seen the birdlings since my previous move–they may be in storage.  But they are always here in spirit.

The Local Crow (revised)

crow 3s

Crow calls to me from above–
“Crowman are you stalking me?”
There he is—on that roof.

Call to attention–
the question
harsh, always interrupting

the pause between the lines.
“Do you want me to look up?”
He extends the invitation again and again.

“I’m telling stories,”
shape-shifting in the interlude–
“remaking the recent past.”

how to release and how to begin–
but that part’s invisible,
stark with intention.

“…or do you hear it?”
unseen voices echo across the gap,
“and are you laughing at me?”

an interior bathed in blue–
“OK—I’m leaving that world—”
memories circle round and round–

“I’m here now, present.”
thoughts hang in the air–
“I’m unfolding those regrets.”

Crow flies over my shadow.
“Are you happy now?”
the clash of silence, unbound

crow 1s

Crow has been following me around for about 15 years now.  I notice birds all the time, but I don’t always know what they are saying to me.  I have a tendency to space out, especially when walking.  Crow’s message has always been clear:  get outside yourself, pay attention.

crow 4s

A message that’s more important than ever.  For Earthweal, messages from the wild, hosted by Sherry, a revision of one of my many poems about Crow.

the circle game part 2

circle game 2bs

Times Square is empty, like the weather—grey now, the colors drained like the empty subway cars, residing hidden in tenements, written in the isolation of morning coffee.  The Sunday newspaper remains undelivered (again) as even that thread of connection frays into feral cats in dark corners and the shadows of crows haunting the hometown I never knew.

All of this is imaginary, of course—flora and fauna are absent from this enclosed space, except as chimera, impoverished by the boredom of my own company, the same jeans and shirt waiting to be worn like the trackless days.  No Significant Other to keep me in, and an invisible barrier blocking me from leaving.  Outside my window a graffiti of exclamation points greets me each day behind the passing cars and on clear evenings I say “Goodnight Moon”, remembering bedtimes with small bodies close and sleepy and warm.

But the lines have been drawn, and as Joni reminds me, the seasons still go round and round.  We’re always captive on the carousel of time.

tomorrow
blue skies
growing new wings

circle game 2 close up s

The NaPoWriMo prompt today was “to fill out, in five minutes or less, the following “Almanac Questionnaire.” Then, use your responses as to basis for a poem.”  You can see the questionnaire here.

 

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Another Thirteen Days

apolcalyptic crow 2s

1
Crow sits
in the back
of my mind,

2
insistent call
searching
for the source.

3
Crow exists as a continuation–
night overlapping with day.

printed geese 2s

4
Dark shapes,
constant motion.
Behind my eyes,
constant motion.

5
I do not know which to prefer,
black branches
or the hint of green,
the waiting
or the surprise.

6
Wings cross the sky
of my isolation,
weaving through wind
rattling the glass,
suspended
between my longing
and the possibility of flight.

There's a crow flying # if I flew

7
Am I rising or setting?
Can light return
me to my rhythms,
or will only darkness come
to fulfill my desires?

8
I send messages
by breathing,
by listening
through the silences
of birds.

9
I mark the edges
with the songs
of memory.

crow #1s

10
The sky reflects
on the questions
that weave my solitude
with songs.

11
I walk the landscapes
of the unseen,
holding the fear
of endings
in the shadows
of glittering eyes.

spiral crows 2s

12
The sun rises above the roof.
Crow calls me to attention.

13
The days remain
undivided,
uncalendared.
Like the blackbird,
unknown.

13 blackbirds s

The NaPoWriMo Day 14 prompt asks for a poem that “deals with the poems, poets, and other people who inspired you to write poems” .  I return often to Wallace Stevens’ poem “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird”.  Every time it opens new doors.  And Joni…

I have done numerous poems and works of art involving crows, and a selection of the art appears amidst the stanzas above.

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this is the place s

Back to the Garden

ears eyes words blk s

The NaPoWriMo prompt for Day 6 asked us to be a voice from inside Bosch’s “Garden of Earthly Delights”.  Although I did a voice from outside the painting last year–On Seeing Bosch’s “Garden of Earthly Delights” –for NaPoWriMo, I couldn’t write anything from inside of it that didn’t seem too depressing for me today.  So I chose another piece of Bosch’s for my Ekphrastic review.

The_Trees_Have_Ears_and_the_Field_Has_Eyes_by_Hieronymus_Bosch s

I found the drawing above titled in 2 ways–The Trees Have Ears and the Field Has Eyes and The Hearing Forest and the Seeing Field. Both are true.

as if you could fly s

the eyes talk–
have you heard them?
they breathe music
of earth stars–
light opening everything
as if you could fly

breathe music s

And now I’ll visit Joni’s garden

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Circle Game

circle game s

My first bike was a childhood gift, way too big for me, that my father lovingly assembled one Christmas Eve so it would be waiting by the tree the next morning.  No speeds, pedal brakes.  As I grew into them I turned the wheels faster and faster until I left them behind.

It took a few years before I began pedaling my way around the city, this time with 5 speeds and hand brakes.  My legs moved the wheels around and around once again, through the park, dodging traffic during transit strikes, climbing flights of stairs as the wheels bumped my body to my apartment door.

Finally I had an elevator!  And then a baby.  No space for cycles that were not attached to a carriage, a stroller, then tri and then bi accompanied by training wheels.  My legs walked beside them, watching my children turn them around and around until they too were flying on their own, faster and faster away from my slowing path.

Now all those wheels live only in remembered rotations.

These days my legs spin in a pattern that repeats itself, over and over, in the same location.  The world outside my window does the passing by.

circles
pivoting around
the still point

circle game close up s

The NaPoWriMo prompt for day 1 is “write a self-portrait poem in which you make a specific action a metaphor for your life”.  For all our lives these days…

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As I did two years ago for NaPoWriMo, I’ve been working on art to use in April for a number of months, this time inspired by the work of Matisse and Richard Diebenkorn.  The circles come via Matisse.

(more) blue

blue ocean grid s

we begin
as vessels, empty,
all this space
waiting to
find the right oceans—ancient
echoes wandering–

 all-that-is
transformed into an
azure song,
composed from
whispers of traces—spirals
mirroring the sea

Color BLock Blue Story by Beverly Dyer

A shadorma duo for Colleen’s #TankaTuesday poet’s choice of words.  The art inspiration is via Mish at dVerse, who introduced us to artist Beverly Dyer, and asked for an ekphrastic response to one of her paintings.  I chose her grid, “Blue Story”, above, and did my own grid to match with pieces of ocean and sky.

The poem was also inspired by Joni Mitchell.