Poetry reveals our hidden roots and connections. Isn’t that cool? Look what I just found. This brings me so much joy…
The Light of the House
by Louise Imogen Guiney (published in Happy Ending: The Collected Lyrics of Louise Imogen Guiney, 1909)
Beyond the cheat of Time, here where you died, you live;
You pace the garden walk, secure and sensitive;
You linger on the stair: Love’s lonely pulses leap!
The harpsichord is shaken, the dogs look up from sleep.
Here, after all the years, you keep the heirdom still;
The youth and joy in you achieve their olden will,
Unbidden, undeterred, with waking sense adored;
And still the house is happy that hath so dear a lord.
To every inmate heart, confirmed in cheer you brought,
Your name is as a spell midway of speech and thought,
And to a wonted guest (not awestruck heretofore),
The sunshine that was you floods all the open door.
The Sun at Your House
by Lori Kane (published in Unshaken Wonder: Becoming Playful Elders Together, 2018)
Warm sun pools and shines more brightly
in your home. Why is that?
Worn, beckoning rugs and life-soft chairs
a sentinel portrait at the door
rich green and red dirt-colored artifacts
nestled within white walls of recent pain.
Witness the dancing dust across sunbeams upstairs,
the bird in the kitchen
your crazy dogs at play in the yard.
Most fairies here are somber, yet there is heart
in all those faces and those fucking
cool guitars, Jesus,
and the tools, and the found things,
and the workshop, and the garage, and
in the art, art everywhere: things far too content to be clutter
far more useful than things designed only for use.
The love here isn’t just palpable. It knocks you down.
It feels like a missing tooth and bloody face
shining out from pure bliss: a sweet, well-caught ball
by a kid at the fence.
Windows and doors shift widely open for the souls here.
The one still walking the dogs, still finding community
creating art here in person and the one
moving only in sunlight now
guiding your strong gentle hands
then shifting to starlight to stroke your cheek
in the too-dark night.
That’s the thing about the sun at your house.
She’s still with you in grief and at 4:00 A.M.
That’s the thing about your art. It’s still with me
here in grief and at 4:00 A.M
as I whisper, “Thank you” to stars in the darkness—
uncertain, still, about who it is, I mean…
Which who is it
that I’m thanking?
Every single time
I doubt my intuition
compromise what I need
shove aside my body’s warnings
bow before convention
elevate kindness too far above truth
allow another’s needs, or society’s, to entirely drown my own
the world goes sideways, fast
I become angry
I become the destroyer.
Behold the power of the goddess.
When will I fully trust myself?
Trust others enough to handle me as me?
Listen to my body?
Listen to her wisdom?
To myself? Here at this window.
Surely now at middle age
I should have learned by now
by now at least
that I am trustworthy and strong
that my intuition speaks only truth
that it’s my fear that sometimes lies
and lands me here again. Again.
Surely I should know
you, too, can handle my truth
my messy self, my needs, especially those that appear crazy at first
those that appear to contradict yours. How silly we seem now
the people who let fear lead us.
Crazy contradictions are precursors to all life-bringing creation.
Mud to a lotus.
I rest today, at peace, here within storm’s gentle eye
covered in the mud I made myself, grinning ear to ear.
No tom boy.
I apparently needed just one more example.
Laying sick again, in bed, on this beautiful and perfect August weekend day
while others brunch, slightly worried about she who takes cover at home.
Don’t worry about me. I can brunch another day.
I am content here, now, learning the lessons I insist on teaching myself until I get it.
I am stubborn. Thank god.
We become idiots when we don’t trust ourselves. Destroyers of selves and of worlds.
I was an idiot. Again.
humility and gratitude
my oldest, dearest friends.
And well played, self.
Too much humility is annoying as shit.
internet, off now
dancing with rain down eve spouts
family, hugged, fed, dispersed to their corners
paw, across cat’s face
wood floor, brightened with daylight through clouds,
edges of self, stretching
until earth and moon become neighbors
until every last star is a friend
all recording devices
begin humming, with anticipation
dripping with life
delighted, to meet you
she floats down and around
exploring her new dimension
kisses your cheek as she passes, visiting
the kitchen first, like we all do
as she tastes homemade lemon marmalade
warm bread and butter,
her eyes widen
and she giggles
for the very first time
re-melting once fluid hearts,
once open minds
with nothing but presence
without even trying
reminding us of home, returning us to us
as she rounds the corner,
we’re left wondering
who is she?
where did she come from?
how did she get here?
what is it exactly
about butter and jam
that has me crying?
I am tired
of this world
I’m tired of violence
hidden, outright thwarted
young lives mangled, ended
weapons preferred to soft human flesh
I’m tired of being told what to think
how to think
why I’m wrong
every time I speak
I’m tired of politics. period.
I’m tired of extremes in memes
pointless contextless debate
distant argument and hate
short attention spans…
I’m going to clean this house
release the mouse
let go some old friends too
and start again with you…
I’m choosing artists and their art
kids helping parents re-find heart
I’m choosing nature walks
poets gathering in old schoolhouses
caregivers helping one another out
I’m choosing animals
trees and perennials
bird migration routes
helping sisters out
with butterflies and bees
quirky humans laughing
stretch selves, without crushing us
I’ve been thrown beneath my final bus
by these hands that forgot how to trust
I’m choosing garden plots
homemade neighbor gifts
shared with refugees
who feel like home to me
I’m choosing books
that bend my mind
and those who let me play with it
I’m cleaning out my house
giving most away
loving those I’m with
helping exactly how I am
I’m filling all my time
showing up as gift
for those who need me as me
more deeply curious
And when I find myself
among the curious
among kind silly weird
among the generous
the humbled, awed, and wow’d
the come and play with mes
the sit and stay a spells
Why don’t you rest with me?
then I will recognize
the home I’m longing for
is the space we’re sitting in
we will find ourselves
at play on solid ground
soaring with dragon friends
among the clouds we make
right here on earth
From across a great distance
940ttti %$%^&*mmm …….!!
¬¬¬¬¬ BB jhut mkopi D74 Se Se Se !
How did she know?
How could she see my life so clearly from the other side of the world?
Yesterday was terrible. I failed. Hard.
I’d made mistakes. Made choices out of hurry and fear and worry.
Made big commitments I couldn’t keep.
Let people down. People I respect and love.
Yesterday I came clean. Admitted my failure. Exposed my flaws. Exposed my need.
I just can’t do this work anymore!!!
I can’t work and live and breathe in this fucked up place—no matter the salary!!
It will kill me!
I am sorry but I have to be free.
Yesterday the whole long, horrible, bloody day felt exactly like this, Althea…
940ttti %$%^&*mmm …….!!
¬¬¬¬¬ BB jhut mkopi D74 Se Se Se !
And you heard them!
You heard the clear and dancing silent voices of pain and of joy.
Today I can see what you were already present enough to see
I am here now
Already on the other side of op3398££$&00!!! and 940ttti %$%^&*mmm …….!!
And definitely past ¬¬¬¬¬ BB jhut mkopi D74 Se Se Se !
isn’t something to apologize for.
is the only truth that can be heard from within, across the world.
Only a creature becoming free again can make this sound.
The most beautiful sound there is…
Only creatures already free can hear it
close up and at a distance
even from the other side of a planet.
Althea hears the clear twin voices of pain and of joy.
Pounds away on daddy’s laptop.
I break my heart each morning
so there is room for her
her memory and story
her history inside of me
disease that slowly separates
her away from her
a slow release
of precious self to daughters
we broke ourselves each morning
let our hearts be wounds
now find those hearts
a gentle gauze
wound around the world