February 25, 2015
Into the forest glistening, damp,
Rustling grass, my nave,
Arched canopy above, my vault,
white moths twinkling, my candles.
Oh blue warbler, my cantor in his forked loft!
Twigs and stones, my resting place
among things green, ancient, and alive.
Round and round, squirrels leap
in liturgy of chase and play
The spotted owl calls out an antiphon.
My nostrils inhale musky woods,
reminding me of something forgotten.
Here, time lies still,
hushed, savage and sacred.
Birds and beasts sing,
sing the morning-prayer with me!
November 28, 2014
like knotted hands holding up the universe,
roots reaching down into the netherworld.
nests in your lofty, outstretched heights
Your swaying boughs,
tickled by wind, they sing,
each leaf a story to tell.
here, in your shadow, I feel loved.
July 31, 2014
How mortal eyes behold dawn-light
the manner he beholds me.
Be I fragile as a torn feather,
a snowflake whose crystals have touched warmth.
Mind the river swelling its flood-banks,
giving bounty so green.
….A river perpetually flowing.
Mind the fox pup playing
laving paw-prints so deep in spring mud
where bushes bloom.
…Happiness ever yours.
April 7, 2014
Why for, we seek immortality and dreams?
Is time numbered by hours seated at a window wishing,
days spent counting coins,
months reaping and gathering?
By years rapt in love’s fires,
within age’s wintry night?
The sower toils golden fields, eyes vigilant
yet tends his father’s grave.
Children skip over gardens adance,
yet behold the eagle’s distant flight.
Friars pray in cloisters adorned,
yet sing evening’s requiem.
Death seizes and respects not.
Its day sure as resting sun.
Sure as the gnat circles in midday,
As lambs in darkness follow only their herder.
This silent visitor, the faceless judge,
beckons both doors of young and old.
Whilst plagued beggars shiver,
and consumption claims kings,
Weavers and merchants wail,
as virgins travail.
Men, all of men,
September 10, 2013
You left the altar standing empty, full of dust,
so you could string fair women like pearls with fine verse,
so you could pluck the pleasures of life.
Yet you sing no poems and life gives no pleasure.
The work of His hands, you turned for ambition,
wordly treasures by the work of your hands gained.
Yet you lifted a cup of lowly ashes
saying: “Behold, my pain”
Like a shepherd, you sought your sheep,
but nay, found only your lonely self
You left, young lover, to find love,
but nay, only sadness.
Through fields afar and adrift,
you wandered when the angelus tolled.
Your heels buried by earthen sod,
you dared not.
The moors became your home.
The trumpeting lark’s strophe, your Gospel.
Dancing maid upon the meade,
your courage lost.
Your vows of merrymaking
lay dying, scattered amongst mere swine,
whose scraps you eat as bread,
in mournful mirth.
After love’s distant reaches, you embarked,
yet farthest removed from love.
You leave heaven’s share for heaven,
a requiem for pious souls.
Come eventide, angels plea in earnest,
that prodigal lips make bold to praise.
And shall your resounding hymn be one of: “Peccavi”
– or “Non Serviam”?
* Non Serviam, is Latin for: “I will not serve”. Peccavi, is Latin for “I have sinned”.
July 14, 2013
I plummeted down,
that labyrinthine way,
where deep calls upon deep.
There, I wrestled the waves,
the murk-laden crests, drowning sweeps, fell sands.
Besot, my soul,
laid waste everything in me
like blackest lead.
Tears beyond count,
loud lamentation aspersed, feeds the salty swirl.
Aphrodite, her foamy tomb,
so fair, verdant, livid,
taunting love never-met, never meant to be,
the old devestatrix,
Oh that I might sink into oblivion!
Buried in sweet pain,
sweetest might forget, ere sharpest to fight.
Dare I stay,
where no solace, dark mist can depart,
no hope alights, no love echo?
July 9, 2013
Oh, sweet mother of the blessed one,
how far a path of darkness you trod,
pierced first by daggers of bitter prophecy,
pierced second by most-terrible loss.
You found him there, your son,
declaring independence from earthly things.
You saw him once, fallen and bruised,
and offered a mother’s hands.
His small boyish frame, you could not imagine,
yet he flourished like the yearling lamb.
Oh most severe was death’s dim shadow
when your little boy leaned against the cedar,
when he took up his hammer at dawn.
How you knew he was a priest,
unlike those who slaughtered beasts.
No, your boy, once grown,
would offer himself, the lamb,
clothed in scarlet vestments,
wearing the miter of thorns.
And you, kindly ewe,
will offer the incense of bitter tears.
you shall answer “be it done.”
March 24, 2013
Psalm of Lament.
Why, my Lord must this hurt?
Because my child, this world is thorns…
Was I ever a fair child?
Injured from my youth, tossed away, maimed.
After the long tunnel of darkness, I entered the light
where the Lord’s children are maimed.
Lord did thou rescue me from sin, my own self-inflicted death,
so I may become as a dog despised?
They once hated me because I was lost, sick, cursed.
Now they conspire against me, my family,
because I am found, healed, blessed.
Lord, I trusted you…
The shell of my former soul, left behind like dross
sunken on the bottom of an iron-smelt.
Rising, a phoenix, I cried out to the world.
Instead, they ignored me, clipped my wings, cast me away.
“One of them” mocked and defiled…your child.
Lord, look at your own, beloved firstborn,
there cut, bleeding…esteemed not.
Was he the fairest of the fair?
He who cried: Why God hast thou forsaken?
Because my child, the next world is a Kingdom…
Hope in you still, my Lord…
for your lead rod is perfect, laden in gold.
Take me from these thorns.
Lick my wounds; count the bones that were crushed,
and lift me from this dark vale.
January 28, 2013
In dreams and apparitions I arise,
aloft on wings of gold,
tempting forth luckless wishes.
I make my playground betwixt heaven and earth,
astride a torrent of smokeless fire.
If I bring thee fortune, it is because I so choose
yet my ruby-eyed dice rattle the name: “mischief”.
A game I play in measureless deeps,
skipping amongst sprites,
taking maidens, leaving sheep.
With thunderous voice, I scatter the four winds,
play Solomon’s chords on my flute.
If I shake mountains, it is because I so please
yet my diamond-shod feet make no sound.
You do not dare summon me,
rouse the ifrit’s fiery heart,
stitch together star-crossed portals.
Know, my wages destroy those faint of heart,
but raise palaces from rubbish heaps.
Come closer, mortal, your wish is my command
yet only if the chips fall rightly.
December 8, 2012
Satan wraps upon the Holy Door
With unveiled shadow clothed,
Claws atop marble tread.
His talons round the altar rail.
Snap, summon and rouse
Rome’s old Bishop from eventide prayer.
Frail humanity doth behold
The Light-Bearing Angel everlasting.
emerald eyes aloft,
chill heels below.
And as the most-glorious
Chorus of old
Did Satan’s voice sweetly ring
From sweetest lips untold:
“Doest thou well a Lord to hail
and call upon his name…”
The bishop unmoved
royal crosier his cold hands grip
yet fearful the reply”
“Devil, I know you not, hear ye, it is written
The Lord God alone, shall ye serve.”
Wings black of flaxen flesh
and wondrous plume,
The Fallen unfolds.
“You were told not
that if thou serve the true world-lord,
all glory on earth and power,
shall be unto thee.”
Follow the bishop’s timid protest:
“All known to me is this:
If thou seek first the Kingdom of Heaven,
all good things shall come to thee.”
In thunder rapt and darkness evermore
shouts the devil anon:
“Fool confess that I am thine king
and the Kingdom mine
before God smites thee for foolery!”
“By the blood
of the New Sacrifice
and the name of Him, who offered thus forth
get thee behind me!”
Did Satan leap like starlight
great limbs pressed the frescoed ceiling.
Bid he oncemore the bishop
praise to his unholy name.
And oncemore the cleric refrained:
“Hath Lord Christ, own Son of God sworn
The gates of Hell shall not prevail.”
Clawed hand swift,
jeweled gaze intent,
the devil’s final utterance fall
as wetted stones downcast:
“Because thou refused mine accord
of all glories and treasures, an offer invaluable,
I shall never cease my tireless attack
May your age sting ye
and thine flock rebel against ye.
May heresy and confusions multiply like wild grass,
Disturbing your brethren.
Great strife visit the house
entrusted unto you,
many to come after shall pollute thy oversee
defile thy apostle’s holy throne.
Error and unrest seize thy people
so they will even deny the Lord among them.
They shall fall deaf to a shepherd’s call,
ravaged by wolves.
Curses unspeakable, I now fulfill
against anything named “holy”
Satan took leave sudden.
Trail swirls behind of serpentine smoke
holding putrid embrace.
At last quivering,
the bishop did stand.
Lips parting no sound
In darkness silence bequeathed.
His hands met rest
with countenance resolute, concluded even-prayer.