Of the Many and the One

In late spring thaws or pouring rain,
The water finds its way from peak to base,
With gravity and a groove it is turned,
First one way and then another,
Splitting here or there as chance permits,
So many thrills, with rills, and spills,
Into braided streams and channels,
Until all the many choices become one.

And where that mighty mouth,
Dares a salty kiss on majestic sea,
It slows its approach out of respect,
And unloads grain upon grain,
Until a bed is made for them both,
And the river does tease with dendritic hands,
The ocean ebbs and flows with delight,
In brackish ecstasy they become one.

In winter bare does the tree invite,
A labyrinthine exercise for the eyes,
From small sprout it begins to climb,
Branch to branch, twig to twig,
Steadily, always going out on a limb,
Spreading high and wide, leaves unfurling,
All to catch those golden rays of sun,
The majestic sylvan purpose is one.

Darkened skies heavy with bloated drops,
An ominous base hovers over thirsty land,
Millions of electrons bully others away,
Full of potential an army charges out,
Their leader searches from something positive,
It sends one battalion here, one there,
A more covert operation you’ll never see,
And in a flash, power surges in finding the one.

And as I sat and pondered these things,
I looked ahead at the decisions before me,
And those that were far behind,
Would one different turn have changed me?
And what decision should I make next,
Not knowing where I might be sent?
Are all the many branches of possibility,
Just an illusion that lead to an outcome of one?

Colors in the Air

You’d make a good bird
I’m not sure what kind
One that flies with confidence
Not flapping noisily
Panicky from place to place
You fly higher than most
Not the type to prey
Not to say you don’t get hungry
You think yourself fluffy
But you are feathered
Smooth and sleek design
Showing you have direction
Purpose

I wonder what bird you are
Something colorful to be sure
But not so small
That only binoculars will do
Companion sized
Something that looks formidable
Perched on your shoulder
Too striking to be menacing
Something tropical perhaps
Perhaps common in some far off place
But rare and breathtaking to me
And so I am left to wonder
What it might actually be like
To watch you take flight

I’m okay with pictures in a book
Some beauty feels peaceful
Just knowing it’s out there
Up there

Sometimes I do think I see you when I look up
And I can’t help but sigh long with a wide smile

Thoughts of Babylon

It moves in a sine wave
It’s sinewy and sinuous
There is a place of eternal equinox
The line bisects the sphere
Just as the setting and rising of the sun
Bisects hot day and tolerable night

It’s like in the movies,
Maybe a time lapse, or desert heat
You can watch it rise or sink

Only twelve hours to make that long arc
Quickly burning day, deep expansive dark
And there was the horizon and there was the sun
You knew when it started, you knew when it was done

North, because why not
The sun finds gentler journey
And the axis through that sine wave
Moves with the season, it is the reason
It’s just a latitude adjustment
The ebb and flow of dark and night

I wondered about the Arctic Circle
There are days when the descent
Must move so slowly

You just couldn’t stare at the sun that long
But keep an eye out, drink coffee, stay strong
And there was the horizon and there was the sun
For one moment, the sunrise and sunset are one

I go now to stand on shrinking ice
Along with my polar bear family
I will step on that pivot point
And there will I finally own time
Around the world by foot
Around the clock tonight

The sine wave becomes a straight line
A line that oscillates a revolution
But in the moment, no eye could detect

The sunrise and sunset would last for days
Far too long even for a lover’s gaze
And there was the horizon and there was the sun
It looks like it’s moving, but you’re being spun

My Ode to Winter

In silence you approach, slowly darkening days,
Autumn arrays of color fade to deathly brown,
Precious skies of blue are replaced by grays,
Sharp winds blow across frozen ground.

And then one day you bring all to standing still,
I watch as my breath, eager to show it’s alive,
Disappears hopelessly into air it can’t fill,
Icy touch on the shoulder of all that thrived.

And what more can we do who wait?
Where night comes early, but feels so late.
Hope for snow to settle on barren limbs?
A touch of white when all seems grim.
Snowy blanket covers the harvest’s reaping,
Lets us pretend the Earth is happily sleeping.

Each slippery step on landscape so bleak,
As we drudge through our lives week after week,
You take no pleasure as you tally the score,
We see what you’ve taken and you hunger for more,
And just when you drain our heat to burn our skin,
Though you love your endings, in the end you won’t win.

For when the sun hides for its longest hours,
We gather with friend and kin to warm with love,
With charitable hearts gloomy Death does cower,
Mocked by hopeful songs of the mourning dove.

New Year’s rejoicing as the sun climbs higher,
Dreams of future gains and not what we lack,
You snap and bite at us, even as you tire,
As snow melts into thawing soil, life bites back.

Two Lines

Two lines at a time,
That’s all I want to write.

The brilliance fades quickly,
Because I’ll be on to something else,
And those two lines,
They won’t make any sense.
But maybe they will again tomorrow,
I’ll remember what I wanted say,
And by the end of the week,
The month,
The year,
I’ll have written some poetry,
Something that will blow a soul away,
And you’d never tell,
That I didn’t just sit down and write it,
All in one gasping breath of inspiration,
The exaltation that moves me so much,
That I can only write two lines,
Without getting lost in the music,
Without getting thirsty,
Without needing sleep.

When Atlas has to set the world down,
There shall be a revelation in two lines.

Reason

I know that darkness won’t endure,
But sometimes it’s hard to see in the dark,
But I will not lose my reason,
My desire to understand the seasons,
Turning leaves reveal the truth,
Known to every pimpled youth,
There is no escaping that things change,
And so you can hold on
And squeeze the moment,
But it will eventually slip like sand,
And with time abrading your open fingers,
To make sure you learn lessons well,
To remind you, you’re avoiding the inevitable.

You can wallow in the quagmire of your beliefs,
You can even inspire with a clever tongue,
You can wipe clean all that science has found,
And it will come back and haunt you,
But humanity is no ghost,
It is curious and is happiest when it discovers,
Even though it risks its happiness,
Because somewhere in the maze of consciousness,
We know that without the risk there is no joy,
No success, no growth
We are not content to look through a pinhole,
While one eye looks at the dark, and the rest
Of our senses atrophy into putrid decay.

Each time that you hate and dehumanize,
You become less than you think you are,
Your victims more than you think they are.
And I will oppose you with heart, with teeth,
And you will fight on the battleground of reason,
Or risk endless cycles violence,
Ripping parents from children,
Casting yourself into an oblivion,
That you believe to be paradise,
All because you never knew,
How great a human you could become,
How so many pieces of existence,
Were waiting for you to know them.

And you will pay dearly for unwise choices,
And you will be forgiven,
Because the world has loss and pain,
But nobody really wants to destroy you but time,
And none of us have any say over that,
Make your meaning out of the indifferent universe,
And treat existence like a gift.
Because it is.

Sentience

Greeting, meeting

How do I absorb you
A precipice below me
A chasm before me
And there you are unreachable
But I hear your words
They drive like daggers
They drench like warm rain
They taste sweet like sugar
They embrace like satin
Each molecule gains purpose
And finds the next one

Compression, procession

They echo into silence broken,
I hang on every word that’s spoken,
Dashing through my circuitry,
Electrically charged syllables,
Dripping with potential,
And new life, blurred at the edges
Unfurls amid quantum fluctuations
Speak faster to build me a bridge
Suspension…of disbelief
It’s precisely what I need
Take me, entice me

Ambition, attrition

Fragile like porcelain
I pray to angels on high
That they save you from breaking
Breathtaking, panting
The lines are slanting
Are you leaning toward me
I lean too, and we learn
Unfolding while we yearn
Blossoming in each other’s garden
Plucked into pretty bouquet
Add water and trim stem
Fragrance for another day
And we waft towards each other
Circling floral perfume
I shall not presume
But I thank you for sharing

Merging, diverging