The Product

columbine tear

Tears incubate life –

Once released from oyster shells,

Pain produces pearls

Waking Up

pink morning glories

Tears may soak pillows

And sorrows breed with darkness

But joy wakes at dawn

*****

‘Morning Glories’

When Columbines Cry

columbine tear

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When columbines cry

their sorrows,

reduced to silvered pearls,

slide down emerald cheeks,

trace Earth’s veins,

disappear beneath quilted soil

and sleep

until they rise

again.

 

 

 

 

 

Shipwrecked

sandy treasures

It wasn’t until her fingers ached with the holding

that she stumbled upon what her heart most craved.

Recasting flotsam into jetsam proved complex –

each snippet and stub, accumulation of a misspent life,

ingrown toenails like colonized barnacles on a heartless hull.

Which to discard?

Where to lay it down?

Her broken treasures had put down diseased roots,

fusing flesh to failure, marrying captain to ship.

Scraping at the splinters, mutiny of the highest order,

was pain more exquisite than the requisite lashes.

But unimaginable riches winked on the sand

and sang Siren notes pure and sweet,

daring surrender, demanding an answer.

Her cries of agony crashed like breakers

as her keel cracked wide;

sea air seared skin freshly exposed to the elements

while baubles trickled to the sand,

frothing like the surf.

Layer upon layer,

all, all became Crusoe to her perfect storm,

her tears lost at sea

with the pounding of her chest

as freedom stirred chains.

At last,

trembling,

spent,

she knelt on bloodied knees

before the pearl of great price

with all she had left –

empty hands.

The Seeker

barnfrost.jpg

 

She searched the halls of castled kings,

parted feathered angel wings,

pondered deep with think-tank Brains,

researched Wall Street’s short-term gains,

cozied up to Heads of State,

sought the rarest foods to plate,

joined the ranks of earth’s elite –

and still, her quest was incomplete

until the day she saw it clear,

frost upon a barren spear.

That quality of strength and grace

she’d hunted for through time and space

was clinging to these simple stems

where trials turned life’s tears to gems;

the Truth – elusive, and unknown

had always sparkled close to home.

 

 

 

 

 

I Cried Today at Staples

barberry-rain.jpg

They asked me what kind of file folders

I would like. I eyed that wall,

boxes of files stacked like bricks

propping up crumbling dreams,

and I couldn’t stop them,

hot tears welling up unbidden,

indecision and nostalgia and sorrow

in liquid form. And I knew

it wasn’t the file folders –

not really. It was more

that after the check-out counter,

after smiling and making small-talk

with a smiling employee about

the weather and the Riders game,

after fighting traffic

and stopping for an iced frappé

on the way, I would carry the bags

and drop them off

with my son

at their new home,

leave them deposited there,

file folders marked ‘Memories’,

‘Fears’, ‘Regrets’; even the expanding

style can’t hold ‘Dreams I’ve Dreamed

for my Son Since He Was Born’,

or ‘Have I Given Him Enough

to Make Him a Man?’ So I stood

in aisle 4 and let the tears drip

until the labels swam, inked

puddles to be filed later.