“But if each life is not new, each single life, then why are we born?” – Ursula K. Le Guin

to experience
as the leaves fall 
and rest upon
the frosted ground
remembering how
they unfolded 
just months before
in the springtime air

how the child 
crossed the street
not returning 
never to be seen again
having disappeared
into their own drawing
of a storm of hope
on a winter day

where life is an extreme
experiment in truth
and the possibility
of grander vistas
lures the eyes 
down the block
and around the corner
into adventure

Jesus said, “I am.” – Mark 14:62

I AM who I AM,
known by what has been
and by the moments of here and now
and by the dreams of what can be,
may the multitude of I AMs we cry
join together into a chorus of WE ARE;
for once again our pronoun usage
focuses more on the me in ourselves
and threatens to unravel the careful
stitching of our ancestors through time
which brought us together intersecting
our pasts, our presents and our futures.
Amen.

Return From Vacation

I breathe the truth in the dust
that lingers in the air from 
years of patient longing.

A daughter asks me to carry her
raising her arms as she turns to me
saying, Uppy.

The ordinary resumes after a vacation
trip that took us to the edge of delight, 
playing in the waters of life.

Unpacked, we ride our bikes to the fountain
where the girls walk circles counting bricks
and the cascades spray mist upon us.

The simple pleasures adorn themselves
still finding refuge from the complex 
which waits patiently for the following day.

Earlier, the flight path of our return
took us over where we now stand 
and we looked down upon the roof 

of our house and the woods
and this tiny circle of water which now  
becomes our daily destination.

A Summer Afternoon

Fascinating images from long ago glitter in the grass.
A daughter runs through a sprinkler across the wet  lawn.
Another turns the page while sitting on the driveway reading.
Still another calls for me to give her a push on the swing.

I ignore the silent roaring of time feeling my very bones become old.
The neighbor makes himself known with a call and a wave.
A dead man out of mind, a forgotten ancestor, rises to play.
Buckets and toy shovels wait in the sandbox where some grass grows.

The soundlessness cannot last all the bright day long, can it?
I look around for my hiding place we built the previous winter in the snow.
All I see is the length of reflected light stretching toward my eyes.
In the water the nightscapes dance as a promise after the sun goes down.

A Room

During dinner I said, "My feet
are too large for my room."

She said, "Any room means riotous
wealth upon which you can walk."

I said, "But cramped living leads to small
bitternesses and resentments."

She added, "And also for cozy living
arrangements that call for lots of snuggling."

I smiled. "I welcome those small delights
which can be found when space is at a premium."

She said, "All of creation is one large room."

Time for Some More Questions

Why is there always enough space after dinner
and before bedtime to ask one more question?

What makes a two hour sail in the burning sun
too long for any questions to be asked?

How does my gaze fall upon the one book I have wanted 
for a so long stacked in the midst of questions?

And, as the Psalmist asks, "What profit is there 
in my blood, when I go down to the pit?"

“I must turn aside and look at this great sight, and see why the bush is not burned up.” – Exodus 3:3

God Who Burns and Does Not Destroy,
who whirls in the wind by day
and dances in fire before us by night,
beguile us with visions in the corners of our eyes,
beautiful enough if beauty will do,
interesting enough if we are bored,
satisfying enough if we hunger,
but just enough and no more,
for we are already sated on enough of us
and more will make our feet too heavy
to turn and be amazed that the bush burns
and is not burned up.
Amen.