Someone once asked the question,
If I am eager to do what is good then who can I harm?
Did they not hear the interesting news that the sun
rose through the horizon and into the sky without any aid?
I called a friend in search of numbers pleasing to the eye
only to learn that the letter I submitted for recognition
had been destroyed because the issue was dead
and no longer used by those who were afraid to dance.
I wish there will be an announcement forthcoming
about the self-imposed resignation of those who failed
to follow the fixed paths of their own plans. And,
I hope for the moment when embraces are placed
at the top of all personal agendas.
I turn the thoughts and prayers of journals
written decades ago into these poems and
hope with more attention and accommodation
I do not wander off into the despair always
waiting at the end of the previous evening's talk.
The piece of learning I always hope for
comes from the awareness that toes
will always be stepped on even in the midst
of the dance where everyone knows
the next turn is to the middle.
I am reminded of the paradox of fire
where bringing life whirls in the midst
of the turning of what is alive to hopeful ashes.
To be released from the search for constant bedazzlement
into a rest area along the road I have been walking for years.
To cease contriving false romances with those things
I do not own and will never have in my back pocket.
To get out from under the bright lights of the big city
and move, slowly, into a dusk where I can stretch.
I said, "I just finished reading
a good summation of the
quagmire we appear to be in."
She said, "This has been a rough
time with insurgents demanding
peace shouting to be heard."
I asked, "With 'Failure is not an option'
as an option can any of us survive
the fall of our personal empires?"
She answered, "Not without casualties
to crystallized emotions and creating
I asked another question, "Can sober
persons holding pre-eminent positions
of power hold the center?"
She replied, "A similar dilemma can be
found in the hearts of those who stand
outside in the corridors of hope."
I said, "The conversation at last night's
party showed happiness lives in the
minds of the decadent few."
She said, "Yes. It also revealed the
desperate need to create possibilities
for new pools of laughter."
Thinking aloud, I said, "The beginning
of wisdom is just a monster of a text
to digest in one gathering."
She replied, "Human beings have been
gathering for hundreds of thousands
of years in dark spaces."
I added, "And feverishly painting animals
on the walls of caves and cheering on
their favorite teams."
She said, "Hope only appears to narrow
when those places are closed and decay
into the ruin that time brings."
The hubris that one can control
their own resurrection
and the hiddenness of the virus
make need more visible.
Sometimes aesthetic sense fails
to develop even in the hardest times
so perhaps God is theology's
We do not recognize that
we continue to benefit
from the shameful history
of our ancestors.
When the center is on fire
engage the periphery
for choosing where to begin
carries a great deal of power.
We argue about what we care about
attempting to get our story straight
and inviting the hope of hopes