Surrounded by Sunlight

Tears dropped in the wilderness
clear a space for the fertile craving
to return home.

Not much changes from year to year;
perhaps the peace of some small movement
into what used to be a dark space surprises us.

We ask, What was that all about?  A time
for suffering to mark all suffering in the desert?

Our gifts create temptation and 
there is a difference between
being loved and loving and looking
at a loved one standing beyond the
bright surrounding sunlight.

A Love Letter

I said, "I have decided to give my life
the title 'Extreme Experiments.'"

She said, "Funny, I don't consider
myself extreme or experimental."

I said, "But you have given me
the possibility to recognize
a grander perspective."

She smiled.  "Two people.  Peculiar
lives.  Some shared space and time
spent in each other's arms makes
all the difference."

I smiled, too.  "I had no idea this
conversation was going to turn
into a love letter."

She said, "As one brilliant mind wrote,
'We complex people cannot retreat
to blockish simplicities.'"

Then two she-bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the boys. – 2 Kings 2:24

Lover of all,
who sends the rain and the sun
and the shine of the stars
and the bears out of the woods,
define "love" or "Love";
for some would consider a mauling
a "loving" act for wanton name-calling
against your anointed prophet
and others, horrified, denounce
your creation crying, There is no love.


to lean back against the one i love
and feel weariness and worries
soften into wonder

to lower the volume of my own
heart's hate and breathe into
the questions

to see that all things have two

to apologize for callousness aimed
at sounds of rejoicing different from 
those I make

to forgive

to allow flourishing

I will remember their sin no more. – Jeremiah 31:34

Rememberer, who writes with a finger
of fire on our forgetful hearts,
do not depart from us when 
we no longer look back on 
the days that are surely coming,
for we cannot see what is written there
on the hearts of others and, confused,
continue to confound remorseful
contrition with wounding indifference.

The Silent Choir

I said, "It's been a while
since people talked."

She said, "The focus on the wrath
that comes overwhelms."

Thinking aloud, I asked, "How
is one supposed to navigate
the openings to unopened letters?"

She answered, "Salutations
matter little when the world
selfies itself on vacation."

"Ha," I said, "no wonder
scripture turns into garbage."

She smiled.  "Always preaching
to the silent choir where love
already abounds in songs."

Love Poem

Washing dishes I hear the piano
     - or - is it the sound of vibrating strings,
          - or - the meeting of felt and wound steel?
From the tenderness of notes
     - it must be - 
          the slight pressing of your fingertips
on ivory.  
     - Those same fingertips -
          - curled -
          - resting -
          - on my chest - 
an hour ago before you awoke.

Petal Me

"Take your time with the one you love
while avoiding the sucking rush
of the vacuumer of souls.
For Death is the only one who waits
at the end of that vicious pull."

She said, "There you go again.
Turning a romcom into a tragedy."

I paused and said, 
"The only good thing to come out 
of constantly being disappointed 
is becoming good at assuaging 
the disappointment in others."

She said, patting the cushion, 
"Come.  Sit back down.
Here.  Next to me."

I said, "The world is full of roles 
and a role is but a gesture in time."

She said, "Some say love is like a rose.
Leave your thorns in the kitchen.
Petal me."