September 2012

Songs from an Empty Bowl

listen to this poem
 
1.

 

She reads rivers, plants,

stars, measures her life

between wolf moon and candle-flame,

Polaris and roseroot.

 

Wooly worms and the croaks of toads

tell her when to take shelter.

Falling stars augur fair

weather and a blood moon

 

brings rain: ashes, dirt, swirls

of black feathers. She drops a stone

into the well but finds the loudest

echoes ripple through her mind.

 

2.

 

At night she closes her eyes

and boards the constellation Carina,

the sparkling ship that sails the sky.

 

She looks back at earth with its broken

people and wonders what is left

when a snake’s rattle

makes the night’s music.

 

3.

 

She becomes a stream, rocks

along her spine, vines wending

through her fingers, mint, ripe

 

berries, the scent of green.

Men dip their cups into her heart;

cows lick her toes.

 

4.

 

Silences slip between breath

and heartbeat, the pause

after a bird’s call;

 

she fills her hands with emptiness

of spaces between leaves

and learns to become whole.