to get into the river
I let go of the shore
drift past fear and through
to discover something new
I let go of the familiar
walk toward the unimagined
to change my mind
I let go of beliefs
allowing stillness in their absence
to change my life
I let go of my self
detached from the mask
that voice again
pipes up, howls
at the suggestion
of a moment's silence
why so vicious
you might take softer approaches instead
of the hammer, a knife, the furnace
of contempt that burns away what
might have been otherwise a flower or
i control the tempo and temperature
of my response i give it flavor
gauge progress by shifts
in volume and frequency
it grows quiet for two or three days then
i tend to violate any fragile truce
ought to see it coming by now
they're big and they're decimal
written in stone
one's about an ox
one demands, thou shalt love
just who commands? surely not
that smiling fat buddha, no--
a lord before whom you kneel
begging for enough to build
your own fortress
of this tyrant who commands love
why? Can it not be pillaged?
Must he insist?
Any child knows: love
is spontaneous as laughter
and cannot be commanded
even for the amusement of the god
who demands love in exchange
for protection from what he made
How much light urges from the sun?
Most is lost to infinity. Still
the trickle that falls to earth fires the aurora.
Sometimes you stare at the the sun. You stare
too long and it aches. Your eyes force themselves
shut. You see bluegreen echoes of the sun inside
your closed eyes. You open your eyes
and the tears come. The world haloes, flares.
You look at the sun and you have to look away.
It isn’t allowed. You can’t receive all that. There isn’t room.
A photo is a reflection of memory
a bounce off the surface of a moment.
When you train your eye on the image
you find your negative—deflected,
polarized (as if Sol were to imagine
Terra its mirror). Reflection is cold,
insubstantial, on the verge,
a mirage, a passing wave.
I sense you best with closed eyes.
It is impossible to capture light
in a photo or in the vault of memory--
sooner put a dancer in a bottle.
So much light pours from the sun;
I am trying to capture sunlight in this poem
but all I have is a net.
It's a poor container, like me.