Monday, January 6, 2020

A New Poem: The Directive

The pool is one of my favorite places to go over poems, but now it seems to also be my new venue for getting poems.  Today, I was swimming laps and reviewing poems for next month's Rumi's Caravan, when these words came into my head.   Brand new and not revised or edited!

Here is the directive:
            No matter what is coming,
            No matter what is here,
            No matter what you feel,
            No matter what you fear,

Lift your head and sing
            to the sky and the tall trees.
Bow your head and sing
            to the earth and the tender
            green shoots raising their heads
            after the rains.

No matter if you can’t carry a tune,
No matter if you wake up raspy-throated
            and hoarse,
No matter what your feeble excuse,
            Sing your morning prayers.
            Sing your evening prayers.
            Sing just because.

Even if you only sing a silent song
            inside your own head,
Even if all you do is hum, or chant
            your little walking song,
The earth and this life
            are so worthy of praise.
And what better way to praise
            than to sing?

Friday, December 13, 2019

Back in the Saddle Again: A New Poem

Sometimes things come to me when I'm swimming laps.  (I guess I'm not the only one; I love this poem by Alison Luterman. )

Often, I am reviewing poems, especially if we're coming up on a salon or a Rumi's Caravan.  But once in a while, some other words spring up in my mind.  This poem was that.  It surprised me.  It's not like other poems I've written.  It's strange, even to me - a little funny, a little sad.  I wasn't convinced I should send it out into the world, even on this little blog.  But, for some, reason, it's complaining about sitting on my desktop.  And maybe it's appropriate for Friday the 13th.  So, here goes.

Back in the saddle again.
What saddle?
Which horse?
The black one.
The black one.
Going down
that lonesome valley.
Not off into the sunset.
Way past sunset.
Full dark.

I let the horse lead.
Why pretend I know
where I’m going,
or even that I can see
through the murk?
The old horse is familiar
with my weight.
The old saddle has molded
to my girth.

We’re mostly quiet together,
the dark old horse and me.
Only the muffled sound
of his hooves on the trail.
If it is a trail.
Maybe we are making
our own trail.
But sometimes I sing.
He doesn’t seem to mind.
Back in the saddle again.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Called to the Page: A New Poem

Every morning,
mug of hot cinnamon tea in hand,
I go down the stairs to the green table
flush with goddess figurines, Tarot decks
and a view of both the lowlands below
and the rise beyond this hill.

Every morning,
I am called to the page.
The old leather journal heavy
with lined paper that will soon be
either put aside or tossed,
in light of my mortality and the desire
to spare my children the chore
of having to choose whether to read
my musings or to feel guilty when
throwing them away unread.

This routine, this daily habit,
is not so rote as to be meaningless,
even when the writing is boring
Ink flows from the silver fountain pen,
shaping letters that fill the blank space,
running from line to line, all valuable 
because they are called, I am called, 
to the page.

Does it matter if anyone reads my words, 
if they are never published?
Is being published what makes 
a writer? No.
What makes a writer 
is being called to the page.
Understanding that,
I am satisfied.