From Hilda Morley’s “Sea Lily
Words voiced. Flamed human resonance
both before and after, flowed over
of color and heat, each a cup
from whatever passes
On reading Hilda Morley’s “Butter-and-Egg Weed”
I wonder this morning, early in the dark before light,
if William Stafford knew of the poems of Hilda Morley
and am certain he did, and reading quickly, as was his habit
Listened closely, so as not to fail to learn
a better way of living, given freely there
of abundance both knew
Coming to know one completely new thing
daily, a necessary thing, perhaps, or failing that,
some new thing one might simply delight in
This is not indifference
Rivers lap, as at unlatched doorways
in darkened morning passages
of tomorrow come,
hushed shuffle and brush,
most not heard heart-call,
of unmistakable intent toward
oceans of bruise-held kisses.
Talking with Billie
Having reached sixty-five,
nearly wrapping up the prologue,
the introduction looms, inviting,
slow sweeping beckoning, softly receding edge,
Limitless, the arc and reach,
the farthest sky’s embrace within which we hear
Buddha’s call that we are heard
Our tears’ resounding response
echo heavens’ warm wishes of well being,
raining blessings of clear-light.
I have not known exile
nor the endless pain of prolonged separation of hearts,
but once in youth for a time seemed eternal
was swallowed whole in torment of broken being,
glaring, un-moored, fearsome aloneness,
was when you came, wrapped in the certainty of moonlight.
in praise of change
it is not ever
that change enters once again
our lives are change
the only constant
the only possibility
calling pushing cajoling
goading us to learn anew
let go the old liberate
within endless boundless potential
Who knows how or why.
Scholars ponder. Ryokan though,
he just wrote his thoughts.
So much flowing grass.
Waters or winds, just the same.
No tangles, no bind.
His arrival then,
here and now, is no surprise.
I nod, push the pen.