Archive for April, 1992

Imitations of Sakanoe

Posted: April 28, 1992 in Poetry
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I
do not scowl to yourself
like a volcano
erupting orange saliva.
people will know you are angry.

II
do not smile to yourself
like a child who has
thought of something naughty.
people will catch you.

III
do not smile to yourself
because you are pleased
with all your talents.
it is not allowed.

IV
do not smile to yourself
like a white wall
splashed with dark paint.
people might notice you are in love

Puddle of Tadpoles

Posted: April 27, 1992 in Poetry
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tadpoles, grow fast and strong
in the light of the eyes
of the boy who kneels
by your puddle,
shrunken from the heat
of the dry days
after the rains.
standing, the boy can see
the river running, chasing
through the jumbled stones,
just over a ridge of gravel
several yards away;
miles to legless tadpoles
and semi-frogs still retaining
stumpy tails in a pool of
brackish water, bursting with life.
wriggling tadpoles in the sunlit warmth,
waiting for the legs to leave,
for throats to peep tiny songs
on their way to embrace
the river bed.

Rope Swing

Posted: April 27, 1992 in Poetry
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This is the way to build muscle:
Haul the rope from over the water
Up to the rocks and stretch to reach
The knot; tensed and poised
To swing out in the air,
All around you, way beneath you
Becoming the wind over the rocks,
Then over the water;
A hole in your stomach,
Muscles strung on the rope
The weight of your legs pulled up
To your chest,
Not to drag you into the water
The guitar strings of your arms
Hauling on the cord,
Grafted to the fiber
Shrieking cables at the bottom
Of the arc of the swing;
Relief at the end of the pendulum,
Weightlessness and falling
If you can let go.

Leonidas #0

Posted: April 26, 1992 in Poetry
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I, Theobalvs, dedicate my next trip to the wilderness to my patron Saint Timothy Leary, friend of painless falls from high places.

Geoff, Laura, Joe, Brian and I
went to the river to play outdoors
and to sing, sing ho for this, the life of a bear.
warm rocks, chilly water, and a rope
were for flinging ourselves through the air.
the sun and the wind bathed us in yellow hues.
music from the car ran its fingers
through the roadside oaks,
anticipating every curve,
and setting the bones that Brian broke.
wriggling our way over the mountains,
we witnessed a weaver of wood.

Falling Violin-Strings

Posted: April 26, 1992 in Poetry
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the rain-sheets of water are hung out
like grey laundry from the clouds.
she dances through them
like they’re stage curtains,
smiling to the waltz, the music,
of the hidden sunshine and thus
for the joy of the rain.

Frog Haven

Posted: April 20, 1992 in Poetry
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I
the splayed hands of the roots
stop searching when I walk past,
but if I listen I hear them quiver
with life blood, holding boulders
when I climb down. unwrapping
and fanning the wind into life
are trees with green springtime leaves.
they swept me along like sand in an undertow.
I scramble and slip down through the branches
and jumbled rocks of the stream bed,
listening to the pianos of the water falling
into each other, over moss sewn stone.

II
beside a sheet of embroidered water
is a cavern of dripping stone:
Frog Haven, hidden behind
a bead-curtain of hanging roots
dipped in the creek,
pouring and pooling away.

III
we are the spirits who define this place.
here, the fall of clear water
is the curve of a spine;
here, the thrust of smoothed stone
is the swell of our muscles.
speaking with the voices of the different cascades,
with tongues of roots and leaves;
breathing out sunlight and forest dust to see by.
here, a trough has worn in the rock,
running happy with songs of mountain stones;
here, several strands of spider-thread,
or elf-hair, to be plucked by the hand of the wind.