We talk over the old bones of the past,
The way people sitting beside a campfire
Take a stick and poke the dying embers of flame
Licking the last log-remnants
Burning in the night air of endings.
We sigh over how it makes sense now
The scenarios once locking us all in blindness
Show themselves clear and sparkling
As light dancing on water
Their jagged-edged episodes
Blistering clear in the light of passed time.
It is how a mother and daughter pick through the past
Of a husband, father, grandfather – his absence
Like a leaf we hand back and forth
Turning it over and over again
Examining its veins and edges and discolorations —
As if this examining will somehow tell us
What made it turn loose and drop from the tree.
Memory: Bright-eyed boy telling me about Shark’s teeth — I was above and beyond the mire of irrationality then — as Seger says Deadlines & Commitments What to leave in, what to leave out.
Reality: There are dozens of us hundreds
walking the shoreline of Myrtle
each day —
You will know us by our eyes
cast down, scanning the sand
looking for Grace reflected
in an ebony shine.
We are a greedy and gracious lot
depending on our need in that hour.
because we need every syllable God whispers.
seeing another seeker with empty hands –
we smile and pass a treasure off –
Here, these are for you.
Handing the letters of God to others
because we are all seeking
words to ease the suffering
of all the questions
that convince us
there is any other answer
there is an answer
in the sand
to who we are –
why we love –
how we are here.
Do you remember the nights in dark moon absent hours of deep crashing wave sounds?
You, with your bright flashlight walking an impatient mile-a-minute in front of me — always running — while love-want-mothering-harlot enveloped me in bliss and agony.
Duality — Loving a man-boy who would never grow up. The letting go ending every facet of my known world (and I knew that truth then) Still — knew the agony was my fight with God over what was coming-inevitable-necessary.
I laughed and cried together as we roamed the sand looking for treasure on those deep warm summer nights, saying goodbye to both of us in every step. Your flashlight dimmer as you raced ahead and as I followed, I knew I was becoming less afraid of the dark.
I find shark’s teeth now every time I visit the beach. God and I, hand in hand, walking together. He gives them to me — a way of loving-forgiving and remembering you.
Her fear enters the door ahead of her.
The fragile-silk side-step fear of trespass
that tells you she knows too many dark
hours — that she is a flower from the shadow
blooms beneath branches blocking
sunlight. Moves and changes come
with strong winds, tussled leaves
and limbs spinning the orbiting petals
upward — into this fragile day of sun
that she both worships and fears.
The sun is a powerful god she loves, but
the trepidation and fear of transgression,
suspicion, uncertainty — the suspect knowing
of humble plant to mystic star, child to Lion,
needful flower to the light which sustains it.
These fears sit down as a group on the ground
around her roots, crawl up to perch on nearby
leaves and wait and watch and then — Wisdom
cradling Mercy in her breast, breathes healing
and the fears recede for now into the shadows.