Sestina Style Poems
“Sestina Style Poems”
Sestina poetry rules. 1-2-3-4-5-6. The lines of the next stanza must then proceed to be 6-1-5-2-4-3. 3rd: 3-6-4-1-2-5. 4th: 5-3-2-6-1-4. 5th: 4-5-1-3-6-2. 6th: 2-4-6-5-3-1. Now, the final stanza, the envoy, is three lines long and each line will end with 5-3-1, with 2, 4 and 6 being buried in the lines.
The first poem “Our Seasons” is followed by an exploded version of 36 poems, and then 12 more sestina poems follow.
my heart has shattered like a stone
the snowy clouds swell low and dark
the embers die from lack of wood
sat at table held face in hands
listen for laugh is this a dream
think of garden filled with roses.
every spring we pruned the roses
beyond the tumbled wall of stone
winds they whispered of a dream
when night has fallen land is dark
caressed her body with calloused hands
as we walked home through the wood.
summer flees so we chopped wood
my lover beside me flushed like roses
pulled out thorn deep in her hands
laid kindling on our hearth of stone
a swift sickening has brought the dark
she croons to me in fevered dream
we talked of things of hopes to dream
fall we planned in our home of wood
with lights aglow room not so dark
through open window scent of roses
cooked our dinner on counter of stone
heads bowed in prayer we clasped hands.
planted bulbs washed dirt from hands
loved our world in a simple dream
on shore of pond skipped a stone
laughed did carve initials in wood
her bower sprinkled petals of roses
contrasts of red her hair is dark.
winter when long shadows get dark
held on tight with clenched hands
in the garden we cut back the roses
has this year been naught but a dream
bed with four posts of polished wood
her picture rests on mantle of stone.
in the dark I woke from a dream
with my hands built coffin of wood
wreath of roses in her vault of stone
The first stanza is about Grief.
“My heart has shattered like a stone”
shards of granite lay at my feet
red pools of blood flowing out
blurring eyes with salty tang
can’t breathe can’t speak
smooth the dirt beneath my palms
trembling limbs betray me now
a shooting pain to my knees
shining light draws ever near.
“The snowy clouds swell low and dark”
unique tears fall from sky
cover form with white shroud
mounded high has hushed voice
quiet stones guard the peace
stretch as far as sight allows
never ceasing march of souls
til shambling gait has broken down
melting crystals on upturned face.
“The embers die from lack of wood”
poke the ashes a gritty taste
vacant stare no longer feel
so cold in vastness of night
sluggish thoughts slowly freeze
draw the covers up to chin
watch as pitted ceiling recedes
walls loom constricting embrace
floating disconnect I sleep.
“Sat at table held face in hands”
brackish water washes stain
shoulders hunched withdrawn within
echoing sobs fade away
a thousand thoughts flashing by
a chair that cushion will never know
what life has faded before it’s time
now a home empty of passion
without a love to share.
“Listen for laugh is this a dream”
upon waking can never hear
far above the stars they twirl
like a dancer in mirrored hall
all bright reflections
that answer back
feel the cosmic music
ringing in my soul
for her song search the heavens.
“Think of garden filled with roses”
perfume wafting on gentle breeze
rainbow shimmers of flexing petals
swaying canes whisper love
tempt us closer hidden thorns
walked together in place of peace
memories of seasons past
trellis now covered in blooms
once all around had been bare.
The second stanza is about Passion.
“Every spring we pruned the roses”
flush of green across the land
sweet scent of life renewed
knelt before me offered trust
grasped with leathered palms
metal glinting in warming light
whistling birdsong floating by
as we hear our hearts touch
bright eyes smiling lips open
“Beyond the tumbled wall of stone”
wild growth in exuberant splendor
vibrant colors fluttering wings
clear a path through tangled vines
lay plaid cloth upon the ground
wicker treasure reveals her love
glossy fruit and crafted loaves
sparkling liquid fizzing bubbles
feast my eyes upon such beauty.
“Winds they whispered of a dream”
sink into soil watch changing sky
blue and white are her colors
buttons popped release her curves
lingering gaze as fingers trace
warm lips explore the textured skin
contrast of sun and wind shivers
urgent movements shadows dance
as one reach beyond this world.
“When night has fallen land is dark”
blue has gone now so has red
black blurred shapes all around
fierce light pours from above
shadow moon sailing free
green rhythmic wings pulse
distant yellow glow of home
breathe deep earthy perfume
cup her cheeks devour soul.
“Caressed her body with calloused hands”
deep sigh soft fabric twitches
rough skin abrades gently
circling heavy mounds that peak
sway with each step tighter
up and down nails scratch
tugging hem over flared hips
cracks echo darkening flesh
slick bud writhes panting cry.
“As we walked home through the wood”
an owl hunts in silent flight
nightjar call eclipses stars
insects hum in droning chorus
leaves on trunks rustle overhead
impaled deep carry her home
sheathed tight in liquid heat
long strides bouncing hard
world quiets as she explodes.
The third stanza is about Healing.
“Summer flees so we chopped wood”
groaning bounty weighs heavy on vines
golden kernels waving sea of malt
dark earth bright shapes eased out
harvest of hope days grow short
sweet smell of cooling berries
gentle breeze blows taste of ice
dark blue is the northern sky
cordage heaped sticky resin.
“My lover beside me flushed like roses”
tremulous smile creases visage
gulping water brushes brow
sheen of sweat covers skin
rest my love pace yourself
sit down in shade of lush oak tree
gentle memories streaming by
faraway sound panicked tone
fading pink turns stark white
“Pulled out thorn deep in her hands”
bind her wounds and kiss it better
tend to scrapes and bruises
feed her broth when feeling ill
sit beside the hospital bed
in sickness and in health
care for her when needed
done with love and hope
not a burden never that.
“Laid kindling on our hearth of stone”
deep in thought spark the flame
bright colors shadows flicker
spreading warmth adjust chair
whispered thanks clasp of hands
busy work clear the table
wash the dishes stare out window
she calls out to me I’m sorry
carry her to bed to sleep now.
“A swift sickening has brought the dark”
propped on feathers hair spread out
eyes closed tight shallow breaths
billowing fabric blots the sun
dim shadows creeping over face
cool clothes soothes burned flesh
gentle touch massage the pain
restless movements whimpering cries
lonely night turns to days.
“She croons to me in fevered dream”
a song of love timeless notes
all the things left unsaid
too late the past has swung open
voiceless pleas ragged sobs
haunted eyes search for soul
nonsense words babble on
of new beginnings in our life
hi she says how are you.
The fourth stanza is about Hope
“We talked of things of hopes to dream”
porch at twilight gently swing
promotion soon with bigger pay
perhaps more garden or a pond
a real kitchen hanging pans
yes a workshop with many tools
eyes shimmering…a nursery
she places my hand on her belly
soon you’ll feel the life within.
“Fall we planned in our home of wood”
extra room we packed in boxes
fresh paint and clouds of white
soft fibers to muffle feet
sanding rungs to form a crib
little clothes fill the drawers
many gifts from friends dear
head on shoulder wistful smile
quiet peace envision future.
“With lights aglow room not so dark”
happy home pattering feet
shrieks of laughter down the hall
homework done restful time
look around at all we’ve built
kiss her head on my chest
fingers trace slid under buttons
coy look through thick lashes
“Through open window scent of roses”
rain washed air cool and fresh
clearing sky crystal light
glittering beads rainbow hues
flagstone path glistening
moss sprigs soft underfoot
quiet snip cutting stems
linen cloth china plates
with vase full flowers bright.
“Cooked our dinner on counter of stone”
bubbling water scent of herbs
chopping harvest of greens
bustling cooks little hands
sneaking samples watchful gaze
secret smile playful pinch
exasperation waving spoon
are we done yet
everyone grab a dish.
“Heads bowed in prayer we clasped hands”
thank you God for this meal
for providing us with courage
and the strength to love
thank you for our health
and the means to flourish
thank you for guiding us
to those less fortunate
The fifth stanza is about Love
“Planted bulbs washed dirt from hands”
partners in life visions of spring
worked the earth in hope
clear liquid soaking soil
breath deep scents of life
splashing clean twinkle eyes
don’t even think of it
doused with water blast
chased her round the garden
“Loved our world in a simple dream”
wake to sounds of pattering feet
happy shrieks buried in children
make breakfast and walk the dog
bathroom shared hurry up
days to weeks to months
many growth marks on doors
equal ever expanding hearts
our family home a safe place
“On shore of pond skipped a stone”
plonk plonk plonk splash
we threw until arms sore
then threw some more
until no stones were left
heat shimmers in woodland
cool waters entice
clothes shed in haste
she emerges fairy creature
“Laughed did carve initials in wood”
haloed iridescence dripping
sweet kisses on her lips
heat dries fans flames
she rides to fulfillment
rough bark chipped
lines and symbols
steel and stone
“Her bower sprinkled petals of roses”
soft curves dancing in light
joyous giggles hide and seek
who is the hunter now
she comes to me sparkling
reclines on natural carpet
beckons with firm caresses
reach in pockets release rain
blessings from our garden
“Contrasts of red her hair is dark”
caught my interest long ago
that sable pelt shimmered
physical attraction at first
but saucy wit captured
what causes two to be one
connected souls in love
we belong to each other
The sixth stanza is about Lonely
“Winter when long shadows get dark”
twisted branches stab like knives
brittle stars washed clean
silent petals falling wind
heavy weight subdues soul
icy vapor melted on glass
stillness of chilled air drifting
pale light shimmers of dawn
reveals a patchwork coverlet
“Held on tight with clenched hands”
careful not to stumble
precious burden carried
eyes bleary with pain
grope for balance
table rocks uneven legs
steam winds in tight coils
gulp bitter black liquid
toss grounds for compost
“In the garden we cut back the roses”
every step repeats again
faded blooms turned to seed
caught out by future thorns
sharp thoughts dulled by cold
slick flagstones worn edges
each stark bush named
withered canes laid in heaps
every color an anchor in time
“Has this year been naught but a dream”
twilight now world goes to sleep
brilliant hues melt like chalk
reach out can almost touch
understanding within grasp
endless cycle polished bright
rock to sleep peaceful arms
always wake to sore stiffness
cannot return to emptiness
“Bed with four posts of polished wood”
eyelet ruffles yellowed now
squares of down still await
run fingers over soft cotton
stroke the curving headboard
gentle smile of remembrance
dust swirls curtains drawn
turn off the light close the door
“Her picture rests on mantle of stone”
forever caught in repose
that relaxed contentment
what thoughts caused her
to accept my offer
ghostly hand rests on shoulder
what do you see in that face
turn to embrace her tight
our future dreams of love
in the pond that is out back
in the water there lives a frog
in the oak tree on the bank
in a branch is a nest of birds
in a room of the house
in a basket sits a cat.
he is quite large for a cat
his favorite room is in the back
he likes to wander in the house
when outside he chases the frog
up a tree in search of birds
with bellyfull sleeps on bank.
hopping along the grassy bank
keeps wary eye out for the cat
provides tasty meal for the birds
to the pond he hurries back
life is simple being a frog
dinner of legs at the house.
flying round and round the house
setting down on overgrown bank
wades in pond searching for frog
not around today is the cat
returns to mate holding back
feeds next generation of birds.
in every tree there are many birds
in the garden surrounding the house
the sides are formal but not the back
mow the turf that forms the bank
noisy clatter chases the cat
all day long croaks the frog.
in my throat I clear a frog
so much work is for the birds
curiosity killed the cat
feels like living in a divided house
work never ends on that you can bank
satisfaction brought the cat back.
the frog waits for the princess while drinks are on the house
people have birds for brains you can take that to the bank
a cat has got your tongue but I’ve got your back.
“Remembrances of a Life”
dresses herself in uniform of blue
nervously drumming spoon of silver
just yesterday wore diapers white
waves from bus black on gold
mother stands eyes rimmed in red
thinks of child so young and green.
drives to work through tunnel of green
moods fluctuate today she is blue
waves of traffic every light is red
towers of commerce flashing silver
lobby of marble veined in gold
cubicles of infinity walls sterile white.
under endless skies she wore white
entwined in waves leaves of green
digit trembles encircled in gold
wisp of remembrance borrowed blue
tapered candles melt rivulets of silver
porcession glides softly carpet is red.
storm roiled clouds rays rising red
wind waves lines of linens white
her tin covered roof gleaming silver
fields of rye sweeping sea green
clearing skies light pouring blue
orb plunges into oblivion molten gold.
crowd roars guzzling brewed gold
hurled sphere stitches rotating red
pennants snap background of blue
runner slides safe home plate white
she smiles at checker patterned green
vendor waves dogs in foiled silver.
rocking chair head glints of silver
memories more precious than gold
ascends the steps in skirt of green
gently tease cheeks blushing red
holding her baby swaddled white
waves of neighbors out of the blue.
stones weathered silver stand guard while
while flag waves stripes of red
spotlight shines gold always protects
while flag waves stars of white
wreathes of green woven blankets
while flag waves field of blue.
Sestina Carnival Edition #1 was held on June 23rd, 2006
After the women cooked the bakwezhigan
the children gather round the chiahyaog
tell us tales before the ishkonigan
when our ancestors walked with the geebawug
we will tell you only in Anishinaabemowin
it is necessary as anishinaabe nanaawdchigewin.
before the people had anishinaabe nanaawdchigewin
they ate grains but not bakwezhign
then they were given speech in Anishinaabemowin
and stories were told to the first chiahyaog
one by one revealed the geebawug
this was long before the ishkonigan.
although today we live on the ishkonigan
we still heal with anishinaabe nanaawdchigewin
our shaman are guided by the geebawug
similar to the wafting smell of bakwezhign
we tell you this as your chiahyaog
be proud to speak in Anishinaabemowin.
when you speak and sing in Anishinaabemowin
it lifts you beyond the ishkonigan
someday when you become the chiahyaog
and you teach the ways of anishinaabe nanaawdchigewin
as a lesson when cooking bakwezhign
then you can commune with the geebawug.
behind the veil is the world of geebawug
they speak to our souls in Anishinaabemowin
feeding a hunger unlike bakwezhign
in a vision of hope for the ishkonigan
show the way to anishinaabe nanaawdchigewin
they give prestige to the chiahyaog.
listen well children to us chiahyaog
for our heritage is from the geebawug
they gave a gift of anishinaabe nanaawdchigewin
to preserve our life as Anishinaabemowin
if we keep our faith on the ishkonigan
we will be comforted like bakwezhign.
a group of chiahyaog speaking in Anishinaabemowin
discuss the geebawug on the ishkonigan
as a tonic of anishinaabe nanaawdchigewin they consume bakwezhigan
Anishinaabemowin (Ojibwe Language )
Anishinaabe Nanaawdchigewin (traditional medicine)
Chiahyaog ( elders )
bakwezhigan ( fry bread )
Ishkonigan (reservation )
Geebawug ( spirits )
riding my pony I saw a butterfly
touching its wings oh so gentle
being outside one with nature
the harness is inlaid with silver
in my life I’ve had some love
took some time to find a family.
lived alone without a family
felt cocooned like a butterfly
spent many years denying love
nothing about life could be gentle
fog covered me in a haze of silver
thought that was just my nature.
bruised battered by human nature
finally left my hurtful family
took a job for some silver
flew to land of ice like a butterfly
found people there were so gentle
gave to me unconditional love.
was so hard to trust that love
that kindness was somone’s nature
treated with respect hugs were gentle
took me in offered me a family
I fluttered for awhile poor butterfly
my mind still balked in mirrored silver.
everyday collected more silver
but had found a land to love
so freeing to stay garden butterfly
delighted in discovery of all the nature
when realized they were my family
shed tears of joy held in hands gentle.
found my home settled in so gentle
the rocks and snow painted silver
new parents and brother in my family
opened my heart to their love
trusting in soul is now my nature
I am free to soar a new butterfly.
I’ve found a gentle soul and him have grown to love.
gaze in silver glass looking back is not my nature.
chose my family reborn like a beautiful butterfly.
Monika The Ice Queen
“Hear My Voice”
growing up family
parents are surreal
controlling my freedom
no true happiness
creative so pleasurable.
mind’s eye is pleasurable
say yes to family
will I be autonomous
some days are surreal
outside there is freedom.
tear down walls to freedom
crumbled bricks touch is pleasurable
stomping dust brings happiness
packing and leaving my family
my life ahead looks surreal
learning how to be autonomous.
to speak my mind is to be autonomous
that is the path to true freedom
on my own feels great but surreal
yet oh so wanton and pleasurable
finding new friends to replace family
sing dance perform joy is happiness.
birthing the process creates happiness
inner voice scolds must be autonomous
choose members to bring into family
many paths to tread openly to freedom
an entire body of work so pleasurable
floating never knew could be so surreal.
love rushes strobe waves flash surreal
caresses touch skin brings happiness
cresting flying sweating so pleasurable
to be me myself I am autonomous
open doors walk through to freedom
finally understand my role in family.
life is so surreal being autonomous
I find happiness in searching for freedom
it is pleasurable now thinking of family.
a wondrous sight for my hungry eyes
a heaping mound of tender mango
thinking of taste makes my mouth water
place my choice in bag colored blue
pay with crisp bills heads of green
walking home under the blazing sun.
harsh light reflecting rays of sun
put on cool shades protect my eyes
the rims are bright very green
bruising my legs bag with mango
past the lake surface is blue
stop to dangle feet in cool water.
relaxing drink from bottle of water
face basks in warmth of sun
helps my balance when feeling blue
leaning back head drooping eyes
wonder what to do with my mango
perhaps some nectar is that green.
nectar is sweet but skin is green
should be mixed with some water
after blending the ripe mango
open the blinds let in the sun
stretching arms I rub my eyes
fill my cup glass tinted blue.
gazing out window sky deep blue
all the trees shadows of green
such a treat for my puffy eyes
all that wonder makes tears water
what a gift is the light of the sun
that grows the tree of the mango.
my favorite fruit is the mango
in my kitchen walls are blue
fading light of the setting sun
shines on window fabric so green
walk to sink listen to water
long day ends splash my eyes.
sipping fresh mango nectar put feet up on couch looks green.
fluff the blue pillow did I turn off the water.
the sun is gone now too tired to care shut my eyes.
What we did with this poem, was that each of us picked six words that meant something to us, then we picked three of the other persons words and proceeded to alternate writing each line. She wrote half, and I wrote half.
You can smell long before sighting the ocean
Anticipate the sand beneath your feet so hot
All through the workday the hunger will grow
For only you know, your lips, your eyes conceal a smile
A look that says much more than the word, love
A look that belies the singing in your heart
There was a time, long ago, when I took heart
Memories of our passion alike the swell of the ocean
Started with tender caresses that lead to love
One gentle touch, my skin on fire, glowing, hot
Breath coming short, panting, open mouth smile
Oh blissful joy, sweet music plays as our desires grow
So what happened in the fields, crops did not grow
Nor the sun shine its face as rain filled my heart
Bereft was my soul till fortune gave me your smile
Bright eyes sparkling as rays of light skim the ocean
The fertile soil we tilled as the blue sky shone hot
Together as one creating a labour of love
Cycle of hope, eternal vigilance worn, faded love
Through blood, sweat and tears, witnessing our struggles grow
Over the horizon came smoke and flames seared hot
Invincible, indestructible our spirit, our dreams, our heart
We held hands and soared like gulls towards the distant ocean
Flying with faith, a bright fresh future beckoned with a smile
The sounds of life filled the room with a newborn smile
As fresh as the morning dew nourishing our nascent love
The joy streaming on our faces, salty tang of the ocean
Washing away the past for new beginnings to grow
With tender hands we held our child close to heart
Gazed into each other’s eyes, overcome, overwhelmed, tears hot
Many cycles have passed, children grown, passion still hot
Kismet, destiny, fate, good fortune has blessed us with her smile
Across the miles between us echoes a strong beating heart
Deep and rich, resonant it sings refrains of love
A simple touch to spark, in truth it will always grow
As high as the mountain, as wide as the river, as deep as the ocean
Embers glowing hot, flickering light reflects shining love
In their sparks reminiscences kindle a smile and inspired we grow
With fullness of heart, passion crests like blue waves in the ocean
For many the words are hard to say, get caught
in the throat. Choking and gasping feel the panic
set in. Eyes wander in desperation, sweat flows
soaking clothing. Arms folded, fingers tapping
impatiently. I do, you know, like you and want you,
but; it’s a big step. When you decide, let me know.
So many blogs to read, millions actually. I know
that comments are desired, but sometimes get caught
up in other things. Real life takes over; although you
write such beautiful posts, it’s the feeling of panic
that prevails. Sit at the desk, ponder the screen, tapping
the keys. Agony follows, for today, nothing flows.
I understand the emotions you have, the ebbs and flows
of a relationship. Through a blog, how well can you know
someone after all. We connect, but are we really tapping
all that is there? Or are we simply floundering, caught
up in the excitement of new growth. Is this where the panic
sets in? When I realize, that deep down, I can’t see you.
There are many things I wish to say, but thank you
for now. Too few truly care, most go with the flows
of life, just floating in the river. Over the falls, panic
and fear, the boat capsizes and they nod. We know
how you feel, been there, done that. Haven’t caught
on yet? That noise in the dark, it’s death tapping.
Death? That’s terrible! Is that what you see tapping
on the window? Long white fingers beckoning you
onward? Crossing over to another existence, caught
by happenstance and time. I don’t see somber flows
of mourners into the graveyard. We all of us know
that death will come someday, but no need to panic.
I was merely pointing out that very thing. No panic
here from me. At least not yet. I find myself idly tapping
a pencil on my blotter. So much to discover, to know
as the computer screen flickers in my tired eyes. You
would think that I could stop; but still the data flows.
Endless streams as someone else’s thoughts are caught.
I am very pleased you have seen me and helped calm my panic.
Together flows our tears as we hug, hands on shoulders tapping.
The sun caught in your eyes, somehow you always know.
To be in the Highlands so very green
Above on thermal soars beautiful bird
Fresh scents of heather on cool breeze
On bright days like this time is endless
As the sun continues her stately dance
Take ease of your cares sit and be present.
The land sings of the past and the present
Hillsides steep with rocks and lichens of green
White flashes as woolly sheep run and dance
In the hollows come songs of nesting bird
Steep trails cut centuries ago were endless
Climb to the top breathe deep of salty breeze.
Taste the distant sea with freshening breeze
Clouds build and swirl as storm nearly present
Dark pillows release torrents that seem endless
Raging foam leaps from heights washed green
Waiting huddled in shelter of tree is the bird
Flapping its wings sprays droplets that dance.
Flowers bloom in profusion bee’s excited dance
Dazzling colors swaying in the still breeze
Leaping from branch to feed hops black bird
His wings flutter and grabs twig to present
Chosen mate thinks then flashes wing in green
Burgeoning growth in meadows that were endless.
Teeming with life cycles of spring are endless
Vibrant energy in creation an ancient dance
Pollen coats everything in blankets of green
Constant twittering floats in the warm breeze
The deadly struggle for survival ever present
From night’s embrace swoops a hunting bird.
Faint golden dawn greeted by a singing bird
Brilliant stars fade in the black that’s endless
Slowly unwrapped like a cherished present
Day blushes revealed in a lover’s dance
Colored skirts lifted by the teasing breeze
The rainbow palette paints the forests green.
Soft chirping bird leads feet to the dance
Partners are endless just shooting the breeze
This poem is a present for a poet who’s green
“Tis The Season”
The voice of a thousand bells rang out with hope
that winter’s day. Bright colors warmed the snow
and the pallid sun strove to melt hearts. Peace
be upon you and all of yours in this time of strife.
For it is said that one shall come to share our ritual.
Glad tidings for some, but others remained cold.
Speech would not fill empty bellies, nor heat cold
rooms. For the poor and desperate, little hope
in empty promises. Had many a century of ritual
and still the land groaned under tyranny. Snow
drifted high and blame placed on the rich. Strife
was now the norm, black looks instead of peace.
Soldiers marched, steel swords kept fragile peace.
Riven with dissension, leaders thoughts grew cold
and harsh. Crushed beneath edicts, grim strife
erupted. All through the night flares alight, hope
blazed and consumed. Come daybreak, the snow
stained red. Too many were given last rites ritual.
Hollow eyes and paupers graves, the empty ritual
of death. The silence felt in town after town, peace
at last, for no one left. The earth, covered in snow
lay dormant. Spring, far way on this biting cold
day, would return once more. The sense of hope
had been crushed, but still cause for more strife.
Change would come, forced from below. Strife
channeled into words and deeds. Codified ritual
replaced heredity, slowly the actions gave hope.
A concept not readily grasped, perceived peace
to be weak. Throughout the long, dark night, cold
plots designed. Strike they would, in melted snow.
At last the heated rays revealed fresh green. Snow
had gone and with the warming earth, false strife
commenced. Old ways and new corruption. Cold
calculations yielded poor harvests for the ritual
of change had sprouted deep roots. At last peace
and prosperity had replaced the longing of hope.
No longer a burden was snow, but a blessed ritual.
No more harsh strife, but harmony and peace.
No longer starved and cold, but a future of hope.
“The Land Of Sorrows”
distant white capped peaks
pilgrims assent sandals worn
sun releases songs
floating beneath clouds
bright colored ancestors shrine
incense curls to sky
trees bend angry sky
waves frothing to deadly peaks
long stairway steps worn
camphor and elm among clouds
sea deity songs
drums pound ancient songs
thunder lifts to sullen sky
drowned from swirling clouds
ragged lightning peaks
poor rice farmer spirits worn
downstream floating shrine
sacred temple shrine
petitioners chanted songs
polished wood planks worn
shrieking birds fill sky
Nainokami shakes peaks
landslides choking clouds
flames feed oily clouds
bronze bells tolling mournful shrine
Shinto black hat peaks
white costumed death songs
purification clears sky
new amulets worn
old trembling hands worn
brown eyes contain milky clouds
memory of sky
last journey to shrine
lifetime spent prayerful songs
Amida call peaks
pale clothes worn to shrine
parting clouds hear somber songs
blessed sky sun warm peaks
“Without padding on the sole the hobnail will pierce the cross”
in the grand pantheon of the spiritual
it is not a singular territory
that causes the suspension
and at times deep baffled
confusion passing for daylight
at the shop of Farzin the Cobbler
not for he the village cobbler
worrying about the spiritual
aspects of prayer during daylight
that is the territory
of the imam baffled
by morality’s suspension
without the fervent suspension
of disbelief the busy cobbler
will always remain baffled
by the mysteries of the spiritual
ways inexorably opening territory
best examined under daylight
through the mosque pours daylight
glittering motes in suspension
vast sacred territory
not ignored by illiterate cobbler
who does seek spiritual
life although still baffled
yet to be baffled
to stagger in dark not daylight
facing a spiritual
crisis and suspension
of faith is not unique to a cobbler
but is every human’s territory
a vast and wild territory
filled with baffled
masons, soldiers and a cobbler
creating my sandals by daylight
nail by nail the suspension
grows until all that is left is the spiritual
without this territory being exposed to harsh daylight
the many baffled souls that confront faith’s suspension
along with Farzin the cobbler could never be spiritual