Poetry and Sleep

In a dream her husband appears
Younger than the day they met.
In a dream he touches his wife
With wordless love in his heart.
In dreams, their child is laughing,
And they’re laughing at their child
And a green park has no horizon.
We believe dreams in doubt of doubt
And don’t live with our losses
But live remainders of dreams
Like we live with moonlight
And traces of distant wind
And sunrise on ashen skin,
Rivers moving deep within.
In a dream his mother sat mutely
Mending the boundaries of his life.
In a dream her brother was a child
And she was mother to her brother.
In a dream, dear friends together,
At first in a familiar backyard;
Later, in an unknown city,
Itself dreaming a collective,
Building inescapable routes.
In dreams, each other, mingled
Of the magic materials of night,
Who vanish utterly into sleeping day
And unremembered poems,
Whomever, whatever we do.

Black Moon

The black moon sifts
The sand for the glass of its eye
And passes over water
Washing night from its wake
Dripping its ink over trees
Invisible month of moons
Filling my glass with black wine
And dark stars without portent
Giving us the word lunation
To accept all that’s in creation
Darkening the mountains
Changing all flowers black
Making everyone look
Descendants of descendants
Desirous of the same peace
Distant at proximity
Closer than shadows

My Wife Learning Piano

Perhaps I should learn a language
And speak to my wife
In elementary phrases
Like her elementary piano chords.
Then after so many years
Of marriage and silence,
Her loneliness and mine
Waltz into the same room
As though we’ve never met
And share the first new
Meaningful words of love
In a hybrid language
Neither one of us speaks.

Leftover Light

Carries the meadow into the woods,
The young river into the old,
The forest line into timberland,
Solid darkness stained
That gives a shape to fear,
Except for divergent paths
Dappled with fallen leaves
Like a fox snake splitting in two
And the sun bleeding through.
Fern-seed sparkles in the dust.
The wheel is wrapped with hemp.
Green is the transilluminator of black.
Three drops of sun blood in my eye.
Night at my threshold.
Devil’s wood at my door.

Fishing Magnet

I caught an angel with sintered wings
And fiery breath, burning the rope,
Sinking into the frozen depth
With my magnet in his mouth.
I magnetized a steelhead salmon,
A gun with fins, rosary of fishhooks,
Cast iron turtle, coins in shells
And knife with gills. I drew up a star.
The poles, in an air gap, touched.
The sun lifted from the load line
And a rare earth moment began,
The magic alive in all domains,
With a flux day moon in a web.
Then I pulled up a strongbox
With God’s inductions on love;
A toolbox with God’s tools,
Despite the irreversible losses
For the final restitution of love.
It was then I felt the snap
Of eddy currents saturate my shadow
And I knew I’d never give up.
I pulled up my own return path
Magnetized into a larger, deeper field.

Musicians in the House

Fill the air with music and talk,
A little wine and later, Bach.

Lulls punctuated by counterpoint
Are their own musical midpoint.

It is like love at prima vista,
Music my first and ever lingua.

I listen to their close voicing
Without myself at all digressing

Into the old man, the angry man,
The bitter and forgotten sideman.

Listening cries angels in my ears
And piano runs melt my fears

And the trumpet my daughter plays
Distills the light with moon rays

And the changes they are blowing
Are the real future we are sowing.