A menacing knight, suspecting his stealthy approach a success,
Lunges ferociously at the slumbering dragon
In a misguided holy quest for glory.
The peaceful dragon, somewhat surprised by the foolhardy attack,
Tears the silly head from the knights body with ease
And places it near his writhing red body and sword.
A look of surprise can be seen in the dead man's eyes for a time,
But a heavy heart has no claim on the gentle beast.
A stranger walks unknown in foreign lands
To everyone but himself.
Passing by a storefront he sees his own reflection
And nods at the man with acquaintance,
A smile is returned in kind.
Wind paints the frozen Alaska sky in sharp lines
Extending the blistering snow beyond the rugged peaks
Like arms reaching skyward in morning stretch,
And uncloaking the often invisible demarcation
Of upslope wind and dangerous recirculation
That forms the snow cornice in space.
The bird knows the wind well,
He sees the varying flow with or without snow
And navigates the mountain ridges accordingly.
Boundaries are drawn on a map,
Then redrawn a thousand times more before the end,
In a struggle that is perfectly human,
Trekking near to the mirage of security
During times of new anthems and fashion,
On a planet that doesn’t take sides with the victor.
Last I checked we both breathe the air
And wake from sweet dreams with fresh smiles on occasion,
And worry about things we discuss in soft voices,
And plead with the sky to spare our disaster.
When the final time-lapse is viewed at high speed
Please let there be no lines between people.
A child asks of the old groundskeeper
Watering graceful gardens
In amber desert sun,
“Do you like watering trees?
There are so many,
It must take forever.”
“There’s more to it than that,”
Says the strong man with a kind voice,
Waters more than the trees,
It gives life to memories.
I think it’s very nice, and
I’m okay with that too.
… Run along now,” the man motions with a wave,
“Chase after the mystery,
Look farther ahead than behind, and
Watch out for rocks along the way.”
From the bow of a great and mighty ship,
In a blackness mirrored by the moonless water,
A profound and humbling incomprehension
With the vastness of space
Overwhelmed and mystified me;
I became unbalanced in complete and terrifying wonderment
Of the countless twinkling little lights
Mapping their ancient riddled exhalations
Across the universe to the sea.
I feel differently now
Looking back on my life,
About the risks I ventured in youth—
When time was more likely,
And strength more complete,
When patience was weaker,
And love everlasting, so I thought.
Now the movie replaying in my tired mind
Is mostly familiar smiling faces
And the rain—
The wretched damn rain
The cold day that you died,
And the new wildflowers
That bloomed the next spring.
Let the water move you
Not the other way around,
So that your efforts are rewarded
In a living connection with nature,
Which is near to grace and beauty.
Do not force your will upon the river,
Which is a temporary victory,
Rather, rejoice in that line of water
That tracks safely through the boulders
And beyond the horizon line.
And what about your fixation with the past?
Does it ever subside?
Asked the man of himself.
Not really, not often, not truly, answered he.
And the record skipped back with a squeal,
To the worn groove it sings in the song.
A tired man walking alone in the desert
Happened upon a bird not startled by his approach
So the curious man asked the bird how to fly,
The old desert bird politely described what he could‒
How he flapped his fledging wings for hours upon hours
Afraid he wouldn’t survive the first height.
Time passed and his patience diminished
From long restless days in the nest,
Until finally one day when he thought he was ready
Deciding to give flight a try.
The young bird steadied his nerve, and
Hopped near to the edge
Then lost suddenly his footing and fell,
Crashing quickly toward rocks and soil
He spread his wings hard,
Bracing for certain demise.
How frightening, said the man, interrupting the story
Impressed by the birds explanation,
Thinking himself close to the knowledge of flight.
Yes, very scary indeed, said the bird,
A very close call with disaster,
But that has nothing to do with how to fly,
And gets you no nearer the answer.
It probably won’t make much sense to you, said the wise bird
But after all these years in the sky
I know it’s less about wings than the wind.
A thousand men fight
For the love of a queen
And kill for the love of control,
Plotting red death to a coward king on the run
Battered armies courageous in struggle,
Bishop takes pawn on f4.
Earth has wild wants too,
Evolving art-life forms unending
Replacing desert canvas for new shades of green
Eroding rocky coastline with sandy beach dreams
Loving the forest in fresh flowing streams
Breathing sharp snow-topped arete mountain scenes
Carving canyon deep feelings in minds spinning free
Caressing her lover in orbiting rings
While rolling together in darkness.