(At the Sooke River Potholes, BC)
All I do, all I am
all I want to be
is to flow like this river
take in contours of shore
blend with each curve
following the slow fluid song
of an always forward motion
along worn paths of bedded stones
smoothed by time’s long passage.
The water here runs shallow
where river has rounded stone
yet feet still ache when placed
on unyielding solid surfaces.
Each step a thin balance laced with pain
lasting from heel to toe to bone.
The river accepts all we have as if
anything more than that
is not enough.
For All of You
You gave yourself, so much to give
the castaway upon the island shore
the treasure buried for others to find
the wind that blows the ole’ man down
the light that brightens the undersides of clouds
the songs that birds sing in their sunrise glory
the stars that try but fail to fill
the unblinking eye of a long night’s slumber
the rains that wet the branches
of trees and leaves them quivering
within time’s slow, unguarded passage.
You are all these things
and more, until what is me
Is left of you.
The Song of the Wild Geese
I hear the song of the wild geese
play high octaves across the fields
Their chorus echoes through the valley
awakening the morning from deep sleep
seeding the chill air with strident notes.
Their voices are a wind chime newly rung
and sky reverberates to the sound
as the geese fly low past my open window
leaving no doubt that a new day is here
with spring bursting ripe upon the land.
In silence I greet the full earth with a shovel
blade pitched deep to the heart of dark soil
soaked with the quiet rains that fell today
content with the seeds in my hands
and tears shed by the clouds in my eyes.
Butterfly Clouds Dim the Light of Reason
The pleasure of softness of petals forgotten
when thorns on the stem of the rose
betray the colours that blossom
with promises that fade with passing of time
till we wake to the pain of self-inflicted wounds.
How can we judge the depths of our lives
from the round confines of these near shores?
How desperate we are as the love for this life
has grown beyond our will to contain it
yet we hold onto dreams though we cannot sleep.
Where black holes exist, all light is captured
held in dark of revolving centers of anti-matter.
As our stars approach the whirl and pull
we must ask ourselves while there is time
if we should enter willingly or resist such confines
holding to the soft contours of space and time?
Butterfly clouds shield eyes from sun
delicate patterns on fluorescent wings
screen the bright colours that soothe
the vision where outward view turns inward
a revolving kaleidoscope mixing of shapes and colours.
In flowered meadow cast in a net of foothills
we run awe struck through fields of daisies
where in one deep encompassing breath
all of our senses of whom we are
spill over in a vast sea of mixed emotion.
When we close our eyes we wonder
if we will lose control of our lives
once so safely self-contained
in our virtual world now inflamed
by the fading light of reason.
Ripples Across Lake Constance
I’ve tried so long to ignore its presence
as age creeps out from under the eaves
into the light exposing those hidden places
where life had prospered in youth’s denial
etched in fragile sunrise glory till suddenly
I’m locked in mortal combat holding
ground that someday I know
I must learn to lose.
This hastened passage through space and time
that once seemed to have no consequence
is now consequential to all I am and do.
Not knowing what end is in sight
the mirror that holds self-image
finally shatters into glistening shards
till each step taken forward
is more vulnerable than the last.
Yet I will not live my life in fear
of some sudden accident or fall
or some illness or random act of war.
I must dream while still a dreamer
caught amid the river’s constant flow
adrift in time’s consuming spiral nexus.
As age sends ripples across my bow
I’ll make my peace in the All not knowing
and accept the undertow of hidden currents
carrying me till I am content at letting go
to that place that no longer separates
me from you, and you from me
but binds all things as one.
Alfredo Quarto is an environmental activist and poet living on an organic farm in the foothills of the Olympic Mountains in Washington. He’s been published in numerous poetry publications including:
Seattle, Catalyst, Raindance Journal, Piedmont Review, Haiku Zashi Zo,
Paperbag Poems, Seattle Arts, Spindrift, Arts Focus, Arnazella, Dan River
Anthology, Amelia, Americas Review, Vox, Middle
Eye Open, Elevation Review, Montana Mouthful, Tidepools, New Verses News, The
Poet Magazine, and Wild Roof.
Poetry Seattle, Catalyst, Raindance Journal, Piedmont Review, Haiku Zashi Zo, Paperbag Poems, Seattle Arts, Spindrift, Arts Focus, Arnazella, Dan River Anthology, Amelia, Americas Review, Vox, Middle House Review, The Closed Eye Open, Elevation Review, Montana Mouthful, Tidepools, New Verses News, The Poet Magazine, and Wild Roof.
So refreshing to read connection to our lives and our natural world which tells us so much about our selves. Lovely poems!ReplyDelete