Stars Beneath the Earth

We should brighten up,
move forward, give up
what’s dead and past
except what’s dead isn’t past,
their stories like buried stars
within the darkened earth.
When we dig that ground
up come vampires, saints,
martyrs and their killers
as we unravel their knots,
sort their tangled skeins into smooth threads
to weave our coats for the winters to come
while stars beneath the earth
shine on in silent glory.

 

 

 


 


More than Temperature

Across the channel
wind driven waves
push against flood tide
under dark cloud
and threat of rain.
Snow covers the highlands
holding back the summer,
kin to the ice within
hardened and unmoving.
I feel you across the water,
grey wave, darkened depth
and the cold a wall between us
refusing to be breached.
More to this than temperature,
the story written on a headstone
cut and shaped by all we lost.
Sympathy reaches out
before the wall can stop it,
the warmth of forgiveness
passing through the barrier
with a gentleness forgotten.
Thick cloud and cold water
layer above and below
yet in the garden of memory
the ground begins to yield.

 

 

 

photograph by Rebecca Hynes


 


Summer Solstice 2017

Center of the Wheel

 

Strength of cloud,
brilliant dawn,
weight of planets
held like a leaf.
Rising with light,
returning to dark
and the center of the wheel
only turning.

 

 

***

 

 

Bathed in a Miracle

 

The green rush is on the land
bursting to breathe
the warm air of freedom.
We bathe in a miracle
pale green and perfect as a baby,
reaching out from the unspoken
into the daylight becoming.

 

 

***

 

 

Sound of the World

 

The river of traffic
roars with a flood.
Fast paced, frenzied,
the sound of the world
while bird-less trees
wave in the morning.
Light cracks over the east
and the planet turns
with the effortless grace
of a ballerina, lifted
from the weight of time
in the arms of the eternal.

 

 

 

 


 


Well of Beginnings

Healing the heart
takes heart medicine;
sound or touch, yes,
but what closes the wound
and brings peace rests within.
There are horrors in this life
breaking more than bones,
isolation that blights the soul
yet there is a well, cold and full
that feeds us with beginnings,
timeless beyond death.
Rest here in the silence;
we have far to travel.

 

 

 


 


Bardo Time

It’s been three days now
as you pilot to the other side.
You took off like a rocket
but the soul slows down
to the speed of life
without a body.
You’ve got a lot to ponder
but plenty of time.
You didn’t want to say goodbye
but we all must,
confused, distraught,
with tears to guide you.
You ran out of fuel
and there’s no way
you’d ride without style.
Not sure if there are bass guitars
or corvettes over there
but I feel you honing in
on the welcome you deserve.
You cut the board straight,
played the music,
laughed at all the fools
and kept time for the band
in your fearless register.
You can lay down arms brother
but the journey’s far from over.
10-4 good buddy.
Let’s stay in touch.

 

 

Dennis Holstun Lopez
RIP


 


Circle of Initiation

Ancients rise through morning light
with open sky on the green land.
They bring unwritten stories,
unheard songs, coming
for the ceremony of remembrance.
The new world waits
across the river of grief
in the circle of initiation
where forgiveness flowers.
Fire falls, the future brightens
as the sunlit beauty of what will be
emerges from the mist
to an Earth full with gladness.

 

 

 


 


Red Blush

Circling around like fish in a pond
thoughts wander through people and events
until returning to silence;
one with the trees and evening sky
red with the blush of the Creator.

 

 

 

photograph by Patrick Orleman


 


Where Turtles Swim

Broken and bent
I enter the gray morning,
the earth sore
and melancholy
by dreams dashed
on the barren shores
of mediocrity.
The surface of the sea
breaks in waves
yet down below
the waters are calm,
where turtles swim
without haste.
When I drop into this depth
I too am carried
by the silence of the deep,
the waters beneath the wave.

 

 

 

photo by Michel Gunther

 


 


Near As Breath

Finding the well becomes a task.
Haunted, near forgotten
the once clear pool of water,
thump of the bucket,
smell of deep earth.
Still as the curving bonsai
I turn up to the rain,
cool air on my face;
what I want near as breath.
Now I remember.

 

 


 


How It Will Be

When lights go down,
the wheels stop turning
we’ll be left with night sky,
morning quiet,
an emptiness that welcomes.
We’ll stop grinding our lives like corn
and circle dance with whales.
Our feet will drum the earth,
the rivers rise with joy,
we’ll be humans
beneath a star filled sky
and wondrous the beholding.

 

 

photograph by Shawn Malone