Place at the Table

I disturbed the geese,
two of them apart from the flock
standing in purple camas,
complaining in goose talk
as they flew off across the bay.
Alone now except for the swifts
and the calm water of slack tide,
the first breeze that comes with the sun
lightly stroking the water.
The green world rises with fearless grass,
the color purple splashed along the rock
in the fullness of spring.
We’re all guests at this feast,
tasting again the beauty of the beloved,
feeling our way like the searching tide
into the deep clefts of the stony shore,
finding our place at the table,
thankful to be alive.





Morning Breeze

You don’t have to correct the world
nor the billions of people.
The stars were placed long ago,
the weary moon constant in its track.
You just may have to let go
and give yourself
to the soft morning breeze
with its gentle hint of rain.





To Join the Living

Spring is rising
as mountain snows melt,
seeking out what lingers
of melancholia and fear
stored in winter dark.
We launch into the river,
skirting between freighters,
under steel web bridges,
finding our pace
in the wind driven chop.
Time to come out
and feel the urge
of falling water,
the hot touch of sun,
to join the living
as our old friend waits
in his ice clawed cave
brooding over December.



Watercolor by Eilish Hynes


Beyond the Door

Cleansed of stress
and ill feeling,
root fed and purged,
I relish the inner space,
the sympathy with what rises.
Deep green has touched the earth
though cold winds stir the sea
and spring waits
while the ancient balance
holds the churning wave,
the tall swaying trees.
Letting go I am found,
emptied out I am full;
beyond the doors between us
a land rich with peace.




Steady Voice

The winds are up from the south
pushing white caps over grey water,
a Pacific storm reaching over the Olympics,
Vancouver Island, to the inland sea.
Most of the shorebirds are hunkered down,
Canada geese tucked into lee cover,
otter laying low in thorn lined bowers.
There’s excitement on the wind,
as if the ocean were breathing upon us,
carrying messages from the far east
of change and new life.
Gulls flare up into the gusts –
storms won’t put them off –
but there are no sails within sight
and we too take shelter.
The sea has begun to roll,
the long fetch of southerly wind
bringing the broad channel awake
yet far below in a stone-lined canyon
the dark is unperturbed, the water still.
The depth will not roil as the surface churns,
a steady voice in the gathering gale.
I want to arc like the gull, dive like a whale
into the darkness, but I keep my post,
calm in the great change upon us,
finding myself in the wind, the wave
and the deep grey sea, vast and unmoved.





To Pillar the Deep

Before the altar of morning,
with the rise of spring
in grey cloud rain,
the soul rests in silence,
steady and full as the sea.
The long arc of history
compressed to a tremor
passes through bedrock,
yearning for the unmoved.
To pillar the deep,
strengthen the stillness,
heart and mind
become quiet as leaf,
weightless as bird,
fountains of peace
for the earth to live on.





Into the Garden

The songs I sing
to keen budding branches
filled with winter
and darkness of root,
I silently sing them,
the trees only hear me
as they ready to open
in cold March air.
From out of the earth-tomb
the beauty of color,
feast for the sky gods
and we in our task
to break the old crust
and rise like spring flowers
into the garden
quicksilver and fair.





Melody of the Stranger

Just this morning,
maybe of all mornings
with the sky full of spring rain
and the fire warmly burning
I turn to the edge of light
in the soft distance.
Cranky as a crow
yet open like a spring bulb
I go where I have not gone
for many years
to the rim of a canyon,
the edge of a waterfall,
above and below
the whole earth calling
in the sweet toned melody
of the stranger I once knew as joy.




encaustic painting by Eilish Hynes


Born through the Plum Tree

Wisdom beneath the earth
born through the flowering tree
in the soft color of life,
bearing the burden of snow
as it rises with spring’s urge,
hungry for the light.





No Telling

No telling what will appear
when the wide arc of earth
slowly turns to meet the sun.
A muddy tangle of clawing vines,
the sweeping bend of a broad river
or the flow of peace
from one darkened window
waiting with thanks
for the coming light.