Comfort of the Stars

When the sun goes down
and the sky grows dark
the trees begin
their quiet conversation.
They picked up the thread
when the two legged
grew silent, each night
speaking to their neighbors
and sharing the news
of home and distance.
The language of the trees
ancient and soothing,
their melodious voices
bass-toned and resonant
with green life and birdsong.
I stand with them
in the night forest,
looking up to far-off light,
feeling the comfort
of the stars rooted
deep into the earth.

 

 


photograph @re_stacks vis Unsplash

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reading of “Comfort of the Stars” with music by Bob Dylan

 

 


 


Rich With Desire

Mountain rivers flow
as sun warms the high country,
the valley full with fresh water.
Our deprivations reveal
everyday miracles,
the gift of life amidst contagion,
the voice of spirit despite the shouts
of loudspeaker and opinion.
Wings of birds shaped to the wind,
the curl of waves over rock
and how your heart only bends with trouble
then peers past stone walls to the earth beyond
rich with desire for spring planting.

 

 


photograph by Willard Walch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reading of Rich With Desire with music by Morten Lauridsen

 


 


Inner Garden

It’s not too late to rise
though the sun
has travelled up in the sky,
the trees long awake,
birds fed and rivers running.
Years and years ago
an ancient people
travelled up the Colorado
from Pacific swells.
They made home in caves
throughout the watershed,
high above the rivers,
painting stories on stone
of sky gods and long journeys,
leaving their memory
for those who would follow.
What stories will we paint,
what history leave behind?
When the scales fall from our eyes
all will be infinite
the poet once foretold
and today we might see,
refusing the false,
turning away from idols.
Rising above the two
we can be as one
and find our place once more,
undivided and forgiven
in the inner garden of Eden.

 

 

Edward Curtis photograph

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reading of Inner Garden

 

 


 


Sky Singer

Sip down
into memory’s cup
sweetened by first light
and pale flowers
then turn to the voice
of the Rain Bringer,
the Sky Singer
who grace with melodies
the bright unknown.
Don’t refuse the morning
or betray the Ancient Ones
who see your face
one among many
calling you softly
into tomorrow.

 

 


photograph by Marguerite Gillies @vermilioncrane


 


Urge to Freedom

Above the rain wet valley
grey and black clouds swirl,
the sun burning through
to light another day.
The land’s desire
rising along root,
up leaf and branches
into the cool spring air
as flowering trees
blanket the ground
with fallen color.
Hunger for new life
awake from winter sleep
lifts from the dark soil,
climbing evergreen towers
and spread by dark-winged crows.
The urge to freedom
long-held beneath the ground
floating now like fertile pollen
broad across the earth.

 

 


photograph by Will Hornyak


 


Venturing into the Unknown

Reaching down into the old earth
to loosen the moorings
of the time driven world,
we follow the roots
of what may yet be
into the dark loam of potential.
Not into the battlefield
where many serve,
but into the mystery, to seek
the solace of the long forgotten,
to retrieve a life beyond despair
that waits beneath the kivas
of the silent guardians.
The new Jerusalem,
an image in the distance
not shaped by human hands,
inviting us to release the predictable
and venture into the unknown.

 

 


encaustic painting by Eilish Hynes @touchthenexus


 


Our Longing Eyes

Bread and wine,
a crown of thorns,
lies of judgement
and lonely walk.
To carry a cross
and know betrayal
the mortal road
yet the cherry tree
blossoms
and throughout
the earth
a risen life
in green and gold
bathes our longing eyes
with the beauty
once again
of morning.

 

 


 


Bridging the Distance

Wet with spring rain
silence rises
into the quarantine
of isolation.
As outer noise quiets
the sound of songbirds,
a few friendly faces.
We smile as we pass,
the separation
connecting us,
the hardship
common ground.
We may find ourselves
in this silence,
who we are and who
we might yet be;
bridging the distance,
again there will be joy.

 

 


photograph by Edward Curtis


 


Forgotten Symphony

The illness showed in many symptoms
but the cause lied layers deep,
a rejection hard as stone,
entangled as a spider’s web.
When the keeper lost balance
the planet leaned, continents shifted
and the perfect orbit unwound.
The age of the predator
rose with a blood red moon
and the time of loneliness began.
Off in the starry distance
light embarked on a long, long journey
with the sound of angels
traveling to the aching void.
Heard first and seen by gypsies
wandering roads without a home,
then throughout the farms and cities,
the sight and melody a gentle rain
slowly softening beleaguered hearts,
encouraging them to play once more
the long forgotten symphony of kindness.

 

 


photograph by Jenny Yang @yzjenni


 


Plum Tree Sparrow

There is a sparrow
on a branch of the plum tree,
just one of the songbirds
left in this city of crows.
She sings with desire
for the light that rises,
she sings for the day
and the warmth to come,
her tuft of feathers
and russet crown
full with the beauty
of invisible touch.
The sound of her music
welcomes the swell
of deep woven roots,
the lift of leaves
to the light of the sun
and here I sit
with the plum tree sparrow,
her bright voice calling
a morning gift.

 

 


photograph by James Frid