Two ravens appear
flying to the wooded point,
the sound of their bark
distinct from the call of crows.
Geese honk in vigilance
then quiet as they take wing
toward a distant island.
Gulls cry plaintively,
winds sough through the trees,
dew lays sparkling upon the grass.
Deep mother of night
opens to bright father of day
and I join the choir, surrendered
to the awakening world.



photograph by Louis MacKenzie





















Reading of “Beyond Castle Walls” with music by the Grateful Dead


Alive in Darkness

Three owls call
from the wood,
their hoots
back and forth
in the forest.
Pale light
slants down
through the trees,
casting shadows
of juniper, fir
and the fluttering leaves
of ocean spray.
Alive in darkness
the earth quietly unveils
with no rush
toward morning.
The channel tide
passes like a river,
moon arcs above
in a clouded sky
while sheltered ones
sleep and dream
of hooded birds
with moonlit talons.





photograph by Robert Aughenbaugh























Reading of “Alive in Darkness” with music by Chick Corea and Gary Burton


To the Renewal

In my time
the turning of a page,
the loss of courage
and rush to escape.
Within the failure
charred remains
of villages in the forest
and shoots of fervent green,
their seeds cracked open
by the incendiary heat
of a landscape born in fire.
I observe, I witness,
and add my signature
to the bottom line.
I lost sight of the treasure
yet darkness brought return,
the fall from grace
softened by your beauty.
Now beyond forgetting
the renewal of our vows
from our watch above the sea.
Amidst seals’ bark
and ravens’ harsh croak
I lend myself to the tide,
surrendering the armor
of this long suffering shell,
and to the renewal I offer my life.























Reading of “To the Renewal” with music by Bach


Countless are the Bones

Countless are the bones
beneath our feet,
each sacrifice of those
who’ve gone before
gifts to the newly born.
They are present
on moonlit nights,
in fluttering trees
and the echo of owls,
looking on
with tender care
as we find our way
through the living dark.



photograph by Sandy Brown Jensen



















Reading of “Countless are the Bones” with music by Samuel Barber


Skies of Communion

Clouds settle down
on the surface of the sea
and blanket the tree tops.
The wet drip of the forest
drums on the cabin roof
while eagles pace
from perch to perch
along the coast line.
We need the rain,
the land already dry
months before summer.
Within the mist
the pinnacles of the city,
its noise and ambition
are far off and unheard.
Life force rises
in rough-barked
fir and cedar
while my soul drinks
from deep water
like a songbird on wet soil.
A young tree grows
from a crack in stone,
rabbits feed on new grass
then return to their burrow
beneath a brake of nootka rose.
I’m living on food
that doesn’t come in a package,
on drink that won’t be bottled.
As the clouds lift above the sea
my spirit shakes off its grave clothes,
an ancient past finding form
under rain filled skies of communion.




photograph by Willard Walch


















Reading of “Skies of Communion” with music by the Kinks