Among Fallen Leaves

Equinox 2021


Clouds reach down to the gray sea,
the waters calm on a windless morning.
Trees begin their descent to root
as autumn approaches, birds returning
to the green grass of September.
A full moon, orange and bright
marks summer’s close, the time
to leave the high branches
and touch the ground once more.
The nights grow long
with solace in the dark
as winter stars rise.
Time to grow quiet
among fallen leaves,
listening to earth song
as the tone changes,
melody deepens
and the land sings
in minor chords
the blues of life.


















Reading of “Among Falling Leaves” with music by Jack White


Hole in the Clouds

Heron croaked taking flight,
prehistoric wings and angular form
reminders of another time.
Like a hole in the clouds
or stirring of the sea,
I am part wind, part forest,
part native to the water.
I’ll tell you the story
as I remember
however incomplete.
This is your home,
body and blood,
yet in the helix
of your innermost
star seeds woven in light
brighter than morning.
You won’t figure it out
by unwrinkling your paper self
to somehow read the eternal.
You’ve got to live it,
beyond the pastures you were fenced in
and ride on into the wastes.
It’s drier out here and stony ground
but in the moment you cross the line
you’ll breathe the clean air you were born for
and your story will make perfect sense.























Reading of “Hole in the Clouds” with music from Sister Drum by Dadawa


Song of Freedom

Steel gray water like polished silver
shines in the dull light of cloud filled skies.
Dolphins feed the tide line,
dorsal fins gracefully arcing
as they surface and dive.
I might seem to be alone
yet I am bathed in a vast community,
life it is in all directions
that rises with the sun and stars
both day and night in the eternal presence.
I should tone it down, speak in the mechanics
of physics and biology. I should but I won’t
for I only have so many days and the music
of my soul will only be sung if I let it.
I worship where I will and refuse the idols
of ideology and vain precept.
Aboriginal in my origins,
boiled in the kettle of a hard city,
I know what it’s like to break the chains
of fear and dependence.
I won’t go back to servitude,
bow before the altars of gold and cold marble.
What tree would vote for the axe,
desire to be cut down and milled to brutal standards?
The prison walls are as fake as the collar around your neck.
No one binds the soul. Ask the monks who kneel in snow
in the gulags of their oppressors.
They smile at the blows of ignorance,
knowing who is really bound.
Each day I follow the breadcrumbs of my heart
and choose life, to breathe the air of earth itself
and send my blood to every cell with the song of freedom.






















Reading of “Song of Freedom” with intro music by Bruce Springsteen


Across the Water

Ancient stones rise from the sea,
black basalt topped by towering firs.
Eagle perches in a crag,
crow lands in a juniper
calling to the morning.
I’m old with muscle,
root in hard to reach places.
Let the sea look for me
along the gravelly shore,
the forest as I walk at night
in fellowship with darkness.
I belong to the earth,
fearless in its silence
and across the water
I call to you, knowing
as in the long ago
we will find each other
in the timeless place,
cloaked in many colors.























Reading of “Across the Water” with music by Piano Tribute Players