In These Dark Hours

Gnarled bark and twisted branches
tangle in the gray sky.
I lose touch with the turning,
the language of wind in the trees.
When we rode in tall grass
the earth was all we knew.
Now I pray upon a wooden altar
that the sun may rise and shine upon the people.


My clothes are soaked in forgiveness
that my family be unharmed.
I have not loved enough
but there’s still time.
I scrawl these words on ragged cloth,
sending them far on the wings of crow.
May they reach you in these dark hours
while we keep faith toward dawn.



photograph by Albion Butters


















Reading of “In These Dark Hours” with music by State Symphony Capella of Russia


Her Desire

This is my world, and yours,
just as we created it,
sentient and wild.
Brambly thorns,
shifting tides,
hard-as-nails streets,
beguiling lovers,
all of it just as it is.
Her only desire
that we road weary pilgrims
throw our arms around her
and whisper in her ear



photograph by Anita Albright


















Reading of “Her Desire” with music by John Coltrane


Dark Green Solitude

Winter sun lights the valley.
Along the coast a flood of rivers,
swollen bays, log-choked coves,
melting snow and full moon tides.
At rest in the quiet
without hunger or thirst,
the land teaches silence is enough
for a rivulet of dark green solitude
to nourish the earth.



photograph by


















Reading of “Dark Green Solitude” with music by Adele


As I Bend

Hours before dawn
hard rain soaks the streets,
in the distance
the outline of trees
buffeted by winter winds.
Though quiet in this room
I feel the world’s unrest.
Deceit sits astride our fate;
the clever regarded as saviors.
I can’t stand rigid
before these winds,
rather keep faith
and sway in the dark night,
for as I bend
I will not break.
On the horizon
the first gray light,
hours away
the coming dawn.























Reading of “As I Bend” with music by Bob Dylan