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


11 Responses to “Alive in Darkness”

  1. Lloyd Meeker says:

    Beautiful, Don — thank you.

    I am alive in darkness. The channel tide moves at exactly its own pace, neither fast nor slow, without need to compare its speed to anything else. I am alive in darkness.

  2. Tom Figel says:

    Don, “moonlit talons” brought a Maryland acquaintance to mind.

  3. Eric Dunn says:

    Beautifully written Don! 🙏

  4. David Waskom says:

    Don, I like the picture as much as I do the poem. A wild-eyed youngster who is obviously thinking about something that Mama would discipline him for, a much more well behaved youngster, and Mom, who perfectly represents your words. Thanks for making me laugh!

  5. bill dare says:

    Resonating within my Heart, Don.

  6. Kinga Biro says:

    This lovely poem reminds me of first light beach walks in Hawaii, when it’s still dark with only a hint of light gradually beginning to awaken the world to another glorious day heralded by the incessantly enthusiastic warbling of a thousand birds. The world around me is peaceful and harmonious, no harsh sounds or vibrations, just a gentle unfolding from night to day.

  7. David Banner says:

    The earth is quietly unveiling itself.

  8. Susan Bennett says:

    What a privilege to be in the company of owls and penetrate the dimensions of the twilight realms with them

  9. James Frid says:

    Thanks, Don. The sheltered ones listen for the gentle breeze of the soft feathered wings warning of the moonlit talons alive in the darkness.

  10. David Barnes says:

    Thank you Don, for these essences which open the senses to the wholeness of the living earth. With the world approaching its hour of greatest darkness, how vital for a man or a woman to be vibrantly alive and awake in the midst of that darkness, with no rush toward morning because, like the holy earth and its creatures, I see by night and I am at peace and engaged within the sacred dark, at home by moonlight and by starlight till a new dawn comes again for a new world.

  11. Veronica Lim says:

    Delightful, Don. I love the image with the two wide-eyed owlets, and a very serious-looking parent. The music you have chosen reminds me of the beginning of a movie I saw a few years ago. It begins, “There are many stories in the Naked City, and this is but one of them…” With your poem being about the natural World, and the music perhaps calling to mind a nightclub (“Casa Blanca”?), you provide an intriguing contrast.

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