Monday, August 23, 2010

goddess #52

no sunbathers here today
only rain and surf
washing the ancient rocks that line the shore.
fifty-two weeks ago
on a bright sunny day
the first goddess found her place 
way down the other end of the beach.
today her sister sits in the rain.
same beach, only different
same ocean, only different
same goddess, only different
same me, only different.
the goddesses, the weeks, the places
dissolve into one another
like this goddess
dissolving into the wet greyness
of rocks and sea and sky.

Monday, August 16, 2010

goddess #51

rain threatens today
not the devastating floods drowning pakistan,
nor the downpours succeeding drought and fire in russia,
nor any of the other numberless disasters across the globe.
just a polite new england rain
washing clean the puddingstone,
falling on the plastic bags, food wrappers, and assorted debris 
scattered by the weather front known as homo sapiens.
in a thousand years
will we still be here?
casting about our stuff?
seeing only ourselves?
or will have learned to breathe with the body of the earth?
to see with the eyes of all beings?
in a thousand years will we finally understand with the mind of all that is?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

goddess #50

business is booming here at the dunkin' 
in the state of "live free or die".
but i'm drawn past the edge where the mowing ends 
and the weeds grow high,
thinking that "live free and die" is perhaps more apt,
since the "dying" part is really not optional,
and the "living free" part is easier said than done.
and i think of janice singing 'bout how 
"freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."
and i think perhaps she's right -
how slowly divesting,
letting go of things -
of ideas
of what's right and wrong
safe or dangerous -
makes it just a little easier 
to walk past the edge
and sit among wild blackberries
listen to cicadas
and enjoy the goldenrod brilliant against the summer sky.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

goddess #49

some urban artist assembled sheet metal
carving out ciphers on this hillside,
then erected sentinels to watch over the weeds as they grew,
softening the edges of the steel-framed beds.
i imagine squashes growing here,
their golden blossoms bright among eggplants, tomatoes, cukes and kale,
nourishing this neighborhood on the other side of the tracks.
i see pumpkins ripening in the sun, 
peas and beans adorning the chain link fence,
and a woman, young and vibrant, who perished nearby - 
wiped out as she pedaled home some years ago.
she would have smiled to see a garden growing.

Monday, July 26, 2010

goddess #48

sisters - separated by endless loops of razor wire that sparkle in the sun
me - free to come and go, to make the countless small decisions that determine my life
you - confined by endless rules and the barked commands of crackley loud speakers,
indecipherable to me, but understood by you, the result of long practice and necessity.
and yet, we are the same.
it could have been me on your side of the wire if causes and conditions had been different.
it could have been you on this side.
and so we breathe slowly, in and out
sense our bodies sitting here, alive in this very moment
and learn to be free and to know that we are one.

Monday, July 19, 2010

goddess #47

a beaver dam dressed in green - 
strawberries, blueberries, moss, and ferns.
the lake three feet above where i stand with an eerie sense
of the built and the unbuilt.
earlier mineral hard land gave way to delicate new ferns, then rich forest humus . . 
then opened to this vista of water, lilies, and trees.
i am touched by tiny winged beings 
and remember how many of them there are compared to us -
some incredible number of times our biomass-
and i can only stop
and breathe it all in
as an inchworm makes her way across my page.

Monday, July 12, 2010

goddess #46

a pause
in this day that cycles between downpour and brilliance
the kind of day where there might be a rainbow
but isn't
only the wet lushness of green moss
mist rising from the earth
and a thousand other shades of green
gladdened by the arrival of sudden storms.

Monday, July 5, 2010

goddess #45

geese inhabit the parking lot this morning
"school's out for summer"
or at least the day after the 4th of july.
here at the edge of the marsh
i celebrate interdependence . . . 
bird calls reverberate in my heart,
sun warms my skin,
i breathe in as all around me exhales . . . 
a dragonfly flashes a brilliant wing as it lights
and small creatures everywhere go about their business
of keeping life going.

Monday, June 28, 2010

goddess #44

it's peaceful here at world's end
despite images of ships sailing over the edge into terra incognita
despite the echo of Eliot's "not with a bang but a whimper"
and the sudden vision of black, thick, gooey water snuffing out life.
an ancient oak patiently engulfs a stoney outcrop,
cries of children and running feet break the silence and fade away,
a myriad of tiny creature deconstruct a fallen branch, returning it to the earth.
all this is true
here at the end of the world
all this, and everything else in this moment -- in every moment.

Monday, June 21, 2010

goddess #43

another goddess lived near here
before the winter
before the rains and the ice and the snow
watching as the leaves turned brilliant, then fell
watching as branches became ink strokes brushed across cold winter sky,
watching as they softened into red, then green then burst into leaf.
and now, as spring turns into summer
she is gone
disappeared without a trace
only memories remain
and the sound of the water 
and birds conversing in the trees.

may we cherish what is and know it is forever transforming.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

goddess #42

my path today
took me along one i walked quite often
some twenty years ago
in a different body
less saggy and wrinkled . . . 
but still i delight in the call of a robin
and the soft curve of a chipmunk disappearing under a log,
in ducks and ducklings gliding past yellow pond lillies.
alive with sound there is silence,
amidst constant movement, stillness
in this green leafy refuge.
may we all know we are gloriously alive in each and every moment

Monday, June 7, 2010

goddess #41

within sight of two windmills
birds sing
crickets chirp
and geese swim in stately rows.

no gobs of oil lurk in these glistening waters.
yet all the seas are one sea
and just last week the smoke of fires hundreds of miles north dimmed our skies.
oh, what will we do with our one precious world.

(with thanks to Mary Oliver)

may we know that the earth is our body, the waters our blood, and the air our very life.

Monday, May 31, 2010

goddess #40

anger unleashed
lashes out to destroy.
malicious mischief
brings no peace.
not to the maker, nor to the marked
nor to those who walk by
wondering where the family has gone.

may we learn to care tenderly for our anger
before we inflict harm on ourselves or on others.

Monday, May 24, 2010

goddess #39

monday morning, 8:23, new york city
how can there be so many people
toting brief cases
cups of coffee
each intent
on a mission
each keeping his or her earth in its proper orbit
as do i
sitting here
sipping coffee

may we all find more opportunities to let our worlds collide
and break away from our ideas of how things are.

Monday, May 17, 2010

goddess #38

out behind winn dixie
steps from the blacktop
wilderness lives.
palms, grapevines, and wild blackberry
prevail over the discarded debris of civilization,
reclaiming the land for us all.

may we grow ever more thankful
for the nature of earth to renew herself,
and find ways to nurture renewal in ourselves
and in the world.

I have always loved the boundaries of civilization, the narrow places where wildness and civilization collide . . . the weeds that sprout from the cracks in the sidewalk, the vacant lot vibrant with plant life and the cast-off things of city life . . . today a short teaching arrived in my inbox at around the same time I was finding a home for this goddess . . .it's called "See the Wild in the Made".

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

goddess #37

mysterious pathway
wide . . . grassy
bounded by stone walls carefully shaped and placed
here in this final jewel of the necklace.
a carriage road perhaps
from some earlier time
when people dressed and rode in carriages
to visit a museum of the natural world.

may we dwell in nature
know we are nature
and may our hearts delight 
in the beauty of the world.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

goddess #36

tall pine
mossy outcrop
sky bright to dark, just like that . . . 
and now the eerie light
that signals the end of rain
or an immanent downpour.
what lies ahead?
impossible to say
just this perfect moment
teetering on the edge.

may we enjoy each moment giving way
to the uncertainty of the next.

Monday, April 26, 2010

goddess #35

here, amongst puddingstone boulders
bordering VFW parkway
i think of ben, soon off to afghanistan.
and tack, a man with twinkling eyes
and a smile that lit up the world
haunted 40 years later
by the things he saw in the jungles of vietnam.
and another
who i shared my life with for a few short weeks so many years ago,
who woke shaking in the night
from dreams of war.

to all who go to war, willing or unwilling
may you be safe in body and mind.
may you neither kill nor be killed.
may you neither maim nor be maimed.
may you remember that those you fight are no different than you
that they, like you, want only for themselves and their loved ones
be safe, happy, and to be able to live peacefully on this earth.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

goddess #34

jagged rocks,
barely worn over eons of time.
water moving past mossy bank,
swift, then slow, then swift again.
everything growing, falling, decaying, growing again.
everything noting the passage of time on its own scale.
rock, tree, human, mosquito -
life measured in an instant or an eon,
all precious, all impossibly brief,
all just enough.