19th & 20th January, 2004
Photograph by Donna Marie
A Thought for Today
Prayer is a handshake with hope.
2 June 2001
On June 2nd I prefaced the
first in a series of ‘Love Letters Unsent' with the following
comments. “Last Saturday when I published a new poem entitled “To One
Absent” I had no way of knowing the kind of mail it would generate. It was
taken very personally by many and they read into it different things.
That’s, of course, the way it should be. A poem is only what each reader
believes it is, nothing more.
It did start me to thinking, however. Lately the same situation that
inspired "To One Absent” has caused me to begin writing love letters that
may never be seen by the one for whom they are intended. It’s all too
complicated to get into but I thought if the poem could touch people in
ways that are meaningful to them perhaps I might let go of a few of the
not too personal to be printed letters I’m writing. Here is one such
A LOVE LETTER UNSENT
Dear You, I hope this reaches
you safe and smiling. Hard to believe that June is here. Is it age,
circumstance or imagination that makes it seem as if time departs at
faster speeds each day?
Since our condition is now dictated by other peoples clocks I no longer
tick off days and months as I once did, matter of factly and with
resignation. I let them go by without a count or feeling of remorse and
yet weeks-end finds me wondering when when will come. The time that sees
us seeing one the other face to face. The spoon-sleep of after love is
missed as much as love itself if not more, because it is of longer
There are times when holding that great pillow is not enough.
Impatient? Of course. And while I know that I can wait because our love is
sure it does not ease some aches that only your arm ‘round my shoulder, my
hand on your chest, sliding to your belly can alleviate.
I awaken sometimes because you touch me in an odd way or because I feel
the warmth of you too much to manage without a loosening of my grip around
you or a position change. Of course you are not there, but then I hurry
back to sleep to make it so again. Once, last night I think it was, I had
my hand halfway inside of you and I could feel your steady pulse as if it
were a beating heart that I was reaching out to grasp. (I pray no doctor
discovers my new accessing rhythm method or dares to take such liberties.)
Did I imagine that you called me ‘darling’ on the telephone? I warn you I
am unaccustomed to pet names but, oh they come from off your tongue so
naturally that I could grow to love and miss them as much as you are
missed if those new to me endearments stopped dripping from your mouth in
our too short conversations.
It is mid-afternoon here, outside birds are silent because they drowse in
shade. Yes, the sun has finally deigned to shine a bit and so the garden
is getting attention from one other than me. It could use your hoe and
weeding hand. I do not, dare not, wish that we will be two-gether soon
enough to harvest what is growing now. I am waiting out the lives we
started alone that we will reap in concert.
However longer, I maintain the stay. I love you, Me.
5/30/01 3:30 PM
First publication 6/2/01
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MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. DAY (USA)
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||The most that we can
do for one another is care.
Dreams have taught me to turn my back on nothing that might
end up being something.
Close your eyes to dreaming only long enough to dream.
BEGINNING AGAIN/January 2
||The eternal magic of eternal
sends the dreamer out into the world,
brings him home again.
One wind makes another.
Recent rain reminds us of a rain ago.
Sunshine is the same each time
seen through different eyes,
felt on different skin,
it is still a wonder and a prize
as love and loving always is again.
I begin today. In life, in love,
the same start I had every yesterday
not concerned with where I am,
where I have been,
only where I go and to what end.
Does rain provide a resurrection
or plow a final resting place,
does love once done inhibit love,
life once lived stop life
from spouting from a dying limb?
There must be winter questions
since answers only come when winter
Some songs do not exist without the singer
certain rhymes are trapped and lost
on certain pages
but these are only songs and rhymes.
Eternal magic still rampages
on the inside of eternal things.
Fire. The river. Plum and cherry blossom
and the vigilance of all the visions
the dreamer carries back from traveled worlds.
I have been thinking about
the absence of love.
How useless April or December is
without another ear to turn to
or anothers eyes to see
a certain wonder exactly in the way
it came to us.
A little melancholia for the final act
a bit of excess baggage shuffled off
an old coat traded in for new.
Nothing is quite
what we think it is.
Cliches become so for good reason,
the best contain a universal truth.
It is never wrong to want,
but you cannot have everything -
where would you put it ?
- from "The Sound of Solitude," 1988