Wild Tulips

You brought me
wild fists of tulips, white as herons;
it seemed injurious
to tame them.

All morning
snowy egrets flew over the lake
feathery petals falling
from their vase.

Nearly Always

To know what you have
lost- a key, a shoe,
a hair beret of ivory

from things that you have
borrowed, stolen, a flower
from the neighbors garden,

a cherry from the grocer's bin,
a quiet moment just before
the rain and thunder quicken

is to understand what rivers
know from start to finish:
all things given are always,

nearly always taken.


A Single Strand of Darkness

I am sad like eyes closed.
What touches my hands does not
belong there but slides away-
rain against the glass.

Don't we slip away with it?

I've loved like spiders
spinning webs of silver scar;
their world all feathered moths
and flies and sun. Is there

a single strand of darkness?

When I sleep like sinking fog
knowing stars are light imposters
a thousand years before tomorrow
burning for a dreamer's sight-

who is cruel enough to tell us?


Secret, Blessed

How shall we understand
the purpose of night,
its blackened vaults,
moonlit columns, endless
labyrinths of tunnel?

In the shadowed garden
the slow, blind slugs
appear from nowhere
licking dew and dirt
with tiny tongues

and whose to say
their hearts, devoid
of malice or any kind
of violence, deserve
to be silenced?

The faultless night
whose roof of trees,
shimmering arcs of sky
and star, the colorless
flower that blooms for

no ones eyes but
darkness, need not be
challenged but witnessed
by candle's light as just
the paradise it seems-

the cold black pearl
of secret, blessed quiet.