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Mugs
Some days I want to drink my coffee
From a mug that reminds me of my mother.
It’s one on permanent loan from
The work kitchen of a now-defunct employer.

It’s gentle curves are like a mug my mother gave me,
A fine sheen, ivory and green, embossed with seashell art.
I lost that in the divorce, along with many things,
And drawers and cabinets full of pain and dead dreams.

My mother doesn’t know anything about that.
She died before it happened.
I often wonder
What she would think of me,
My life,
My choices,
Now.

But this curved mug
Is brown and green and embossed with trees
Like the ones my mother loved so much.

One of my favorite images is of her
Hugging a pine tree
In Rocky Mountain National Park.

So when I fill
The mug that reminds me of my mother,
With Folger’s crystals like my father used to drink,
It is as if I am having a small cup of coffee with my parents
Each morning.

That is a very fine way to start the day.

20160329_091003
Denver, Colorado. (This is my alternative mug, purchased for
me by MKL. I love it.)

Quote of the day: “I am the way a life unfolds and bloom and seasons come and go and I am the way the spring always finds a way to turn even the coldest winter into a field of green and flowers and new life.” – Charlotte Eriksson

Daily gratitudes:
The flat fall of Snowmaggdon
Favorite movies on a snow day
A super snuggly cat
Experimental eggs
Having a warm spot on a cold day

 

Today’s guest poet  —  Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Sudden Light

I have been here before
But when or how I cannot tell:
I know the grass beyond the door,
The sweet keen smell,
The sighing sound, the lights around the shore.

You have been mine before,
How long ago I may not know:
But just when at that swallow’s soar
Your neck turn’d so,
Some veil did fal  —  I knew it all of yore.

Has this been thus before?
And shall not thus time’s eddying flight
Still with our lives our love restore
In death’s despite,
And day and night yield one delight once more?

Today’s guest poet  —  Jann Howell

Always Wondering

I’m always wondering
… where you are
… what you’re doing
… are you thinking of me?
… do we dream the same dreams?
… if we feel the same things
in our hearts.

But every time
I try to speak the words…
when I try to ask the questions
just to get the answers,
a fear takes hold of my heart
that the words that you’ll speak
won’t be the words that I seek
keeps me paralyzed.

And the silence between us
stretches further than the stars
so that I am always,
always wondering
where you are.

Today’s guest poet  —  Conrad Aiken

Chance Meetings

In the mazes of loitering people, the watchful and the furtive,
The shadows of tree-trunks and shadows of leaves,
In the drowse of the sunlight, among the low voices,
I suddenly face you,

Your dark eyes return for a space from her who is with you,
They shine into mine with a sunlit desire,
They say an ‘I love you, what star do you live on?’
They smile and then darken,

And silent, I answer “You too — I have known you, — I love you! –‘
And the shadows of tree-trunks and shadows of leaves
Interlace with low voices and footsteps and sunlight
To divide us forever.

Today’s guest poet  —  Lawrence Durrell

This Unimportant Morning

This unimportant morning
Something goes singing where
The capes turn over on their sides
And the warm Adriatic rides
Her blue and sun washing
At the edge of the world and its brilliant cliffs.
Day rings in the higher airs
Pure with cicadas, and slowing
Like a pulse to smoke from farms,

Extinguished in the exhausted earth,
Unclenching like a fist and going.

Trees fume, cool, pour – and overflowing
Unstretch the feathers of birds and shake
Carpets from windows, brush with dew
The up-and-doing: and young lovers now
Their little resurrections make.

And now lightly to kiss all whom sleep
Stitched up – and wake, my darling, wake.
The impatient Boatman has been waiting
Under the house, his long oars folded up
Like wings in waiting on the darkling lake.

Today’s guest poet  —  Rumi

Some Kiss We Want

There is some kiss we want
with our whole lives, the touch
of spirit on the body.  Seawater
begs the pearl to break its shell.
And the lily, how passionately
it needs some wild darling!
At night I open the window and ask
the moon to come and press its
face against mine.
Breathe into me.  Close
the language-door and open the love-window.
The moon won’t use the door,
only the window.

Today’s guest poet  –  W. B. Yeats (this is a re-post from 2/10/10, but it feels right for today)

When You Are Old

When you are old and grey and full of sleep,
And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face;

And bending down beside the glowing bars,
Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled
And paced upon the mountains overhead
And hid his face amid a cloud of stars.

Can You?

Can you not be happy
Until you feel that you have mourned?

Day after day, you are faced with your losses
Like a high-stakes gambler who has to
Drive a cab to earn enough money to get out of town.
Some days, loss is a vicious presence,
Others, it is a subtle shadow,
But it is always there.

Must you embrace it
Wrestle it
Conquer it
Before you can free yourself?

Before you can forgive yourself?

Before you can reclaim yourself
and your dreams?

I am sad to think
That you cannot separate me
From your loss
Because I know
what
that
means.

On The Riverbank

I see you
On the other side of the River Styx,
Wandering the banks
Looking for a way back.

Your pockets are so deep that you get
Distracted searching for the coin
For the ferryman.
Is the coin there at all?
I don’t know.

I bury some treasure in a comfortable chest,
Scribble poetry in the sand
With the killing edge of the shovel,
And wait for you to cross.

 Still and Surely

We can sit at any table in any tavern in the world
And I will still hold your heart gently between my two hands.
I do not want to love you, but I cannot seem to help myself.
The spirit that shines through you, cloud shrouded though it may be
in these tired days
Speaks to mine in a language only we two can know.

I can sit alone, buried beneath sorrows and dreams
And still feel you as surely as I feel the wind blowing off the winter sea
As surely as the birds dip and plunge off imaginary coastal cliffs,
As surely as the sun creeps lower and lower into the blue-consuming darkness.

Your tender heart matches mine beat for beat despite miles of land and longing.
I wish I could not feel it
but I do.

But if I didn’t
if I didn’t

There is no choice in it – there is no if I didn’t.
Love is not a choice, it is a fate, it is a fable,
It is a tale reserved for candlelit darknesses at rough wooden tables
with the sound of the ocean singing distant in our ears.

(Submitted for Thursday Poet’s Rally – Week 36)

March 2019
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