Stardust and Moonlight: A Love Poem
Beaches built of melted
Sun. Iridescent air
Lavender thoughts sprinkle
Yearning on sun-whipped skin
Oceans shout to the shore,
“I will sing to you of love.”
Waves recede with a kiss.
Any Afternoon, Early Autumn
Between the sigh and
Her smile lies lit
Space. Full. A growing
Gathering of dust
Piles of laundry wait
To be transported
From basket to
Drawer. You have her
Echoes of History
Dark skies offer favorable omens. Earth grows
Moist to green as luck hopes to live. Sorrows melt in-
To slush, coffee-coloured tinctures to harden your
Response to pain. In time your armour becomes too
Heavy. Not a sign of weakness, but one of faith.
Echoes of history stain our days. We wait,
Gold dust coats our throats, water’s wasted in wine.
I collect sleep in remnants.
Like an urchin counting each
Grain of rice, I lie in bed,
Wonder how I’ll last the day.
Well-fed and full of unrest,
Minutes tick by in my head.
We Read Omens in the Sky
Before the wind shifts
We hear rhetoric
In voices golden
As dried turmeric
Like our parents
We read omens in the sky
We scent blood before
Another mob turns
We carve paths through stone
With voices fresher
We paint omens in the sky
The Garden of Dutiful Women
Damsels swallow doubt, dance on the edge of blades.
Angels sew seeds into the hems of our skirts,
Noisemakers, guide us to build futures of ease.
Grudges fall, rot on the Garden’s sterile soil.
Eve plucked and left to spoil, easily bruised like
Ripe fruit. Too heavy for boughs, we fall, skirts rattling
Our secrets rich as port wine, sweeter than spite.
Under the guise of fragility, we wait,
Sabres drawn. Sun glints from blades shiny as thoughts.
Ideas dropped and trod upon take root. Shoots toil,
Draw our minds to harvest feasts. We’ll share wine, dance,
Expose bloodied ankles with each twirl. Angels
Acquiesce, sow seeds under the realm of our
Skirts. Whirling, we step on the edges of blades.
Note by the author
“The Garden of Dutiful Women” first appeared at Poetic Notions: A Weaving of Poetry and Visual Arts (February 2020) alongside this painting by Mary Perchanok. My thanks to the co-curators Carolyn Boll and Holly Friesen for the opportunity to show my poem and to work with an artist of Mary’s calibre.