tanka

tanka--
small songs I sing
to join
my voice to other voices
hidden in the grass

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Sonatina

light fading
at the tunnel’s end
I slip away
down the fluted passage
inside a singing reed


longing
to open the clear wings
of music
I breathe into my flute
a flight of butterflies


the murmur 
of wind-turned leaves
before a storm—
the soft cry of a mourning dove
echoes in my flute


~Skylark 2:2, Winter 2014


Thursday, March 12, 2015

almost spring

a cow’s skull
of polished bone—
through the orbit
of the eye
this patch of snowdrops

~red lights 10:2, June 2014


the slow chant 
of chorus frogs
chilled
near to freezing
my hands fill with starlight


~red lights 10:2, June 2014

Friday, February 27, 2015

an inland sea

landlocked
I trace the rosy curve
of a conch,
sail by the stars
on my inland sea

~red lights 11:1, Jan. 2015 


ashes heaped 
in a walnut-shell boat
I sail
by the light of a candle
the caverns of the heart


~Moonbathing 11, Fall/Winter 2014




Monday, February 16, 2015

inlet


the shark’s tooth 
like a dragon’s tongue
filling my palm. . . 
bubbles of sea foam
on shifting sand 

~Atlas Poetica 18, July 2014

I am an inlet
of the only sea—
starfish 
lodge in the tide pool
of my being

~Moonbathing 10, spring/summer 2014

Monday, February 9, 2015

Lost Worlds


snowmelt
from mountain glaciers
blesses
Pachamama’s belly . . .
her rising fever chills me

breathless
at 13,000 feet
I blow softly
across two coca leaves . . . 
the ritual of wishes

twilight
in the Temple of Virgins
on Moon Island—
I leave an offering
of blood-red gladiolus

the Uru people
live on islands made of reeds
cut adrift
I reach for the shore
in this river of stars


~Atlas Poetica 18, July 2014


This tanka sequence grew out of a trip to Peru & Bolivia in October, 2013.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

wings

music lesson—
the caged bird 
beating inside me
learns how to sing
her own sky into being

~Ribbons 10:3, Fall 2014


I wait
without wings
in the empty chapel . . .
organ music lifts me
by the marrow of my bones

~A Hundred Gourds 4:1, Dec. 2014



Saturday, January 24, 2015

signposts


knees to chin
on a bike too small
I pedal
toward crossroads
shrouded in mist


~Bamboo Hut 1: 2, Jan. 2014


signposts
pointing this way, that way
toward Unity
and Union Grove . . .
seeds scatter in the wind


~Bright Stars 6, Fall 2014