Monday, August 26, 2013


stone rooms
filled with Mayan dreams—
the wings
of frightened swallows
beat against my chest

Chaak the rain god’s
blackened face
over the temple steps
a double rainbow

a jade mask
for a dead king . . .
in the window
of the tourist bus
the beggar’s face

on cobblestone . . .
the boy
with the withered foot
hawks used shoes

an altar stone
grooved for the flow of blood . . .
in each little shop
an armed guard
struts his shotgun

the sun god’s
nightly passage
through a two-headed snake—
I dream of finding
the second mouth

of smoke rising
from a ritual fire
we cleanse ourselves—
these bundles of rue

flower water
in a plastic bottle
in my carry-on
the shaman’s essence

Atlas Poetica 14, March 2013

~Impressions of our trip to Mayan sites in Belize, Guatemala, and Honduras in November 2012. 

1 comment:

  1. All of these tanka are very rich and vivid. I was glad to read this in ATPO.