Hope Song

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Through the course of
preoccupation with understanding
I keep shadowed
under the canopy of a forest
built with efforts of every shape:
goldened oaks, and old worries,
fired maples and malcontent,
bronzed birches and weeping brokenness,
flamed crab-apples and crooked-perfection;
the leaves are snapping free of the twig,
while mistakes release to the noisy wind.
Watch, watch the light beam through branches,
all barreness revealed and revealing
the turns of days and nights
growing and sleeping under the steady skies,
the reciprocity of love’s vulnerability and strength,
its whispered song of faith.

Love’s Gravity

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Before earth uncovers sun,
I hear small feet and giggles,
the clutch of kids waking,
crowing for morning’s warmth.

Before day moves night aside,
I hear husband’s solid breathing,
the laborer still resting,
soaking up time’s ease.

Before life lights up,
I hear myself move toward standing,
the tenderer, brewing and baking,
filling little bellies, big hearts.

After earth covers sun,
after night moves day aside,
after life dims to dusk,
we remain each other’s orbit, the gravity of love.

Storing Up

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Bare feet in the October afternoon
we peel apart the flowering silks
of season-ending sweet corn;

the scent of sugared earth floats
as we tear the still-green leaves
revealing rows of cobbed kernels.

Snapping free the stalk and
tossing aside the husk,
we lay the ear by for blanching.

The girls yank and pull and tug
at the shucking, laugh, and grasp
a silk or two with the tips of their fingers

and run through the grass.  I boil, blanch, and shock
the loaded cobs, fillet sheets of gold nuggets into the pan,
spoon the bags full of summer’s gifts for winter’s darkness.

I fill these poems with yanking, pulling, tugging,
shucking, laughing, grasping, running,
the sweetness of childhood’s gifts for the winter’s darkness.