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Reflections on Rumi



Climbing up the path I step aside
Delighted by the fragrance of roses upon the garden wall.
He meets me at the gate;
Gives me welcome, and a cup.
I drink his wine,
And lose myself in drunken loving among the roses.

Asleep in two worlds,
No fear or pain,
Content where I am,
Until its time to climb again,

I cannot remain lingering between;
I tell him so; He smiles,
Pins a rose upon my breast,
Guides me back onto the path.
Now he joins me in my quest,
And fills my time
Increasing my capacity for wine.


Here you are.
You are, I know you.
Here am I,
Who you know well.
Again we dwell in form together,
And I'm beginning to Remember
As I watch you shine,
And project your wondrous magic show
Upon this place and time.



There's a shadow on the window
In stenciled definition
Shaped in the outline of a rose.
The shadow's of a cane
With a flower at its tip,
Leaves and thorns
All along the length of it.
Well framed
On the dusty window pane.

Real as a shadow
But not as a rose
It moves although never touched
By the wind

Outside, the real rose
Glows in the morning sun.

© Valerie Hawes



You are filled with God's glow.
It radiates out pure sparking light
making you appear as a mystical flower.
So why the sad face?
You have a bonfire of happiness within.
Why don't you immerse your heart
in its blissful sweetness?
Do you still think it's outside?
Listen, my friend,
the gold mine of all gold mines
is underfoot.
Won't you feel foolish
when you discover
your father has bequeathed
immense wealth?
All your wandering and begging
has brought you naught.
Come sit by the fire
and feel it's warmth.
Let's drink wine
and look at the moon
until we become mad with joy.

©Gerald Rhoades


Full Moons
Under full moons
lovers wings are
spread open
As moon begins to wane
it drops
its ashes from
the lover who lives in
the sky


Morning Dance
Red melon skies dance
hearts of truth
Seeing with the eyes is limited
while feeling with the heart
is abundant


Feel the way
Listen to winds passing
through mysterious fields
of wonder and
find fallen stars

©Paula Timpson




who makes art of brooks and April branches, your kingdom come in every
breath of every stone,

in puddles bearing chalices of sun down to the creatures
of the undersong. Your will in oak

leaves who hang
on to witness their green children spring. Forgive us the crushed

insect, the flowers unadored,
and mostly for forgetting this vivacious rot is all




Forever is composed of nows – Emily Dickinson

Hello my soul: my adoration of rivers and chesty clouds.
If you are the pandemonium of tilled fields
why never a shout? 

If does’ tails bound in your blood how can you lie
still as a fingernail ?
You are all and nil, solace and sweet terror. 

Without you I am as rudderless as an abandoned dream.  
You are older than dreams or ideas of dreams,
amazed as the first-born star. 

I sit at my desk knowing you
are there, breathing you but not enough
believing you.

I haven’t seen you since that rain-lashed night
on the Mohawk trail, when I knelt in the mud
and mushed leaves and out of my body

like a snapped power line you crackled:
the bright of billions of fireflies—
so much light I could barely make out my body

half an eternity below: a spec of pollen
between your zephyred fingers.




That night I knelt in agony next to the pond in a mulch
of twigs and leaves and the earth reached out root-strewn arms
and shook me from my body. 

As I blossomed from my skin, I knew I could fly
as far as the bruised edges of time and barely be
beginning.  Such light—my entire life a single spark. 

Christ’s in another:  crèche to cross,
his life somehow mine.  What I’d thought was me,

lanced through the skins of “am” and “was” and into the bones
of Always. Flesh was nothing but a gauze of thought,
a half-remembered mirage.

I was dew and desert, spider and dinosaur,
pebbles and torrents of flowers.  I was everything
I’d ever wanted to be. 

Why then was I  
so terrified I’d never get back?



Earth is showing off
her masterpieces
of shadow.  The sun
is giving the grasses
all he’s got. The pond
drinks her fill as always,
looking up, as always,
expecting more.
The wind clings
to things she has been
wanting to say,
wanting to stay,
whispering her sadness
as she leaves, the leaves
like running
water begging her back...
and here she comes, sailing
in on her bright silver
boomerang as if she never gets
a big enough shoulder.

On sunless days
the grasses keep stiff
upper lips, missing the caress
of those gorgeous shadows.
The selfish pond does her best
to be sympathetic
to the drops that deserted
her for the “high life”,
as does the mountain 
spring to the waters
that are forever
running off to sea.
By late May
lilacs are almost able
to forgive the unfaithful 

They know that after
bliss like this sun scalds
and the clawed
winds will tear the rest
to tea-colored shreds.


MAMMOGRAM (for Marion)

The lake is still, too still.  It’s as if it’s hiding something.  Like stalactites 
dead pines nose into bottomless caves, tugging geese
on rusty pulleys down with them.  

The world is upside down: look at me rippling over the exhaust of clouds. 
Something shoved winter over autumn, left the forest scabbed and iodine brown,
left flowers shivering. 

Nothing wants to be here anymore.  Everyone can see what
did this: the thing smoke in its veins, violet
sludge in it eyes; the one who lurks in air and water and perhaps

in one of these women in the bone-white anteroom, waiting with my wife to be squeezed and demeaned.  They too can think of little else. I can hear the rasps of magazines, the plastic chairs grinding their teeth

as the women shift to tuck smocks;  hands stunned and listless
as these beached gills at my feet.


PRAYER  (for Michael and Caitlin)
May I always vow:
Despair is furrow
Sorrow's sword a plow.

May pain be a spore,
Fear the prime mover
Darkness was made for.

© Duane Tucker



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Last updated: July 25, 2006