Tsunami

The slow sun turns to morning, burning
through shade and drape like a surgeon’s laser
trims fat. My children ran to catch starfish
when waves peeled back,
ready for one grand
surge,
that took homes, gardens,
and laughter. It is too late now
to build arks or prayers,
and no one in particular
to forgive. There is only the sun
and me watching it.

Available in The Scent of Water on Mirrors
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Homecoming

for Minet

I wanted to ignite a prayer at Sunday church,
seek a blessing for your safe return, for our reunion
to get here quickly and happily but discovered
every tea light and votive candle already burning
with someone else’s need.
Whose prayer would I extinguish for the sake of my own?
Whose desire snuffed out?
I touched the lighting stick to a flame,
lifted it as high as my arm could reach
and then blew the fire to embers and watched
smoke ascend with my heart.

 

Loss

Why do we zero in on some things, and overlook others?

News outlets expose the ramifications of the Ebola outbreaks and what it has meant to some and what it might meant to others. I watch dispassionately.

Videos of dying children in Gaza and Israel go viral. I watch dispassionately.

Ebola and War affect more people and have the potential to change the entire world. Yet, for some reason I have compassion fatigue.

One participant — in a sport I don’t even enjoy — dies after he runs out into oncoming traffic, and I discuss it with friends for at least two days.

One actor takes his own life and time shuts down.

I have the same relationship with Robin Williams this morning as I did yesterday morning. I knew him through his work – movies, comedy skits, television – and all those things are still available. For years, I have been aware in at least a peripheral way that despite the funny exterior, he had a very serious and sometimes troubled interior, so I can’t even claim that what happened was a complete surprise.

The stupid, senseless loss of a young, vibrant racecar driver is shocking and provokes a great deal of anger.

I can’t even articulate my emotions regarding the loss of Robin Williams.