Of all the saints, my Anthony, I love you best. For you did what I long to do: you walked away from a life of comfort and ease,
This is the Month, and this the happy morn
Wherein the Son of Heav’ns eternal King,
Of wedded Maid, and Virgin Mother born,
The ram’s horn bellowed.
Fused with snapped spears and hatchet heads
nicked shields covered the field,
that light kept me a year in its grip first
my feet caught fire then my blood
we moved at the edge of endlessness
headless handless mouthless mind-
To you who are lost today
like a needle in a haystack, reading this poem alone.
Alone, brother island, sister moon. The ocean is big,
A grace of green, the underleaf
of olive, the birdsong’s
cradling. It’s as though
How the earth now struggles into spring.
How the cold hangs on, each morning cracking to begin.
Violet, whispered Eve, because
saying the names aloud
made the act too real. Pansy
and woodruff, the flowers so small
Who am I to cast light upon the human soul?
Sitting down to write peace-verses for mercenary gain,
Hunting for poems and hoping against hope that I need not
Imperfection is the place where the spirit enters,
the small hole in your shirt, the loosening threads
of carpet, the ache in your soul for forgiveness.
She consoles me as I meditate
before Mass—Julian of Norwich,
that is, who says, “We are clothed,
wrapped in the goodness of God.”
Praise God for all things green
Lime jello, blades of grass, emeralds
Chameleons, the neon river frog
Heavy papayas begging to be picked
I expect the whitest dove,
purity as the Spirit breaks apart
firm blue of our ceilinged sky,
a tapered shape, an elegance.
But Picasso was right.
She spoke softly, calmly recounting
her pain through a furnace of litanies
that helped her hold on to the unbelief
I cannot tell you why
I taste death;
the windows clean as rain.