Category Archives: prayer

the sound of my prayers today

mulatu astatke, tezeta

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Filed under music sweet music, prayer, the dead, Uncategorized

Prayer for Darkness

give thanks for
this night

this walk uphill
towards darkness

the pause at the peak
the descent towards home

give thanks for night
warm enough to bare

my skin before
winter arrives

give thanks for the stars
that have left

my heart to finish
dying in the sky

give thanks for you
moon, when I ask

where are you

and you answer me

new

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Filed under blues, love, poetry, prayer, solitude, spirituality

The Only Thing I Have to Slip Into

It’s been a time for living, some days I could even venture to say I’ve been living poetry. A good excuse for not keeping up my writing practice, which is not to say that the impression of these days should not be written down. A list poem, at least, which might include the words
tornado
Roseanne
emergency room
roller derby
ratchet straps
motel sex
southern accents
Wyoming
Deerhunter
redwoods
gorge
king’s chambers
Gypsy
goodbye
reunion
french fries
turtles
elk
electric toothbrush
passenger seat
ten and two
Biting on the gritty dust kicked up by hundreds of lightning bolts striking a purple sky.
Filling up the gas tank one more damn time.

In the past two weeks I have left, I have arrived, I have finished, I have started, I have reunited, I have jumped in, I have come home, I have returned, I have rarely been alone.
I am just catching up with the part that writes, that reflects, that tries to make meaning out of putting words together. I’m in no hurry. I don’t hurry very well.
The first thing I wrote after I returned, in front of the ocean, was a prayer.
Right before I left, when I was landlocked, before my love arrived, when I was often alone, I also wrote prayers. This was one.

Give thanks for prayer
when it’s the only thing
I have to slip into
the cracks of my cold,
tight heart. Give thanks
for clichés, though they
are the very things I warn
my students against using.
Clichés may be dead language
but we say these things over
and over for a reason, don’t we?
Sometimes things just need
to be said without a care
if it’s been said before.
The dead still need remembering.
Give thanks for warm nights
that let me stand out on my deck
in tsinelas and stare at the stars
Give thanks for the waxing moon
that is not yet half way full
because when I have nothing
to hold I imagine my own hands
hanging on to the bright edges,
dipping my fingertips into the dark
parts though I know the moon is always
round and full. It’s just a matter
of waiting for the light to shine.
Give thanks for all forms of transportation
the planes that carry my loved ones in the sky
and the car that will carry me away from this place.
Give thanks for the ability to take care of myself
even when it looks like having one more drink
even when it looks like smoke in my lungs.
Give thanks for the ability to run
and feel my muscles moving
even if my main motivation
to move is to release
my body from longing.

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Filed under cross-country road trip, Homesickness, Landlocked in Indiana, long distance relationships, love, mid-west, poetry, prayer, San Francisco