The Daily: 12 April 2023

There have been many good writes this month. My All Poetry site is overflowing with kudos. (For those unfamiliar with that platform, there are contests and awards.) So I’m sharing a few here.

beyond words

so much invested
in these sounds and symbols
so much granted
to meanings and myths
we bequeath primacy to numeracy
being beings of fingers and toes
tongues that wag
with titles and rules
all our own devising
all encased in flesh
to be lost with death

and we call this sacred
this word we cast
a net for all essence
a cage for all mystery
orbiting the ego-wrought
chained to small reason
we of limited perception
we name deity in our likeness

within this skin
dwell all these worlds we made
a nested doll creation
built on foundations that fold inward
i name 
and so what is named is become
but for its lack

the stars have no names
nor even that designation
no mere idea of man
encompasses the ancient
no accounting for atoms
this word
this is the work of transience
the apprehension of infancy
and we call it knowledge
and we call it god

being is so far beyond words
and yet this little is all we have
for understanding

like it matters

you say, each day dawns
like a golden lily
to be filled with bee and butterfly
and all the casual concerns
of eat, mate, birth, die
of which sum is life compounded

but do we ask too much of significance
that it must grace each moment
from rushing morning routine
to coffee rings left on the table
from traffic light reflections
to birthday greetings left unsent
conscious time snatched from the interstices

i think, swept up in coarse rhythm
we lose the intricacies of harmony
fail to feel the wonder
in the fact of a breath
no reason at all to be here
and yet we are given this gift
of such shocking opulent benevolence

i say, do not live each day
as though it were the last
live it like it matters

the collector

he set out
for what, where
he can no longer recall
journeying these many tides
with barnacled beings 
growing fresh hide
hoarding past in dithering piles
old needs now in pigeon-holes
new guides on sturdy shoulders

he fares o’er silent seas
wandering the empty oceans of eternity
traversing days, moons, stars
gathering in the draff of lives well-lived
his beard becomes a burgeoning burg
with teeming want marking time
an age for every fingernail

he thinks
i am this island
its god and its rocky foundation
to put aside my burden
is to expunge this house
and even the pneuma riding the winds 
crave time
collected memory
brimming bellies

and so
he carries on
to no destination
he thinks
it is the journey that builds life

spring commonplace

oh, for the artistry of spring
the least opuscule
rendered ephemeral perfection
minutely majestic
as common finch and maple blossoms
gems arrayed against barren branch
a chance encounter of kaleidoscopic color…
and she moves on to new work

each moment a marvel
fierce beauty revealed
in the power and frailty of a flower
the brave vulnerability 
of opening to probing sunbeams
the stunning commonplace
of small birds at rest

the cleverest creations of humankind
are never the equal
of her daily dalliances

the path to humility
runs through spring

©Elizabeth Anker 2023