Thursday, September 09, 2004

From Rose Breath collection


This silver shiver of life
that passes through me now
burnt as flame in Moses's bones,
and moved as wind through Isaiah's voice;
it softly shimmered as a pale bird
above Jesus' wet hair;
it betrothed barefoot Francis
and became liquid light in Rumi's pen;
it was a rose bud in the breast
of Joan of Arc
and the flame which consumed her flesh.
And there are countless unnamed ones
who yielded open and learned to love--
common folks now famous in Heaven,
who let the gentle ecstasy pour through.


When the spirit is naked and open
so life can course through it,
then the flash of a woman's thin thigh
is as beautiful
as a quiet discussion of recent history,
or the homily of an old priest,
or the raucous caw of a blue jay
or the sight of birds drifting through trees,
or a dog's restrained, wary speech,
or the splash of river water on a stone,
or the taste of blueberries,
or the writing of poems.