Uncover the Sun

Walk Through

 

Walk through

that open door of grief

and you may find

a softer heart

and a kindness of memory

 

Under the pain and sorrow

are images

of smiling faces

and moments of togetherness

that transcend time

 

Beneath the wrenching alone

are all of the ways

of connection and comfort,

the conversations between hearts

when they love

 

On days

when grief spills from the door

and overwhelms everything,

sit quietly and remember

before

 

When you walk through

that open door of grief,

you may find

a clear window

into forever

Uncover the Sun

The Fog

 

The fog has slept all night

upon the ground,

barely waking to sit up

and climb the sky

with chill fingers

 

It clings to trees

and ghosts the houses,

thickening the air

with all the words

we cannot say

 

The words that would make

this world real,

real as the fires

that turn acres

into kindling

 

Real as the bodies

curled in sleep

in doorways of despair

town after town,

city after city

 

The fog finally reaches

right into daylight

and takes the long sentences

filled with all the words we cannot say

and says them, says them all

 

Uncover the Sun

Past Any Season

 

Autumn is everything-colored

except black and white,

magenta, dark purple,

orange and red and gold,

every shade ever seen in gardens

 

If we were leaves

would we love each other

far past youthful green

into the fallen months

of rusty brown?

 

Would we remember each other

long after we lay

on mossy ground,

slowly darkening

into earth again?

 

Every autumn I picture you

playing in the fallen leaf piles,

throwing them sky high

and laughing

past any season

 

Uncover the Sun

Your Metal

 

Test your metal,

let it sing to you

under the tap tap hammer

of everyday life

 

The instrument of air

will play tunes

upon that windchime

of yours

 

Enough fire will form

any tool you’ll ever need

to dig or till,

sew or bejewel

 

Your metal will serve you well

as weapons sing

through the air

in fierce metallic cries

 

Your metal-

perfectly balanced

between life and death,

love and loss

 

Someday,

every bit of your metal

will fall down

into earth’s veins again

 

Death, that metallurgist,

will render you

forge ready

once more

 

And

who knows what

you will then

become?

 

Uncover the Sun

Five Minutes

 

In five minutes

you can change your mind

or your life,

write a poem,

end a relationship,

answer the phone,

drink a cup of coffee,

win a prize,

count three hundred seconds,

forgive yourself or another,

laugh uproariously,

listen carefully,

quit a job.

 

In five minutes

you can change your mind

or your life,

stand up to injustice

start a relationship,

give a speech,

read a book,

donate to a cause,

start a new job,

appreciate yourself or another,

weep many tears,

help a stranger.

 

In five minutes

you can change your life

or not.

Uncover the Sun

Feast of Stars

 

Through the rocky crags

we can see a whole feast of stars

laid out against the sky

in an infinite banquet

of sound

 

That kind of music

only comes in the night

when the last crescendo of day

fades into dark

with a savoring pause

 

The moon rises,

singing her light arias,

while the stars dance

sweetly with the sky

and the earth smiles in wonder

 

It is then that our minds remember

ourselves, each other,

and the bountiful concert

that no human instrument

ever played so well

 

Uncover the Sun

 

Neck

 

This long column holds

up a head full of brains,

ideas, imagination,

the power of remembrance,

a scull clothed in flesh, nerves, and skin,

and openings orbiting

random thoughts

 

This tube of sound and swallow

constricts around sorrow,

gulps past the bit of apple

Adam once ate

but blamed on Eve,

and sings life

one note at a time

 

This gusty windpipe

develops from conception

right from the heart

to nod, bend, and swivel,

to express self,

sense, nonsense,

and sometimes silence

 

This long slender holder

of every flowering mind

often grows tired

of lifting up

the whole human

world, one small brain

at a time

 

Uncover the Sun

Travel

 

If you travel past the fallen sunset

into the blue heaven

of not knowing what

lies ahead,

you may find music there

and a moving still life

painted by fate in broad strokes

with marvelous detail

that changes

the closer you arrive

 

If you travel beyond the trees

rooted in every weather

and follow

the curved trunk up

into the branching future,

you may find home there,

where liberty

nests

at the top of the highest reach

of any living creature

 

If you travel beyond the death

of dreams, and loves

and wishes,

you may find a gift there

waiting for you

not to be opened

only held

and known

and accepted,

wrappings and all

 

Uncover the Sun

Transitions

 

When I was young, I had a hard time switching from a creative dreamy state to a linear, homework mode, and vice versa. I needed quite a bit of transition time between different kinds of tasks. Reading books helped calm down my brain and make the shift back and forth easier. Certain times of the day, like morning, were easier for me to focus my mind on left brain activities like math, and I loved having unscheduled hours from late afternoon into nighttime in which to ponder and create.

 

After learning to write analytical essays in 9th grade, it became more difficult for me to write creatively. My head actually hurt trying to make myself conform to school work. I got the same kinds of headaches in college while moving between right to left brain activities and back. Years later,  a woman hooked me up to a biofeedback machine. Apparently, I spend a great deal of time in dreamy states of mind similar to small children between the ages of three and five, which explained a lot.

 

As an adult, I still need transition time between right and left-brain activities. While doing bookkeeping for example, I put music on  and start in the morning. For right-brained activities like art, I start later in the evening after the mundane tasks are finished. It remains difficult for me to shift from doing art to linear activities, for example, but after left brain activities, right brain ones seem like I escaped from jail and made a break for freedom. It is important for creative folks to figure out how to transition back and forth between such different kinds of tasks effectively.

 

Since I’m self-employed, I am able to establish my own hours and have a lot of freedom to organize my day in the way in which my brain works best. When I tried the traditional, 40 hour per week job, of which I lasted exactly three years out of my entire life, I experienced increased ill health, not to mention frustration creatively.

 

Many of our societal structures work well for people who can make their brains operate a certain way. But for those who cannot, it is awful. They may be the artists, writers, musicians, and creative folks that don’t conform, not because they don’t want to, but because they can’t. Some may call it a lifestyle choice, but for many creative types, it’s the only way their brains function properly. Unfortunately, this isn’t a friendly society for nonconformist brains. Or as a woman from another country told me, “Your society is soul crushing for artists.”Continue reading

Uncover the Sun

No-fig Days

 

Some days

are no-fig days,

no fat fruit

plumply waiting

to be picked

 

No sweetness

hanging

lushly among the leaves,

the pulp juicy

around the seeds

 

No surprises

beckoning in the garden

to delight the eyes

and pique

the palate

 

Some days

are no-fig days,

undistinguished

from other ordinary days

except by anticipation

 

Of fig days,

full of flavor and devourings

and the glory of nature

bearing and sharing

most fruitfully