On the long dark road
surrounded by tall trees
we slowly passed zombies
standing like burnt out streetlights.
Surrounded by silence
except the tires on asphalt
they did not move or
blink while we stared.
Hours later we still
were uncertain if they were real
or forgotten nightmares
emerging as signs.
Behind the red glass
what being or consciousness
watches our every move?
The voice behind the glass
asks one clear question:
why won’t you let me out?
Beneath the new moon
questions become more frequent,
secrets begin to spill.
** From the series “The Integration”
The empty fields
will breath darkness
until giving way
to the increasing light.
What today is hidden in shadows
will slowly be revealed.
What will you see when
the night becomes the day?
Emerging from the past
into the present
I continue to pursue the future
always chasing the light
whether day or night.
Tall pine holds up the sky
free of clouds as the sun
I look beyond the tree tops
through the holes
in the sky at the
first star winking
in the twilight of
a spring evening.
I am alone in simple thoughts
free of burden but I feel
an eye is cast in my direction.
I cry slow tears when –
the raven filled sky descends upon the earth.
the sun settles between bare branches.
the moon takes over watch.
the stars paint the night sky.
White snow absent of
absent of tree shadows
and raven wings.
White snow becomes the
moon filled river.
White snow becomes
the expanding horizon.
White snow becomes
what we bring, what we perceive.
An empty canvas, the empty field
becomes a blank page and the contents
of our full minds, the charged emotions
we carry become the objects strewn across the field.
The white snow is deceptive
and in the beauty we can become
distracted and lose sight
of our being our place in everything.
Like mind dusts they accumulate if
not cultivated and swept away.
Our being, our body, our minds
require maintenance and care.
Winter evening in mid-December.
The sun set hours ago and
cold is descending from the heavens,
there are no clouds and the moon is hidden.
The only sound is my feet
and the running dogs.
Down a hill we slide
and stop before the tree line.
An expanding presence
darkness fills the space between
trees, between the fields and the sky.
As evening settles in
I wait for Leroy as
she watches the tree line.
I feel we are not alone
beneath the clear sky,
free of the sun.
The black water flips
the sky and transposes
the sublime night-time patterns.
I become transfixed on one
particular yellowish dot
and after looking away
I no longer find it in the sky.
The following poem is written by Robert Bly. He is considered one of the greatest writers of our time, and it was a challenge to select one piece form his 60-plus years of writing. This piece is from the collection “Eating the Honey of Words: New and Selected Poems”, published in 1999 by Perennial.
Solitude Late at Night in the Woods
The body is like a November birch facing the full moon
And reaching into the cold heavens.
In these trees there is no ambition, no sodden body, no leaves,
Nothing but bare trunks climbing like cold fire!
My last walk in the trees has come. At dawn
I must return to the trapped fields,
To the obedient earth.
The trees shall be reaching all the winter.
It is a joy to walk in the bare woods.
The moonlight is not broken by the heavy leaves.
The leaves are down, and touching the soaked earth,
Giving off the odor that partridges love.