Crossing the Black Path

It is the end of the day.

The trouble is we are dying. . .
Nobody talks like that,
But surely the setting sun understands this language.
But the wind,
If you want the wind to hear now, you shout.

The wind is busy mocking the weather report.
There is a turbine on the ridge that needs to turn,
A roof to blow off,
A flower to stir,
A prayer to deliver,
An old eagle to loft. . .

Shout: The trouble is we care!

The clouds travel over us
And sometimes look down!

Don’t let us be road kill!

We are crossing now,
Almost to the double line now.
There is a roaring in our ears;
We are just like turtle, moving from swamp to pond,
Deer in search of cover,
Making a dash for it,
Mouse racing the juggernaut!

Eagle is scanning in our direction,
But not for us my sister,
And not for the tear in which
Our fear is reflected, my brother.

How can anything be understood
Amidst this cacophony of prayer?
All this crazy praying
For all the things
That were once given. . .

Because we are crossing now
We are praying.
Our fear is praying for us!
So small, so small in time and space.
Is this really all we are?

Is this really our day to die?
Our warm bodies full of blood and breakable. . .
Fathers and mothers and children crossing.

Naked, anxious,
Leaving one side to cross to the other.

This black path
We are crossing. . .
With respect, we pray,

Let us cross!

He

He hunches alone behind
His gray beard
From Idaho
He hasn’t read any best sellers
He dresses in shades
That make gray
Look like a rainbow
His name is a name
Out of a brief story
About someone whose
Jump off
A trestle
Instantly erased him
Ssst
But every night
At exactly 3:00
He floats out of bed
On his back
Lifts the open sash
And sails up into the waiting sky
Smiling at the stars
He stops at the same place
In the sky
Gathers his wits
Smiles tenderly
At the constellations and
With one flick of his little finger
Fires himself into
The fragrant gap
Between the
Honeyed lips of time

 
GARY LINDORFF, TCBH!’s resident poet, is an artist, musician, poet and counselor / dream-worker who practices shamanic techniques, and who lives in rural Vermont with his wife Shirley and two dogs. His website is BigDreamsWeb. (This poem was inspired by reading about the untimely death of Occupy Oklohoma City’s Street Poet)

Maybe I Can Be Trusted

Back in the 50s
We were served up this warm vision
Of sculpted cloud-high bubble-cities
Catered by sloe-eyed robots.

How far that silvery angel has fallen!
Far below
Where Dick and Jane are playing hop-scotch
In the rocket graveyard.

Now a giant bronze plaque proclaims:

The speed of light has been attained!
Prepare! Prepare!
We have straightened the lightning!

What am I saying?
The general himself is shouting —

Prepare!

I am in the streets
Of the City of Sad Thoughts
Where people have become irrelevant
And I have just abused a small white dog.
I press this sweet dog against my face and cry.
The dog sees
That my soul is strapped to a beam of light
Vaulting through space.

I myself was abused
Or deceived
Just like everyone else
In this city.
I can hide nothing
From this dog
Who has become the moon.

Tell me what you see.
Maybe I can be trusted.

 
GARY LINDORFF is an artist, musician, poet and counselor / dream-worker who practices shamanic techniques, and who lives in rural Vermont with his wife and two dogs. (He is also Dave’s brother.) His website is BigDreamsWeb

This May be the Last Time

An old rock song plays
Distantly in my head
Behind three waterfalls.
The first waterfall, my tinnitus,
The second,
My faded memory of the song,
The third waterfall, my indifference. . .
 

I find that new songs don’t age well
But the old ones seem to want something. . .
 

You never understood me,
You never listened.

 

Here, I’m on a swing.
On the upswing, air sweeps by
Pretending to resist
But thrilled to make room;
Kids know all about this rush!
 

On the backward swing
The wind is a little confused.
 

Few things in nature move backwards
For good reason. . .
When the tree rocks back and forth,
What is back, what is forth?
 

But forward is the way to center now and
 

This may be the last time, children,
Maybe the last time
I don’t know.
 

GARY LINDORFF is an artist, musician, poet and counselor / dream-worker who practices shamanic techniques, and who lives in rural Vermont with his wife and two dogs. (He is also Dave’s brother.) His website is: BigDreamsWeb

A Boy is Traveling

 
A boy is traveling
in the back seat of the family car,
a beige Rambler
driven by God
(who, just for now,
is his mother and father).
The boy is looking out the window
ecstatically
at everything that passes
along the road of life.
It is a smooth ride
because the tires are barely touching the asphalt.
It’s all geared to the silken smoothness
of the boy’s vision of things passing.
When they stop
they will be in Florida;
all the orange juice you can drink
for 25 cents!
It will be like a dream.
He will learn to dive
at his uncle Bill’s
from a half-kneel,
like praying.
In a very short time
the boy will see everything
he needs to make sense of life,
of heaven,
of the universe. . .
And he must pay attention, as
very soon,
his hands will be on the wheel,
driving his parents home.
 
1962 Rambler Cross-Country Wagon1962 Rambler Cross-Country Wagon