Like ash…

Aloft …

and parachuting back to earth after its mission of purification;

In leisurely Sunday morning recreation,

Drifting the same direction that I walk—

a joyful traveller on a train to unknown wonder—

Flurries glide alongside me:

Village children, white teeth gleaming, racing the train for jubilation.


Then I turn

And my buoyant racing companions

Become innocent kamikazes on a collision course with my face,

Their gentle landings caught up abruptly

on the wool-clad whale of my body

cresting unexpected under their boats.


…And jostling vexation into the air–

That I would be swimming upstream, against the wind and current.

The branches reaching more often across my path now, like turnstiles,

Also brush my body with that question.


The wind picks up, as if whetted by the blood-sport,

Causing the innocents to strike harder, melt faster.


But the sound of my boots in the sand hasn’t changed;

Massages my senses with a savory sound: rhythmic, sure, benign.


Then a brilliant Blue bird,

an angel descended onto the battlefield,

Redeems all;

Pierces melancholy with miracle,

And then– his mission complete–

Disappears, literally, in the blink of my eye.


And the battalion of pale paratroopers thickens,

Swirling around me now as the wind further quickens,

Like water around a bow,

Each defining the other’s course,

And Slaloming, absolved,

in the ballet of the Tao.

m.l. 2016, Eldorado

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