Playing favorites

I’m asked my favorite poet…

How can I answer?


There are too many poets I don’t know.

There are so many stars

And I barely know the one nearest me,

   Cannot even look upon its radiant face…

   … until its light has bounced through a billion prismic cells

       and shines through mine as me.

How can I name my favorite poet?

Everyone is a universe and my eyes are dim.

If I were to name my favorite poet,

It’s the one I know this moment,

   The one in whom I recognize myself.

And the more I know myself to be everyone and everything,

   The less I can name any favorites….

But if I were to name a favorite poet

—among the few poets I know–

Today it would be Rilke.

In his voice I first recognized my own.

Before that, I knew myself only as

the nameless one between the raindrops…

and within the fire… space… light… sound,

and especially

   the infinite,



Truth be told, I could not even know that

–in human terms–

Until the Radiance was molded into words,

   Muted in the shade of this other soul,

     Between whose words echoed my own.

Everyone is a poem,

And each speaks with the breath of One Poet

   Who favors none.


M.L., New Mexcio,  August, 2016


Black desert scarab–

Stink beetle–

Staggers in jagged circles

Across the desert mosaic…

Dense little licorice tank,

He is too black for this place,

Cannot blend anywhere,

And rambles as if from the exhaustion of not belonging.

Yet the Raven is Black–Unknown

So black he too turns blue.

He carries his belonging with him, inside him,

In the Wh!Wh!Wh!Wh! of his wings,

Which sweep away all question of belonging,

And he lands with full (and comical) entitlement

Upon the cedar branch too limp to bear his weight,

And yet it does,

Through his sheer will to belong.

Presence Pretending


It’s quite simple, really…DSCN0586

I know…

But I pretend not to…

And then I forget that I know…

…forget what I know.

It’s the grandest game of Hide and Seek:

The one I am afraid to play,

Until I remember that I am already playingDSCN0587
Or I wouldn’t be afraid.

The one in which

The Hider and the Seeker—

And the game itself—

Are all the same stuff:

Presence Pretending.



80 Years a Mystery

Today –August 18th, 2016–would have been my father’s 80th birthday.

This week offered me little stillness to attend memories, but the universe gave me a few moments this morning

— and a very few lucid brain cells–

to open to any messages or significances.


 So it is that I simply and briefly honor him today,

The mystery and miracle of him.

The one who is now but a memory:

A collage of snapshots in my psyche,  

Gems in my treasure box,

Aches in my bones, bruises in my soul,

and Echoes of an hysterically clucking chicken and the a bar of soap clunking to the bath tub floor, as Daddy chicken lays another egg for his daughter, who giggles with inexhaustible delight from her perch on the toilet seat on the other side of the shower curtain.  

…The one who lives in my intelligence,

who heals and shines through this living heart, mind and body.

 bill christmas 19602aDSCN7425