As I was batting around the ball
of an idea, it turned into a bird –
unfolded – the way I hope
a poem unfolds and startles me.
I’d like to be a bird next time.
Birds don’t need to learn
to love the world. Gray sky
is a stone any bird can enter.
Or, I’ll be a black-eyed seal
that breaks the surface, shiny
with news of its deeper life –
the way I hope to come back
as a poem that surfaces,
re-surfaces, keeps glistening.
-From Throat Singing (Word Tech, Cherry Grove; 2012)
Originally published in Poetry East
-- Susan Cohen
The Fissures at Taft Point, Yosemite
They make a slow strange clock, these boulders
arrested in their fall long ago, caught between
parallel spires of cathedral-grade granite.
The boulders rest like fat abbots, gray,
gothic, jammed into the vast, jagged belfry
of Yosemite's south rim. They wait.
But also illustrate the scale of time. Tourists
tap their watches, nervous for the last bus.
They worry what they're missing for dinner
down on the valley floor below, depart like pebbles
ticking downslope. The boulders remain
locked in place. Freedom for some takes time.
It can take an earthquake to shake things free.
- from Windfall, A Journal of Poetry of Place,
-- Dave Seter