Listening to Stars
My spirit has exited,
Miffed at some incident.
Went out listening to stars.
Their songs fall around me
Like little waterfalls
Mumble to stones,
And like rain on June evenings
Slips from the glimmering
Leaves to dark puddles
And quieter pools--
but the gleaming
Lay down their shimmers
And ribbons of gold.
And that’s how the stars sing--
In hushed, rushing whispers,
Dancing in great halls
Of measureless night,
Music that glimmers
Along the vast corridors
Where velvet silences
Cradle the dark.
Among the faint chorus
Of starlight and gravitas,
Mid the high pillars
That hold up the sky,
A single soprano
Line lingers and falters,
Rising and falling
Like wind on a lake.
Long lullabies, legends,
And heroic histories
Murmured in languages
I cannot speak.
I am still waiting
For self to come back to me,
Calmed by the song and
The indigo peace,
Holding a harmony
Suited to counter
With commensurate grace.
(Written in 2005)
A murmuring fall in the fading light,
A sweep and a stream down the eaves at night,
A muttering drum on the roof overhead,
A pelting persistent on glass and on ledge,
Comes the rain.
The softest of mists that caressingly spills
Upon muted greens of the faraway hills
Fades them out gently, soft and shy,
Whispering away into cool, grey sky.
Lullaby silences linger in rain,
Hushing, surrounding with lulling refrain,
And leaving, as all things else quietly cease,
Just me alone with the dripping trees.
And when at the day’s end the clouds thin and part,
And sunlight comes flooding the world wet and dark,
Then flings over grey clouds and damp earth and all
The song of a rainbow in breathless enthrall.
Passes the rain.
Morning in Montana
Fine ice made satin ribbon of the road that strode
The high plateau-land of the Great Divide.
Tall, ponderous ranges flanked my either side
And, softly cumbered with the heavy snows
that deeply drifted from all winter’s throes,
Resembled august and colossal rows
Of pallid, smoothly tumbled jasper.
The early morning sunshine peered among
Dispersing then combining clouds that clung
Awhile to nearby peaks, then briskly flung
At me a few standoffish banks of fog.
The mists that ever shroud the mountains
Roiled round my car like flustered gods
As if inquiring why I trod so high,
For now we all were wandering in the sky,
The clouds, the sunlight, and the road, and I.
But as I drove that lonely plateau road,
So coldly drawn between such silent hills,
The heavens briefly turned to stained glass mode:
The sunlight found a place to filter through.
The clouds that fumbled near me brightened to
Light rose and salmon cotton candy hues.
The snow-bound mountains all around me too,
in bandied light that danced and leapt and fell,
Blushed in several shades of faint pastel,
And momentarily the universe was pink;
Then all turned back to grey.
Words are Colours
Words are colours
“I love you—“
“I hate you—“
“You’re so ugly,
They think that those colours
Will fade in a day,
But what they don’t know
Is that colours make paintings--
And murals— and worlds.
Mutters turn to echoes
That alter every hue,
And manipulate the sunlight,
And change the kind of blue
That shimmers in the sky
When you make someone cry.
The world was made with words
And still is being made.
Tell the trees you love them;
Encourage all the stones.
Know your spoken kindness
Invigorates your bones.
In wandering clouds of dust
Remaining as empires crumble,
The silent chaos demands a hero;
No one unusually glorious,
For redemption indulges the humble,
And no one herculean, virile,
For the torrent of mad destruction
Requires a tempering peace,
Whose invisible powers bend
The brokenness back into function,
Till angry ambitions cease,
And people love people again.
The Flowers and Me
Written in 2011.
Silent night, billionth star,
Perfect rose, speak.
When I see you, in me cries.
I am strong, and weak.
We belong together, the flowers and me;
Never can I sever this funny mystery.
Every day you see your own face;
And think it boring, as though nothing new is there.
Yet because you already know the tears in your own
Eyes and the stories in your own mouth,
And everyone else knows theirs but not yours,
Each remains silent, not asking, not telling.
In this way, the histories of generations go untold.
What you do not tell, no one will know.
What you do not ask, no one will tell.
Country happiness crowds my evening walk,
This solitary dirt road a dusty ribbon amid undulating fields,
The still scented air hanging heavy in haying time.
Slowly the sun sinks.
Finally cool, the land, leaving the sky to its crimson and salmon glory,
Murmurs sleepily to itself;
Sweetly the day fades.
(Written in 2014, this poem describes my reaction as a four-year-old every time my dad looked at me, amused, and said, "Danielle, I think your imagination is running away with you again.")
Is running away with me--
They say that to me all the time,
And every time they say it,
I cannot help but see a thing
That climbs in through the window,
And grabs me by the waist and dashes
Over field and meadow,
Farther far and still away
Until I cannot see
Where it has vanished in the hills
With a very helpless me.
And never and ever again will I
The thing and myself see.
Written in 2015
Clouds like frigates floundered,
Becalmed in azure air.
Because you loved the sky and land,
I knew that they were fair.
You looked at books with wonder
So I see them just the same;
And faded heirlooms as a door
To some forgotten day.
You thought my childish musings
Were worthy of your time;
And smiled as if my chatter
Evinced a brilliant mind.
I never felt too foolish
To say I couldn’t see;
You seemed delighted just to learn
The world afresh through me.
Keenly you attended
To all my rambling tales,
As if my growing were a song
That you were writing down.
Artist and Purveyor of Endless Possibilities