I tried to satisfy my hunger
by finding Zeus in the clouds.

But apparently the sky god 
had abandoned his throne.

Finally, in sad frustration
I looked down.

Only then did I begin to notice
all those luminous living things
on the ground:

things that want to be seen--
things that need to be seen--
things that can feed me

including this stream

with its myriad slivers of sun
silver ribbons twisting
yet remaining in place
as the waters slide on--
rippling with gentle excitement.

If I’m patient
sight and sound then become 
a feeling:
too much for my chest
but my heart wants more.

At such moments
I feel blessed 
to live in a world
abandoned by Zeus.

myth steps blog
© 2021, Michael R. Patton
author's note:

“I have sounded the very bass-line of humility.”  
	    -- Shakespeare, Henry IV, Part I


Recently a nature show on TV
tried to explain why
the bullfrog thrums all night

but I already knew
how steeping yourself  
in the cold dark water
can resurrect deep feelings:

though he has no sweet notes
the frog still feels compelled to sing.

As I listen to the pain
in that plodding repetitive croaking
I also hear a relentless drive 
to heal the wound down inside.

Can bluebirds sing
with such gravitas?

I don’t know.  Maybe some.
But at night I listen
to the bullfrog.
myth steps blog © 2021, Michael R. Patton
author’s note:

You’re just as much a paradox as I am.


Before I fell asleep in the field
I recalled the waterdrop seen
on that dark-purple flower petal

and felt: I’m just a drop.

But as consciousness 
slowly evaporated
into darkness
I felt myself 
deepening down.

Then when I awoke 
after an hour
or maybe a month
I remembered feeling
so small.
I remembered feeling
 so deep.

I felt our truth again.

So easy to forget.
What I Learned While Alone: poetry ebook © 2021, Michael R. Patton
author's note:

I may not be Mother Nature’s son…

But maybe she appreciates the way I respect her.


I’m sheltered by the forest trees 
yet feel vulnerable because
I’m a stranger alone:

vulnerable as a child--
is nature my mother?

the connection broke long ago:
those trees offer no comfort--
all they do is watch me
from a distance
I can not bridge.

But in uncertainty, I open
to the feeling of mystery
to the quiet dark grandeur here.
I feel myself grow small--
I’m no more important
than that stone.

Maybe even less.

Yet experience myself
as a special individual
because I feel 
so strangely alone.

But lifted by wonder
I also experience the stone 
as a special individual…

the waterdrop on that leaf...

the tree frog.
myth steps blog © 2021, Michael R. Patton


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