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head hand - January 11, 2014s

author’s note:

It was blessed good fortune when I discovered the books of Robert A. Johnson.
 

HER

I write to honor a woman
who hides in full view—

whenever I lose her
she watches and waits

as my stitches break open—

she will sew me back up
but I must first guide the thread
through the eye of the needle:

I must nurture her
before she can nurture me.

If you claim
you do not want her
I know your poverty—

I once tried
to leave her behind
because I thought
I needed to be tough
to make this trek
across the desert…

but finally I felt so weak
I had to stop
and as I gave myself up
I realized her presence
then realized her strength—

when I looked skyward
I found her gliding
in a fleet of sunlit clouds

then discovered her again
in the cloud shadows moving
across the brown sand.

At night,
she beams down upon me
from the eye of the moon

as I nestle into a boulder
shaped like her hand.

Some meet her by blessed accident:
a burglar opens a window to rob a jewel
and ends up leaving with the bride.

She comes to me
when I finally acquiesce
and allow myself
to experience perfection…

© 2014, Michael R. Patton
listening to silence: the book

goddess treatment border - November 19, 2014s

author’s note:

Many have speculated on the existence of a goddess religion in ancient times…

I now have my doubts.  Even so, I know the goddess is real.
 

SOPHIE SOPHIE SOPHIE

I lost Sophie so long ago
I can’t remember when—

now she seems so foreign

though I see her everywhere:

in the glowing pearl earring
found suddenly in a dark theater

in an elegant hand print on
a frosted window
highlighted by The Moon

in a burning sunrise cloud

in the reflection of that cloud
on the gently burning sea…

so much of life says “Sophie” to me—

including the way
the peasant woman kneels
at the creek as she scrubs
yesterday’s clothes
—her long black hair
   flowing down to the ripples—

I stand there, smiling whitely
with my hands behind my back
acting casual as I remark
on today’s weather

while to myself I chant
this sacred thought:
“Sophie Sophie Sophie”.

But as she lifts her inquiring eyes
I’m startled awake
and ask myself,
 “What—
  what could she possibly see in me?”
 

© 2014, Michael R. Patton
dream steps: the blog

lady hair - July 16, 2014s

author’s note:

Mrs. Creighton, my high school English teacher, was always on our case regarding redundancies within sentences and paragraphs.

So the poem below is a type of revenge.

And yet I thank her, for helping me to keep my language honest.
 

INTENSE GENTLE ESSENCE

Knowing
I may be possessed
by a gentle spirit
if I enter that room…

I hesitate

because of the intensity

and yet, I am drawn inside

because of the intensity:

when I stand very still
and allow my heart to fill
until my brain stops
long enough

for those nerve endings
to unclench their tiny fists…

I can then sense
the subtle rhythmic waves
of her breath…
the warm thrilling mist
of her presence
within me—

it’s both too much
and not enough:
that essence…

collected then dispersed again
throughout the darkness
collected then dispersed again
throughout the darkness

the darkness within
the altar of my chest
the temple of my body.
 

© 2014, Michael R. Patton
new steps

author’s note:

It is a glass of water
ever just poured for me, a memory
kept silent come to speak.
               — Robert Duncan
 

THE ARCHAEOLOGIST

When he said her ancient name
he felt as if he spoke
of every woman ever born—

thus, he could endure the work—the dust,
the tedious years of shifting, the fights,
the sweating madness
of that desert country…

however, her elusiveness, so deeply felt
could, at times, overwhelm him, leave him
weeping…

then, in desperation, he’d catch himself up
by saying the other name—the ordinary one
of a woman lifting her cupped hands
to the sun

that incantation would return him
to the beauty of a world
in which chipped cups
take the place of silver goblets—

that name, so strong
served enough blue water
for him to endure
the dust of his blindness—
enough for him to bear
his maddening doubt.

© 2012, Michael R. Patton
dreaming steps

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