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author’s note:

Happy Groundhog Day to all the groundhogs out there.
 

AFTER I SAW MY GROUNDHOG SHADOW

If gray clouds cover the sky
on Groundhog Day
the groundhog won’t see his shadow
and so, feel safe
to remain above ground—
to feed, to frolic

just as I did
in my dim Spring.

On the other hand
if the sun cuts through the clouds
then his shadow will be revealed
and our furry friend
will retreat to his dark den—

afraid, as I once was
of that creature unknown.

But in time, he’ll return
just as I did:

I guess we can’t forget
the glory to be found in sunlight—
we want to see—
even if
what we witness frightens us
or pains our eyes.

Maybe…or maybe
we begin to worry—
wondering if

that shadowy something
has followed us back inside
and still lurks—
hidden in the dark.

So we then decide:
hard open light is actually safer
than the shelter of soft darkness.
 

© 2019, Michael R. Patton
myth steps blog

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author’s note:

Hoping I might provide a little bit of light at this dark time.

Best wishes for the holidays.
 

THE LIGHT OF DECEMBER AT MIDNIGHT

Night feels darker in December…

I open myself
to the strange deep quiet
of Solstice

and stop my walk
and open my eyes
to that nativity scene
I think looks so cheap.

Suddenly I see
the pink plastic baby
lying in tinsel straw
is the new life
hidden in my heart:

a slow gestation—
the birth not guaranteed.

Then I see
that glittery styrofoam star
is the wise one within—
the one who often sighs with sadness
at the sight of my rough antics

and then—alas!—I see
that plywood cow beside the manger
is my own domestically-dull head.

Yes, I’m still quite dim…

nonetheless
I can see the light
in this dark season

so maybe there’s reason
for hope.
 


© 2018, Michael R. Patton
40 New Fables: ebook

dear reader:

Allow me to repeat myself:

At my death, I hope someone says: “He fought the good fight.”
 

THE GOOD FIGHT

In the dream, I knelt down

into a circle of light
found on the floor
of a dusty dark tunnel

and in an instant
an upswell of energy
saturated me—a sensation
both buoyant and dense—

my whole being hummed
with the grand expansion

yet at the same time
I felt diminished
by a power so great:
consumed—overwhelmed

I soon woke in fear

and immediately lost the feeling

then cursed my weakness

as I often do
when I give in
to lower instinct
and reject what
my higher instinct desires.

However
I didn’t lose completely:

whenever I remember
that underground light
I can sense (just vaguely)
that force of peace
within me—

within me
yet frightfully foreign:

I doubt I could ever
live with that mysterious intensity
for more than
the occasional moment.

But no matter—
a recent dream shows me
determined to return—
fighting

through a dusty storm wind
toward a dim distant light

and though I feel so weak

the exhilaration spurs me on.
 

© 2018, Michael R. Patton
my war for peace: poetry ebook

author’s note:

No such thing as a bad dream!
 

LIGHT FROM A DARK DREAM

As I struggled to navigate
the dark labyrinth
of that dream…

what a shock when
the thin guiding thread broke
and soon after that
my small lamp blew out

then in the smoky fog
I tried to find my way
with careful fingertips

but my sense of touch
had dulled.

What a blessing that dream!—
because…

when I awoke to its light
I began to see again.

© 2018, Michael R. Patton
myth steps blog

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