Earth, and its Dark Spots

IMG_0156by Ethan Fleisher

 

woe to the thief who catches wind of the truth.

woe to the bandit that sees his reflection

flashing in a drug store window.

woe to the river dog who watches a last pine fall

from his reward has come his doom, and not so late.

woe to the tyrant who kills his last serf,

to see his kingdom emptied of its blood.

woe to the woman who kisses a boy

to make jealous another, so only to find

he will never trust her because of it.

woe to the writer who pens all his secrets

exposed and naked he withers in winds.

woe to the god who makes smart all his monkeys

replaced by the creature, usurped by creation.

woe to the poem that words out the world’s magic

brujos add potion to the inkwell and quill.

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Dream Shepherd

Under night.
Night touches the dark tracks
of pine
rooting in the between-worlds,
there rouses spirits
once called tricksters
once called teachers.

Now they only frighten us,
so we tell stories
of how they might condemn us.

I hear the whip-or-will.
It sings from the first moment
of utter dark
to the first moment
of pregnant light.
My tracks are soundless
and take flight
in the dusky shadows
as doves
or peregrines,
birds that may take my
step to dream heights.

The night world and the world
of dream
are not separated,
but are like two silver paths
who meet in a center
at a crossroads.

Dreams
are made
from the breathing void
and they fly on the wings of bats
into our dozing heads.
There are shepherds, who in that world
guide their dream flock

to crossroads
that see no false light
that do not bare the stamp of man
we find the places of soul offering
portals we cannot cross.
My soul is a portal tonight
that all may cross.

A shepherd,
staff in hand,
points the way over sleep-green knolls
into vernal waters where
he knows nightmares are to be fished.
The flock posesses a unity
swims through the dark river
of nothing
their bevy dancing through ether
colored like flashing coins of deja-vu.

Everything lives under the moon now.

Tonight my soul is open.
I cannot hold a grudge
when power is glistening
in every blade of sedge grass
every trembling bulrush.
Tonight, on the waters
glowbugs haunt
and the ghosts gawk at the beauty,
taking small souls in jars.
Tonight my soul is open.
I do not fear the dark
but am wary at the sound
of footsteps approach