Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Boy's Gift

I only have
two little fish and
the five barley loaves
my mother packed
for my father and me
for our long
walk home.

I’ve been hungry before
and fear losing my little dinner,

but your eyes so fill my heart,
that, smiling, I give you all I have.

Oh, you must be the One!

for from my meager dole
you feed five thousand souls.

Never again
will I be hungry!


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Natural Force

The earth shrugs
and beneath the sea
mountains lift shifting waves
driving man
to higher

Primal force defines
the earth
as we are defined
by the rise and fall
of breath.

Yet contented we live
by the constant sea
as darker oceans
roil deep
beneath our feet,

and transfixed
we gaze as eternal waves,
pounding thrusting stones,
shatter to frothy foam.

No wonder, then,
when deeper lungs exhale,
in terror we flee,
and cry to God
for mercy.


Friday, August 22, 2014


Hail Mary
full of grace
you are
filled with grace,
with grace
fill me
in streams
of yes
draw me
to where you are
to where He is
among wo-
among men
fruitful, grace-
fully gliding
through the
dark veil
at the hour
of yes
to my


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The Sadness of Holy Saturday

Through the moonless night
clouds choke receding light

and the world descends
into darkness.

Where are you
as winter's chill pierces my hands? 

Oh, where have you gone? 

Do you not care that I decay
without your gentle breath,
that without your light 
I wane like the failing sun?

Why have you abandoned me?

Through my tears I see 
two millennia of agony, 
the six million slain,
all the fallen generations
newly free, heavy nails 
at last released. 

(for James Foley, 8/19/2014)

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Crow on a Branch

Crows rise and drop
in the high redwood tree
arguing, competing
to see who would light
on the top-most limb,
as thin branches, bending
under their weight, waver
and bow

when suddenly
one raucous crow
comically falls.

Cawing, the clumsy black bird
beats out his own breeze,
and rises again
to the argument.


    Friday, August 15, 2014

    Peaceful Evening

    Like a dark tower,
    my window looms;

    ebony night waits
    just a step away.

    Deep silence
    consumes empty spaces
    in the tall trees

    where breezes sing
    in the joyful morning.

    My feeble lamp
    can only reach
    a few feet out

    and sets
    the pale grass

    as glimmering ghosts
    softly search
    for peace.

    But peace
    can be uneasy

    and stillness signify


    Tuesday, August 12, 2014

    The Bridge at Rio Vista

    The bridge stands low
    over the swollen

    black water,
    rushing to
    darker seas,


    sucking breath
    from the fallen,
    the overboard,

    the suicide.

    Its sturdy stanchions,
    hold fast,

    give refuge
    from the maelstrom,

    a way across

    or a place
    to jump.