Set off from here with a romantic lover
Wrote every letter
From my strongest hand
A heavy T started every line
To say I wasn’t going alone
I am a headlight in the getaway
Whistle like the sweetest bird
A beating heart, the legendary
Dance around, forever carried
And find the song to let it go.
Set off from here with a romantic lover
Dancing through the Kingdom of Joy
Alone, the rupture had a sentence
A package of unexpected buoyancy
Laid about thy path.
Oh, shame shame the clouds have come
Accept thy fate and look back no more
Forgive each breath you once deplored
Let run deep thy river’s mane.
Stepping aside, a willow tree
Called thy name twice in vain
But on the third day, as time began
A shift in conscience pulled at thee.
Then with a rod of sixfold and reel
Twang at last, the pauper’s gold
Gifting all that had been told
Left alone in a field of wildflowers.
When you worked those sidesteps
A John Lee Hooker rhythm
Where I swooned for miles
Into your sugar sweet arms
That led me dancing
In a step step all night long
Baby, all night long.
Walking past a darkened window
About my business of the day
I caught a glimpse deep inside
That sent me far away.
I shuddered at the thought upon
My furrowed brow, so cold
A memory of a locked trunk
I had believed far away.
Oh torment, why thou doth attack me
In my daily sugared tea
Leaves me holding secateurs
A photograph from far away.
There then rests thy saving grace
A cutout tacked to thee wall
A guillotine for my dancing fingers
Upon darkness far away.
If you were at peace
Would you find the motivation to move on?
Would you step away
Wreck your thoughts
For a better way?
How many moons must smile at your soul
Before the sun begins to rise
With you on it’s mind?
Does peace found ever stay a while?
Does it last into our silence?
Does it come along
Through the wind so free?
Does it catch you in a dance?
We were sitting by the fire when Mountain Chief came back
Him and his seven men came nearly galloping in
Whooping and hollering, clearly happy to be home
We had known they were coming
From the Scouts who were on lookout
They had two buffalo with them
We were going to celebrate this evening
And the women were busy gathering wood for fire
That would be roaring for the next three days
Cooking and curing and smoking.
I helped Moon Cow as I could
We were in charge of setting up the smoke house
For all the curing that we would be doing
We latched it together from wood we found
Using our axe to form the frame
Throwing two layers of buffalo skins over the top
We layered the inside with stones
That we also placed on top to keep it extra heavy
And created 7 shelves inside, above the smoke
To put maximum meat inside to smoke.
That night I was included in their celebration
Moon Cow and Lily helped prepare me
With two big hand marks on my left rib cage
And two little hand marks on my back, upside down
Moon Cow said that I was a good omen
And that as part of his families tradition
I would be offered the little rib from the left side
And that Mountain Chief was pleased with the sign
Lily River told Moon Cow who told me
That her downward facing hand prints on my back
Was her way of showing me
That the power of her downward flowing river
Was at my back
I was left speechless as I just watched the two of them
Prepare prepare me
And then Moon Cow sent Lily back to Willow
As they helped each other prepare.
There was not just the one fire in the middle
But many surrounding fires
That each had a roasting spit on them
For the family to eat from
Mountain Chief ceremoniously cut from each buffalo
Parts that he would announce
Who and why it was given to
A ritual I had never been witness to
But understood at once the value
His people put on it.
When I was given the left little rib bone
Everybody at once erupted into cheer and dance
Acknowledging the good omen they believed I had brought
I wasn’t really sure what I was supposed to do
And when I looked to Moon Cow for advice
He just shrugged and laughed at me
I at once was caught up in the ceremony.
When I awoke
There was a fresh mist across the encampment
And some twists of smoke
Coming from well attended fires
Finally breathing their last breath
I could see from some teepees
Smoke funneling out
Moon Cow had enjoyed the night as much as I had
And was just waking up when I returned
From freshening myself in the brook
He had no eggs this morning.
As I sat crosslegged in the little clearing
Hidden as I was, deep within the forest
Heading East to the land of the Old People
I wondered about the faces I might see,
Faces of the men and women who would greet me,
Faces of the children playing in fields
And fields growing with the vigor
Only well cared for fields of tender hands can grow
I knew I would find
In the land of the Old People.
Beside me was a little patch of buttercups
That skirted the edge of deeper forest
Fallen logs and fir needles of this land
I could still hear the brook I had crossed
Calmly gurgling in the distance
My canteen still cold from its fill
My belly still churning from its fill
My fingers still wet and a cold
Only fresh mountain water can give,
A cleaning happily taken
Where I had let my bare feet soak gently a while.
My eyes scanned into the forest
Of an age I guessed ageless
Not a stump to be seen
Finding geometry in naturally fallen trees
Trees standing so tall my guess couldn’t reach
Moss covering so gently
I envisioned the industry nestled
Deep within the safety net of moss
That lay about thickly covered forest floor
Fungus’ mycelia layer hidden well
In healthy circles around the Ancient Giants
Old Man’s Beard hanging low
And spider webs zig-zagging
With its delicate fibers of care.
My pouch was always on me
No matter how far from camp I wandered
So as I moved away from my opening
I felt instinctively for my tools
Stepping over former soldiers
Rotting as life continued its circle
Through the efforts of decay
My soft crunch avoided the mounds
Finding edible mushrooms was easy
This early season of harvest
Upon edges of clearings I’d find strawberries
And blueberries and salmonberry brambles
So thick I’d get high
Feeding so heartily on such sugar
I knew it wouldn’t stay forever.
Fire starting was an economy no man could do without
No sane man that is,
For plenty of nights I’d been cold
In pure darkness of deep night,
But this night I had supple moss
And accessible wood dry enough to start
A warming dance in my blood
Soon the coals were hotter then the wood
That burned inside their whispers
My bed was simply a roll
The hard ground was something I was used to
I carried soft fur of a bear
On the top of my bag
Which I’d lay under my roll
To soften each night’s cold
My dream of a sheepskin
I had read about in books
Of old foreign herdsmen roaming
Highlands of Scotland
But I with my simple roll
Laid out on the ground.
Each shoulder I shift, shuffle,
Creaks with passion left un-stoked.
A winding splinter soaking
In the full moon’s setting sun,
A twisted root dancing
With leaves of another season.
Little whispers call out my name,
And it’s feeling a lot like rain.
So this path goes on,
Leaves fall to the tune of a breeze
And guesses punctuate each heave
With uneven ground, frolicking madly
Amidst pebbles and sticks
That grow wilder, fonder,
Of screw-top frameworks
Settling into the pocket
Of our toiling shuffle, softer.
When I say you’re perfect
I mean it from the whole of my essence
From my tingling toes
To each breath I excitedly (and deeply) inhale,
From my deepest lost fantasy
To each lightly placed finger tip
That crawls every imagination I’ve got.
Your perfection seeds my stillness
That captures me in your grace.
Your wrong is not a wrong,
Your wrong is effort in my eyes
That nurtures your blossom,
Imagination takes your fancy
And lifts your spirit,
Infecting me like a perfect vision,
A sun rising from the horizon
Inch by inch warming my open eyes
To the miracle of a new day.
Your perfection isn’t in your perfect action,
Or your perfect features,
Or your perfect voice or perfect success,
Your perfection lies within your being.
Your perfection lies within your effort
That dances as you know how to dance
Over obstacles and through conversations,
That listens and speaks and shares and fights
And bruises and hurts and feels and bites.
Perfection is you, not the sum of your doings,
It stays with you as you go,
And returns again tomorrow,
It follows you into your messiest of days
And shadows you as you run.
When I say that you’re perfect,
It doesn’t hinge on how you treat me
Or what you bring me as a gift,
It doesn’t depend on your generosity
Or how close you hold my hand,
No, I mean it without you even knowing me
And I mean it as you walk upon your path,
I mean it as you say goodbye
And wave me our last kiss.
I don’t want to fall into what I’ve never believed,
I want to fall into just you and me.
Late night snacking upon our ruffled sheets,
And every morning’s breakfast
Made for two, that’s you and me.
I want to go for daily picnics
In amongst our wild and thriving garden
Like the love we feed each other
From the bottoms of our feet
That touch under covers
When we’re playing hide and seek,
I want to grow into our house
With your little things hanging everywhere
I want to journey long and far
With your laundry in my bag
Because forever I want to carry
What burdens you, nevermore.
I want it to be just you and me
With a candle makes three
Over dinner we made together
Bums touching as we danced and poured
Our love freely like wine.
And our love intoxicating!
With every breath we share together
Will be sweet wine hand in hand
From our bottomless bottle
Of our hearts we’ve tied together
When we plunged under the oceans spray,
When we first danced the night away.