Vigil

We put these offerings out
into the blunt nothing of tomorrow,
then wheel about and drift off
impatient to gather more

and all our works and amusements
all delights and suffering
lie unclaimed
sliding into yesterdays

they will waste until our bones
are no more than a smear
beneath a rubble

until we and everything
known to our kind
have vaporized and seeded the cosmos

and somewhere the light is lifting
and fragments gather into wholes

Love song of the seasons

Shall we meet on some vacation,
Soaked in summer perspiration
Or put it off till August
When the rains no longer dog us

Or shall I look for you in autumn
Seeking out your soggy bottom
Wrapped in leaves of red and gold
While your ass is growing cold

But not as cold as winter’s blast
Be you ever so steadfast
Will you be on some new caper
Despite the freezing vapor

Or, alas! not until spring
Shall I find you on the wing
Pushed along on some tornado
Nearly halfway to Laredo

Whatever is the season
You choose to fry or freeze in
I hope it’s not too long, my lover
Or soon we’ll have to start all over

Dangerous companions

A child finds himself wandering alone
In a forest, seeing a campfire and, drawn to it,

Finds dangerous companions, thinks,
What is it I am afraid they will take from me?

Not the place of my birth, or of my rearing,
Or the place from which my ancestors sought refuge

Not the things I’ve inherited –
Blue eyes, brown hair, big feet and a guilty conscience –

Or the illusion of permanence that is itself
The only permanent thing I know.

My life? Such a fragile thread!