Monday, June 3, 2019

A Poem by Lawrence Burns

On a Wing and a Prayer

Can a poem speak,
angel or arrow,
soft truth or swift answer—unavoidable?
Imagine the flight of a faded pink diamond kite.
Aloft by a string. Balanced between Icarus’ youthful illusions  
and Bellerophon’s bitter regrets.
Oft admonished, we are extolled, “focus on being in the present.”
How best to do this?

I want [to] fall in present (sic).  As in: to fall in love; not to fall in line.
The kite in my mind—it trembles in the breeze, painfully alive: albeit, aloft.

I’ve long imagined that I’d emerge, epiphany-like into the present
as if it were the epicenter of some to-be-determined, right moment.
Arriving concisely with some precise insight; Aretha Franklin shattering my illusion with a song?
A shattered egocentric exoskeleton: freed self, [finally] enjoining with life’s melody.
And still, I meander, discovering multiple epicenters, all falling in to the present. Alive.
The creek bed is still and yet the waters meander. 
There is no “it”. No “moment.” Only melody. Wafting. Forward.

A soft pink kite flutters. Almost errantly. Aloft and rising slowly,
while the waters move swiftly
in the dawn.

May, 2019
Lawrence Burns 
(son of Marilyn McDonald who wrote A Brief History of Tassajara)

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