Thursday, March 4, 2010




for Layla on her way


You’re like this wandering dawn

thirty-five thousand feet above the Pacific

and I’m like this horizon

back here on the ground

at my desk in Perth

wondering if all that splendour

might ever stand in my doorway again.

I don’t think yesterday ever stops

or there’s ever an end of beginning

because everything includes everything

from the very start

like water coming down a mountain on the moon

whole in every part of its flowing

in the expanding here and now of its knowing

the entire sea of awareness

that fills all the cups of time

is contained in every drop

that spills over the brim of a human heart

that knows the journey is the whole of its destination.

We are most homeless on our own thresholds

just as we are crossing them

to go out into the night

like fireflies among the fixed stars.

And most vulnerable

when we take off space like skin

to show someone we love

there is no outside or in

no end or origin

no departure arrival or road

in the way we begin each other

like worlds we could live in

like birds in flight through the night.

And you could bring your own stars.

And I could be as wise as the seasons

and discover the whole earth

is the philosopher’s stone

and throw it through the mind-mirror

that makes love look for alibis and reasons

like small cracks around its eyes.

And birds would be the first words

of a sky that’s learning to talk.

And later you could teach it

to play the stars

as if the universe took the shape

of a beautifully made guitar

in the hands of a wistful siren

whose longing is the music of her solitude.

And I would come to you

like the afterlife of a tree you once loved

and whisper things to you

even the wind doesn’t know

when it opens its ears like leaves.

We could steal the moon

from each other’s window

like lovers and thieves

and get away with it all like joy

because no one believed we could. 

You could be the sacred groves.

I could be the rebel wood.

You could wear the night for clothes

And I could stand there in my strangerhood

and let the flames fall from my body

like feathers from a phoenix

and burn so hot

you could see right through me.

Space is faster than light or thought

and space is the dark mother

that opens the gates to everything

in between the lines of an unsigned loveletter

that writes itself as you read.

I am the way I am

because you are the way you are

said the darkness to the star

the flower to the bee

the mountain to the sea.

You could be a mystic river

and I could be your reed.

You could be a fire-giver

and I could be your candle.

You could be a grail of rain

and I could be the search.

You could be a rose of pain

and I could be your church.

You could cry like a late-night violin

and I could be your Handel.

And that’s the way the world emerges

out of the emptiness of a boundless abyss

and love calls out like one voice with myriad echoes

you could be the furious dream

of the butterfly princess

who dreamed she woke up to a kiss

and thousands of miles away

here at my desk

I could be the bliss

of watching you rise in the morning.

You could be a comet

passing through the sunset.

And I could be the vapour trail

of your new-age prophet

and explain you like a message to the rest

any sign of your light

is proof to the fruitful

there are still cosmic eggs

that break like worlds

waiting to be born

that fly from a shaman’s nest

high among the stars

and a full moon in the apple-tree

whose passage is blessed

by a lone Druid

in a cathedral forest

struck by lightning

back here in Canada

counting tree-rings

like so many scars till spring.