FROM THE TREE TO THE GROUND THE SEED IS UNBOUND
From the tree to the ground the seed is unbound
as a bird in a space capsule re-entering the earth’s atmosphere
like an apple at splash down withering like a parachute.
Or the wind uplifts you like a lion with the mane
of a solar corona, and you roar in the abyss awhile
and then it lets you down like a dandelion
in a windfall of paratroopers crossing the Rhine.
Rags of the flags of last year’s nation of leaves
stuck together like the pages of a wet history book
made sacred by the earth I’m walking on bathed in blood.
Nature red in tooth and claw as if the hot passionate colours
that advance to the foreground were more violent
than the more distantly passive violets, viridians, and blues.
Chill out means stop aiming at everything as if
you were a sniper in a belfry with a machine-gun
looking for God with your third eye laminated to the lens
of a high-powered telescope that’s got you in its digital crosshairs.
I’m not seeking freedom to not have to look for anything.
I’m not turning over every stone to see where the angels
keep their ancient places as a junkie-poet once said
in the gutters of Victorian London, or peeking under every leaf
to see where I left my eyes like reading glasses
under a sheaf of poems packed on my desk
like the layers of the Burgess Shale after the first good snowfall.
Things come of their own accord out of a time-zone
that’s unique to them, and delight in their reception
like strangers in the doorway of an open heart,
every step of the way the threshold of a journey
that would never depart like the bloodstream of a ghost
evaporating from the palace it built in the salt flats
if you didn’t give the flowing a purpose, a destination,
the drift of your circuitous blossoming something to find
when you arrive at the place you lost it like an exit
at the front entrance of your mind. Peace isn’t
the consolation prize of a new pair of eyes
trying to make up for the loss of your happiness.
It’s the only cornerstone of the stars
in a desert of quicksand saturated with the mirages
of the tears you keep sinking in like the delusional oceans
of the moon, in a tidal pool of unsalvaged shadows.
Black walnuts all over the ground this year
like incinerated solar systems from a Rumi poem
lying at my feet like unracked cue balls that didn’t break
but I don’t take them as signs of things to come
because things to come come quietly in the night
without making the grand entrance of a moonrise
or heralding their farewell with the garish sunset
of a trumpeter swan. They come on small feet
that barely make a whisper through the grass.
And then they’re gone like a bubble in a mirror
that breaks into ripples on the surface of the mind
once it makes contact with an atmosphere vast enough
to contain it like an enlightened vision of the wind it rides
to ends of the earth like the breath of life within us all
from birth to death, the mysterious door left ajar ahead of us
and the one behind, opening even wider in our wake.