on slipping

i don’t have words to spill this life over into your lap

to shape with ee cadence the timbre of the street

to strut the interruptions and disruptions of a kingdom-journey for your reading pleasure

i don’t have words which paint a million pictures

or even one

i don’t have pictures which sing a million words

or even one.

i can’t string letters and intonations able to evoke the fears and despair i live into, die into, when i walk these streets of pain

i don’t have rhythms of language able to invoke the freedom and hopes i break into, breathe into, when i dance in these fields of gold

i can’t wrap words around me (or you) to cover the nakedness of the shadow

which shames between the motion and the act

i can’t sing lullabies which settle the heart locked-up or sooth the soul that holds the key

i can’t share names of the faces of the several-stories i’ve just shared that caught you unaware


i’ll see-saw you through this, your fingers like sieves, these words like sand

gunshots and giggles.

a bottle in a hand and a head-hung-low

and a hand on a bike and a sure-secure guide

both called mother.

blood-shot eyes and bright-eyed hopes.

destruction and chaos and a time to build and a time to heal

violence and a time to kill

sitting on a front step, laughter and shared meals, and a time to be born

darkandlightanddeathandlifeand a hundred irreconcilables waiting to coexist

so i’ll speak in riddles and spin tales in rhymes and

i’ll stumble with allusions

side-step illusions

and know that He who sees, sees

and one day this dim reflection

will be understood

even as i am fully known.


7 thoughts on “on slipping

  1. So beautiful. I would love to meet you and have an afternoon of coffee spoons and words with you… 🙂 I’m a friend of Bruce Collins – he sent me this link. Wow, again. Dalene Reyburn

  2. Blown away by this piece again as I looked for it this morning. “ee cadence” – woah! Your words, your heart: beautiful.

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