Thursday, March 27, 2014

Complete

The eyes that see, the hearts that beat--
How will blood answer the mind's command?
The dark and the light are what make us complete.

Every virtue an advance, each sin a retreat,
street voices scrape, compel and demand
the eyes that see, the hearts that beat.

The dictator was once a baby, so sweet--
Evil in us, like cancer, shrinks or expands,
fills with the dark and the light, makes us complete.

The angel is tempered by anger's strong heat.
What will you censor, what should be banned?
The eyes that see, the hearts that beat?

The conscience that guides, the urges that eat--
Stay hungry, search on—how much can you stand?
The dark and the light are what make us complete.

That baffling place, where reason and desire meet--
Will you fling a fist or offer an open hand
to the eyes that see, the hearts that beat,
in the dark and the light which make us complete?

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Damaged Muse

When evening light will reach and fall just so,
and animated shapes emerge from lines,
with the darting brush's quick, sure flow,
and the artist briefly stops the rush of time,
your incandescent waves of falling hair,
a face that's so possessed of dark and light,
a complexion held in stillness fair,
is captured, held complete—not quite.
The broken smile still has the will to charm.
I give this haunted art what it demands.
It holds me, too, for now I'm free from harm.
This oddly frozen hour--cold paper in my hands.
How I have come to learn the artifice in art--
True seeing comes not from eyes, but heart.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Slow Spring

In the pre-dusk hush, the
mind slows, studying the 
snow which knows
stillness, and the thaw
and melt, drawn back
into the earth, no sound
in the soft ground, where
there is something 
green or wanting to
be green, while, above,
through cirrus wisps,
more light every day, 
while arctic wind disagrees--
wait, with the patience
of a tree in winter. 

A Letter to My Students

I don’t say it enough, but I care about you. Each of you. That’s why I’m here. It’s too much work to do it for the money, so there must be ...