Across the western sea the islands gleam
like jeweled notes that play, or so it seems,
a wild and rugged song, steeped in romance
and stories that delight the night with dreams.
The winds, when they are willing, swirl in dance
in steps not of America, or France,
but in a strange and sensual caprice;
they tempt the stranger to but take a chance.
The clouds above lay soft as down, or fleece,
and slowly billow as their grays increase,
’til full of rain and summer’s violent storms,
they empty out their content in release.
The long horizon stretches far ahead
across the line of sight like a pale thread,
and seems almost a never-ending band
that ties the rolling waves to the sky-bed.
At dawn and dusk, the edges of the land
seem to forget which part is foam or sand,
and blur into a gray and purple stream
that mixes light and dark along the strand.
15 MAY 2017
Posted in Poems
Tagged #BookofForms, Arabic verse forms, beaches, horizons, islands, poetic forms, ruba'i, rubaiyat, sailing, sea, sunrise, sunset, waves
Through the mist of dawn it slips,
on its lips a whispered sigh
that echoes through the damp air.
Almost not quite there, it flies
between the slow waking trees
whose rough knees, still stiff with night,
begin their conversation, too –
with morning’s blue everywhere.
11 JAN 2017
Along the edge, the slightest remnant lingers
before it falls away into the void
and dries like alcohol upon the fingers,
its essence there but nonetheless destroyed,
the merest memory of thought or action
caught only by a sentimental whim
unable to return the satisfaction:
the empty echo of a finished hymn.
And yet, that tiny fragment’s lack of meaning
unlocks what always follows, in the end:
an empty room assaulted by spring cleaning
that only waits to be filled up again.
Before the dawn, the night feels it is endless:
a gaping maw that, in the sun, is friendless.
05 JAN 2015