She Arrived Bearing Leaflets


She arrived bearing leaflets
gathered hastily from a tree
that once made its home
along the bluff that bowed
in the direction of All Saint’s Creek,

Where the flightless seraphs would
traverse from time to time
to retrace the melody
that escaped somewhere between
celestial monuments immemorial

And the hallowed confluence of
electric mists and vernal shadows
that marked the beginning
and the end of a journey’s refrain,
just beyond the bend.

One leaf was given to a man of great wisdom
who preferred the wistful caress
of remote breezes emanating from
solitude sweetened with age
and fortified with crystalline shells of Faith.

Another was given to the golden-haired urchin
who painted the meadows with colors
birthed out of fond remembrances of
tender passages from lullabies
that dared to trace their lineage back to Blue.

Several more were given to
the animals that dutifully roamed
the forgotten stretch of the forest
in which visions of sunrise trickled down
like nervous rain on its journey beneath the surface.

The last leaf was given to me
as I wondered into the chestnut stream
that flowed from her eyes.
I held it to my heart and promised her
that I would awaken each morning hereafter

Bearing lavender periwinkles for her silken hair
extending in every direction, culminating into
tightly-woven star steps leading back
to the beginning of the Creek
where there were dreams of flight, patient and graceful.

I promised her that when the leaf crumbles,
my heart will divide the pieces among
every meandering soul in search of her lament,
and legions of despondent youth
will arise and build spatial arias from her maiden cry.

And the galaxies will awaken, changing form
with each resolution, presaging the moment
when each star will descend upon the horizon
and illuminate the spot where the leaflets once
graced her outstretched hand.

I sit and mark the journey
of lost stars that find their way down the bluff
and into my bosom, where I inscribe her smile on them,
and turn them into wings that glow in the dark
for the angels who plant trees at night.


Art by Matt Wisniewski

I know well that I shouldn’t want you.

I know well that I shouldn't want you.

I know well
I shouldn’t want you.
I stifle
Desire and care
With all the fury
Of a corrupted saint
Entreating moments
Past and future for mercy.
And atonement.

I know that
Spirits are astir
Within me
With vague intentions.
A specter of desire
Comes to rest
On the ridge of your vein
Where your palm begins
To stroke my face.
Three phantasmic
Little urchins
Dally precariously
With the threshold
Of my awareness
Of your presence,
Threatening to obscure it
With three shades of dust
In the name
Of perpetual penitence,
Of chaste lullabys
Forcing rest.

I know well
You do not see me.
You have never seen me
And never will
Save through chipped glass
Thickened with
Red wine turned to gel
Encrusted with
Unanswered appeals
To tomorrow,
Using the songs of old.
But with your voice
Clarity arises
And makes the flute cry
(Like yesterday),
Perhaps at the sight
Of empty crystalline
All gathered along
The river bend
Where I shall want to
Accompany you,

Art: “Panopticon 2”
Guy Denning