always thought that water would (or eyes that could see through time)    listen


when you've salted the sea and schemed what no one attains    i'll tell me who i am


the struggle to fall out of sleep    when dawn is the bed of being someone else


past the past of where i was born    is the September of wanting to take someone there

black walnut dreams drop shadows upon my bed    the weary of god's undressing

just these hands in which i cannot stop living the little good    done wrong


in marvelous silence death's seedling grows    and blinds what's hard to know


the cry being crushed is the depth of the dream no one is interested in living

work in the fog of daylight    hardly know who i am in the river of night

how the invisible can begin to hum    is what the maple in my cornfield knows


the field your dreams work knows no light until death scratches an eye


just the mirror that painted her face    there is no one else in my privacy


most beautiful daybreak he ever saw    was a sky created by others


time to fold up the unfinished world    swim away into the night


the bones of my birth fetched a price    became the whisper in another's life


listening in another's arms knows all my heart is made of

deliver me from clothes and skin    from wind and the crow brought in


whose bones in the ocean of today have guided my hand beyond

walk in a small garden that maybe someone came to fear


does the voice of one who is dead gamble away the phantoms one knows

the eyes of the sheet you lowered over your body stop at dawn


more silence in life than life in the universe—sky, at other times

i am back in the house a child would know the instant sky goes to stone


when weeds make me their living path    into a canyon too inessential to follow


i refuse to inherit anything smaller than god's journey through our rooms


from the portrait of the man born a slave    i walk outside of healing

and what if the heart giving birth to the child prefers the hush and the heat of an attic


what lightning remembers will never wound    is the moon returned to its river


leaning over the edge of august    the horn of the wounding moon was true

who is ironweed staggers stars    this hand i dipped in its spring

too dark to tell the sun i have seen where the last garden on earth has run


one chord of light searingly close but you learn the guide that guides the hand

and if i could find my child as a child again in the memory of blue Japanese iris


if i knew the name you called yourself    would that rub sight into my eyes

captives are those who return and return—i am a potato surrounded by mountains


how do we gather whispers of blood as they fall from a buried shadow

from the trees there is a cry, saddled, waiting    is the sound of the dark in our house


why do elderberries continue to dream until each drop of blood returns


keeping things whole in the absence of wind :: here's a body gathering its shell

call of the owl beside a dream :: or a pine taking leave of the night


years pass in a single white blossom    i think no one looks in or out

how is it i know the escape of small winds has answered the prayers in my breath


in the early life of the mother of the rose    you are the one afraid of flowers


learn to breathe water you will find the other forest

the other secret in the touch of a hand    life in the absence of light



lay down in the fire on the side of the defeated    wind that will never come

in the archive of the last word    of the weight of the rope    how ugly is flowering


only sky blowing into the eye of echinacea    ashes of black umbrellas


into the tides of being unsurprised    what have people of the island thrown away