O Lotus that blooms from a tear of compassion fill the air with your intoxicating scent Remind us that anywhere there is concern or sympathy for others clear water blooms When the bodhisattva saw the suffering of humanity a tear formed a lake of pure water From the clear fresh water grew a single Lotus From that Lotus stepped the compassion goddess O dear one, enlightened one accompany me on this last journey of mine for I am scared Outside my window the desert lies beneath a sun killing those who suffer the weight of all civilization on their back The air here is poisoned with toxins The water is itself a miracle each time it appears falling over my fingers yet is refuse recycled from the filth made by people just for the fact that they are human I sit in a concrete shower a stranger’s hand between my legs to remove the stink of my existence and that hand is the hand of Tara come to make my transition from flesh to ash peaceful and without pain For that gift O enlightened one you who saw the tears of the world and flew down to bring us beauty I thank you For each indignity I suffer let me see it as a gift a signpost on my way to the other side And let holiness lead me, a craven and flawed creature, the least of all these toiling and struggling souls Let me find peace in the unknowingBecause a tear from the eye of a holy one baptizes me and protects me from all
Untimely death declared (one day left!)
One day left! Time to prioritize
Assume the stars say do whatever you want with what little time left
Spend the rent on charming ballet slippers
Dance at the ball until way past midnight Laugh until you wet yourself no matter
Turn all your oh, no!s into oh, yes!s.
Say hello to spring which won’t become a fall
Make some room for pudding—the real kind made of whole milk and eggs
You will need your dogs with you
They will give miniature barks in their sleep
and deep sighs when you give them kisses
Begin now the journey until your dying day
Write your own prescription for poetry
Read out loud every poet you’ve ever loved
Eat a feast prepared with you in mind
Remember the power of word medicine
Confound folks with your command of facts
Suddenly you remember everything you ever knew
Nothing forgotten now
Dementia just another state you’re passing through
on your trip across the great planes and spaces
Tell your stories to an appreciative audience
How you danced to drums in Sitka
How you disappeared into the ocean mists and midnight light
Enjoy mesmerizing accounts of adventure tales
Marvel at a flock of eagles in a single tree
Find a boy who knows the meaning of life
Feel the energy of warriors fallen to a massacre
Tell the folks you won’t be home for Christmas
Fly to Edinburgh and drive to Skye
Take the high road
Let the others take the low road
Sink deep into a leather sofa
Don’t expect anyone to understand
No one will love you with a love sublime
When the last grain falls through the hourglass figure you never had
Join an angel chant in 3 part harmony
There was one day left and you
sucked the marrow of those final 24
The formatting is all messed up. But it’s easier to read at the link.
Xánath Caraza reviewed my book As Meaningful As Any Other in la bloga
The June edition of Setu is now live from Pittsburgh, thanks to Anurag Sharma, its publisher and editor-in-chief.
Here is the link:
Editor, Setu (English)
Many thanks to Scott Thomas Outlar, Sunil Sharma, and Anurag Sharma for including three of my poems in this fourth Western Voices issue of Setu, among the many fine poets included. I appreciate the hard work they perform on behalf of the global poetry community. My apologies for formatting problems in this copy and paste.
Here’s one of the three.
The grackle’s gifts
In my backyard there’s a grackle. His eyes quick,
he finds gifts I do not realize I need. Gives
me his cocked head of attention. Sings love songs only
my Viejo knew, back to keep his eye on me, frustrated
he no longer has thumbs, fists, a facile tongue, and bilingual brain.
The grackle found another’s ring with letters and a date. But now
it’s gone to pay the water bill.
Indigo shards adhere to glass bricks, bend light, distort shadows
both inside the house and out.
My favorite sound is the harsh cry of a grackle.
My favorite smell is the honest sweat of a worker.
My favorite tastes are whisky and sin on his breath,
or the gush of sex memorialized on hands and thighs.
My favorite gift is a lover who pays attention, gets it right.
The one who pulls me into that other dimension where nothing
exists but percussive sound, intimate scents,
secrets muttered through clenched teeth into the back of my neck,
a single black feather left outside my closed door.
Many thanks to Scott Thomas Outlar , Anurag Sharma and Sunil Sharma for including three of my poems in the Western Voices issue of Setu, along side a group of excellent writers.
Ostara in the Key of Bach for Leslee Becker while listening to Bach’s Suite I for Unaccompanied Violoncello Prelude On the vernal equinox, a lace of rosettes wreathe a maiden’s Read More …(Poem) Ostara in the Key of Bach by Donna Snyder — Return to Mago E*Magazine
She can make the heat death of the universe
a thing of beauty,
and an exploding star an object of desire.
But the gravity
of untimely death eludes her magic. Killers
proceed like a curse written in an ancient alphabet. Death,
indifferent to color or class,
turns crowns of glory into meat hooks, pierces our flesh, steals
our breath, pulls us into the final black hole.
Our bodies, sanctified,
the mix of every color together, disappear
into the ultimate dark.
“Oxygen: Parables of the Pandemic” anthology inspired the “Oxygen” project to help India fight the deadly second wave of COVID-19 and raise substantial funds for GiveIndia and Project Hope, supporting the cause.