Land Brave

What historic shadows do we live with?
What bricked, mortared, and hole-riddled, but still beating heart will we keep saying suffices?
What love? What?
This battered banner
These stars
Ready now, to tell true stories
Able, finally
To let go
To grow


In the evening, I sat out, well beyond 8:58

The front porch shadows shielded me 

That I might pretend

My bedtime hadn’t come and gone

The smile in my telephone-voice wasn’t masking a mom’s tortured heart 

Acceptance would come and those few miles away, would prove okay, someday

Hood ornaments on passing trucks did in no way devastate

This wasn’t the calm before the storm

The temperature wouldn’t dare drop, degree by degree, with each sip of my sleepy-time tea 

The gardens weren’t soon going to hell

My choice to survive hadn’t offended my God

Tomorrow, no one would know 


There are times when shadows will not do
Will not do
Will not do
When their storied presence pains the eye
Pains the eye
Pains the eye
And I see wrong mystery, dark’ning doors
Dark’ning doors
Dark’ning doors


We can’t call them untrue

The shadows forever forced against concrete 

Are forever a part of you

But so too, was that moment before the bleaching

When you believed in the good air against your skin

Go back again, despite that it seems you can’t 

Receive what the lurking has to offer 


It is an unexpected hour 
Not too late
Not too early
Enough light so that we can still hear
So go back and look again
Do you see the soft shadows asking 
Don’t disengage 
Do you feel the air giving 
Reasons to stand

Late Sun Day 

Bring me long shadows
Unorchestrated, lingering glee

Wait while I watch us all exhale
Healed now from last week’s barrage 

Listen with me, will you?
The fight-song building 

Gather up we, the sun-spilled relief
Before we march again 


If ever

I’d wished for you to hold me as I smiled

It wasn’t moments ago

The heat 

The lack of regret 

The slightest light filtering in

As I held then heralded my breath

It was months ago

I’d wished

If ever