…and we sprawl with it
                      and hear another world for a minute
                      that is almost there.

                                – William Stafford (“Sending These Messages”)

Almost like the code we tried at ten
to pass notes in school, letters mailed
our parents couldn’t comprehend—

it was our bond to a separate world
composed of pages of petroglyphs
that are lost, but not secret anymore.

Ah! All the love letters dispatched
to safe places beyond longing
for days and nights of perfect dreams.

I could have been an attorney
and learn to hate language, or
an accountant with only one answer—

cop or minister weary with humans.
But the places I didn’t go is small
by comparison: the thin, outer crust

to another world inside us all,
almost impenetrable. I work
around its edges, sending messages.



                                              “Sending These Messages”
                                     (if you get this far, the typo is ‘slant’)

2 responses to “SENDING MESSAGES

  1. I am, as usual, without adequate words to express the ways writings move me. At the risk of being inarticulate, they are exquisite.

    The creek may be dry, but your well runs deep, especially in your poem for Robin, and in this: “another world inside us all, almost impenetrable. I work around its edges, sending messages.”

    Selfishly, I say I’m glad you didn’t become that attorney who learned to hate language.


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