In this year, drawing to a close,
a litany of heart attacks, dementia,
a friend’s hip fracture, one’s mastectomy,
another’s knee-splitting fall.
In this month, not half over,
Linda’s mother, dead,
Rick’s father dead,
and, Nan’s husband, too.
Bad news piling up like old newspapers.
I offer what I know, a phone call, a visit,
a card, a casserole. All the while,
something flickers, eludes me.
And yet, on this ordinary morning,
the Dalai Lama’s chant fills my
sunlit kitchen, where a pot of posole
bubbles on the stove. Soon I will
set a table with woven mats,
yellow patterned napkins, pick
the last of the spinach from the garden.
Two friends will arrive at dusk.
Over candle glow and red wine,
we will hug and laugh, be amazed
that one’s children are teenagers now,
the other found love in middle years,
and I, old enough to be mother of both,
will etch this time into a lithograph
of remembrance. Tomorrow’s green flash
just beyond my vision.
Articles Of Faith
Terence Blanchard’s trumpet, lyric and melancholic, grieving
Katrina’s losses, soaring benediction and healing.
My heart’s vibration to a struck Tibetan singing bowl,
harmonic waves rolling up my spine.
Honeybees ecstasying amid pollen
in an open-handed magnolia blossom.
Butterflies, pale yellows or monarchs,
their swooping paso doble above the lemon tree.
Impossibly intoxicating incense from
freesia, verbena, apples and cinnamon.
A garden-grown tomato,
that burst of juice and seed at first bite.
To awaken each morning, breathe each hour,
string the pearls of them into the necklace of each day.
SYLVIA LEVINSON’S publication includes: Blue Arc West, City Works, Hunger and Thirst, Mamas and Papas, ShotGlass Journal, SD Poetry Annual, SD Writers Ink, Christian Science Monitor, Golden Lantern, Ekphrasis, Serving House. National Award City Works, 2007. She mentors high school seniors for writing projects, and volunteers at Jazz 88.3 FM.