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Charlene Langfur

The Delicate Moon

 

I forget how difficult moving on is,

or going for more,

 

how rising comes and goes, growing old and

becoming new all at once is,

 

how new life comes even when we’re standing

still on a dark night.

 

Tonight the world seems to stay in place.

 

This is how it is in the desert, what shies away

from the heat in the day comes back for more later.

 

The rose colored petals open up,

 

phenomenally, the tiniest green sprout moves

above ground, nubile, gentle, here to stay.

 

A sunflower is ready to break for the sky,

green and tall, a tall yellow flower flowering.

 

I know I can do this too, come back again,

walk out as far as I can go,

 

the clouds overhead closing up in the dark,

 

and I am out with them under the night sky, past

the buds and the petals, the delicate moon overhead.

 

 

Nothing Happens After This

 

The crows are talking in the sycamore trees out

back like they are pros. Like they know the scoop.

I feel like I am gravity’s angel with them, growing older

walking further than I think possible, out over

the worn path in the backfield from where I live,

and I am under the new little moon as light

rises. The day opens up and up. Buds

opening up on the rose bushes. Blush colored,

they are soft with new life. Life is expansive and

I am taken with it living big in a little space

in a waterless desert making good. This is it.

And there is nothing to do with power or yield here.

The scent in the air of orange blossoms and dew.

The sky over the mountains at sunrise is lit up,

you know what I mean, stuff from the beginning of

the world, full of quarks and atoms, whatever you can

fathom, ripples of color in the deep blue.

 

 

Walking at First Light

 

The clouds are all over the mountains,

hugging them close, hanging over the snow at the top,

the day starts this way with a bit of a breeze,

the sweet air around me is close in, near as it gets,

everywhere I go, I am out walking at first light

and all the tiny stars have disappeared

and I am trying to touch the world full on,

walking hard, imagining planting sunflowers

in the thin strip of desert behind where I live,

moving across a sliver of sand and dirt for a good half mile

here, arable stuff, of course I am still growing old but

I ignore that today as I do on most days, I intend

to exercise hard, trek on and on, looking out for the unexpected,

the wild, the as is, it is never exactly the same, one

day is different from another no matter how similar,

even now I see a small bird in the mesquite holding a worm,

yes, in the great big Sonoran desert where I live,

this small succinct bird is getting on about things,

and I am walking under the giant palms covered

with more seeds than you can imagine, little dates to come,

you know how good they can be, the superfood, dates,

and I am walking past the century plant with the first

growth of its single stalk starting out in the world,

one bloom that lasts a lifetime, talk about big ideas,

this plant has one, and then there is the green here and there,

the aloes and the yuccas, I look for more, touching at the roses

when I pass, I look for more still, some desert treasure,

true north, the world breaking open one day at a time

 

 

Charlene Langfur is an organic gardener, a southern Californian, a Syracuse University Graduate Writing Fellow and her writing has appeared in The Stone Canoe, The Hampden Sydney Poetry Review, most currently in Cold Mountain Review, Blueline, Stone Voices, forthcoming poems in Poetry East and Spoon River Anthology. She is a practicing Tibetan Buddhist.