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Memories and Anniversaries

Sometimes you're caught in a riptide of grief
and the waves threaten to pull you under.
Sometimes you look at the veins on a leaf
and it fills you with a sense of wonder,
the sun dazzling off fall's golden leaves,
when shadows lengthen and darkness deceives.

When you're caught in that moment when fall turns
to winter, trees bare before the first snow,
the bleakness of browns and your heart simply yearns
for some color to break up the fallow.
In the pause you await, the darkness speaks;
the voices of the night are what you seek.

The moon is full tonight, so awaken,
welcome them, wisdom of the ancestors.
This, the hardest thing you've undertaken,
buried deep, your life-long longings, preserves.
The body, soul, and ground beneath your feet
hold the secrets in your body's heartbeats.


© Christine Salkin Davis, 2019


I Come from a Line of Embodied Ventriloquists

I come from a line of embodied ventriloquists --
          people who spoke through their bodies,
muted from fear,
blinded from pain,
crippled from oppressive anger,
unable to catch a breath in the stale stench of disappointment and loss.

I run in the dusk of the evening,
not from the angry mobs brandishing torches and burning homes of my people,
nor from the brutal weapons of starvation my ancestors fled,
but from my own fears --
          obsolescence,
          descent into meaninglessness,
my own demons of the night,
terrors and shadows of the dark.

I want to know,
          did they speak up and what did they say?
          What words of protest sprang from their lips?
          What words were whispered in the dark
          that told them it was time to go?

I carry their wounds and scars in my DNA,
and I hope they will whisper to me
          when it is time to speak
          and when it is time to go.

© Christine Salkin Davis, 2019


Encorcelled (Found poem sonnet)

Enchanted evenings and shifting signs,
full moon to new and cloud-shrouded stars,
primal night pulsing with passion, pain,
and the deadly silence of the hours.
Left are lingering leaf marsecence,
and their earthen decaying remnants.

Watercolor wash morning, loved one
lost, found, and secrets revealed, false starts,
surrender anger and uselessness,
radical changes wait in the dark.
Like earthenware shards, so grobian;
dark shadows beckon utopian.

Voices confuse, distract, searching for
reminder, happy memories of
distant past, fading fast, in the dark
defy, commit. Take a stand for love.
Take a stand for that which encorcells;
like in bird in your hand gently held.

© Christine Salkin Davis, 2019

Listen to the Sound of Rain

Listen to the sound of rain, gently falling.
Listen to the sound of breath, falling, rising.
Listen to remembering, gentle dreaming,
breath of life and ground of being, beating

heart and slowing down of time, timelessness.
Listen to your aching heart, its final press
of pain, its kiss of death, abyss
of time. Listen to time's time of fullness,

time to breathe the newly rained-on air,
fresh as spring but crisp and unaware
of the page's turn, the journey solitaire.
Listen to the sound of raindrops everywhere.

Listen to the gentle voices of the night.
Listen to the silence in the new moon light.


© Christine Salkin Davis, 2019


Samhain

The seasons can't decide and neither can I--
stay or go, forward or back,
do I shed my clothes and feel the sun on skin,
warmth enveloping like a summer embrace,
or do I bundle and cover,
layers against the first frost?

This season of light to dark
and Mercury retrograde,
feels like a push-pull in my heart
and the darkness descends too soon.

Ancestral longings, day of the dead,
arrivals and departures leave a trace
and a touch of sadness for the passing on.
Time is eternal
but there is never enough time to say
goodbye.

The full moon lights the path;
tribal foot prints carry you on.


© Christine Salkin Davis, 2019


Grief (Sonnet)

"His death left a void," the headline read.

All deaths leave a void, absence of space
like a black hole of nothingness, dead
silence and of what once was, no trace
remains, just remnants of memories
of somethings said, done, activities

and glimpses into eternity,
gone, bringing us to a new place where
sadness overwhelms, enormity,
nothing, feels like more than we can bear,
a growing gnawing tearing at your
gut until you can't take any more

emptiness. The contrast with living
is stark, startles, and the only way
you can still be close to the feeling
is pain, it's the closest you can say
you are loved; it's the evidence you dared
to love; it's the pain, nakedly bared.

© Christine Salkin Davis, 2019





Wandering and Waxing Moon (Sonnet)

Wandering and waxing moon, airy mind
and visions, rainy sky, dreams unfolding.
Frozen in the in-between, the green-vined
leaves await the time for falling, golding,
turning autumn, in the meantime, holding
on, they hang in mottled drear, not quite dead
but not still here; future hints beholding
a watercolor wash of yellow, red.

I often wonder why the world's unkind
as the headlines evil deeds upholding;
paying attention carries sense of dread.
Like vines, your future is with mine entwined,
and moving through the thresholds takes bolding
action to make this moment's watershed.

© Christine Salkin Davis, 2019

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