Once I Walked
Once I walked yellow with flecks The Berlin wall was falling, far away I could not have then seen strawberries glistening on the hedge. Endings are old new beginnings. They do cry for salt after all. They mix sears of pain with a curse of Cain. On my walk I fried tulips Cried aloud the names of lovers their races and places. Until all at once the field of strawberries glistened and my beating heart a Euphoria of happiness. Beginnings are new old endings. And we start out over again.
Growing Up Hard
Murder and defamation shook my house down, left me lying in cold damp weeds, squishy. Persnickety. Sometimes going up Snake Road, the stars outside in open night made my thumbs bump uncontrollably and I ran to find the top of any hill, any thing Those days I thought of James Meredith, Medgar Evans and I screamed into green air with the crickets piping red loud. Death was in the air and how, like Mercé Rodoreda's epic “Death in Spring,” hypocrisy was snapping my garter belt tight on my thighs. This mystery time went two ways for or against. Cucumbers and carrot sticks kept us soused in quiescent racism and maudlin pretense. Death in Africa and shootings in Alabama left me knowing the world was in apocalypse now Bleeding sheer bone spit. Meanwhile people everywhere kept dying, electrocuted hung and shot. UN speeches blared. A bleeding bristling bone split.
How we face the world
We should go up at once, and possess it, for we are well able to overcome it. —Caleb, Num. 13:30
Whenever tides spun avid Wherever it was inevitably dark Annie sang soft whisper memories, of what was said quiet in her parents bed. At first glance she was a small circumference in others views— one gentle cell dreaming. Her mind waters welled like the tides blood and Annie without knowing why searched in her gentle blue for Caleb a man all strenuous! He of the mind’s rough face. His voice a rocket to Annie’s stillness Sometimes she even thought quiet like a night star, some times calm dreaming her intransitive wonders running. Caleb he burned too hot for her cool she felt in this soft black cave the souls, spirits of the balmy present, turning and turning Annie could not reach the off switch to silence restless Caleb burning. She tried turning off that switch To un-wriggle his wrestling ongoing transitive chaos. And Annie bless her she said I want to slide not to possess to roam not to own reds periwinkles and blue hyenas the best.
Me a cauldron flaming
The sun is fading before my eyes As I try to make sense of my life that is in many baskets. Many kitchen doors with high ranging stoves and tilting floors and bonfires. It’s odd the sun is fading and I am not. My heart is a cauldron of music sound love and sadness. The sun will not always fade. While I am around I’ll stay a flaming cauldron. This year many leaves are thick with matter and hang themselves on, burning with unique brightness in the cauldron of life loving eyes.
©2022 Linda Chown
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…was West Coast Berkeley born and raised with the light of freedom. Educated at UC Berkeley and San Francisco State, Linda has taught, protested and lived internationally. Her last book, Sunfishing, can be bought at Amazon. She grew up surrounded by radicals, experimentation and innovation, and is proud to continue her radicalism.
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