My Mother’s Pen


In the back of the drawer,
my mother’s pen.
Gold, with her name on it.
Mislaid in darkness
for how many years?

I hold it in my hand
until it warms.
But when I try to write
the ink is dry.
No words come.

Still, in the silence
of this anniversary
veiling the day,
arriving each year
like a soundless caisson,

…..memory constructs a picture —
…..her hand holding the pen,
…..her eyes alert as she
…..looks up at me, unhappy
… interruption —

Sparrow’s Homily

My sisters and brothers,
we are small, so small,
creeping, wings clipped,
through weeks and years,

no end in sight
(although our end
will one day come,
certain and sure).

We stare up at the stars
and ask the old questions:
Who made us?
Why are we here?

Silence and more silence.
The universe will not
answer, the heavens
are mute as stones,

but if we were given
one sacred acre where
we could wander at will
as wingless pilgrims do

in old stone cathedrals,
would each moment open
into an immense branching
interior where we could perch