Terra Firma

I stopped the car,
got out of the car,
and started walking, barefoot, with my shoes in my hand.

It was early evening, in summer,
with a little breeze,
and the scent of lilacs.

The road felt warm and rough and solid beneath my feet,
but not far below it was just dirt and the roots of trees.
Above my head,
the branches of trees.

I thought, what if I were a woman going somewhere,
with my shoes in my hand, down this road?
What if I were a woman walking away,
putting space between myself and something else?

Over my head were the branches of trees.
In one of the trees was a red-winged blackbird and his mate, watching.
I stopped to look up at them; I turned in a circle,
beneath the leaves, and the birds nesting there.

What if I were a red-winged blackbird, or lilacs in a field?
Here I am, walking, but I don't know where.
Above my head, sky, beneath my feet, roots.
I didn't bring any shoes.
There never was a car.


Sioux Roslawski said…
Shay--That last stanza is especially lovely.

(Why doesn't my rear end look like that? Sigh.)
Cloudia said…
I sort of experienced you creating this poem. Knowing how lines & possibilities whisper to me. I love your muse. You are my favorite living poet. So keep alive. The dead poets competition is FIERCE!

ALOHA from Honolulu
Comfort Spiral

=^..^= <3

Cloudia said…
Oh, yes! A pic to muse on!
hedgewitch said…
The mood in this is dreamy and even perhaps, elegant is not too extreme a word--something refined as the breeze off the ocean that has changed in its passage over water. A beautiful examination of our existential quandaries,Shay--floaty and filmy and utterly lost somewhere between roots and sky. I loved this, in case you can't tell. ;_)
TexWisGirl said…
'back before dark poems' - i wondered if i had hit the right blog... :)
HermanTurnip said…
Is it a man dreaming he's a butterfly, or is it a butterfly dreaming he's a man?

I really enjoyed your riff on this (if it was a riff). This piece has a very organic nature to it.
Mama Zen said…
I love the feel of this, and the way it makes me feel.
Sherry Blue Sky said…
This does dream one along, and I adored the ending, where there werent any shoes and there wasnt any car. Loved this.
Sherry Blue Sky said…
LOVE this music!!!!! Had not heard her before. Wow.
Kathryn Dyche said…
No shoes and no car, love that close.
Lynn said…
Beautiful and a little spooky.
Kerry O'Connor said…
You have the most remarkable ability to place yourself inside a picture, to hear and see and feel your way around the environment with such a certainty as to convince the reader it was all true.
The song has the same almost ethereal quality to it where anything is possible and we can merge with blackbirds and lilacs. Love this.
Sara said…
Ah, it's a mystery:~)I've probably said this before and you might actually find it offensive for all I know. Every time I read your poetry, it comes Southern. Granted that is my accent, but I don't always read things that way. For some reason, it just feels right with some of your poetry.

I agree with Kerry, you do have a talent for reading a picture and coming up with the most interesting words to accompany it.

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