for a moment of joy or moments no one pays for, i give myself a ‘jornal’. this makes me rich. try it.

Angelus (for One Shot Wednesday)

How elating—
the walk by the harbor at dusk: the hour
hardly fits the feeling. Yet, day melting on
to ground and water seeps off as mist,
abstracting realities, transforming
states into half-dreams—a moment
that soon passes.

My feet cease
scissoring, a mindless technique
to cut into the half-hour—the
slice of time at which the heart is said
to pump faster, hastening
the river flow the body has entrapped—
and stilled, remember my childhood
but failing to recall

the minute-
prayer angel Gabriel’s hailing
Mary who was to have a child—a fairly
domestic scene that for ages had mystified
this hour. But brake on my steps holds me
not in prayer to dwell on such angelic
moment. I stand smiling, no less
a fool being alone, at this:

on grass patch a duck pair
bedded as a robin circles blinking disbelief ,
head turning in ways, ‘Lost, am I?’
—a look so innocent as much as
beguiling, a circlet that isolates
stark truths, blinds eyes
to mirrors: this moment
a black figure heaving on the crosswalk
hooded for heat—in the harbor
he makes like home, chills make
for walls—the freeze hangs on his
wiry moustache, a Cheshire grin to passersby
‘God bless!’ So like Gabriel
I imagine in tone yet so unlike

the angel in that his chant and greeting
fall insipid on indifference littering
the walk–I pass him by
resume my steps tight clipped
his eyes trail the dull beat my Reeboks
drum on the bridge. My heart contracts—
startled at the suddenness, the broken
rhythm signals a must

some help: the robin whisks its wings
to my eye path—in the
half-light its wing-spread so like
a minute Gabriel. Unthinking, I stop
to honor a childhood hour, and peering back
at the dark figure the seeping
night has walled in, I sigh
a prayer.

…one of my early poems written in 2008 in a series of what I called ‘journal poetry’ or journals I wrote in verse from memories of my walks at the Inner Harbor in Baltimore right across where I lived half of the year on Federal Hill. Posted here for One Shot Wednesday at One Stop Poetry to share it with you but expecially to a community of artists and poets in this inimitable space whose love for their art ‘spangle’ (my favorite word) the skies (my favorite phrase). Come on in, check us out or better yet, join us.

March 2, 2011 Posted by | free verse, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments