Listen, Recall

Odilon Redon, Orpheus

In early morning hush,
the moon sings farewell,
gelid murmured notes
through white cat-paw clouds

if you listen, recall
light recalls time recalls light,
the ancient ships of night seas
ask when
ask what
you want
from the whispers and pulses
of mother music from earth and sky,

the fiddle, flute, and drums of
wind-beats and tree rustle,
the cardinal chirps and crow caws,
black on red on blue and green, every color
a promise, a warning
of what is and what was.

My poem from the Magnetic Poetry Oracle.

Ingrid at Experiments in Fiction is hosting a Global Assembly on Climate Change. Read more about it here.



Odilon Redon, The Muse on Pegasus

On a long wander, cold-breathed,
I think every spring’s a poet born
as from rain a rose—
yet, if we recall the red petals’ fall

in sun turns and moon cycles,
and after dusk’s berry-glow and bird-light flickers,
the deep song of ancient souls
carried on wind-fiddles–

now wait for light whispers
and the caramel breath of dawn,
a honeyed smile that lingers on treetops
and beneath, the lichen rocks
and moss blankets,

seeds rest,
knowing when to bloom.

My poem from the Magnetic Poetry Oracle. It’s cold here today.


Odilon Redon, Orpheus

Day fast approaches–
peach glimmers lie beyond,
but now moonlight sings, a rhapsody of silver rills
joining star-song, an ancient stream,

like ghosts within, their faint echo lingers,
the always of past carried on the universe’s waves
coursing through brain and heart.

Now, the music murmurs secrets—
sea-tongued murmurs, rain chants, join the moon’s music,
sky-diamonds chime and plaintive violin notes
fall from rooftops,

whispering if, whispering when
we meet in dream-time wanderings
who knows
what comes after?

I’m taking a work break to post my poem from the Oracle because who knows what might happen if I don’t. I don’t want to find out! I have projects to complete by Tuesday, so I’m behind on reading and responding to comments and reading others’ posts, but I will get to them!

Tuesday afternoon (evening his time), I’ll be taking part in Damien Donnelly’s winter festive poetry party, Deck the Storms. Damien is the host and producer of the poetry podcast Eat the Storms. He is also a talented poet and wonderful person, who has thoughtfully scheduled this event as a birthday eve party for me! 😏 It’s free, but you need an Eventbrite ticket to attend this Zoom event. Here is the information.


Reflection, Odilon Redon

Urged to stop—
or still, enough to smell the pink-tipped day
as the fast, frantic fiddle plays,
and purple breath-clouds cross the sky,

to blossom in the in-between with shadowed light,
and in this between, or in the after, you ask

why? The hot-headed goddess sits above
languidly shining bright-beamed, life seeming to
swim and sail through death-churned water—

elaborate on if, she says.

And you gaze at blue, recall the taste of honeyed-spring,
and puppy gambols, the scent of summer rain,

the sound of it falling, you falling
deep within, slowing to hear the whispers
of wind and stars, the voices of loved ones,
remembering your dreams.

My poem from the Oracle. I thought I’d try first for a cadralor or attempt another fragment poem, but my mind (or she) insists on making connections.


Odilon Redon, “Béatrice”

she’s crownedxxxxxxxxxresplendent
in golden light, xxxxxxxxthe sun is gowned,
halo-headed xxxxxxxxxxand the warmth of her smile
shimmering, xxxxxxxxxxthaws heart-frost–and ground,
she is the bright future xwhere a seed planted now sprouts–
and there is hopexxxxxx knowledge will grow, star-dusted
again xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxand glowing

A cleave quadrille for dVerse. De has asked us to use the word crown. A quadrille is a dVerse poetry form. It’s a poem of 44 words.

The Father

Odilon Redon, Orpheus

He dreams of rust-gowned trees aglow
in the rays of blood-rose sun,
as the bright blue sky turns violet,
he catches the change on his tongue
turning shadows to song.

Later, he’ll recall this light, this change, this song,
and if his daughter cries at wild, wind screams,
he’ll strum the notes and sing.

The Oracle always knows. This seems to be a companion piece to something I just wrote (not posted).

Dream Sailing

Odilon Redon “Flower Clouds”

We sail our sloop
in the after-blue, where
flower fish explore eternity–

the night sea with its cloud-eyes
open to our wild ride
through sacred and secret.

We are surrounded by dazzle,
by fire, by radiant light
embracing us in its rhythm–

not all is broken, I think,
as we drift home
in the blush of morning

hearing joy and laughter
as the birds sing to our star.

The Oracle gave me this poem bright and early this morning—before the sun was up—along with this image in my head. She’s a big fan of Redon’s work. Some people like to see a bit of the process–so here’s a screen shot of the words I used.

Tomorrow, I will be joining other poets in reading our poems at a live event for the Anthropocene Hymnal edited by Ingrid Wilson. You can find out more here. It’s 11:00 AM Eastern Standard Time.

Ever After, and Again

Odilon Redon, Apparition

If through the storms
you dream, over and over
of blood and ghosts that laugh
from their own universe to yours—
then watch for shadows, but wait for light
shining in morning’s pink-tinged song,
a symphony of color, of life.

It’s been an odd morning after a stormy night, but the Oracle knew what she wanted to say. This poem practically wrote itself.

The Dreams, or What You See

Odilon Redon, Orpheus

Ask the moon what her whispers mean—
dreamtime longing, the after-ache of shadows

that slide or slink, glide, or make us think
of what was–the ghosts of yearning

seek the light. I watch, and if I can’t recall
each pink-petaled spring or purple rain,

I see them all—the symphony that glows and lingers,
or hides in rustling wind-whipped sighs

and suspiration of the sea. Here I hear,
and time fast-stops, while the fiddler plays

the song of life, death, and all that is,
and what is not

but was or maybe what will be.
Listen hard and long . . . now do you see?

The Oracle kept giving me a few words over and over again, like moon, light, after, ache, whispers, etc. and I could imagine her getting exasperated and saying use these already!

Criss-Crossings in Deep Time

Odilon Redon, L’arbre

Cross the forest threshold
covered in squirrel-scattered leaves.
Acorns, chestnuts, cones, and seeds
buried amidst ancient, tangled roots,

Three cats—curled, colored knots
white, tortoiseshell, and grey-striped.
Descendants of tigers, purrs with sharp claws,
gone–save the shadow
pressed against my warmth.


Driftwood, weathered and bleached white,
a venerable creature beached
waiting for the tide.
What stories could it tell of its journeys–
of time and beyond?


Red flowers rise to a rosy sky
Hello, they cry, and wave.
From wooded umbra,
white striped tail rises, too, leaving his scent—
not a perfumed calling card, but a warning.


The clouds grumble,
their secrets burst out and light the sky
Your arm across me in the night, I reach to catch
a glittering fragment before it vanishes—I laugh
and hear an echo from the in-between.

A cadralor for dVerse. I hope I’ve done this correctly. To me, the form seems like a dream, in which you understand it as it goes along, and when you wake you feel something’s been resolved, though you can’t explain how or why. You can read about the form here, but briefly from the journal Gleam:

“the cadralor consists of five short, unrelated, highly-visual stanzas. The fifth stanza acts as the crucible, illuminating the gleaming thread that runs through all the stanzas and bringing them together into a love poem. By “love poem,” we mean that the fifth stanzaic image answers the question: “For what do you yearn?” Please see sample poems and editor statements on the cadralor to get a feel for this new form.”