Memory

We were told the average background color of the universe was turquoise.  She said “that’s because a coyote ripped it from the mountains outside Cerrillos.  But now they say it’s actually a shade of dark beige, drying mud colored.”  It was a glitch in the software, the astronomers said.  The coyote was unmoved.

She sits on the floor sorting coupons and roughly clipped articles on herbs and natural remedies.  Occasionally she looks down at the hollow of her chest, at the still reddened slash left by the scalpel.  “I’ve got no veins left.  I hate those damn needles. If they want to poison me, I’ll drink it gladly.  Socrates had nothing on me.”

I rub her feet as she slides into the MRI tube, and pull on her toes.  “I can pull you out at any time.”  I look at my wrist but there is no time in this room, checked at the door.  Just the metronomic magnet.  As she emerges she grabs my hand, presses it against my chest.  I cradle her head and trace the scar across her scalp, trying to touch the missing brain matter, the tumor it nestled, pushing aside the brittle hair.  “Lightly toasted,” she whispers with a weak smile.  She hates white coats and stethoscopes.  “They’re the new morticians.”  They take her in small sections.  She is a slide collection in the back of my closet, on the pathologists shelf.  I want to gather them all and reassemble her.  I want her to be a young girl of fifteen again.

Coyotes wander down from the Sandia hills.  They gather outside the Santo Domingo Pueblo, sensing the slow seepage of heat from the sun baked adobe.  There is no moon.  They know each star.  They stare into the darkened sky.  They see only turquoise.

Doors

He walks slowly into the room. He looks around, noting the position of every piece of furniture, each picture on the wall, the nap of the rug, how the rug is slightly off angle giving the room a sense of rhombus-ness. When he leaves and locks the door behind him, there is a sudden darkness, and he smiles, for he knows that when he returns the next day, nothing will be the same

 

Taking

You can take my sight,

but my mind will still see what it must,

and my fingers will become eyes.

You can take my hearing,

I will imagine what I must,

and my eyes will become ears.

You can take my tongue,

but my body will shout what I must,

and my hands will speak volumes.

The only thing you cannot take

is my words, for without them

my prison would be complete

and I would be rendered mute,

deaf and blind, and that is a fate

from which I could never hope to emerge.

Where?

Walk slowly down the path. Note the stones along the way. Step on them, or over them, the choice is yours. The sky is still above you, there is no reason to look up. Do not seek a map, for at best it will say “You Are Here!” As if you could be anywhere else. With each step you are somewhere else, so the map is almost always wrong. You are here, and here is all that matters.

Enso

In the interstitial moment

between birth and death

a universe comes into existence,

something that never before existed

and existed always, new

and well-known, unseen

and visible for eternity.

Measure it well

for it is incapable of measurement,

and ends without warning

and precisely on schedule.

In the momentary breath

that marks the transit,

we proceed nowhere

and cannot return to where we began.

And So It Begins

The coyote no longer inhabits the hill south of our city. Yet we know he is there, staring down at the lake, watching the grape clusters fatten on the vines. We cannot see the orange-red orbs of his eyes on a still winter night. We know he sees us. Coyote cannot be found, no carcasses attest to his presence. Coyote is everywhere, walking among us, living in parks, living in plain sight, knowing he is invisible. We see his tricks, know we were once again outsmarted, know we can outsmart him. Coyote no longer inhabits the hills here, for he has morphed, and we are coyote.