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Posted to Poetry

Pictish Revelry

The Gaelic wind sang of their Celtic care as they danced, strong arms joined ‘round the fire. A firth in the whole of the Scottish sea where men grew strong on potable comradery. In chauvinistic fervor they gathered to celebrate life, battle and a brave death.

basso profundi

Creation sings gloria sustinere
the voice of darkness and light
of unquenchable thirst
and radiant expansion;
destruction and creation–
its immanence announced by a
remarkable B flat
sung fifty-seven octaves
below middle-C

(Scientists at the Chandra X-ray Observatory have recently been able to “hear” the sound of a black hole. It resonates at B flat, 57 octaves below middle C. That is some sub-woofer!)


Shafts of ripe wheat lay the horizon gold
in the quiescent Midwest dawn
the stark white elevators the only
break in the flat canvas.

Some thirty miles beyond a small town
appears–old buildings polished to a
new luster.

A few cars on the street
mostly pickups parked near the
solitary diner.

The familiar strands of
Waylon Jennings playing
on a distant AM station.

If God had an epiphany, what would it be?


Heads held high backbones razor straight
They glide a foot above the rest
Their pedigree dating back to those
Who first fled to these rugged shores
Back to kings and queens and royalty
Their vaunted blood line is declared

But you, my lowly friend, should know that
None comes from nobler stock than you
None has a nobler, more prestigious line
Than that from which you come
For as you stand in this late century
Your line has never failed
You blood goes back to the Renaissance,
To the time of Christ and further

It reaches back to the days of ancient Greece,
to the Iliad and Odyssey
It goes back to the time of Moses
To the time of the sphinx and pyramids
It goes back to the time
when homo erectus first stood tall
Back to the first ice age, to the reign of
Tyrannosaurus Rex and further

Your line’s success goes back beyond the star’s
Collapse that formed this solar system
Your line goes back to the hydrogen, helium
And lithium from which all was made
For as this universe was mothered
Your lineage goes back to that still moment
When there was neither space nor time
None can claim better than that


The muted cacophony of transient desire falls
gently on their shoulders, stirred by a passing
jeune fille –wrapped in ribbons of vestal care.

Bittersweet glaze for graybacks now on the
fringes of pride, their once virile mass
draped loosely on rickety frames, their gaze more
history than exhortation.

The evening passes, the graybacks retire
to secluded dwellings, dreams still playing
of youth and desire.


Does a candle delight in being a messenger
to an ethereal God, or does it only know regret
as its wick smolders and its body puddles
and evaporates?