Near daybreak eyes begin to close.
My mind steps down into our most
*In a dark time the eye begins to see,
I meet my shadow in the deepening shade …
Below in spectral gardens
A raven sits motionless on the branch
of a skeletal tree greedily eyeing a
tiny lark all feathers and bone.
In the state between sleep and wake
I traverse birth and mortality,
a faint hint of earthy candles sweeps
the orb of my celestial dreaming.
Sensations of pearls like tiny moons
fall from my open palm into infinity.
And you, whose sigh is a strophe
of sonnets, waits far at the boundary,
not spirit or rose tinged snow
but flesh and bone and sinew.
Now I am sleeping less,
roused by the wing beats of Boreal Owls
circling ancient Cypress trees,
their screech a fist with knife edge
talons erupt through feathery curtains,
breaching my seclusion.
Dark traces vibrate my hemispheres as
lofty breezes lift me a spectral mist vanishing
over the valley to a moonlit hillside of sweat lea.
An ivory wolf lies beside me.
He is the scent of ripe wheat fields and
his eyes are the color of the eastern sky.
*In A Dark Time by Roethke (Stanza 1)
In a dark time, the eye begins to see,
I meet my shadow in the deepening shade;
I hear my echo in the echoing wood–
A lord of nature weeping to a tree,
I live between the heron and the wren,
Beasts of the hill and serpents of the den.