STILLE NACHT


(24 December 2018)


The sky is clear tonight.

A waning moon rides quietly

above the branches of our poplar trees,

trailing cloud whispers and recessive stars.


The year, like others,

bends its arc downward towards

a last repose:  book closed, accountings

black-inked in a silent ledger


that may not be changed.

Mocking or affirming -- though

more often shelved high to ignore --

the double entries matching


gains with losses or

ambiguous betweens recede,

their zodiac pull descending

through remote horizons.


All griefs and joys are

registered.  Small grandsons’

flashing eyes, the wriggled greetings

of their lion-colored dog,

 

stark deaths excising

slivers of the heart, trace

filigrees behind our moving on. 

Veiled past! -- remade

 

each day, whose gravity retards

but at the same time

slings us forth to walk

(one foot before the other)

 

through recumbent dark.



Version first published in Crosswinds, Vol. IV (2019)