Our mom, Margaret Fuller, and Mary Colter,
three who crossed over, wait for you at the table
whenever you sit to eat. Colter designed
these plates after looking at pots of Mimbreño Indians
unearthed after 1000 years of sand cover.
She built her tower on the South Rim
of the Canyon at its highest point—
seen repeatedly in nature, recognizes
how one enters from above, by foot,
before descending. One must turn geologist
to imagine you sailing ancient oceans
in the Esperancé. Gifts arrive as one descends
even in boats. Bright Angel Trail contains
more kivas than one can photograph.
Colter wore waist-long strands of multi-colored
a Path of Truth ring on her finger.
Margaret Fuller's here because of your word,
transcend. My inwardness is grown insight,
life within, life without, making talk and poems.
She edited The Dial with Emerson,
both transcendentalists. She, too,
needed more than Jesus, calling on Greek gods
to walk with her. "The blue sky seen above
the opposite roof preaches better than any brother."
Now she shows us how to fall. Her doctor
says she's found a way to go down
and not get hurt—still better to let her go
than tie her down. Amen. Mom remains
the wildest teacher we've ever had—hence,
the best. This morning, with Kick Ass Coffee
from Kicking Horse in Canada, I'm thinking of you,
and your story on your birthday—all you've done
Where you're going as you sail.
It's your birthday, the day gods give us
great permission to practice.
You sent me the word transcend
and a movie and I walked Bright Angel Trail,
a walk returning me home before I came back
with Karen. This poem's a coupon
for the meal with the women.
It's good any time, no expiration date.
whenever you pull into the harbor.
Unlimited seatings. I promise
not to listen in at what gets said.
Happy Birthday, and Love,
your brother, Jim
9 May 2010
who knows things, because
of their strange competence—
but even better to talk with them.
with someone who makes things,
and Steven, you know and make.
With you we enter the mysterious
coffee shop of knowing.
Even better—to tell someone:
His blue Chevy goes 130 miles per hour.
It's not so much about speed.
It's about timing. About not
getting there too fast.
It's about relationships of all kinds.
It's not about the 10 seconds
in the quarter, either,
although there's nothing without that.
Hitting it just right—
No, talking about Steven,
talk always turns to character.
Something that's not part of any part—
a part of who you are invisible,
yet engraved and inscribed,
something that can't be changed,
but can be counted and seen.
That's how we talk about you
when we talk about what you bring
to the track for all of us
for those ten seconds that go so fast.
7 May 2010
Piano lullaby comes from Karen's dream.
The grandpa that I am turns me in my bed
The garden waits knowing that roses
will soon be eclipsed by a storm
of bachelor buttons that have taken over
the Path of the Mailman. Bachelor buttons
ask for nothing and bees come as they're called.
I sit before all of the facts with the best coffee
and eaten the sweet berries like children
I refill my cup, piano keys