Night Moves


Its trunk a full two hands
in diameter, 40-year old grape

vine, wine vision of green
dreaming. Foch, near cousin

of Pinot Noir out of France.
The gnarly twisted trunk

came out two years ago
with a spade and a saw,

elder brain seized
by eastern tree art,

placed in a 5-gallon plastic
planter from a nursery

with potting soil and pumice
for drainage. Two

winters, re-establishing
roots. Right before Valentine’s

he goes at it again, gnarly
himself, cutting roots

grown out from the bottom,
freed from the sides

with a knife. New soil
of red rock and pumice,

a clay pot 3-feet tall
chosen for its elegance, vine

set to show its twisted path
and history with the old man.

Jim Bodeen
10-12 February 2016


He’s no longer
the medic crawling
through hospital's rice paddy
lost and scared.

Jim Bodeen
3 February 2016


Just so I’m clear with you,
I get to keep my word,
God-given, one, and bi-lingual,
only as long as I’m present to it,
myself, God and others. Show up

and tell the truth
best I’m able,

beginning word,
principiante, hy-

a following word.

Jim Bodeen
10 February 2016


Doing chores, running errands,
Robert Sund reading Shi Shi poems
from 1971, recorded by someone at Centrum
in Port Townsend six years later,
Sund like he’s sitting
next to me in what my friend calls
an American voice. That third summer
at Shi Shi, he says, couldn’t get
anything written, people showing up
on the beach, anxious, anxious,
poems born a half century ago
coming out of my old Subaru
in Yakima friend, this seriously rectifies
the situation—keep an eye out
driving these streets,
they’ll pull you over.

Jim Bodeen
10 February 2016


Choir upstairs singing,
following the drinking gourd—
a concert choir with heavenly voices,
and all this action
coming from below—
Men’s Bible Study shipped from Texas
complete with discussion leaders—
taking attendance, taking cash,
this is some train, coal
trane chugging night vision
before the homeless arrive
in the church basement—
Rumi says,
Look at the chick pea in the pot—
boil, nicely now! and keep moving,
get a move

Jim Bodeen
10 February 2016

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