I live in Santa Cruz County, California, with my wife and a July abundance of plums. Much of my writing has centered on the homeless, which we also have an abundance of in the county. I have work in Storm Cellar, Star 82 Review, and eclectica, and forthcoming in The Homestead Review.
I am one who waits in the minor morning
which has the silence
of a stone, a minor morning
with the heaviness of a stone, a minor morning
with the silent song of stone
in the less-than-wished-for minor morning.
In this less than light we know as morning
the first of solar fire
seems delayed, the immensest kiss of fire
which will break the minor morning
seems delayed, the strings
of yellow light not yet strings
which could sound, strings
silent in the minor morning-
like guitar strings
unstrung, or mandolin strings
mandolin propped on a shelf, or strings
like the strings
of a lyre, the player asleep on stone,
strings as heavy as stone,
of the kiss of the immensest fire.
I am one who waits for this fire
to erase a fire
from a star expelling light in strings
star perched in air like a pin on a map, a minor fire
in the minor morning.
As I wait a fire
from night's rage dies in my heart, a fire
which falls to silence
and the silence
is full, and the fire
fades to have the sound of a stone,
but not the heaviness of a stone,
for a stone
has the silence
of a song not sung and a stone
has the heaviness of that song, a stone
like a song stuck in the chest, unsung. Strings
of the throat which could sing out the stone
of song and the heaviness of the stone
in the minor morning
before the morning
we know as morning (without the heaviness of stone)
these strings do not sing, for they are in silence
as a stone is in silence.
I am one who waits in this silence
still as a stone.
I watch in silence
and this heavy, heavy silence
is like a kiss without fire.
unready for song builds to a greater silence.
Then the strings
of that great lyre of morning approach, strings
of the morning
we know as morning,
not the minor morning.
gives way to wind over stone.
I play my strings.
(originally published in Friends of Poetry)
©2015 Jeff Burt