NEXT TIME (a meditation on ancestral memories)

wading into reflections
immersed in the roar of the crowd
free Cathy walked toward the center of the earth
lowered her torch to the still waters
ignited a running ring
the firedance surrounded her
please do not let them burn her

logic said they left her a way to escape
they won’t burn her she’s their only
Aboriginal symbol
pioneer and champion
reason replied they burn symbols have
incinerated pioneers may sacrifice champions
do not let them burn her

she would make such a glowing sacrifice
consecrate the games fire their spirits
purify the hemorraging history of
Down Under’s new world order
so brave her grace in silent
running waves all around her
do not let them burn her

a sly miracle woman she
escaped the burning
stepped clear of the ring
leaving the fire this time
and faced the arena
where the crowd waited
for the games to begin

[won first prize, Detroit Writers Guild, 2002]

                     voyager raindrops
                     playfully birdtracking each
                     well-traveled window

    organic love free
    of all known toxicity
    except the wanting

                                 life experience
                                 you can take it to the bank
                                 not     easy     money

             brazen mulberries
             tantalize my midnight soul
             wild dreamtime dancing

[haiku previously appeared in TANGERINE DANCE, 1999]

"don't tell me I can't rhyme"
I would never tell you
that you're unable to rhyme
or not allowed to rhyme
that rhyming can be
hazardous to your health,
brought down an empire,
or built a brave new world.
I would never tell you
that rhyming brings laughter
to a child in the park
or a smile to a mariner's face
on a cold wet night.
I will tell you that rhyme
*knows* even in its absence
that rhyme believes
in the present and hereafter
that rhyme, by loving design,
(c) 2006 Jeanne Powell

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