Working It Out

I have been alone for days
dusk and dawn breathing in the distance
while the silence envelops
like an approaching front.

But don’t get me wrong, the weather is fine
even as the coyotes call from the ridge line
and veils of moisture drift in to the trees.

These days, it is I who am the sentinel
turning the light toward the movement
in the underbrush, dispersing the dark.

pbsweeney. 9/27/2008


Taking Place

In the treetops, a wild morning

is taking place

Wind tatters the aging summer leaves

branches sway

sun glistens on the cold

shoulders of the oaks.

Night is dispelled, thoroughly.

We in the clearing below

in the deep well of the still green

where the stones are cold to the touch,

we are already cloaked in another season,

waiting for the canopy to fall

for the dew to turn to frost,

our breath to cloud.

In Beauty

-for my Son on his birthday, in hopes that he may soon leap…

The supreme pleasure in beauty
the Creator’s perfections
in beauty cast over the landscape
of earth and heaven

Rapture in the delectable
rapture in the seared eye
stricken and slain by beauty

Pale leaves unfolding tinged
with silver, gold, pale copper
The delicate softening of
bark and branch and formidable oak

There is sighing to be done
and leaning into the breeze
Love may rise quickly on days like this
running fast and hard from winter
headlong over the precipice and into the green.




There comes, in the late afternoon
an emptiness of purpose
where there might be lingering
in what’s left of the sunlight
and we may dream and not think
of beginning

The view of the street is enough
the bees hanging in mid-air
seek no nectar.
If I were a dog I would not bark
a policeman, I would only watch the
vague torments of dishonesty,
a writer, I would not type the
next chapter heading
but let everything go
for a few minutes
and in this place that is so large
the un-tethered self tingling
with enormity and axis,
a tiny triangulation of the infinite
means then that breathing and being are enough

Oh yes, we say, in the quiet exhalation,
in relief and obscurity and sadness and joy –
opened, closed and opened again –
more than enough.



While Planting

When I am with thee
I am both weak and light
yet I know thee –
my body an interpreter,
able to feel your breath
in the breeze on its cheek
the warmth of your golden afternoon
on its skin,
while your fragrance carried to the air
from a thousand petals
reaches for me.
Beloved, I am thankful that you stop at nothing
that I may know only your embrace.

PBSweeney . April 10, 2008 . Clearwater

Note from Self

I found myself today standing quite still, after working in light rain expanding the small flower bed near the sun room window. The rain was quiet for a moment, but the trees and low growth were not. There was much little flutterings and chirbles and pips. I realized I was standing in the midst of a roving band of chickadees, on the hunt for insects and bits of tasty things. My stillness, I guess, was automatic. And they did not seem to mind me because of it. I would not say, as some might, or as I perhaps might have suggested even a year ago, that they came to me, or were drawn to me by my peaceful energy. The I of me, had little to do with it. I was merely in their path, and as I did not present myself as one of the more excitable humans, they continued on their path, coming quite close to me, even peering at me and pausing for a time. “Hi,” I said to one in particular who was two feet above me on a slender branch. It was an ineffectual hi, it just came out, because we were eye to eye and well, I didn’t want to be rude. Such a tiny bead of an eye. He moved on without rushing, as did his roving mates. But for a time, I was in the thick of them without any fuss. As they moved off, I scanned the trees and the undergrowth, feeling a little lonely. They were nice to be with, those chickadees, even if like most creatures, they were just on their way somewhere.



Even now, the day wide open in its noontime,

the sea as blue and restless as a buried past,

my night’s breathing and sighing for you

     overtakes me.

Rapt in a peculiar bliss, I have bridged

a catalogue of grieving, longer than the naming of ships.


Here, in the bellflower’s pendula, the swallowtail

unfurls it’s slender probe into the heart of the bloom

     and drinks.

And the bloom releases the breath of it’s sweetness,

the essential food.       Indeed, I have become,

bliss and bloom and heart and food

    for thee.