If you ever lose heart and the earth seems as distant as stars fading into the noise of your busy mind, know this. That a tiny island exists in the blue hands of the ocean. That a tree grows upright into the salted clouds. That two eagles love each other enough to spend their lives greeting the morning sun together. That two eaglets stand in their nest, gazing at the heavens. Looking down to the forever ground. They eat and sleep and flap their wings. And one day in July, one by one, they will jump into the air. They will know the difference between existing and what is beyond. They will hold onto nothing. The hurricane will come, courage catching their pinions on fire, as they mount the wind, climbing ladders into realms of the invisible.

--T.L. Stokes

Saturday, February 6, 2010

after Keats

Aloft and silent,
they must be stars with crystal heads
turning in stillness
above our burning
and our love,

no words or utterance
can show this feeling,
how tender the sparse life

whose words, young
and hardly tried
do still live among us.

I too love the young man,
though tragically lost
amid his own heart's theft

willingly given,
a woman washed by grief
reminds my own treasured losses

and here we sit holding ourselves
in the words of a passionate
spirit, young and not knowing

his fame. Old treatments and cold
sped him off from our world
yet not so far

nor unlit,
to be forgotten.

c2010 T.L. Stokes

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