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

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Mandela's Mouse

Mandela's Mouse

I believe you will slip away from us
when no one is looking,
hungry world, unfinished children,
one night like any other.
No fist rants the door,
no flash of light
no bars left on windows;
unnoticed, the idea of time
removes itself
like a mouse,
after finishing the last speck
of the last crumb of bread,
without turning
or needing a thing
tiny feet
hurry away.

We never know
where your eyes will open next.

Once slipped
from antiqued pages
the note falls,
yet the book of your body
does not miss the words
of your life.

Nelson before you go
tell me a story.
Please don't say a word.
Let me sit in the chair by the bed
the room filling with lightning bugs, moths,
an old eagle.

The rattler’s tail shivers
and drums in the distance.

You let go of us
as your breath seems to be something we need
more than you do.

You stand with the sheet around your shadow
burned by a soft light
as with all good ghosts

gone while the getting is good.

by T.L. Stokes

c2013 T.L. Stokes (all rights reserved)

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