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Long Beach, CA

All Very Much the Same

In the last hour of a good day when, if you’re lucky, you smile at some passing trifle of this life, unwinding yourself towards bed and
The great daily dying, for resurrection in morning light
You sigh your soul alongside the great questions, for just a moment,
You graze the fingers of your soul over the inscrutable rock face
Carved with words you can’t quite make out 
And gaze your sight into the unflinching quiet, where all is night,
Before you close your eyes
And then you fall asleep before them—the questions you could not crack—an old man or woman that will wake again as child, in new light
Bound to blow wind again into the sail of a boat which can’t quite find the sea 

Sleep is our surrender
And in this space, in the last hour of day, all the inequities of history spin away
Until balanced on the same axis we behold each other plainly, if we have the eyes to see
There’s Cleopatra sitting across from me, and Einstein looking plaintively
Peasants, and nameless hordes (and I among them), all seeing our humanity
And nodding, at last judgment free 

Some sit in this holy hour by candlelight, some by campfire,  
Some in the glow of a screen, perhaps spilling all the sacredness like perfume poured profligate on the ground, 
(Though it’s too sacred to be poured out entirely
The vessel refills itself, endlessly)

Wealth or rank possessing decided these things, when and how we sit and stand, but
Wherever we may be, we all step outside our proverbial tent beneath a cobalt desert sky—the stars burning on every side, sighing
As they unwind their own selves slowly, asking the questions that burn within us all,
Undying beacons in the night, ready for sleep themselves, still staring down at us, as if for answers—
We who make up a great constellation, burning here in holy darkness 

For more poetry, click here.