Tag Archives: Stephen Mead

We People

Stephen Mead

mostly like walks: coffee cafes, talk river,
occasional laugh bursts & some (lots of)quiet——
Indulgence is insular, & sometimes it’s too much,
sometimes, just right: escape sought in books, movies,
in wondering about others, in not wondering, not——
Long music mornings, afternoons & twilights widening nights
toward a narrowing dawn either fought, dreaded or accepted like slumber.

Then, of course, there’s the dancing, the tangling, the organizing,
the legislating, the resistance or did we give in?

I remember a flash of red: cardinal from the clothesline
2 stories down, that flitting immediacy senses seized.
I remember sunspot days, everything a vivid shimmer, colors:
fuzz enriched. I remember living a single breath with
2,3,4 a.m. strolls of black clarity, of being camera shy of
eyes, other shoppers, other windows, crystal nerves, desperate
anger, anger reined & calm without blindness giving way
to a shrug, a giggle, to a kindness hurt moved beyond.

I hurt for you, you hurt…
& passion entered, enters too, passion linked to all these
things——the walking, the leaving a restaurant & once
in a while,
harassed, smiles
not just getting by because
hatred said wrong: wrong the closeness, even when
there are differences, wrong the surfaces,
the perceptions of what,
who, you & me are.

I remember thinking someday all this would be an artifact,
& money no object (is it?) or maybe even a means,
& the hatred also obsolete, but not the needs, the walks.
Long ago. Some day. Passion. Hand found hand.
Feet, each, a pace, together & diff…
Yes, god knows, & knowing hell, that’s what I believe.


Rain On Your Wake

Stephen Mead

A celebration tonight
for your birthday, 76th, reached nearly
in life, Mom, reached nearly despite
the last agonizing months, eight,
which the diagnosing doctors
overlooked the severity of,
& you not entirely out of mind enough,
giving it the old heave ho’s good try
with a smile to appreciate
beneath the hair net & wincing gaze…

Thus I have learned courage,
as adhered to your spine as the fungus
discovered too late amid the blood
clot havoc in that rehab which could not
rehabilitate you through the I.C.U,
or the Hospice, a fought for blessing,
bringing your grace now to this night.

Outside it is raining, Mom,
& suddenly warm for January,
a thaw in our lives, this river of grief
lavender as your roses, your irises,
your lilies, fertile in the delft
ivy twines over the oak of
& you are own beloved Beauty Sleeping.

Like a time capsule you are submitted
for some heaven on earth, submitted,
a love letter whose enchantment
we are not ignorant of,
yet with no magic key save faith
for the breaking of the spill
on this mournful voyage we fall
& heal through, perhaps just like
this drizzle is

eternity’s rice