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Between Two Chains
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January 18



Between Two Chains






The curving movement half seen sweeps forward and catches me squarely on the chin.  Realization glimmers that next time it will strike me in the mouth and I take a step back.  I estimate the returning arc, raise my arms, push the board back from whence it came.  As it hurtles toward me once more I reposition.  Force returns force; fury comes vigorously my way and I thrust with strength and enthusiasm. And this is fine for what it is.  I have learned how not to get hit.  I can push when I get shoved.  How much better will it be when I can get on and swing?



Tie your lose ends into bows.






In the prairie there are small fenced cemeteries
Family plots.
The flat expanse of land opens to the eye
Hand carved monuments stand in testimony
To love and service.

In these places grow wild flowers
These places cordoned off
From mechanization and agribusiness
Held in trust are the bones of loved ones
And the soul of nature.

Blue bells, paint brush, lupines
And all manner of reedy grasses.
Deep inside me is a place like this.
The place I have buried my young.
The little ones who died of shame, neglect and hurt.

And I must return, not to exhume the dead
But to pay tribute.
To return with honor and love
Harvest the daisies and buttercups.
Grow them in the garden of my heart.

I can tend the flowers
Which spring from destruction
I can mingle them with the growth of my sober life.
Restore my prairie
To a splendor it has never known.

I can enjoy the bounty
Of saving seeds worth saving
And planting my Higher Powers will for me.