"Ceremonies" and "Anything Is Possible"

Ceremonies

The shot rang out, ricocheting against the green,
catching the goose in mid-air.
Then, to our astonishment, a sudden gathering
of geese circles over and over the body
before landing and standing watch.
After, one of them steps out
slowly turning away, with the others
following in procession, wrapped in the dignity
of leave- taking, of a ceremony
honoring the fallen. They live and die
in freedom, journeying above
our noise and confusion,
unlike us, who say we live
in the land of the free, but who cannot gather
and mourn over our soldiers from
Iraq because the president has forbidden
public view of the coffins
that arrive in quick succession,
as he stakes out a silence that smothers us
and we obediently fold our wings.

 


 

Anything Is Possible

                        for Edwin Soto

 

Take the sky, one moment rays
of light rest on the balcony, the continent
of clouds opens to reveal a deep blue,
then the wind's absence, yet the air

exudes humidity, the possibility of rain,
just like the unexpected decisions that shape
our lives by a group of men huddled
together in a palace proclaiming

that the frequent loss of land the size
of a football field by rising sea levels
are of no consequence, like the drought
and high heat that invade our forests

causing widespread fires, and that new
private prisons will be built without
mentioning that the inmates will be
minorities who work there for a pittance.

But a young teenager in a poor neighborhood
is writing poems about police patrolling
the streets and the fear that pervades them,
yet his verses are the wildflowers

that greet us during our arduous journeys,
like the sudden smile of a person you pass by
that opens up a place inside yourself,
a little child laughing as she runs down

the street, reminding us that there is
always hope that moves us forward,
the uncharted territories, the truth
that kingdoms cannot banish.

 

 

Marguerite Guzman Bouvard is the author of ten poetry books two of which have won awards, including the MASSBOOK Award for Poetry. Her poems have been widely published and anthologized. Her latest poetry book, the Flame of Life came out in 2018.

 

Edited for Unlikely by Jonathan Penton, Editor-in-Chief
Last revised on Monday, January 14, 2019 - 22:54