Black River of Loss

                                 black riverEverything now residing in my bones,
Slowly learned by years
Swimming in black river of loss,
Watching as body of trees
Thicken their bodies reaching for Light,
Birds building nest in delicate hair.

Long tapers of cattails
Stand straight by shallow ponds,
Soaking their roots in grief,
Brown shoulders stretch for blue sky,
Endless clouds without names
Floating in faint fragrance of breeze.

Every path leads back to this:
Three things to learn from life—
To love what is mortal, see within an essence of beauty;
To hold it tightly in tender arms
Aware your very being hangs upon this fundamental core;
And, when the time comes to say goodbye,
To be calm as quiet water while letting go.


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