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Feb 10th
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The Poems of J.P. Dancing Bear

AE_poetryEditor’s note: This week’s Poetry Corner features the work of J. P. Dancing Bear, the author of nine collections of poetry, most recently, “Inner Cities of Gulls” and “Conflicted Light” (Salmon Poetry, 2010 and 2008). His poems have been published in Mississippi Review, DIAGRAM, Copper Nickel, Third Coast, Natural Bridge, Shenandoah, New Orleans Review, Verse Daily and many other publications. He is editor for the American Poetry Journal and Dream Horse Press. Bear also hosts the weekly hour-long poetry show, Out of Our Minds, on public station, KKUP.

The Winter Wolf
There is something a little grayer than the snowed-upon
forest background: a watchfulness, a waiting hunger
in the peripheral vision. It is not that the white world
is comfortable to her, but she has found a way
to live in it: winter coat, letting the snow form
around her till it is a blanket that keeps her own
warmth within. It is not hard to see she lives
with purpose. This is where my beliefs begin:
she is the mind of snow. She has brought frost
to the pines, ice to the lake, and glitter to
the hills. Her voice is the wind cutting through
the landscape. When I hear her gospel in the boughs,
I know this is the cathedral, and when her gaze
is upon me, I am already on my knees.

Tower
you’d spent all afternoon constructing a tower of windows and doors: curtains
hanging flaccid as flags in the breezelessness of summer: all doors set ajar: so you can
see through any openings: the darkening sky becomes a home: your inner voyeur sees the ripple and shape of clouds: someone ridiculously whispers earthquake weather:
which is another way to say fear: the shadow of the setting sun adds extra beams on the
ceiling: in the scaffolding: you imagine yourself living in the penthouse suit high above: enough room to turn the page of a book: you’d be able to see out as far as the ocean and
the mountains: a lighthouse: not so much for a warning: as a much as a message:
welcome—there’s plenty of open rooms: wherever you like

Coyote and Finch Aubade
This morning an unexpected fog
greets me at the door; the branches
of redwoods and pines seem bodiless
but reaching into my own skin.
I hear the notes of a finch coming
from beyond the blanket of mist.
On the road the coyote stops long
enough to look back at me, as if I
might be slowing him up, keeping him
from his own importance in the world. 
I look back, not with coyote reasons,
at your window half-buried beneath
the blanket of waiting stars and new light.
All this hunger and need is a gift
says the song of that nestled finch.

Comments (2)Add Comment
8.13.10 Friday Dusk CST Chicago, IL @6:38pm
written by LornaShelly, August 13, 2010
Bear,
to see even when not their
i seem to be able to write similarly
i enjoy your pieces
I'll drink my Cabernet and keep dreaming
i know you can do the same
i would like to publish but i need to write it 1st
if you are my Mentor all can be possible.
LornaShelly Mosse'
Tower.
written by Nat Kendall, August 10, 2010
I really love the symbolic building of the structure in Tower. Bear has captured courage and a youthful inquisitive feel so well with the imagery. Nice selection.

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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

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