The Night Heron
(for my dear friend, Jeremy Nathan Marks, a poet of mind-boggling talent, for whom this poem has been promised for far too long, though not so long perhaps as the lives of poems go...they are ancient things, even the young ones, and as Memory is my negative Muse, I can not recall exactly where or when this piece began, except that I know it began in one of the many enriching conversations I have had with this man.) The Night Heron the night heron stands silent as the sea refuses the sun. shorebirds' shadows fall on deafness like lids. the sun speaks and you see the stars. the wind tells your stories in voices of the night. you hear. you listen. you find your roots in the reaching branches beneath still waters. broken reeds whistle a hollow tune in the wind and chatter like bones in the breeze. a clap, and you fly, pulling long legs from the water dripping behind you, lighter than any great blue, heavier than light. we search the sky for fish while our branches blow in air. we stand knee-deep in wetness while all the life, all the time, is right here. this song sings itself in the sun. undone things thunder as one while the elders look on mutely and mourn the lost morning of man. this work will never be done. this song can never be un-sung.