Like the wind
I work my way through the tall grass of the crater.
A place of rare emergence, it is named for ‘ihi ihilauakea’
who between drought and flood
sleeps under the hardened mud
and in the languid shade
dreams are draped like a clover lei
in this dry and wordless place.
The thorny brush scrapes the canvass,
its rhythmic sway
is the sea that lifts a finger
to paint and texture the horizon far away.
Like the path
I am worn by generations of footsteps.
Boots dusty from the factory
with the starched white wedding tunic
fitting like a luminous shell
dropped from greater heights
to speak of sacrifice
and the miracle of being alive,
within the crevices of myriad choice,
a clinging crustacean
against the immensity of waves
drowning out the tiny voice.
Words were meant to be an offering
but the sky makes short work of my ambition
as spray begets beads on lava rock,
more sweat is necessary.
I lift my eyes to read
the careless cursive in a pattern of birds.
Cryptic signs from those lost at sea
come to me at dawn.
My makeshift empathy
is tattered by the wind
but still waving a thin, forgotten banner
faded with time.
Best to replace messages with rhyme
flagpoles with fishing line,
to see what can be drawn from the deep
instead of waving idly from afar.
I couldn’t claim any of this as my own,
elusive silhouette against the sky,
paper cutout to the hillside,
raised shade in the veil of clouds
just passing by.
I did not obstruct the wind
but lent an animated note
to its continuous hymn.
I did not construct the unknown
but bent my craft to its every whim
before letting go.