lives beyond myself ~

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rememberthis

how it was
you found me –
a vine within the stone
a path you’ve suffered often
to where all sorrow goes
you wonder
as I’ve wondered
you curse sometimes the way
when night surrounds me weeping
I wonder why you stayed
to see me safe
to chart my course
so different from the rest
who were you
when I was lost
in grief beyond myself
to darkness forged of longing
question born of sighs
where I was
to wander back to you
mountains beneath mountains
rivers deep and wide
swept me to the ocean
to sands
by loss denied –
to find me whole
some other day
when I am yours again
to fill the winds
with mystery
at the mention of your name

. . .

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another first ~

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gathered mine

the first kiss
your last goodbye
held as mine
‘neath jealous skies
where truth was sealed
by wordless sighs
lies
too old
to remember

the way we came
from roads before
with want for none
but grace for more –
than a hand could hold
a heart would store
in boxes old
and bursting

given place
a rite of rest
one promise sweet
tho unconfessed
with all I am –
with nothing less
than a song
you taught me
whisper

into the still
surrounding now
when by ten thousand
deaths
I vow
another breath
somewhere
somehow
in fields by heaven
seeded

another first
‘neath amber skies
where angels dance
by firelight
where truth was sealed
by wordless sighs –
lies
too old
to remember

. . .

Author’s Note: Pieces of this have haunted me over the last couple weeks. Not long ago, I wandered to an old road not far from where I grew up. I could see clearly that an industrial park was hedging bets on every spare inch of land. But on another day (another life), the trees barely parted for the lane, and beyond was a field deep with wheat and dreams. I don’t know whether ‘parking’ is a southern thing or not. I’d hate to think that we’re the only ones with an appreciation for summer nights on a lacey quilt – witnesses to heaven beneath a blanket of stars.

unnumbered ~

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had I known
from the start
what the stars had in mind
might have bound
up my heart early on
perceived as transgression
forgiven as such
unnamed to the darkness
just before dawn
where poetry stands
as proof of our days
was here that we first learned to love
had my soul been aware
of another somewhere
pages unnumbered
and bare
carbon impressions
of weakness and light –
fragile remembrance
of sight

. . .

almost might have been ~

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leaving

I’ve no right
for speaking –
no welcome invitation
I wonder even this
would you allow
a moment left
beyond the reach
of reaching all the time
might save my soul
from grieving –
to feel the same again
let me tell the story
as it almost
might have been
let this one confession
free your heart at last
from loving me
believing me –
a vestige from the past
how was I to know
you’d turn the tables
as you have
how was I to know
you’d have to go

. . .

verse erased ~

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beyondmenow

will I remember you
as sunlight –
swept atop the waves
as tears
my heart neglected –
were never yours to save
will I barter still
this shallow breath
for pages old and faded now –
for one more line
another grace allowed
a place to be
by verse erased
as lifetimes spread to days between
our last goodbye
as fate returned –
the dreamer
from the dream

. . .

Jonathan Mark Lundquist
1956-2019

paths of stone ~

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story of the soul

there’s a sound
that sorrow makes
in still dark rooms –
a void
beyond the burden
an anguished understanding
would you know
for whom I grieve
daffodils I planted
yesterday

on paths of stone
hearts are rent
life recalls its meaning
with circumspect
reminders
was this the way
we came
searching out our others –
the truth
we gave away

. . .

in the breath before beginning ~

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cometome

I knew you
in the nothing –
in the breath before beginning
where living turned to shadow
to speak of other truths

I knew you
as a whisper –
fell while I was sleeping
a gathering of clouds
against the blue

I knew you
as a wishing –
a star by heaven tethered
a blanket neath a canopy
of dew

I knew you
as a night bird
come to me in slumber
a messenger of promise –
an evermore
come due

. . .