First Rain


lazy drops of rain slide down the window

a sigh of relief drifts from my breath and settles,

     comfortably, around me

outside my window jasmine vines dance erratically under the

     onslaught of heavy, languid drops;


this is no whisper of delicate rain

but a torrential respite of long-awaited showers

voluptuous, gray-hued clouds ease themselves onto the shore,

     making landfall as they leave their ocean voyage behind

they roll stoically towards the mountains,

     releasing their renewing nectar onto the desperately

     dry land below

plants quiver in the promise of these falling drops,

     leaves reach out longingly to gather each, tiny blessing,

     roots swell with anticipation in the slowly-drenching soil

and I melt, thankfully, into the promise of renewal




a soft murmuring

a whisper


like the susurrus of a cool, trickling creek faintly          

heard through the damp, dark lushness of the forest


or the creeping cobwebs of anxiety crawling stealthily up my spine, 

delicate feet burrow into the sanctity of my peace while I try         

and breathe through the most simplest of tasks


like the susurrus of gently scraping oak branches,          

bending and dancing in the steady, melodic rush 

of an afternoon breeze up the river valley


or the incessant, repetitive tapping of doubt-filled fingers on my conscience 

asking,  “am I doing enough, living enough, loving enough…am I enough?”


like the susurrus of ocean waves calmly, rhythmically unfolding themselves onto

the beach under a star-sprinkled sky illuminating musicians joyously playing

around tall, flickering flames


or the words of my mother, on the subject of having children young, 

“if I could do it again, I would do it differently”


The susurrus may be a whisper but I hear it loud and clear!


the anxiety is not always tiny feet tip-toeing across my skin but a hammer,

 nailing my ear to the whipping post, it is only with my strength of will 

and determination that I can rip myself away from the pain and torture


the doubt is not always a gentle tapping

but a flood, a deluge of tears washing down my face, 

cleansing me of my attachments and my sins


the words of my mother are not always fleeting reminiscences, 

but a blazing standard of success and happiness to

 base the decisions of MY life upon


The susurrus may be a whisper but I hear it loud and clear!


until…I don’t

Post Election Invocation


I knew she was there,

buried deep beneath the softness

of a good life,

of plates filled with nourishment,

laughing children and

pleasant evenings

A soldier sleeping wistfully

through times of peace,

stirring occasionally,

but never fully rousing to the agitation

until now…


It was not the moment I first learned she was there

two blue lines boldly marching across the

plastic barometer of my hormones,

It was not the moment I decided to not

forcibly vacate her from my womb,

nor the first flutterings of her movements

inside the staged waters of my inheritance.

It was not the euphoric moment of

meeting her after the battle of birth,

nor the first time I held her to my breast

for the life sustaining milk of our ancestors,

These are not the moments that define for me

the before and after.

It was later,

alone with her for the first time,

her newly born body snuggled next to mine

sleeping off the exhaustion of one at the

crux of a journey.

I sang songs to her of people devoted to the earth

and was flooded with visions of

mothers from around the world,

mothers forced to send their children into

the chaos of violence and hate,

hoping upon prayers they survive to find

safety… and love,

for the first time I was able to glimpse

a fraction of their suffering.

Becoming a mother was painful.

A surrendering of my peace of mind,

a severance from innocence and blind joy,

my heart torn wide open,

compassion and grief pouring from a vessel

that finally understood what it is to

love with everything you have.

It was not a sweet sentiment written

inside of a hallmark card,

but a volcano,

erupting in an explosion of rawness,

love and sorrow and joy and fear

oozing down slopes to form a lush, vibrant land

where life grows and prospers.


12 years I have been a mother,

a third of my life.


And now this,

this crumbling façade of safety

with the election of one man.

A reminder that in this beautiful forest

of ancient trees and blooming wildflowers,

there are wolves! 

Animals known to hunt and kill for the fun of it.


This election is a call to battle,

An awakening of a deep, ancient instinct

My inner warrior, She is here,

scrubbing away the rust,

shining the metal of her breastplate so

they can see the brilliance of righteousness,

donning her armor,

slowly, methodically,

with intention and the

fierceness of a lion.


I have three daughters,

the three faces of the Goddess represented in

the gifts of my body.

I have been the maiden,

sweet innocence in the new growth of spring.

I am the mother,

eternal nurturer and provider,

I am learning to be the crone,

gathering the wisdom of life.

But let us not forget the fourth face,

the dark moon,

the dark Goddess,

Let us not forget the fierce, protective Mother!

let us not forget the divine liberator!

Let us not forget the powerful, vengeful destroyer!

Let us not forget Kali!

Creek Tree


I am dying,

slowly strangled in the cracking clay

my roots push deeper into the soil,

stretch towards water that carved

its home centuries ago,

gone now for years,

diverted and drained in 1 season.


I watched hopelessly as young Salmon

suffocated in the warming puddle,

tried to spread my branches a bit further,

to offer shade in hopes of some relief,

however slight

but it was not enough

Salmon died and their spawn

will swim up this stream no more.


My wilted leaves ruffle in the breeze

reminding me of Owl’s feathers before flight

now only a memory.

Owl left with the sound of ‘prosperity’,

of primitive civilization amplified,

a steady drone unceasing in the night

She left to search for quieter hunting grounds

her mate lay poisoned and rotting in a field

unable to accompany her.


Where once I gazed upon meadows of wildflowers

there is now row upon row of feathery, bushy foliage

no variety

no color

no deer wandering amongst a rainbow of vitality

nor bees to harmonize with the wind.


My brittle leaves drop like mice fleeing

a burrow discovered by Snake

I look to the creek bed,

dusty and barren,

water a blurred memory,

and I pray for rain

as only a dying tree can.