when one of them hurts all the generations of kin grieve i hold them as deeply as i know how rage at the wolves that stalk their small bodies dance with each of them in the heart of love
All should be transformed into a source of wisdom and compassionate living.
—Taitetsu Unno, “Number One Fool” (Tricycle, Spring 2008)
Sometimes at night we stroll and
we do not know where the perfume
comes from, but tonight I have found
from across the deep orchard a hedge
outside the wire fence where the wild rose
is ferocious in its pink blossoming. Its
headstrong bouquet is more gong than harp.
I would know it anywhere.
I try to be still. Try to be alone,
and my heart clangs like a bell.
I try to fall away. I try to disappear.
I try to hurl my discontent into the cloudy river.
And the river says What? to me.
And I do not know what. Don’t understand why.
Confused about how as well.
And I follow my nose to the next
rise of wild roses, stand beside them
and breathe. Every breath, I need to fight for
tonight. Nothing comes easily.
There’s a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.
No there’s not.
—Finn Trommer, 5 “and a half” years old
All day I practice not knowing. But damned
if that slinky surety doesn’t sink in. No, no
that’s not a dinosaur print, I tell my son,
when he shows me a strange swirl in the sandstone.
Yes, I tell Wendy. You can plant the individual
garlic cloves, and then admit moments later
I just do not know. I don’t know. I don’t know.
There was a time when I thought I did. And perhaps
it is better now. These days, how I notice
everything—the shadowed wrinkles on the cliffs,
the high-voltage scent of wild rose in the morning air—
but it’s not everything, and I can’t help but wonder what I miss.
What I miss, well, the I think I know the list is endless. Perhaps
there were multiple suns in the sky—
I don’t know. I was looking down at the most curious,
strange and wonderful shadows.