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A Poet Is Born

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The first line of each breath-of-a-poem is taken from The Poet Slave of Cuba: A Biography of Juan Francisco Manzano by Margarita Engle.
 


~~ 1 ~~
 
In some hut of mud
with a floor of dry, tamped dung,
a poet is born.
 
~~ 2 ~~
 
inventing verses
that rise and fall with seasons—
the farming poet
 
~~ 3 ~~
 
on flimsy paper
writing words that reach thousands
with pathos and light
 
~~ 4 ~~
 
A fragrance of words
flows from the child poet’s mouth—
honey on his tongue.
 
~~ 5 ~~
 
the whispered daydreams
of corn pushing toward the sun
during tassel time
 
~~ 6 ~~
 
a woman running
from the seed about to split
into lightning songs
 
~~ 7 ~~
 
The fragrant garden—
she comes each day at twilight
to sip with the bees.
 
~~ 8 ~~
 
No one is looking
as she enters the courtyard
to steal a mango.
 
~~ 9 ~~
 
after the harvest
every vine stripped of its fruit—
season of waiting
 
~~ 10 ~~
 
Count the songs growing
in the tunnel of the mole—
ten thousand or more.
 
~~ 11 ~~
 
Even a free bird
cannot sprout another wing
when one is broken.

 
Poems © 2015 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
 
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More Sunday’s Whirligig #21

Planting

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Afternoon shadows lengthen in the potter’s field, Yuma Pioneer Cemetery, Yuma, Arizona
 


in the potter’s field
far from any beach or strand—
a widow’s keening
after they plow a furrow
and plant her husband as seed

 
Tanka © 2015 and photo © 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
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Split

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Chapel of Santo Niño de Atocha, Chimayo, New Mexico
 


how a mother’s love
makes even autumn sunlight
split the hidden seed

 
Text and photo © 2014 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
More Carpe Diem: “Autumn Sunlight”
 
More Twelve Days of Mary at Recuerda Mi Corazon: Day 2

Waiting

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Soon-to-be-irrigated cropland, Sonoran Desert, Southern Arizona
 


Waiting for the plow,
a fallow field gathers strength
for nourishing seed.

 
Text and photo © 2013 by Magical Mystical Teacher
 
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