Posts Tagged ‘scale’

Grand Scale

Today I am grateful to remember I’m small—
a woman who lives in a deep river canyon
surrounded by fourteen-thousand foot peaks
in state the size of New Zealand
in the fourth largest country on Earth
on the fifth largest planet in our solar system
which has a radius of three billion miles
in a galaxy one hundred thousand light years in diameter
in an observable universe of ninety-three billion light years.
I sit at the end of the deep river canyon
and look at my two cupped hands.
What I can carry is so small.
What carries me is so great.
I offer it my grief.
For a moment, I am weightless.

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Strange Balance

When the boy is sneering
or the glass is breaking
or the woman is weeping
or the streets are crowded
with anger and rage,
it is hard to believe
a small joy
has any real value,
hard to believe
a single red gerber daisy
or a cup of grapefruit-scented tea
might have any relevance,
could bear any weight on the scale
that measures what it is to be alive,
but last night, while I was steeping
in worry, aching with injustice,
my daughter created a stage
between the threadbare couches
and hummed herself a soundtrack
as she leapt and spun
and shuffled and flapped,
and oh, how her brief flare of joy
changed the flavor of the night,
an improbable balance,
the way even the smallest amount of sugar
transforms the bitter sauce,
the way just one note
resolves a minor chord,
the way the barest hint of rain
makes the whole desert
erupt into bloom.

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in my palm
a tiny pelvis—
birth of the universe
with such large hands
this petroglyph
holds the past
bright scent of juniper
no longer there—
still I sniff my fingertips

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The heart
is perhaps
more bonsai
than redwood—
by the size
of its container—
still, it branches,
it grows,
learns to thrive
no less
no less

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