Temporal Pastoral. A poem by Subhaga Crystal Bacon

Like a dark thread and a golden bobbin,
you and the dog stitch your way down
the brown hills. You rise and fall upon
the grass like a mirage, sometimes gone
then as if you tread atop its waving tips.
At last, when you must be near, you
disappear completely from sight.

The land has swallowed you.

I wonder if this is what death is like,
seeing you wavering in the distance
as if you will draw near, as if you’ll
arrive where I am waiting. Unless it’s
I who get there first and wait for you.
We’re both waiting here in our way,
living moment by moment, day by day.

The world crashes, and fear hums
along all the wires and portals. We’re
not immune but inoculated against despair.
We walk the dog, eat our meals, wash
our hands, watch the world turn from brown
to green. Life’s eternal leaving.

For Those Who Won’t Stay Home from Church

This morning I worshipped God
in the light on frozen grass
that shone like a thousand windows
of stained glass . I worshipped the crack
of wood, its sculptured grain
that contains the imprint of years
of rain. I prayed on my knees for the fire
in the stove, warmth and home.
I prayed before the altar of candle
and smoke to those who hear and hold
the suffering of the world. I prayed
to be of service. I prayed for you, pastor
and supplicant of the mega church
with its walls and roof, its bodies
tightly packed in stadium pews.
Be still, and know that I am here,
came the answer in the empty room.


Bio & Link
Subhaga Crystal Bacon is the author of two volumes of poetry, Blue Hunger, forthcoming in June, 2020 from Methow Press, and Elegy with a Glass of Whisky, BOA Editions, 2004. She lives, writes, and teaches on the east slope of the North Cascade Mountains, in Twisp, WA. subhagacrystalbacon.com

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