My Place by Xristi M.
The earth and I have been long together.
That has not made us friends.
It is not equal commerce between peers
that binds us, purchase
but my awestruck worship
of the blue and emerald manifestation
of a powerful goddess–
the variant beauties, buy changeful but constant,
of mountain dowagers, aglow in sunlight,
mist-shawled in evening,
and star-crowned in the black of night
of seas deeper than the human soul,
beneath whose thundering surface
the bells still chime of churches flooded long ago,
calling lost seaman from wrecked hulls
for services where mermaids twine their hair
with harvested pearls and
beckon to the thronging schools of fish
of forests where trees stand
in virgin starkness against the sky
and drop their leaves and needles
on the mossy carpet below,
the playground and commissary
of all those creatures Adam named
of the vast, still stretches of desert,
at once so sere but drenched in sameness that
past, present, and future seem
only a single speck of time
between the bleak horizons.
She, the earth, has also her Kali nature,
cleaving herself with earthquakes,
spilling churning lava from her volcanoes,
spinning storms that purple the skies
and wash her shores to ruin,
twisting air to funnels of destruction,
and, most dangerous of all,
giving room to man.
She does not court familiarity.
I call her home,
would not presume to call her friend.
I know my place.
You knew and loved “your place”. Goodbye, Xristi. You were my dear friend. I will sorely miss you. Rest in Peace.