Saturday, 6 November 2010

87. Al-Jame’ – Gathering Gems

Suggest gather, gem, value, what to do next --- 'Tell me, what
is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?' Mary Oliver

What shall we talk about – what’s up
(we’ve got a little bit of time)
and who will speak and who will follow whom
(what’s new upon this kitchen table top)

and shall we circle round and round
(with eyes and ears and touch and tongue)
giving little pats-on-the-head
(and will we choose to work, eat, dance or sleep)?

Who shall we please and who not please
(tomorrow and tomorrow’s ace
encounters, meetings, semaphore)

or hate or care or love, respect,
or look across the surfaces
and feel for sudden truths that hope can trust?

Before you die…
with only seconds to live - eat a grape
but with minutes to live – telephone.

If you’ve hours left to live - family
or a few days to live - meet your mates.

With two weeks to live - walk alone
and with months left to live - write a book.

With years to live – ropes go slack.
Go slack.

eat grapes.


  1. For no specific reason, as I read these I imagined hearing the voice of Quincy Troupe, whom I had the pleasure of hearing read some of his poetry live back when I was in college. Very nice, thank you for sharing.