the tattoo…

it started
just below her ear
and coursed down
her neck
covering parts of her breast
winding like a politician’s words
to  her back
vining down her leg
it was there
for all to see
it protected her
from her own teachings
of love thy neighbor
she was willing to die
for those who shared
the same tattoo
but those
whose markings
were different
were to be
guarded against
kept away
and shown
                                                           no mercy
                                                            in battle
                                                           that they had children
                                                             and husbands
                                                              lying dead
                                                              in the rubble of life
                                                               was not her concern
                                                                for they did not have
                                                               the tattoo of  god
                                                            she saw

upon this plain of tears…

the night
knows your name
for you have returned
to this dark corner
where dreams die
over and over again
each time
reaching out
to touch the velvet wings
of hope
that flutter
beyond your reach
still you come
dressed for a celebration
while others wear
mourning clothes
but you
in hope
and without
where would
the dreams
come from
the seven

china doll…


once the source of laughter
on a christmas eve 
bringing a child’s face aglow
as if sprinkled with glittery star dust
now homeless
an aging inhuman artifact
unceremoniously wedged between
a copy of modern medicine
and an article on dying with dignity
residing along a deserted road
abandoned with childish disregard
now her constant companions
an old black and white tv
and her well-worn reclining chair
that stand guard over her
as if an attending physician
her eyes are now vacant
so many promises of god’s redemptive grace
yet the steady throbbing of pain
every solar rotation
every eclipse of the sun
the pain remains
she wonders
when does one die
is it when the heart stops
is this