Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Hope at Sunset

Photo: Brian Federle, Oregon, 2014

Across the fading valley
The silver bay shines,
effulgent edge
under twilight hills.

flat waters
cut a thin line
beneath dark heights.

Saw-toothed ridges
rip thin clouds
to ragged shreds —

the plunging sun ignites
the resplendent light
of love
for this sad, winter world. 

Sunday, March 24, 2019

A Father's Lament

Photo Brian Federle, Hawaii, 2016

Spring fills this dry land
With life, yet
I cannot see your face
or embrace you with a father’s love
as I did when last you filled our lives
with your easy laughter
and beautiful eyes.

Shall I speak to you, tell  how
small birds gather
in the budding apple tree
hungry no more,
filled with joy?

I cry out to you
and the startled birds
fall into silence,

Let me tell you, then,
Of my new life without you.

Deep in my side I feel endless pain
where my heart once beat;
now I merely breathe

My son, oh, where have you gone?
Call to me from the brilliant heights,

for deep in darkness I lie
crying to see you just
one more

(for Brian Federle, 3/4/86 - 3/25/17)


Photo Brian Federle: Morning, Washington State, Aug. 2014

deep in my center
lies the

it resonates
softly, it
in my ear.

its lover,
the word
like thick mist
coastal slopes.

but this crude song is
a metaphor,
an anxious gong,
a poor imitation,
a mockingbird.

the word
all explanation.

it just simply

(3 Sept. 2010)

Friday, March 22, 2019

Consoling Mary

Freely flow her tears;
a dam so brimful
cannot contain
such towering waves.

Wondering that
my words fail
to give peace,
I reach out
and take her trembling hands.

I brush away
all her
bitter tears.

(13 April 2011)

Monday, March 18, 2019

Evening Prayer

Wind stirs in expectation,
softly strokes my face.

The March sun reassures,
warms my pale flesh
through layers of thick sweater
and winter coat.

Under indigo hills
new grass flows,
yellow and green,

as past distant ranges,
to the sky-bright, rounded sea
it flees and sends
a gift of clouds,
in glory.

Peace to the grass of the fields!
to dark hills and drifting clouds,
and to the sacrificial sun

(21 March 2014)


This stained glass window can be seen inside of 
St. Peter the Apostle Church, 179 Baldwin Road, 
Parsippany, NJ, USA. 


From this holy height,  
I gaze into
my Father’s eyes.

His fire scorches
my trembling flesh,
and fills my soul
with sacred breath.

In joyful flames
I suddenly see
I never was
what I appeared to be.

(25 February 2013)

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

The Goodness of March

Photo: S. Federle, Little Pink

The goodness of March,
rain, strong winds,
buds swelling —
the everyday

The tree
we planted last year
on the first anniversary
of your passing
is blooming,

its small, pink bursts
quietly exploding
in the green glow
after the storm.  

I smile to see it —
thin, wavering limbs
climbing to the sky, defiant
in the March wind.

Are you smiling too?