Thursday, September 20, 2018

To The Beautiful City In Waiting

I had brought no silver but the moon
no gold but the sun
I was remiss to everyone

all winter the earth wore white
beyond Labor Day
to whom shall I complain

cried the complaint to the lute
the Madrigal across time
I sang at the doll sized sink

or amid the eglantine in Keats or in
the remnants of the Beautiful City.
I was housed there

but mainly in my mind
anchored in mist
anchored in mist and God

I rose to tell you this
but you, you persisted.
banishing me again.

mary angela douglas 20 september 2018

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

The Black Evening Gown With Its Single Rose Found

I see the black evening gown as a pure object
with the familiar delight of its off the shoulder rose
the rose being a true red, not a false one

and layers of black tulle
with their occasional sparkles sewn in
oh, are they jewels? we wonder with delight

like those sewn into the clouds when they break apart
like the light of small small stars in the evening

I think of the play by Maeterlinck
and this is the costume for night
Night in an allegory

with its exquisite red rose
we point it out in the picture
see? it's the same one

its puzzle pieces of little stars
oh purest of gowns

then, the costume of sheer poetry
nightfall and the blue dusk leaving us behind
at dreamland's dreamy edge

with the scent of violet cologne

when my mother bends down in the old novel
we made up for her
kissing us before she turns to go

leaving us with realms of Let's Pretend

to step silkenly
into a golden carriage.
the one we knew was coming for her

at the End.

mary angela douglas 19 september 2018

The Jeweled Way Is Gone

maybe holy angels then inspired us
building up our defenses of beauty
against the cruelties lapping at our door

this was what the grownups called playing.
with all conceivable blocks we built the playhouse
the one we would live in evermore

when the storms came battering
the trick or treat scares,
silos for the candy corn.

Ive thought a lot about it
how the green trees made our grove
long after the leaves, even the trees

were felled.
and how the wishing wells in the picture books
looked so realistic

we believed in so much then.
now I think of little children
little children in school

day by day forced to call it the environment
when for us it was the faery woods.
what is gained I wonder

stripping the branches bare of the gold leaf
the veins of gold, the ramifications
and the ramparts too

of invisible kingdoms.
the jeweled way of measuring the worlds.

mary angela douglas 19 september2018

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Be At Rest. The Ark Has Landed

I dreamed we were going home
not the last one. but the first
the one with the pale blue walls

the glass swans sailing
on the toy river
the lost thimble found

the thimble of gold
the locket of silver
the baby locks of hair

she must have kept somewhere,
our fond Grandmother.with the musical flair
there was the magnolia

floating in the silver bowl
the way she placed it, always just so
the theme from Paliacci...

the pine needles all over the

lavender rug
the Christmas tree still resplendent
and autumn's apples

summers nursery rhymes.
how far we have gone to lose you
every time beyond the bright mirrors

in the strange encryptions of the world
it was hardly the fairy tale road
and yet, there was gold.

that never disappeared
let us be launching now
caught out with our nets of dream

our natal stars
knowing where we are now
that it was Heaven

and will be, again.

mary angela douglas 18 september 2018

I Saw The Ghosts Of Roses Rise

to Alfred Lord Tennyson

“…My children, who do not lie.”-The Holy Bible

I saw the ghosts of roses rise
the hour that the Princess died
that way of looking at the world

died with her.
then poetry unfurled
the thin silk scarf of grey

the thread of warning.
I saw the clouds disperse
but only to reveal blank skies

blank pages blank Ages
a spark gone out in the eyes
of everyone, it seemed that way

to me then when
I saw the henchmen looking for that spark
only to quench it.

the execution of children
by subtle means
the ones who still dreamt

when they slept
and in between assignments
on the crumbling steps of all parthenons

the unscheduled dreams…
we met in grottos

our candles of thin means melted down
and remembered when Song
was the highest art

for what it dared impart
to the human heart
of the Divine.

Oh King in exile
your children too
refuse to honor the wastelands

just like You

to drink from the professional cup
when the empty toasts go round
to sound the trumpet

of the vacuous – New.

mary angela douglas 18 september 2018

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Hyping The Hurricane

I was alive when they were hyping the hurricane
while in the shadows of small riverbank towns
the floods really did come.

the shadows thickened in the mud flats
the tree frogs sang.
then we were a million miles from home
home floating off as if it were a barge
so far from Homer and all his songs.
they were all out
hyping the hurricane. so long, they said to us
while we just prayed.
in a parallel universe
they remained
on a flickering tv screen.
seeming to me at least a bit insincere.
drowned crickets sang
their angel ghosts
the Heavenly Host
the ghosts of summers drowned.
what does truth matter anyhow
when they lie about the weather
some places got no rain at all.
they think we are too Southland
small and stupid to notice
when rain gets hyped
and small towns too.
and who is who
and catfish fried
where someone died
and water burials
lily pad dreams.
and schemes of those out
hyping the hurricane.
those of us
who really miss our homes.
who care about the details.
of an elegiac sadness
getting the story right.
staying up all night because its
us you know
with no place left to go
no games to play
with an ear out for rushing water.
oh sons and daughters of the being not seeming.
look to your redeeming.
the folklore of the free
who can still see things with their own eyes.
and know the wisemen really did come at Christmas.
no matter what the papers say.
mary angela douglas 17 september 2018


things are coded
each in their own way
I can't explain it

but I know it is that way
even the trees
their tree codes whisper

in the light of day
and when the stars appear
the trees are near

and understand the star codes
year by year
ring by ring

the angels sing
the green trees fire
is lovelier than we can see

and God has the key
also to you
maybe to me

reading the codes
in dreams where
it's always snowing.

mary angela douglas 18 september 2018