Tuesday, December 31, 2013


A Very Happy New Year 2014 to everyone!
God bless and keep you in the New Year.

mary angela douglas

"Go Out Into the World!" She Cried She Cried

"go out into the world!" she cried she cried
tipping their wings with frost
in the early spring,
the false queen.

the children turned to birds, obeyed.

and lifted heavy wings.
interminable is their flight, oh God-

and the sun is going down

swiftly into a sea made out of violets.
guard their meadows.

they are out of sight.

oh mother bereft of song
how long you waited by the picture
windows of a twilight

for their least return.

mary angela douglas 31 december 2013;rev. 21 november 2014

Monday, December 30, 2013

Certain Poets Read The Skies As They Did Before

writing in diamonds on the winter skies
God in His singular Castle keeps the night
and tries once more to scatter poems
for you

from the crystal highlands of His ultimate Preciousness.

but I am semi-precious and can't

quite catch the drift, do you?

of all this silver coinage everywhere.
and rubies that can't be spent
are gathering in His West 
where the slow swans rise.

oh, ever new cryptology that can't be
decoded yet
though we are trying to-

transcribing what we knew before
or thought we did-

and what we almost hear

mary angela douglas 30 december 2013;rev. 21 november 2014

Saturday, December 28, 2013

The Things You Think You Ought To Know

the things you think you ought to know
are snickering in the closet by the chalk board erasers.
the things you ought to know
(by now)

linger by the door when you line up to go home.

they know who you are;
the one with the scuffed shoes
(whose shoes are polished every night

bright beyond new penny, bright)
who dreams while the ice cream melts in the cup
with the flat wooden spoon
day-by-day in the afternoons.

but you know the clouds in pink and blue

are scudding across a winter sky
that looks so springlike out the stenciled windows
and you know the trinity is three leaves of golds

kissed on a single stem,

is loving you and kind
and you can run can run like the wind
far from the things they think you ought to know

and the guilt of the red and green crepe paper bells

made out of paper
made out of paper and they never ring.

the rosy punch and cookies when you

haven't finished your arithmetic
you haven't finished your arithmetic

but you live in a house

where you can count on love
to triumph always in the end
to triumph always in the end

whenever the pastel skies can snow

over the things you ought to know.
over the things you ought to know.

mary angela douglas 29 december 2013

Note on the poem: this poem stems from an experience in elementary school on the last day before Christmas vacation when we had our Christmas partythe last two hours of the day only the teacher held me back from the party because I hadn't finished the arithmetic for the day from the problems on the board because I couldn't understand them somehow.

Finally, she said in a voice edged with exasperation, well, Mary go on to the party.I can see you're never going to finish.  And I remember the feeling of happiness going to the party and sadness at being the last one and the happiness of going


Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Was It Falling Down In Daylight

[for Sylvia Plath]

"because their words had forked no lightening..."
=Dylan Thomas

how did it feel to write that way
dark side of the mirror to mirror's
sad back to back
expressive but incommunicado
scarcely published in the magazines
bypassing your intensity
was it
like falling down in daylight

with everyone watching you
wringing the light from your last pearls
princess, beekeeper of the denser luminosities-

in the fair far fairy tale woods can
you take the wrong turn
and get lost in the lostness
did you.

when she came with her basket
that last time (the witch) with her
pale green laces her used-up mythologies
her gold apple laced with a glimmering poison
how I wish you had slammed the door
in her face and not invited her in for pastries
and coffee.

oh, but you became a conduit
of darkness with the eyes of the seer
everywhere on the surface of 
your peacock soul so blue and green
so gold and yet despairing
who vividly sees no road ahead
the bridge washed out-
the fog never lifting from the jeweled path
that could be.

who trained you to live without hope
mining your own ore to extinction;
weeping in every cell of the
sharp-sheared, untimely in the rose gardens.

didn't anyone notice
you grieving there in your thin, bright dress
(quenching your wedding finery, Eurydice
all by yourself
in the choice that won't come back)
but the thieving oracles
you listened to 

or, was it something someone said
lightly on a summer day, in passing,
not meaning it really, in the strawberry patch
by the side of a house
so that everything afterwards was
kaleidoscope smashed, no longer turning 
except the one ardour for poetry
calling, Sylvia,

keeper of the lamp with the radioactive flair.

or was it something said again and again
and driven home in the chill and damp the subterfuge
or only the owl feather's drifting down
on you, the snowy owl when you
wished for snow instead and
to be washed in light like Christmas
but could not be. somehow. otherwise.

or was it a penchant for the rookery for
the raven's wing on no upswing, for the bleak days.
why couldn't you see so many times
there was a brightness about your head;

like a saint's aureole, it shows in old photographs
that cannot show that the falling down in daylight,
rainlight, goodbye, unbluebirded in a tower of dew
I am vanishing
my winnowed children in the greylight (she cried)-

blinded you instead, gleam after banished gleam
to any other outcome
or crook of the lightening's tree...

CHORUS (or what is left of it):
in the lousy kitchenette
the realms of your eyelids, Ladye,  fluttered: "snow"

mary angela douglas 25 december 2013;revised 29 december 2013

Dear Reader:

Please look for light not darkness.  Please hold onto hope even in dark moments.

God is real.  Life is not only what it is in the  moment.  Please always hold on. Nothing is worth throwing your life away.  Nothing.

God is with you.

Start With A Star

start with a star
a little brighter than usual
flashing a lighthouse message
above scant trees.

is it that hard
to imagine?
you could be going somewhere else
than the errand you thought you'd choose
or was chosen for you:
a journey through purple darkness

beyond the Christmas card silhouettes
silk-screened across the indigo;
glitter on parchment representing snow
or starlight, take your pick.

and then a cold night.
you're in the fields or just at work;
not thinking of anything at the bus stop

and the light grows larger now
filling half the sky
and work grows dim.

start with a song.
you think you might have heard before
only, not like this, and not for Him

as if the notes had burst all bonds
and turned to gold around and through
your listening attuned to nothing else.

start with a feeling, almost a little jeweled
washed silver to gold and back again
and resin is singing too now
through all the winter trees

of gilded apples on the branches of the universe
you only thought you knew.
and life starting over with the Star.

mary angela douglas 25 december 2013

Tuesday, December 24, 2013


could it be made of small stars
she asked the Fashioner softly
so that nothing could catch fire
in the vicinities

or carved from ivoried snows
to be worn in extreme cold, quarried
from a warmer rose, rosepetal stictched to

an even seam
even seeming like spring
at the earliest, set off
by pale green velvets,
the mazy motion of the trees.

I am setting off she prayed
on a journey that has no end.
make it from light, my Father
or wrists of rainbows
braclets of the miraculous
spanning the unshed tears,
the underpasses

overlooking the crevasse
over which I must pass
heart-rended, even without shoes
slipping on the pearl of Your shadow...

moon painted, bright beyond wonder
so that I may not forget You

mary angela douglas 24 december 2013

Sunday, December 22, 2013

No Muted Merry Christmas Angels Sang

did they 
have a meeting earlier in the year
and not invite the rest of us
who still believe
all sugarplumed, lay plans to have no
muted Merry Christmas?

experimenting, I went everywhere.

I smiled; then I was welcome
speaking of this and that. 
Then I said Merry Christmas!
bonhomie scattered like geese
in flight before gunshot.

happy holidays they whimpered.
or, the same to you, I'm sure,
they sniffed.
wanting to remain cool in the world wide
cool club where God Knows Who
makes the rules; I never did.

my reputation for a Christmas song.
did I say something wrong

my inner child laughed.
oh let me say it louder then.

on earth, on earth
quadrophonically now in

surround surround surround surround sound
in cathedral bells in neighborhood gingerbread;

white lighted snowfall lamplit candlelit knowing
Light has come into the world let me be Merry
and know why
and never be ashamed.

oh heralding angels weren't
oh, Christ the King

Christ the King
Christ the King
is chiming snow bright in the air

ring out my evergreen children everywhere

 mary angela douglas 22 december 2013

Saturday, December 21, 2013


only one orange
is blazing like the sun
brought down to earth
only kinder.

no sunburn.

an orange wrapped like a present
a little hard to open

but when you do

isn't it the kingdom of orange
made just for you
orange orange

overfilled with orange

the soul spills over into laughter
orange through and through

orange peel remaining

you could file under Oh.
it's gone now.
and wish for another.

but that is asking for so much

when your hands still 
smell like flowers.

mary angela douglas 21 december 2013

Note on Poem: I haven't eaten an orange for over seven years.  It's complicated.  Difficult to ride the bus.  Difficult to chew the stringy ones on sale.  Easier to store frozen fruit and lighter to carry than a bag of them would be.  Today someone gave me a Christmas orange. And I wrote this poem to express the amazement I feel (and felt as a child) that one small fruit could hold so much joy. And bo so orange.  Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift of the Orange.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

There Is No Death Of The Romantics

swans in the mirror of the soul
float on, having been banned from
post modern poetry.

where else would they go?

constricted and confined
condensed at the ballet to
save the audience time;

no longer needed at school
when slipping through the slit
of the Valentine box

wrapped in silver foil
decorated with red construction paper hearts
on white lace paper doilies, no more.

configured differently-

oh! not at all.
for they shone brilliantly
beyond the dress-circle diamonds of the
spectators who cannot guess now
when the clues are far too few
what they are missing.

over the footlights

swans in the mirror of the soul
drift on a wisp of
Pavlova, perhaps the
waters of Coole;
half-murmured in a dream

you've neglected to be transformed

your former poets mourn
and supplicate but you must be

they say to you on the job and if they knew

they would disapprove of the Romantic
leaning of the ghostly scholar

poet, pianist holding out to you

unseen, too rich and variegated the
thread of what has been
cleaved clear in two.
no cream for the apple tart.

other ages darker than this

you think but cannot say

have known have known the
soft flutter of few stars,
alone above the trees and witnessed, then, that

the swans in the mirror of the soul

float on and exquisite as pearl by pearl
impervious to wars, cultural or otherwise-
to poets unlearning their trade
wild Beauty wild with grief

unraveling and undeterred.

mary angela douglas 19 december 2013;22 november 2014;28 december 2014

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Time At The Fairytale Threshold Cannot Pass

time at the fairytale threshold cannot pass:
let the lime tree flower endlessly by
the little door or suddenly turn to snow who knows

why distaff gold once spun
is spinning yet and twelve princesses
in rainbow raiment find 12 reasons

to be glad in their worn shoes
where it's always twilight dancing
that's not much further down your

dreaming mind and you will stand
in deep midwinter by the rosebuds
not knowing how you came;

forgetting to bloom in the snow
and breathe the haloes
round them, rosy-ringed

not feeling the cold at all.

oh inexplicable were the things you
ought to know; that they remain.
so holding the sea glass shimmer in your hand

half-waking in your room
these tokens of light sustain 
the music of the tune that

you were there
oh, you know you were

with your mystified heart
your umpteen reasons to be glad
that the waves would not depart

because you loved them

mary angela douglas 18 december 2013

Isn't It Enough That The Orchid Skies Intensify

isn't it enough that the orchid skies intensify
and then the cold.
and this is only one kingdom.

isn't it enough
the moon is a melon that is sliced by clouds
and there on your plate again
oh silver waters, there's the full melon
once more floating and floating

how many stars 
and no census possible.
flower on flower flowering
failing in an orchid light

in the frost of words improbable to say
or even pronounce and
full as the dewdrop heart on the green stem
wavering in the summer heat and then,
all lilac gone

and more than enough.
only, somewhere else

mary angela douglas 18 december 2013

Friday, December 13, 2013

Snow Should Fall Like An Eyelash From The Moon

[to Dylan Thomas and every dreaming child]

snow should fall like an eyelash from the moon

(that softly)
on the child reprimanded for dreaming;
made to stand in corners after school
for paying attention

to the spooling blue of the sky outside the window;

the waving trees. and you wave back in your greenery,
too, it seeming that important to acknowledge friends.

let peppermints spill out of the stockings

with the orange and appled profusion
you have merited early,
oh child like a silver riddle.
like an ivory eyelash from the moon.

swirling and swirling

thicker snows will come to you
and a violet noon from the vagrant poets
who can't misunderstand you.

hand in hand their angels sing

and they have set watch on you
and sent the feathery owl-wise snowflakes spiraling
like an eyelash from the moon forever and ever

where you will wander-

leaning into the icicled chiming and
tracing the traceries of the frost-made feasts
on All Souls' windowpanes;

stalwart in green and gold, remembered,

taking your stance against the vanishing

mary angela douglas 13 december 2013

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Lost Saints Wandered Through Forests Of Miracle

lost saints wandered through forests of miracle
treading the light but never crushing it;
famished, making the music shine:

how are you far from home

when you carry Him with you
lost saints wondering wondered
and they did not err.

and they are shot with gold.

and they are jewel like in their speaking
if they should speak.

how will small animals defend themselves 

when they are gone
when the bluebird blue no longer

hangs onto

the hidden flowers,
before the approaching heel and
with none to gather them.

mary angela douglas 11 december 2013

Note on the poem: this poem is my impressionistic tribute to old legends of the saints such as The Little Flowers of St. Francis.

But it is not the saints that are lost, even by the poem itself you can understand this since they carry their home (God, Christ)with as within them and it is, after all, the forests of miracle, this being the chief one.  I also mean "saints" in the old-fashioned meaning,as all believers.  And it is in the last stanza's reference the heel of disregard, the heel of unfeeling power that approahces to crush the "small animals" or the defenseless, yet, like them, our defense is of God, so what seems like lost is not lost, what seems like threat is not threat if you realize that you carry God uith you who has said to us "I will be with you, wherever you go".

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Her Wishes Were All Strawberry, Flecked In Golden Cream

[to my mother]

her wishes were all strawberry, flecked in golden cream
that never soured in summer; such a dream
of raspberry ice in the dead of winter making you
happy to be cold or colder then or
a slice of green lime in sparkling cranberry

that is quenching but you can't guess why
her wishes were a blue sonata in a bluer
town, true as larkspur lilted the lilies, as
pink as mignonette at sunset

sunrise never far from here
is a stillness gathered in a white bouquet
of all white fragrances you can't imagine
simply, said the good fairy,
such a sweetness concentrated.
will you try?

I, too was enchanted by her wishing.
entranced, I only stood there-
moon coloured, shy and wondering-
incapable of granting anything at all...

mary angela douglas 10 december 2013;revised 11 december 2013

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Loving The Spotlight Till The End

[not to the target market (because there isn't one)]

if it's going to be the last word that you leave
is it really going to be hammered out in a workshop?
and if it is really what you feel

why would you need professionals
to help you see it.
any child can look at the moon and wonder

where all that silver comes from.
but we labor for gold.

mary angela douglas 7 december 2013

Friday, December 06, 2013

It Wasn't The Doll-Like Certainty Of The Bride

it wasn't the doll-like certainty of the bride
I sought from You, Lord.
but only to know the Father of the

Light inside and glide through tempests.
it wasn't a doll like certainty veiled,
feted adorned with life-like flowers
for which I cried.
why would I when

You have given all the stars
without being asked.
and your flowering floats
from winter skies
and each springtide
petaled numberless and fragrant
beyond the heart's capacity
to abide..

it isn't the doll-like shine I missed
the temporary shelter time after time.
how could I when .
only one gleam of your

sustained me-
one sparkle that lit-
the Magi on their way

mary angela douglas 6 december 2013

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

True Reading Is First Reading

true reading is first reading;
lullaby gold
you've lost more than you know

once on a Saturday with Aladdin 

jewel like in the shining cave the soul wandered.
and now it's graded

grade to grade

suspected.  even followed.

can you remember chanticleer clear

the princess in the picture book
roseleafed in the rose that was her

the true test of the knights on the glass mountain.

how you turned the page with no one making you?

no blackboard demonstration, QED.

no diagramming even in coloured chalks
what the heart already knows.
from birth: the Light flows, the baby laughs.

apple green reading.  crunchy

in the attic, red delicious on
a snow day snowing words
fresh as evergreens, sweet peppermints
not required!
not core!

no book reports, just books galore.

the report of midsummer horns
in the Faeryland inside your head
and no critics to get in the way.
you and you alone opening

the antique casements

you could open on the seafoam green foam
where it's you that sees
with no interpreter
the ghost ships foundering there forever
on the reefs when you dream: only in coral.

then soldiers drilled in the counterpane hills

and were never wounded.
and you were not assessed

who owned the Palace where the books were stored,

ridiculous cried the Prince.  Off with their heads.
they stormed no battlements then;
oh beyond meed and free as the air and Blessed
what higher Degree ah wanderer over opulent seas
could anyone else ever give you, anywhere

mary angela douglas 4 december 2013