The Sunday Whirl http://sundaywhirl.wordpress.com/, with Wordle 8, was exceptionally challenging this week. The words from the wordle were: strange, lotus, alluring, stories, kinship, devious, bold, torsos, sleep, enchanting, wish, and inspiring.
As soon as I saw the words, I fixated on ‘lotus,’ as in yoga’s lotus position. It became my theme and my poem began taking shape; however, this was the most difficult yet.
THE SECRET PLACE
by Mike Patrick
This time each year, I make a daunting trek,
to find again a secret place once found
while hiking with a group of college friends,
in Colorado’s cliffs and holy ground.
I’d lost my group in blowing sand upon
a great cliff’s top. I safely crawled along
a path, above a thousand meter drop.
It was a place where only gods belong.
Among the rocks, I found a sheltered notch,
and gratefully sought out the safety there.
Inside, I found a strange and wrinkled man.
With lotus folded legs, he sang in prayer.
In peace, he greeted me and bade me sit
next to his fire, beside a seeping spring.
He whiled away the empty sandstorm hours,
and in a sing-song chant he told me things.
He told alluring stories of a time
when people had a kinship with the land.
In harmony they grew their fields of maize
in fertile fields instead of rocks and sand.
But devious and bold new priest of war,
ripped out the beating hearts of harmless men;
from torsos tied to altars stained in red,
while angering the gods who knew their sin.
The murmur of his voice put me to sleep.
I dreamt enchanting dreams of bygone times;
inspiring me wish for their return,
and ruing mankind’s sins and awful crimes.
When I awoke, the old man was not there.
The fire was all to show he’d ever been.
This year, again, I’ll try to find that notch,
that secret place, and dream with gods again.