Now you have awakened

Now you have awakened
In another place

What will you sing in your sweet voice
The Cheyenne horses you are following
Taking you home….

Your form made of eternity and silent rain…


We carry you with us

You are a part
Of our belongings….

For my brother
John William west
Kit fox clan
Cheyenne nation of oklahoma



Scenting the small deepening in the leaves

Arrived from the lighted rivers

The haunted 

silent rivers



dying rivers….


Where at their banks winter prepares its messengers….


This is the day of absences

The day of singing….


Where the dead and the living


Are inside us….


Tsistsistas name for winter hawk

From the photo of my sister barbara bartlett

Who ainoh visited for two days in queens ny.

In here

In here the wind pushes against its memory
The dark trees listening

Where a psalm of witness hides….

Awakening in early morning

Something broken in the river
Where a lone bird
is singing

sound of an open hand moving across a
dusty brown table…

lonely words seeking shelter

While all the shelters are burning….

Autumn 20/20
from the stronghold

It rains…

It rains….inside the air that is folded toward it….it sounds its knowing making the streets glisten and the fields open their coats
and the birds listening for winter fly through it….

It rains deepening the leaves of autumn into
Their mirroring soft singing….

And what has fallen in the rain quiets the fields

Lowering its prayer

Into the earth….

Foggia ghetto


In this dreamless autumn
dark birds unknown to me form
Their ancient pattern toward some summer place

Found this small path and a prayer
Floating in a rain pool

Where the full moon will find it

And they will listen together

To the sorrow….

Psalm for us

On the Lesina plains
October 1 20

2 AM

Waking shadows 
Bring us to a place where we look back
And know we can never return....

While the sky rains voices 
Of those who are falling dancing in the
Colors of the lost....

We stand where children sang

Their small footprints 

All around....

poem of farewells
Foggia ghetto

This is the place

This is the place
Where the end fell into itself

We were there as it looked back toward us
With our empty bells and our souls
Burning in the hills

We arrived in a boat made by a quivering child

Everything fallen out of our mirrors

As we taste the first days

And the last….

The place
Foggia ghetto

They sit where horsemen have passed

They sit where horsemen have passed
Moisture rising from
the hoof prints….

Owl dreams hovering above them….

on a rainy mountain road near grove Oklahoma
A dead black one lifted its glistening wing
As I passed…..

In a haunted mansion in France
I closed the bathroom mirror the limp wings
And vacant eyes behind me….

These are the ones that chose us….

And will sit with us
While only our shadows remain

and our bones have melted away….

Thursday July 16
Lesina Italy

You are not a wolf

“You are not a wolf
And this is the land of wolves now….”
Sicario the film 2015.

Long before winter these ones sent
Their tracks looking for you….

The black dog sits among you
Its crimson eyes turned toward you

They will ask you to come out
Whether by your stench of hatred or evil fear

They sit in the blackness where you sleep

They will rise as darkness to enshroud you

They know who you are…..

We are among you

Even now….

Dog soldier poem for enemies.
Mahago domiutz tsistsistas
June 30.20

Life is not itself

It is a long journey
It is the world’s dream of us
The footprints that have led away are our own

We watched them leaving
In the silences that have taught us to be still

While the wind howled…..

It is not itself
We sit in its dampened rooms

Born so far away from ourselves
Looking back over our winged shoulders

Where the long journey began….

Painting with words
For Paul klee
From the stronghold