miércoles, junio 20, 2007

Whose Nude and Holy Iridescence Belongs to No One: Thirteen Poems by Richard Cronshey, Part Three

The Sound of Wind at Night

Who is the girl inside the girl
cradling a crow's skull
in small phosphorescent hands?
Dirty snow and cellar stairs.
Am I the sound, late in February,
just before morning,
of wind through white pines?
Or am I the listening?
Or the suddenness without ancestor?
Shepherds in the high pastures inside her body
sit up all night beside campfires, their eyes wide listening
to her deep blue skeleton sing
her black and dreaming names into the world.

Notes To Self

Everything that exists
exists to set me free
from everything that exists.
Like a fire, learn
to erase yourself
as you go.
Abide at the intersection
where futures are consumed.
Be a skeleton key
in flames
releasing daylight from daylight.
in order to have shone.

Solstice Poem

City of almond, and the way to the city
of almond:
this changing, imponderable body,
a ladder of breath scaling the daylight
and the night,
a bridge traversing everything.
She keeps a sapphire concealed beneath her tongue.
I would be the sound of water to her,
rolling over stones.

Wishing Poem For Terra

This is given, this ritual,
this tilling:
earth turning
under earth;
brilliance under brilliance.
Here now, the orphaned storyteller
comes home
driving her herd of wounds through the high blonde grass and the haze.
For her thirst, the new moon,
immaculate black water
cupped in her cut palms,
raised to her lips.

Sweet Thing

Snowmelt through snowmelt.
Orphans of ourselves these many years.
Let the heart be reconciled with the heart at last.


There is a laughing power that releases itself into itself
utterly, flashing, and is here and ours.


We see that we must relinquish everything,
that we have always been this relinquishing.


Cradled in the circle of the breath,
an ember, a folding together
beyond all efforts.


New snow, first light, the presence
in which birth and death are reconciled.


Elemental space offered to elemental space,
this is our true ancestor.


To be here with this weaving and unweaving forever,
wedded to the weaving of the empty world.

This is the third of three parts of Richard Cronshey's thirteen poem collection, Whose Nude and Holy Irridescence Belongs to No One.

miércoles, junio 13, 2007

Whose Nude and Holy Iridescence Belongs to No One: Thirteen Poems by Richard Cronshey, Part Two

Lost in Probate
to my children

I leave you a mirror in an empty house.
Keep it near you.
I leave you my disappearance,
a place of pilgrimage to which you need not travel.
Be still and it will find you.
I leave you this body and conjuring solitude
sister of the widowed cities
sister of their black windows
an uncreated wilderness
where emptiness seduces emptiness,
a ring of quicksilver singing itself to sleep inside you.

And here is the sound of waves breaking far out at sea
and here is the mother of this motherless opacity.
Here are the black windows and the snow,
delicious emotions, rogue energies, nested silences;
abandoned casinos of delirium where you exist,
the ghost of a ghost for centuries listening
to the inconsolable pulsation behind the stars.

To The Root of Itself

Chapel of salt,
the night sky inside of you.
This is the blue
and motherless honey
that comes to you.
Now you are naked, like the days
undressed of their names.
Music swims through music and through you
And this is what you have now.
And this is how you live
with this transparency and this ripening.
At last, you are like the snow
that is only snow
and the snow whose nude and holy
belongs to no one.

To Eternity's Sunrise

Indentured to what remains
after the smoke clears.
Now that I'm a ghost ship,
a mausoleum made of steam
sold to the rain on the temple stairs
and all the places I am at once in the rain.
Now that I'm a secret I keep, even from myself,
invisible, a whisper
hypnotized by the clockwork of sorrow
and sold to wrecked pianos in the rain,
and wild lavender with the weeds by the freeway.
Now that everything releases me,
brilliant poverty, blowing snow,
bird on fire in a cage of changing bones.
Indentured to buried iridescences.
Sold to every dying breath. Ah
the light blossoming out of the light.

Solstice Poem

Derelict melody
mansion of clarity
we are just lost in long grass
There is a horizon hidden inside my life
from behind which my life keeps streaming
a still light on the lee side of the ridge line
where the little life sings to the big life
like a child lost in long grass
The voice, the moving silver energy there
is the wind between black buildings,
a song circling back on itself;
grief, like an eclipse,
a river, or a mirror.

Here is a song for Mother Sorrow

Mother nothing, sorrow, shepherd me.
Let me be bread, medicine, energy, presence.
In this very body
I will bear our bleeding history
high above timberline, into the clear light.

This is the second of three parts of Richard Cronshey's thirteen poem collection, Whose Nude and Holy Irridescence Belongs to No One.

viernes, junio 08, 2007

Whose Nude and Holy Iridescence Belongs To No One: Thirteen Poems by Richard Cronshey, Part One

Overcome By Vertigo I Covet The Opalescence of the Diamond

For a long time you can feel that nothing is happening.

Snow falls and you look at the snow.
You look at the snow. You look at the beautiful
jeweled escalators of the snow cascading down and down.

Two Poems With Coffins


Fugitive, connoisseur of thirsts

the whole of being, an intricately ripening sphere,
a silence, exists enfolding you here
at the crossroads of the body
where we are now and put down
the strange weight we have been carrying,
sand dune, broken window, cricket, caress,
empty bottle, apparition, a bone, a voice.
Who was it that wished for this?
And where had we been taking it?
Here is your inheritance,
cerulean blue to cradle you,
breath to take you home.


To be human and go on blushing, applauding,

saying excuse me without understanding
how it started or stopping to ask;
believing somebody else knows,
not wanting to be alone.
Transcendental burlesque blossoming in mirrors, paraphernalia,
rainbows, dolorous sombreros, days.
The same presence everywhere. Look for her, she eludes you.
Not wanting to be the only one
with a little black coffin in your heart;
a little black coffin the size of a thumb
with nothing in it but wind.
For now take this black rock and don't stop polishing it.
A golden cricket lives in it, listen;
a tiny blue loom

To All Mothers
in memory of my mother, Rosemary Louise Cronshey

This human work, look at it :
an unaccountable ripening;
my life bearing me each moment into my life.
The inconsolable pulsation that carries me.
What is that
releasing bliss from bliss and breath from breath?
Basilicas of memory, affection and breath;
immaculate solitudes where the heart is set adrift,
and the heart within the heart, such a sweet and empty weaving.
I don't understand the things that make me live.
Finally, I'm not afraid of my mind,
the crazy dispossessed luciferian energies
ricocheting around inside me don't scare me anymore.
The demonic mariachis, truncated ecstasies, phantom pleasures, baby saints
crowding the stage in the impossible fallen down movie palace of my heart,
I know them pretty well now. Not one of them can destroy me!
Because I know I'm nothing! I'm nothing
but love and suffering, and so what?
I don't believe in anything but loss and tenderness anymore
and that's enough. I will move with its motion now in completeness
and now nothing can hurt me, not even grief!
I could never live an off-the-rack life, like them.
I just want to keep walking up and down this road a while.
Who built this third hand world
over wordless and holy human truth?
Why must we resuscitate this disaster day after day?
This human work.
Look at it!
This labor we must undertake, of living and dying
and taking heart
that gives us our magnificence,
that makes our death an aprilling.
How unlikely, how finally impossible it is
that I managed to get here at all,
exactly nowhere, with everything,
every single conceivable thing
spiraling around inside me
clambering to get out,
sending me out on the street in the middle of the night
to find you;
to tell you what I saw.

Richard Cronshey was born in Los Angeles in 1966. He is the author of Adagio of the Body (1990), Three Similar Instances (1992), Afternoon in The Museum of Late Things (1994) and Mutilated Currency (1997). Cronshey co-edited Bird Full of Rain (1999), a collection of the late Glenn Parker's poetry.

After graduation from the University of Utah, Cronshey traveled and worked in Asia and Eastern Europe for ten years. He now lives with his wife and two children in the US suburbs and works for hospice. Of these poems, Cronshey says:

These most recent poems arose out of the efforts of my mind to come to grips with itself through the discipline of meditation. I've been studying meditation for several years, not very successfully, under the supervision of a teacher. In my best moments poetry is a religious practice for me. It's religious in the sense of growing out of a wish to relink with the ground of being, and then to allow my actions to flow from that root, a form of contemplative prayer. My aspiration is to get to a point where I am living and writing without self consciousness, really selflessly. There is a quality of that in the writing I most love, the presence of primordial intelligence and generosity.