Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Fellow Travelers

Star Pattern
—Poems by Claire J. Baker, Pinole, CA
—Anonymous photos of Persian rugs


Should a star fall into
our hands, we need not
return it to the sky...
If we must break new
ground, why not start
with the land
on which we stand?

If we feel we are
on our way, yet we
have not moved an inch
we are on our way...

Fellow travelers, we need
not fly a million miles
to know we can soar.


(for Linda Laskowski)

Though stars are
made of fire, fumes,
explosions, chaos

may we never cease
recalling stars as
magnets of majesty

crystalline bouquets,
open doors to heaven,
the eyes of angels.


A toddler, I kept looking up
at the canary cage,
wanted to hold our dancing bird,
hear yellow music on my shoulder.
Waving my arms, I tried to
fly up.

Guessing my wish, mother
held a flour-sack dish cloth
by the cage door, told me:
"Honey, I'll bring you Dickey bird."

The cage door rattled,
Dickey fluttered. Mom held my
hands under the lowered cloth,
a bulge on top the size of Dickey.
She smiled, "See, Dickey's inside,
now you can hold him."

I believed.
I held the empty dish towel,
I became a poet.

 Weavers at Work


We kneel
on a Persian rug
mindful of
purposely woven
into rich colors
and intricate design
by a master weaver—
as in life on earth
and in heaven.



The moon flowers
into full bloom.
We cradle hands
for mystical light.
We have waited years
for such a night.

splendor slips
into cupped hands
like a prayer
we were born to

 Cross Pattern

(for CM, a poem of the ‘70s)

Today in my yellow kitchen, I call
your name over a soapy cup and bowl,
the suds a fringe of dishpan lace.

I confess to you I've hurt someone,
ignored warnings, stolen keys
I'd no right to touch..."Is this
crude creature the REAL me?"

Tears sting, blur, but your words
redeem, as years before when
I rushed into your half-open door
like a storm! You named me wild,
warm, understood: said you knew
I wouldn't stay for long
but that I could find you
any night or any day

" the laughing yellow kitchen
to the left of my soul,
near a cup and by a bowl."


Today’s LittleNip:


we are a sunrise,
a sturdy sunflower
nodding Yes

roses and daffodils
comets and moonlight
lavender footprints

over a snowy meadow
where we walked
today and long ago

We are evergreens
freedoms, forget-me-nots
forever-after changed.

—Claire J. Baker


Our thanks to Claire Baker for her luminous poems today! And don’t forget that Poetry Off-the-Shelves meets in Placerville tonight, 5-7pm, at the El Dorado County Library on Fair Lane. Scroll down to the blue column (under the green column at the right) for info about this and other upcoming poetry events in our area—and note that more may be added at the last minute.

For more about the weaving of Persian rugs, see


Claire J. Baker
—Photo by Katy Brown, Davis, CA
Celebrate the weaving of words into poetry!

Photos in this column can be enlarged by clicking on them once,
then click on the X in the top right corner to come back
to Medusa.