Saturday, February 09, 2019

A Long Storm

Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area
—Poems by James Lee Jobe, Davis, CA
—Photos Courtesy of James Lee Jobe

A long storm, the two of us
In that little cabin, just two rooms
And one lantern. Lightning
And thunder. Rain on a tin roof.
The storm drowns out the sound
Of our clothes dropping on the floor.

 Yolo County, Cache Creek Conservancy

My friend takes the mountain roads;
She loves climbing, white boulders,
And seeing the sky up close.

I take the valley roads;
It is the flatness that I love,
And the look of a slow creek.

Which roads are best? Who can say?
What do you love?

Ask those questions first. It’s getting late.
Even now the sun is westering into shadow.


A ladybug crawls on a blade of grass.
What about it? Everything.

The universe itself is a part of the moment.

 Yolo County, Putah Creek

Six hundred and sixty three sunrises have risen on this
Six hundred and sixty three sunsets since your last breath.
I wait for nothing, for no one.
I don’t need to live and I don’t need to die.
Each moment is what it is, lacking you.

I will never see you again.

Son, I put your ashes in the creek, in the river, in the ocean.
I put your ashes in the air, across the face of this earth,
And some sit still in this house where you will never return.

I count the days since you left,
And I write the number somewhere on my body,
On my flesh.
I was away one number and I add the next one,
One digit higher than the number before.

I will never hold you again. My son.

Days and nights pass in this emptiness.
I wear my grief like a crown; I am the king
In this empty place, and my reign will be a long one.

Six hundred and sixty three sunrises have risen on this
Six hundred and sixty three sunsets since your last breath.

I will never see you again.

 Yolo County, Capay Valley

The measure of a gun, an empty holster.
Wasted flesh, a body outlined in chalk.
How do we clear the way to justice after this?
How many graves to be dug?
How many families left behind in grief?
When do we begin that long walk back home?

 Yolo County Line

The world is wrong, not you.
Once again,
The sky and the earth are upside down.
It happens all the time.
The lone, dirty window to the world is a door,
And the door is shut and locked tight.
So make that swing go up as high as it can.
Go ahead and just jump off if you want to;
It feels great,
Doesn’t it?
The world is wrong about everything,
All of it.
Not you.
Trust your own heart.
You were born with the answers inside of yourself.
As soon as the very first light entered your eyes,
You were absolutely perfect.
Kick open the door.
You’re ready.


Today’s LittleNip:

A righteous soul, indeed—
To not seek Satori, only service.

—James Lee Jobe


Thanks, James, for starting our Saturday morning off right! Davis Poet Laureate James Lee Jobe hosts two upcoming readings next weekend: On Friday, Feb. 15th, at 7:30 pm, The Other Voice features Charles Halsted and Robert Ramming at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Davis, 27074 Patwin Rd., Davis. Then on Sunday, Feb. 17th, at 2 pm, "Ladies of the Knight" Angela James, Carol Lynn Stevenson Grellas and Jeanette Sem read at the Davis Arts Center Poetry Series, 1919 F Street, Davis. Both events feature an open mic and both are free. Contact James with any questions:

Today, Women's Wisdom Art features an opening and sale for their work at Sacramento Poetry Center, 25th & R Sts., Sac., from 2-5:30pm, with a silent auction, refreshments, and archived art for sale. From 2-3:30pm, Women's Wisdom artists will read their poetry and prose. Scroll down to the blue column (under the green column at the right) for info about these and other upcoming poetry events in our area—and note that more may be added at the last minute.

—Medusa (Celebrate Poetry!)


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