Poetry of Love, Resistance, & Solidarity

Let the blankets hold the shapes of our sleepingIMG_0864

all the dreams long. Let the cat on the dog’s bed

move over enough for the dog. Let the snow,

gathered tight to the afternoon sky, relax its grip

and show us the white contours of the new world.

Let the last one to leave the room close the lights

and the first one to rise make the coffee.

Let the sorrow we carry unfurl enough to reveal

its story’s ending, whether that ending is upon us

or still to come. Let the windows hold the pink gold

of the just-rising sun and the infinite blue darkening

of the rising night. Let the flowers and stones

make their ways to the gravestones of those we love

who left but never left, no matter how tender

the pain of their imprint. Let the flowers and stones

we collect to carry in our pockets and books

remind us of all that cycles its beauty through

the gift of this life. Let the quietest clearing

in prairie or woods, party of one or crowd of crows

land us exactly where we are. Let the rain come

and our unexpected shimmeying and leaping

alone in the living room. As well, let come

the storm warnings with time enough to find

a basement, the silver light of the winter horizon,

the blue light of everyday, whether we can see it

or not. Let us remember that we are not

who we think we are but only and at last

canoes on the river of light and cooling water.

Let us paddle hard when the current switches,

and put down the paddle when the moon’s face

shines before us, below as above. Let us trust

that we will always be led where we need to go.

Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg is the 2009-13 Kansas Poet Laureate, author or editor of 16 books, and founder of Transformative Language Arts at Goddard College, where she teaches. With Kelley Hunt, she offers Brave Voice writing and singing retreats and performance.

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Comments on: "Prayer for the New Year by Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg" (3)

  1. Myrne Roe said:

    Lovely images.

    “When the moon’s face shines before us, below and above,” I may get my nerve up and send in my poems to this site. I’ve enjoyed so much the work of others over the last several months.

    In the meantime, your poem makes me feel alive and hopeful, a fine gift for this day.

  2. Anonymous said:

    Thanks, Caryn. And peace beneath, and peace beside, and peace beyond. WJK

  3. Tyler Sheldon said:

    I truly enjoyed this poem, Caryn, and your unique, powerful phrases have once again inspired me to keep writing. Thank you for this piece.

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