Search

Paul scours eBay for suicide notes
of people who happily failed to follow through.

He wishes to study the notes for signs
to recognize the prelude

of either his own deathly desire
or that of a friend’s.

In his search, he turns up printed and cursive blessings
penned by a thousand different hands.

The blessings are anonymous
and there is an honesty to them that touches him.

That leads Paul to children’s crayon drawings
and memories of kindergarten—

the birthplace of abstract expressionism
and the impressionists.

copyright © 2022 Kenneth P. Gurney

Far Away Right Here

Lori blurs and fades.
Such are January visions.
Such is the fire
burning pine and aspen.

The fire that once
burned in us
for each other
is long ago ash.

It is an evening
of remembering
faraway people
to send them blessings.

Prayers if you prefer.
And touching
the dreams
that never trued.

The dog
with her head in my lap
feels the gentle stroke
of my hand.

copyright © 2022 Kenneth P. Gurney

Childhood Reenactment

My pet mice were named
Joseph and Mary.

One of the six in the litter
had to be named Jesus.

But which one that lay
on the shredded paper nest?

Our dog enacted the roles
of all the barn animals each day for treats.

Our outside motion sensor light
was the Star of Wonder.

Three house finches at the window
played the Wise Men.

Not taking us seriously,
our local youth priest mock-blessed

the liquid inside the no drip
small animal water bottle.


copyright © 2020 Kenneth P. Gurney