Penguins

I see the ocean surround me
everywhere I go.

I live on the mountain
and in deep salty waters.

There are birds that fly
both mountain air and the ocean.

Do not swat at the things that bother you
or you may break their wings.

Sometime last year I realized
my heartbeat powers the tide.

I feel I should have naturally
sensed that rhythm

and recognized it
shortly after I was born.

Maybe puberty pushed it
out of my awareness.

I placed my hand on my heart
to regulate the tides

and alter the moon’s effect
on my love life.

I removed
a rib by mistake

and broke it into a quintuplet
set of Eves—

all penguins swimming
near the tree line.


copyright © 2020 Kenneth P. Gurney

Both Hands

There are mountains.
They will not always be there.

Nor will love or blood.
Leaving is a constant state, so stop holding on.

If I understood how to be larger than myself
exile, death, and heartbreak would not affect me so.

A single hand clenches rage in a fist.
Two hands bowled fill with prayer and offering.

I cannot take back what has been said
or offer what has been unsaid for too long.

History is a human construction
made of words and interpretation.

Remember that. Words. And interpretation.
I urge you to write your own story. Win or lose.

I am leaving, now. I follow the mountains.
I use two hands to wave goodbye.


copyright © 2019 Kenneth P. Gurney