Under the soles of my feet
These Yokohama streets roll by and by
Ants in a rat race
Rats in a shark tank
Watching all the people scurry by
Onward and ever upward and outward
Onward and upward and outward
And sky high
Through the souls of the streets
A hundred thousand feet walk by
Jumping for the brass rings
Jostling in the straightaways
Eyes never looking to the sky
Forward and up toward with eyes cast downward
Working till the bones run dry
Under the soles of my feet
These Yokohama streets pass by
Dappled sunlight white and yellow fell
Upon my couch with pillows orange and blue,
And I resplendent in this cozy spell
Thought lightly about life and what I do.
I am one who crossed the great wide sea,
Who lives a life away from what is known.
I shrugged off comfort and complacency
And left for foreign shores and foreign towns.
In truth I did not give these musings strength
(A Sunday morning is best spent in rest)
I sent them off with tea until at length
One tiny thought sat heavy in my chest:
How have I crossed the world and lived by chance
Yet never once have I been asked to dance?
No joke! I was just sitting there, on my couch, thinking about nothing in particular, when it occurred to me that I have never been asked to dance.
I think I was asked to dance when I was in seventh grade? SEVENTH. GRADE. Oh my God, what happened? I make light of it in this sonnet, but that is ridiculous!
Returning to work I pass a house.
Repainted four times, that house.
I remember when it was white.
What I really remember is the moon –
A sort of full moon
And a few dwindling stars in a sky full of slate.
The sun was not up, but we were.
I felt the heater’s hot air on my tiny arms
And I looked up at the cold moon.
I could not tell you the name
Of the family that watched me those early mornings
When Mom had to go to Chicago to teach,
When I had school,
When Dad was off flying helicopters in a war.
But I remember their maple wood table, deep amber wood,
I remember chocolate chip pancakes.
Dry pancakes, moist chips,
And a sort of full moon.
Eternal Harmony of Breaking and Building
We begin in chaos.
Electricity – atoms compounding, vibrating,
Casting off bits of energy and pieces to achieve a laughable harmony.
Order – stackable cells meet other cells, trade numbers, arrange for later meetings.
Hem, press, steam into rigid forms with supple limbs,
Containing order and chaos in a semi-permeable shell.
Expand beyond one shell
And find only repetition of the pattern.
Chaos of a day.
Symmetry of a routine.
Electrons in the form of dentist visits,
Greedy tumbles with hopeful acquaintances,
A slippery stair, burnt coffee,
A hummingbird watching with curiosity as you fill the Earth with micro greens.
Order of the food web.
Chaos of the meteors, and yet symmetry in gravity, magnetism, the very cycle.
The cycle suggests ultimate order.
Though the cosmos may appear to tumble in giddy abandon
We never burst apart in abandon of our own orders.
We may create chaos, but always in form.
Lay ink blots on code on scribbles in crayon on scaffolding and mandalas
Movement, dance, destruction, and yet within the limits
We see and cannot ever hope to comprehend,
Hemming our cells into structure, our electrons into place,
Until we end our own order and join new orders in the dust.