Monday, October 30, 2006

In Dark Forest

In the depth of the sky,
I see you.
In sunlight on water,
you are there.
In dark forest,
your heart.
In my breathing
and my waking
and my sleep,
- Ralph Murre

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

The Course

Staying Course

Like smoke, some of our energy
darkens the sky.
Sooty stack of America’s ship,
emblem carried above rusting hull,
casting about oceans without harbor.
Unwelcome, the fouled air.
Unneeded, the roiled waters.
Listing to starboard,
she plows on,
her crew eyeing lifeboats,
her captain holding course.

- Ralph Murre

Monday, October 23, 2006

take y'self a look

take y’self a long look
write y’self a long book
get an agent ‘n’ go on t.v.

tell ‘em how yer ma was unkind
how yer seein’-eye dog was blind
get a divorce ‘n’ go on t.v.

shoot some lefties, shoot some southpaws
shoot some Indians ‘n’ shoot yer in-laws
get a pardon on court t.v.

disappear from the public eye
wait for the popular hue and cry
run for office ‘n’ go on t.v.

- Ralph Murre

Monday, October 16, 2006


There is Music in the Sailor

and there is music in the sea
and there is music in the cedars
and in the tall grasses
and in fishes and me

and sometimes we hear the music
and we dance or we weep
with the emotional willows
trot with foxes, waltz with waves

and we may swim with swans
and hear rhythms in ravens’ wings
tremble with the aspen
fear the diving of the hawk

or we may never learn the tango
or we may learn to fear the clock

- Ralph Murre

Wednesday, October 11, 2006



Like the twitchy second hand
mopping the brow of my Timex
and always pointing at something new,
I’ve gone ‘round the dial
and looked in all directions.

Tick Tick Tick

And people ask what time it is,
just as though they want to know.

Tick Tick

They take seats and I tell them,
“It’s a little too late for you --
take note of the length of your shadow,
see the birds that roost,
and feel the wear in the arms of your chair.”

Tick Tick

And people buy new watches
and look for a second opinion there.


- Ralph Murre

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Monday, October 02, 2006

October Dream

photo by Nancy Vaughn

I dreamed of a place without fences
and the women and the trout swam free
and sheep safely grazed
under the watchful eyes of wolves
and I dreamed red maples
bled syrup on platoons’ pancakes
and farm wives with rolling pins
and blue aprons ruled the waves.
I dreamed you were a wading bird
with an appetite just the size
of my pale crustacean body and mind
as I swam between your legs
and back without caution
and I dreamed of the hills
only the blind can see
and I tasted frost-bit apples
from the broken tree of good and evil.
In the dark, I dreamed of the dark.
I dreamed of hell
but there were no fires.
In fact, it was raining cold rain.
I dreamed of hell
and there were armies
shipping home trinkets and the slain.
And in this hell of a dream
there were papers to be filed,
there was nowhere to walk,
and no one was ever on time.
I dreamed of hell
and you were not there
and no one helped carry the pain.

- Ralph Murre