Audio · Poem · Poetry · Tai Chi

New Audio: Fair Maiden

Fair Maiden

White leather sown with straps and beads,
Braids woven in feathers
Though fair skinned,
I am a Native maiden,
On my path winding inward.
The forest tangles
Yet opens its vines and limbs
As a cave mouth,
Where I enter, greeted by a wolf and a hawk,
Guides to an overlook.
Wolf at my side, the expanse opens up.
I fly with Hawk,
The wind drumming my face
To where the dance is,
The drums, the rattles.
Wolf and I dance.
As the Fire strokes my hair.
Drumming, chanting, whirling.
I whirl my arms skyward,
Embracing air. I am small,
For the twisting air makes night a shape,
Looming before me, it asks if
I am ready to die.
I stand bold, warding off Death.
Fair Maiden to the North,
South, East, and West, all directions.
Night Dragon breathes Fire,
But I ward off Death in the fumes.
All around the drums beating
In my heart, steady beats, strong.
I stand like granite.
I am the chanting, the dance.
The songs open to me
The words I need to know
As I emerge from the rage
Of Night, asking for my Soul,
Of which I have many,
One for every element.
The elders sing my divination,
Their faces lit by fire and stars.
The Night Beast withdraws,
Warded off by my Spirit,
There he rests, waiting
For another test of me, but
He’s really an Ally,
Guarding a contract
Written in parchment
By the Sea of Forgetting.
I am here to be reborn.
To awaken to Truth
And to lead others to their sacred gardens,
Where Fear makes their beasts
And where they greet Death
As a passage to their Spirit Name.
And emerge as warriors,
Gifted with arrows, feathers, and drums.

Copyright © 2017 Barbara Harris Leonhard

Image: https://pixabay.com/en/native-sprite-dancer-folk-art-20341/

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Audio · Poem · Poetry

A Visit with Twain

I met him in a cave,

Led there by a wolf

Who said he was my guide –

But that was a joke.

Imagine the wolf’s howls

Of laughter as I faced

Mark Twain, the real host.

There he stood before me,

Dressed in white,

His gray hair shimmering –

He brought that light with him.

I paid my respects

And gratitude for this sighting.

What a surprise, so unexpected.

He told me many sad stories to pass along.

Twain, I don’t think I’m the scribe

Who can pen your journey!

I’m not the one who knows boats.

Now, there’s the irony,

Scratched in his tears,

Choosing me as kin.

What am I to learn

From this master’s words,

Wrought in sorrow.

Can it be penned by a mere traveler

On her own soul voyage?

Is it that we share

What his heart holds?

Is Grief my albatross,

Caught in my sails?

Winds cannot release her, but I must.

Her grip’s an illusion.

I’m not in her talons.

Nor was he.

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Copyright © 2017 Barbara Harris Leonhard

Image: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/10203536627334068

Image: https://sfbaytripper.com/2012/09/10/22-best-quotes-about-san-francisco/

 

Audio · My Mother · Poem · Poetry

How Did She Go?

How did she go?

The mystery.

This woman with no memories,

No way to find the path,

No way to recall a face,

No way to know she dreamed,

No way to know the face of Death.

How did she manage?

 

We held her close,

Go to the light. 

But did she?

Light?

 

Her last breaths like those of a guppy,

Out of the water too long. 

Did she know? 

Was Dad there?

The chakras still spun 

Until spent in the sand.

No wind.

 

My heart collapsed

In the knowing.

I was then a stranger, an orphan.

Her guide and now 

Not her guide.

 

In a dream, there she was,

Resting on a bed in an alcove,

The curtains draped on either side,

Her shoes placed gingerly under the bed.

I’m lost!

Where’s my wallet? 

The bill to be paid. 

Three shiny pennies lined up in a row.

Pick them up, she said.

I resisted

The bad luck.

 

It was 2:05p.m.

When they listened for her whispers

Trapped in her throat

For a different guide.

 

Copyright © 2017 Barbara Harris Leonhard

Image: My Mother

my sassy mom

Audio · Poem · Poetry · Tai Chi

Fair Maiden

White leather sown with straps and beads,

Braids woven in feathers

Though fair skinned,

I am a Native maiden,

On my path winding inward.

The forest tangles

Yet opens its vines and limbs

As a cave mouth, 

Where I enter, greeted by a wolf and a hawk,

Guides to an overlook.

Wolf at my side, the expanse opens up.

I fly with Hawk, 

The wind drumming my face

To where the dance is, 

The drums, the rattles.

Wolf and I dance. 

As the Fire strokes my hair.

Drumming, chanting, whirling.

I whirl my arms skyward,

Embracing air. I am small,

For the twisting air makes night a shape,

Looming before me, it asks if

I am ready to die.

I stand bold, warding off Death. 

Fair Maiden to the North, 

South, East, and West, all directions.

Night Dragon breathes Fire, 

But I ward off Death in the fumes.

All around the drums beating

In my heart, steady beats, strong.

I stand like granite.

I am the chanting, the dance.

The songs open to me 

The words I need to know

As I emerge from the rage

Of Night, asking for my Soul, 

Of which I have many,

One for every element.

The elders sing my divination,

Their faces lit by fire and stars.

The Night Beast withdraws, 

Warded off by my Spirit,

There he rests, waiting

For another test of me, but

He’s really an Ally, 

Guarding a contract 

Written in parchment

By the Sea of Forgetting.

I am here to be reborn.

To awaken to Truth

And to lead others to their sacred gardens,

Where Fear makes their beasts

And where they greet Death

As a passage to their Spirit Name.

And emerge as warriors,

Gifted with arrows, feathers, and drums.

 

© 2017 Barbara Harris Leonhard

Image: showing me at a martial arts competition

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