A Pocketful of Borrowed Beads
Alison Jennings is a Seattle-based poet who taught in public schools before returning to poetry. More than 60 of her poems have been published internationally in numerous journals, including The Bangalore Review, Burningword, Cathexis Northwest Press, Meat for Tea, Mslexia, Poetic Sun, and The Raw Art Review. She has also won 3rd Place/Honorable Mention or been a semi-finalist in several contests.
Underneath woven nests of secrecy, grief is posing
as a wounded animal, sheltering in place throughout
the brutal winter, awaiting spring’s transcendence.
Within the temple, mourners grapple with karmic
emergencies, as elected lawbreakers intensify their
clawhammers on the chances of collective healing.
We must sharpen our shapes against these sinners,
find a saintly severity of expression, to fill sunken
traps of steady scrutiny which ruin our enthusiasm.
Somehow, in search of the seven chakras, shamans
come bless us in holy water, baptizing with sacred
spells from the ancient Country of the Righteous
People, as they calmly strike brass singing bowls.
Forming an accumulated weather, a furious aura
of edgy energies beads together mythical fragments
into a rosary, while a pyramid of angels, intoning
Gregorian chants, calls us again to listen and to trust.
Sooner or later, we shall discover what speaks to us.