scarcely there


you are scarcely there –
solid only on those spare
nights when you sleep beside me

by day you fall apart –
like bread in water or
the clods of dry earth
I strike from the roots of weeds

I have come to tell you
there are no new prayers,
that what it is that leaves
us at dawn, leaves us

to tell you that some subtle thing
in our spines has shifted,
and I am unwilling now to
peel myself away from loneliness

neither of us, I think,
is meant to be one-nested,
though were we to be
taken from ourselves,

we would carry still a memory –
homage to our quiet beginnings,
a wind that tugs at the milkweed seeds

© Sarah Whiteley

the beauty of impermanence

they do not stay
but rather stray
as petals from the palm
soft and sweet
while gathered
softer and sweeter even
when gone
but oh! such joy
when unkempt kisses
rain delphinium blues
in impossible pieces
of drifting sky
let my skin
sing the wind
in rushing strains
and my lips
sound the echoes
of tall grasses gleaming
over stretching plains
how my core
riots to the call
of trees whose leaves
turn in eddies
of green exhilaration
before the songs
of birds depart
in bright-feathered drifts
along the trails
of those far-roaming
petalled things

© Sarah Whiteley