Marjorie Power


Step in, further in, through
a hush, listen morning
of soft air and endless
greens birthed by rain,
toward a steaming hollow
hidden from the sky.

In, further in. Here, sky
slips from this world and through
to the silt filled hollow
of memory. Morning
blurs with anytime. Rain
teases, quits, is endless.

Among endless
branches that shoulder the sky,
that lift hands to the rain.
Amid mosses and ferns, through
a fall's coming morning,
as green as hope's hollow.

Settle in this hollow,
where the word endless
bubbles up all morning,
taking the form of steam. Sky
means a deep light rising through
earth, returning as rain.

In bloom, in this rain-
forest: small daisies, hollow
side bells, foxgloves not through
with seduction, endless
buttercups and yarrow, sky
blue stickseed. Morning

breathed here, before morning
spread to the world. Rain
had no name yet; the sky
was a white hollow,
empty of prayers. Endless
meant leafy. Touch meant go through.



I was in a sestina-writing mood, plus I'd recently visited Olympic Hot Springs, one of my favorite places to relax, and spent hours soaking in the muck. I wound up dropping the last stanza of the sestina.