At The Cathedral

Hush, look up in awe.
See the redwoods rise,
and feel the breath in
your chest lift to meet them.

Put your palm on the base,
shocked at how soft the bark
feels underneath your hand.
The crevices are so deep
and dark, they looked like
they were carved in stone.

This is no cold stone, though.
This is teeming and alive,
rough and supple under your palm.
Spiders weave delicate and
intricate webs inside the
places where the redwood’s
small, dark slabs layered over
like a thatched roof, dips
dark into itself. Mossy
softness, like streaks of
paint, a child’s hand across
the canvas, runs up and along
the massive body of the tree.

The rustle of leaves
makes you look up,
makes you realize just
how small your hand is,
your whole body and being
are, really, in this place.

Still, the treetops call,
invite you to see the decay–
cracked, brown, broken leaves
slowly turning  dead to
fertile– at the roots, all
the way up to soaring
branches above that weave
shadow-green lace, ‘God’s
kaleidoscope,’ you marvel.

You stand there, wondering,
as the redwoods ask you
to look at your own supple
softness, to see the places
turned brittle, let them fall
and feed your roots. They
ask you what you will let
die so you can meet them
up there.


I will never do
I will never give
I will never have
I can never be

There is so much more
that I could do, that I could give,
that I could know.
There are always flaws, always
cracks, always empty, gaping holes.

I dip my thumb into the
vastness of all these perceived
Slights and fails. In them, there is
that human stillness–perfect, frail.

In my flaws, I find
The holes, they let in breath–
The cracks that let in light–
In these broken, empty hands–

Stories and Rain

A light Mānoa rain flicks
down so lightly you can’t even
really see the drops. Just cold,
tingling moments— like stars
in the milliseconds after they explode.

Painless, perfect, they
are the seconds after the splash
of your most perfect canonball.
They are the nerves on your lips
after your first kiss comes up for air.

Here, I walk at the foot of a valley,
a long trench flowing into the urban
mouth of movement. I go, I run
I hustle I work I live and then
a light Mānoa rain falls. I pause.

I used to be terrified of things I could
not see. Ghosts, demons, beasties
were waiting, their cold, wet fingers
creeping around corners, under beds,
just outside my window.

Now, tucked into the corner of
two colliding worlds, the future
creeps its fingers up the soft cheek of
an evergreen face. A white blanket rolls
down to cover them both. They rest now.

I look up and see them. Pinpricks cover
my face. The stars, the nerves, the splash
the kiss— their magic unquantifiable and
too quick, too grazing to even be registered.
They are only even real if you take notice.

And I hold out my hand and tiny pools of
rain collect, in the creases like magic.
The terror and the wonder of the unseen
are equally real and not mutually exclusive. They
are merely waiting to be seen in the stories we tell ourselves.