CHRISTOPHER RALEY

 

Rain draped days in music,
roads in rhythm,
nights in song.

I thought of you sometimes, in theory;
the same way I would think words like
sovereignty or predestination.
True words after their fashion, but able
to cast a veil over object.
And rain played a love song
of sometimes gentle,
sometimes jealous, persistence.

One day we hiked Silverton Falls
and jumped on backs of slick rocks
to the center of a small pool,
where spray of engorged fall
was of little difference from rain.
A friend said you were the great artist:
If so, what have I called your canvas;
to what have I confined your medium?

Still rain draped days in music,
roads in rhythm,
nights in melody.

One day, driving back from university,
sky opened and light fell and roads shone
as veins both dark and bright;
blood of men pumping me
through trees burning autumn.
I climbed in hollow, I climbed under copse,
I mounted the ridge and it rose away
from the river’s cold abdomen.

Even the city cannot defeat
the musical world that preceded it.
Valleys and mountains sang vespers colors
westward to your returning storm.
My eyes soared, almost pulling
vibrations of soul through my throat.

 


 

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