I know a woman who, when she hears wise words
her palms upward. She’s as likely to place her hands
on my shoulders,
to comfort. None of it for show. Palms upward,
she’s a basin.
Palms downward, a wellspring, rain.
May we be basin and well to each other.
May we be rainlight
and the winds that freshen the morning. May we
sleep as roots and bulbs
in winter, faithful to the quickening throb of inner
May we rise up in our love as a fire leaps and kindles.
May we hold our hands
to the fire and warm them. “Stand watch over this burning,”
Rumi says in one poem.
And in another, the fire itself, the fire that is fountainhead,
“Come into me, and don’t mind the sparks.”
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The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.