Grand Canyon Psalm


Grand Canyon Psalm

I.

Nothing prepares you
for the heart of the world
lying open before you:
luminous layers
of rosy rock,
jagged and rounded,
leading down, down,
right into the earth.

In the silver silence
of night, you hear
how this heart beats:
it trembles and rumbles,
it nudges your bedstead,
unsettles your cottage,
reminds you of death
and life and the earth.

Undulating layers of pink and mauve rocks and peaks, with trees in the foreground.

II.

Nothing prepares you
for the ear of the world,
always wide open,
always upturned,
listening out
for the thud of the pine-cones,
the dance of the deer hooves,
the chant of the milky-way.

You have arrived
at the mouth of the world,
its voice of thunder,
its eloquent silence.
Here you stand, struck,
quiet at long last,
as tiny as an ant,
anointed like a king.

Christina Egan © 2018

 

A tiny fraction of the immense expanse of the Grand Canyon.
Photograph: Christina Egan © 2008.

Do Diamonds Die?

Do Diamonds Die?

Even diamonds die.
Empires erode,
battlements decay,
skyscrapers melt.

Not so what locks
your look into my look,
my heart into your heart.
Love will live.

With or without a night
or even a day,
a confession, a vow.
Love is born love.

Diamonds have grown for us,
as rare in the vast dark soil
as stars in the fathomless void.
Heaven does happen.

Christina Egan © 2004Engraving of hot-air balloon between layer of clouds and starred sky with moon.Illustration from a children’s book of 1896.
Image provided by British Library
through Flickr.

P.S.: Reader, he married me!  ;o)

die unterseite der ahornblätter

die unterseite
der ahornblätter

die unterseite
der ahornblätter
zu entziffern
bin ich bestellt

die verästelungen
der äderchen
die lebenslinien
und altersflecken

pergament
durchsichtig
gegen das licht
liebesgedichte

bettlerschalen
dankbar und demütig
bischofskelche
frohgemut hochgemut

die unterseite
der ahornblätter
zu besingen
bin ich geboren

Christina Egan © 2019

Die Unterseite der Möwenflügel

Die Unterseite der Möwenflügel
läßt mich die sinkende Sonne erahnen,
das ragende Raster der Fensterspiegel
darf mir ihr blendendes Angesicht rahmen!

Dies ist die Kreuzung voll Hast und Getöse,
Räder und Füße wie wirbelndes Laub,–
dies ist der Augenblick, den ich erlese,
Blitzen und Blinzeln im zehrenden Staub.

Christina Egan © 2019

Quiet Fire

Quiet Fire

In balmy darkness
I was floating
over sand and salt,
along the garland of lights,
below the curtain of stars…

One fell.
In a flash, I thought of
my distant beloved one,
in a flood, it came back,
the impossible future.

Decorative paper, black with ripples in grey, white, purple.He, too,
had come like a shooting-star,
fair, fast, in a sweeping curve,
with careless grace,
like a message from life.

Cold is the sea now and rough,
with dullness tainted the days
and the sparkling tent of the night.
The quiet fire has passed:
the face that mattered.

Around me is autumn,
and I know that spring will return
and my youth will not.
The voice that struck me is silent;
and my heart eats death.

Christina Egan © 2012

A memory of the Mediterranean Sea, where one can swim, and swim even in after dark, even into autumn…

Decorative paper. Image provided by British Library through Flickr.