the poetry that matters

Rod Pederson

Rod Pederson resides in Ottawa and is the current director of the Tree Reading Series, the third longest running reading series in Canada.

words for what happens


- meditation one, in which time coheres in its passing

          it’s a wire
stretched tight across the night blue strewn and bellrung
raindrop clappered shivering drip then liquid stars
the while the moonglown silver creeps the sun start

         slow the colouring
         eyebeam slipsin slideways

into dayspring fanning cloudbeamlike and wind strummed
fangling promissory jangling notes so godward high
         but still the wire
threadstitches through leaps up a deathling skyblaze

         upon an ashen day

- meditation two, in which the lover yearns the flower

hipwise grows the roseating springbud
then portending splays a reliquary fallsong
slides along the downfrom staymen passionarching

        the goneto glissens

does the lover petalkiss the meltword skyway
prayerbent sole the heartsome longwan edges thatway
while the worlding sunfall drenches every leaflike

       the wormglow fastends
       every runworn blaze

- meditation three, in which love lost is lost

armswide and sunghigh sails the soulgone
leaves a heartstone long lifelocked and bare to weather
there the cutwind bitten saltspray worries blessures to the bone

      repeats one tongue

grasp or plead and is the roundrock worn in slowtime
quick the hours’ fallfading heartstep afterall will
stand gateshaken past the crossing in the whitelight

      rung and openarmed
      the love lostgone and last
      the driven onelove

- meditation four, in which the lover loves alone

slow the starfade drowns in blue begins the sunrace
arcs again and never wonders        never falters on the moment
when alone lovekeening cries the always question

       just like that
       a sometimes answer

or unclear the greymoon hangs      and haunts the swollen hours
backrides a daystrung hazeful        over all and wake and wallow

       until the seedling brightpoints
       promisewishing claw the night


- meditation five, in which the desert is taken by the sea

waterward the crossing followed sandprints
windfill glissed a hemstitch tattering robe
and hours daypassed encoiled arose another

      dervish did
      and mindlost
      went the way

the shoreboard lay laptongued and mersome songplashed
hallelujahs forthright aimed upyearning tread one
back the other breaks the dunelock then the newsung

      against the faltering
      ardent spray

- meditation six, in which the blaze of life sets out

railbound and riverstrong the greenforce drives across and light
      quietward the rattletrack runs begging
all toward the overarching gray forlorn moonrisen shroudfall

      into gauzefog thus the morning’s
      morning beating heartwing

tallfalling or it’s rising to or from a godhigh soulburst
      incendiary flashes once and daybright
dopplers down it warps spacewide and stretches longward

      placefound shimmering sheer
      enjoined the deep darksparkling field

- meditation seven, in which the many long the one

      last thought farflung

the shade drives madly edgeward   long vainsearching
words won’t yield it can’t return it   goes
and shadowcast at lightspeed burns the brightness

      flies the spirit’s age
      and is it changelike

all and every synapse flare shroud the long shot bier
keening noise too white to tell the single flownsoul
cannot know one heart deep couched among the many

      but listen
      passing allsouls’ clear
      and long soft whispering sigh


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