The moon remembers

Returning in her blood, the
moon remembers which

near star is no more, and
it sinks its shade again,

builds up the root of the
mountain as it climbs out

of yet another shadow.


Here is Muriel Rukeyser’s poem:
Martin Luther King,
Malcolm X

Bleeding of the mountains
the noon bleeding
he is shot through the voice
all things being broken

The moon returning in her blood
looks down   grows white
loses color
and blazes

…and the near star gone—

voices of cities
drumming in the moon

bleeding of my right hand
my black voice bleeding

we dig these trenches

This bleached night is a sparrow’s song
and home    this

Furthest of form, article, pretense: a
grip on time    we

Stray on the fictions of an undiluted
lie    and streak

The night white with pain    we dig these
trenches and flee

Poet’s Epitaph
He sang until his death
singing close to his eyes
to his true life, his real life of lies;
and to remember till he died
how it had lied, his unreal life of truth
– Muriel Rukeyser’s translation of Octavio Paz’s poem


Why so loyal to a worldview which
Shrinks your

Space    are they good people? Why
So crumbling

In deference to so many potted stances
Have their hearts

Spoken anything true of late?

Unborn song

my full song has yet to be
born but it

was sung yesterday and it
will be sung

tomorrow   my first song is birthed by wood, stone and
participle   it was sung before and will again   my loud

song is silent, but silence is dawn, and it has your roots.
___

The mouth saying nothing.     The air saying live and die.
The womb saying welcome, the sun saying Dare.
– Muriel Rukeyser from ‘Unborn Song’

___
this cot of unsong/birthed
with revel   this

brood of a long slant of edged faith   this crime
yes

this crime teaching further buds to unburden the crime
    this cot   yes
    this cot of unsong   flame

witness across the threshold of sense

You mark this song, this horror
Of syllable as eye

Witness to impalpable harm, ex
Nihilo crucible of

Further waste - turn now, read
The shades of hade

He is forever trapped
who suffers his own waste.
Rain leaching the earth   for lack
of roots to hold it
and children who are murdered
before their lives begin.

– Audre Lorde

Whatever cries and changes, lives and reaches
Across the threshold of sense; I know the piercing name;

– Muriel Rukeyser

we reach in words

we reach in words
   a steel bank
   a rimed percolate we reach
   in words

a bible truce im
   maculate slouch where the
   green greed of
   terror builds

The dream on land last night built this boat of death
but in the suffering of the light
moving across the sea
do we in our moving
move toward life or death

– Muriel Rukeyser

I trundled feather, am done,
Will begin as love’s

Craft sheathing watchful fleece-
Another bearing of

Fear as it says word, bit and the
Dark rum of a doubled

Noon

The world as loss

To reach beyond the loss; hark, sun,
   the droop of my mourn as
   ash counts wedded beats
   and reveals an acorn beast.

Hark, sun, the wringed azure,
   as you plunge the red across
   my morn, and as you read the
   acid lawn, explain.

This was written as one possible response to Muriel Rukeyser’s Song.

The world is full of loss; bring, wind, my love,
    my home is where we make our meeting-place,
    and love whatever I shall touch and read
    within that face.

Lift, wind, my exile from my eyes;
      peace to look, life to listen and confess,
      freedom to find to find to find
      that nakedness.
Muriel Rukeyser