Thoughts Walking, by Radiance Angelina Petro

I wondered what it would be like to combine some of the haiku from my most previous post.  This happened:




Thoughts Walking
Radiance Angelina Petro


Good morning snow drops hiding under the shade
of the Siberian cypress. May I join you?

Last of the snow, may I join you in melting?

Early frog, with the gold spot between your eyes,
teach me everything you know.

Two carp—one golden, one white, emerge from the murky darkness,
moving slow as afternoon dreams.

Welcome back heron who never left. Frost sliding from your hunched shoulders.

Dear lavender field on the neighboring hill. Are you wishing
for something? It’s best you don’t.

Twisted oak, growing through the cemetery fence,
my heart is tangled in fences too.

Walking still, I find a weather-washed deer skull. Its antlers
hold the sky.

There’s a man without a home, sitting against an old beech tree,
shaking off the world.

Fly! You’ve come early, rubbing your hands together.
What mischief are you planning?

Buttercups, washed in the sun, lining my path through the woods.

I know—big steps, little steps.
Just keep walking.









A Handful of Haiku, by Radiance Angelina Petro

A Handful of Haiku


Radiance Angelina Petro


Some of these haiku have the wrong amount of syllables.  I don’t think Basho would mind.


after a spring rain
I toss worms back in the grass
worms with their five hearts


we share our stories
watching the bonfire rising
touching the dark sky


walking through the woods
I find a weather-washed deer skull
antlers holding the sky


the wind walks the change
under ochre-colored robe—
begging bowl empty


leaning on the oak
the old man shakes off the world
becomes the bright sky


the map’s rivers, roads—
age-lines tracing the world’s face—
so many ways home


dawn’s meditation—
a time-dented singing bowl—
trying to ring out


when sleep finds my eyes
owls drift from the night trees
asking who I am


walking by the farm
I hear the last cricket sing
near the closed barn door


good morning grand oak
you’ve twisted through the old fence
I twist through me own


shaving my glad breasts
making them smooth like fresh grapes
this is who I am


Hey gold and white carps!
What darkness have you come from
to swim into the light?


Welcome back heron
standing in the cold river
frost melting from your wings


Fly, you’ve come early
rubbing your hands together
who will you bug first?










Lines of Demarcation, by Radiance Angelina Petro

Lines of Demarcation
Radiance Angelina Petro


The robins, squirrels,
the bees investigate the day—
morning’s prashad.

I wake disheveled, but ready
for the journeying. I am the one
who descends—a celestial time-

keeper–a one-person envoy—
sailing towards soundings and distances,
everything elaborating everything,

yet going unchanged. The lines
of demarcation were never real
to begin with.






It’s Time to Storm the Door, by Radiance Angelina Petro

It’s Time to Storm the Door
Radiance Angelina Petro


The ark teeters on the water-shedding mountain.
There’s a bitterness in the bones of the dead.
There are no longer roads. The ground,
undernourished for lack of sun and trees,
is putrid mud and marsh. Come on god—do you think
the drying world will be overrun by saints?
There are animals scratching to get out—bellies all agreed
a reckoning has arrived. It’s time to storm the door.






Almost Unbelievable, By Jennifer Angelina Petro

Almost Unbelievable
Jennifer Angelina Petro


I seem to always be sailing at night waiting
for the arrival of the day. I hold a misbehaving compass,
and the cherubs at the edges of the maps blow too many winds.

Every now and then moon-sheened dolphins leap over the boat,
and that’s undeniably beautiful. Yet mostly I wait
remembering the holy names, drifting through star-shadowed crags,

and pouring longing onto devotion’s fire, waiting
for the light and sound to come together, bringing me at last,
to your waiting, almost unbelievable, shore.






Bliss is Real, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

Bliss is Real
Jennifer Angelina Petro


The forest of Tulsi,
where Krishna danced
with the gopis, is still there
opening to a hundred roads.

What does it matter—iron age,
silver age, bronze, or golden?
We’re all dressed like Radha.

The inaccessible one shakes
off the world. Bliss is real.
The bed of the one without a second
is waiting for you.






The Star-Nosed Mole, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

The Star-Nosed Mole
Jennifer Angelina Petro


The star-nosed mole has twenty-two rays
shining from its short snout, and that red, fleshy light
guides the blind eyes as it throws dirt behind with grappling claws.

These are bhakti days—even the flea leaps for joy.
What isn’t the shabd? Everything digs
for the vermillion light just ahead behind the dark.






I Call it Love, by Radiance Angelina Petro

I Call it Love
Radiance Angelina Petro


Watch the stick of incense travel down—
following the burning, becoming
a cane of ash as it goes. In the vanishing,
does anything need to be named? If it does, all names
are one name, and you get to decide what it is.
This morning, I call it love, and all my thoughts
are one thought, and that too I call love,
and when I rise, my gait will have changed, and the ashes
blown away by the burning.






When Night Comes, by Radiance Angelina Petro

When Night Comes
Radiance Angelina Petro


When night comes, it doesn’t dismiss the day.
Instead, it takes it to the river, like
a raccoon carrying a cube of sugar
with its black, velvet hands, and dissolves
it in the passing water. And every time
it looks for the white granules gone—surprised,
but with the hopeful knowing more sweetness
will appear in its hands tomorrow.