For Alana and Patrick, May 31, 2014

Your dad could strum a chord for the groom’s ironic
Soul, pluck notes for the bride’s unbridled heart.
The river could rush inevitably down the cataracts,
With music of mountains and trees and love and hurt.
Quotidian mysteries could rise like bread in ovens
With alphabetic fingertips at work
Assaying life and life’s atomic leavens
Filamented against the blooming dark.
And pouring off of certain pages of the local
Paper could come the haunted words of unbound
Laughter smashing through the wall to tickle
Tattooed limbs with the music of the mind.
What could be is on the verge: the wedding knot
Is tied to the bridge and the strings are strung tonight.

Your dad’s guitar could play from heaven a psalm
Of David connecting stretched, refashioned strings
And bent blues turned into bliss’s home,
The hallelujah wrung from righted wrongs.
The sky could cry, the ground could disappear
Beneath your feet, only to expand in daylight
Revealing oceanic paths of freer
Joys than you imagined in the gnarled night.
And schooled physicians with their evidence of cures
Could wrestle with your intellects and find
Themselves at odds with your inner music’s tears
Turned into a gladness they can’t understand.
Undo the funeral dirge; the wedding knot
Is tied to the bridge and the strings are tuned tonight.

Your father played a song when you were in
The womb, with river running to the rhythm
Of ingrained momentum’s long and winding
Road that led to this day’s bridged chasm.
The tuning fork in the road reversed to blend
The bramble and rumble of muscled motor city
With virginal violins and warbling stands
Of Douglas fir—gritty and pretty in harmony.
And parsed-entangled visions of the future
Stretch across the threshold of the room
Where the end of May is perched on June’s shoulder,
And blessings shower down with tears from him.
Two melodies now merge—the wedding knot
Is tied to the bridge and the strings are strummed tonight.


  1. For House of Words’s sequel – “Ellipsis Mansion…”

    I just love this – and the refrain goes deeper with each read. Man!


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