Oracle

He was a shaman always
clad in sacramental
wool plaid shirt, dirty cap

there are no mountaintops
in Minnesota’s northwoods

Enlightenment here comes
from atop decaying tree stump
aside rustic leaf and pine needle
carpeted trails cutting through
towering pines, birch, oak
you stop, sit for a spell

solemnity in this place dictated
with wry smiles, knowing nods…
rubbing of beard stubble chins;
moral lessons here punctuated
with a joke, tall tale, or sly wink

The guru walks with you;
there is no sacred pilgrimage to
be made no sacrifices requeted
or self-flagellation required

unless you make the joke
on yourself

Wisdom came to me on short
walks I wished even then could
have lasted much longer.

Jaywalker

She crosses my mind from time to time
in a downtown crosswalk, distracted,
late-for-a-lunch-date manner

sometimes she is more casual, unaware,
letting the dog out, grabbing the Sunday
paper off the sidewalk before brunch

She crosses my mind from time to time
weaving through downtown like a drunken
sailor in 3 inch pumps with a broken heel

sometimes she paces as if her cab is late

She crosses my mind from time to time
usually without warning and always,

always, always against the light