Sister Lou Ella Hickman


It is difficult/to get the news from poems/ yet men die miserably every day/ for lack/of what is found there.
                                   william carlos williams

instead of news
let there be poems
like light eons ago
what men   and women die of today
becomes the flash and flicker across the screen
yet agony repeats itself
as it always has
in the universe we have called history

for example
what was today doing twenty years ago
spread out the newspapers, magazines
and go comparison shopping . . .
was the Cold War of the fifties really
a cold war
the original war
(agony repeating itself)
was hidden in the hot, dark corners
of family values

what does not flicker/flash across the screen
what men   what women go searching for
in the poems of themselves
will always be a certain slant of light
without the headline

the mystery that makes us who we are






     remembering concert for america:  9/11/2002

renée fleming sings


such a singular gift:

her voice floating like a flag

over rubble, dust and death


listen again    as if

for the very first time:

                                 a golden sky

                                   a lark’s song

                              sung sweet and silver

listen     now

for the first time

then     remember

you cannot walk alone






 ruth and naomi: refugees

you simply left
full circle you both return
after escaping a brutality of famine
as well as loss
tomorrow you will begin your gleaning
in a season of grain ripened under a summer sun
yet more than what will feed you both:
your story
ripened in its sacred retelling