Seeds, go forth.
Go naked as greed.
Go gentle as doves, subtle as snakes.
Go cloaked and daggered, go forked of tongue to sunder the clods.
Go winged, go barbed, go stoned to ride the waft and drift,
the currents and furs of the grand haphazard.
Go armed with patience and grip.
Lichen, be plentiful, multiply.
Mosses, build on the rock a cathedral of lush and roam.
Fungus, come last to the feast. Take of the plenty, praise
Water, hold true to your vows.
Bring ease with your touch, ceaselessly rounding the body
of Earth toward a more perfect globe.
Keep the faith, winds.
Whistle and hum. Be assured, one day you’ll learn the words.
Trees, lift praise to the skies; rise green in the forests and churchyards;
take root, distorted, in ice-fissures, drought-plains, the cracks
Be both upright and swayed.
Master the muscles of reach and branch to assist the exacting
construction of nests, allowing to each clutch of eggs its season
of safety that nestlings may pry open spaces for hunger and song.
You fledglings, alert your hearts to the shadow.
You hawks, be quick.
Go forth, all beings, knowing no ends, no amens, only means
turned to provisional meanings.
As for the odds, fear not: it’s a round.
It begins and begins.
About the Author
Marjorie Stelmach has published five volumes of poems, most recently, Falter (Cascade, 2017). Previous volumes include, Bent upon Light and A History of Disappearance (University of Tampa Press) and Without Angels (Mayapple). Stelmach’s first book, Night Drawings, received the Marianne Moore Prize from Helicon Nine Editions, and a selection of poetry received the first Missouri Biennial Award. Stelmach has just received the 2016 Chad Walsh Poetry Prize from The Beloit Poetry Journal. Individual poems have recently appeared in Arts & Letters, Boulevard, Florida Review, Gettysburg Review, Hudson Review, Image, The Iowa Review, New Letters, Poetry Daily, Tampa Review, and others.