Sunday, May 31, 2020

Storm Rocket

Storm Rocket

The big storm comes, rattles
the latch of night, batters twilight
with its troll voice and god hands,
throws soil from a thousand raped fields
at my face, dry earth's stripped debris,
melted smell of dirt-charged void
electric as the ghost of your lips in the dark.
I'd wear it like a rocket, follow it, fly with it
to that other land where wheat sings to
the living earth, lightning is a dreamer's
 dance and storms sigh down
a cobweb of emerald rain;
but seventy years of hot wind
have made me small as dust,
a pygmy trapped in
this unbreakable
of pain.

May 2020

posted for The Sunday Muse

Images: Sky in Saskatchewan, author unknown, via internet  Fair Use
Rocket, by Brad Phillips   Fair Use


  1. Yes. Exactly. Me, too. More than one can bear.

  2. Could not help getting caught up in your big storm, felt bruised and battered, danced through it, and emerged back where I started. What an amazing journey. And an awesomely beautiful write.

  3. Ah, the storms and pains of life. Beautifully described and endured.

  4. Oh yes! So good, all of it. Would have to quote the whole thing. The wonderfully unexpected "I'd wear it like a rocket", harnessing the fury of dust storms, riding that dark wind to "that other land where wheat sings to / the living earth". Wonderful.

    1. Thank you! I still can't comment on your blog, so I took the precaution of copying it before I hit 'publish':
      "Solid and flashy at the same time. I like the feel of every-day being distorted, of simple things needed for focus, and of what can and can't be accomplished. As always, a pleasure to read."

  5. Shaped like the swirling winds of a tornado, your poem was equally as powerful. Great write!

  6. I think this is one of the most amazing poems I have ever read! I don't even know where to start. This is brilliant Joy and makes me feel like I have seen your deepest hopes and loss.

  7. There are such marvelous turns of phrase here. The " troll voice and god hands" and "storms sigh down a cobweb of emerald rain." But what really got me was the meat sentence we all serve, which gets harder with every passing year at some point. The way you put it was, as is usual for you, utterly original and apt,and the truth of it as implacable as bad weather.

  8. Being swept up in the storms and stunning images you present here.

  9. This is so visceral. There's a sense of being buffeted by life. The final lines seal it perfectly.

  10. well, f!@#$%. that's a swing and a hit of a poem, shaped like a rocket in motion - that sort of odd near-symmetry which is the hallmark of what is real. Nothing perfectly symmetrical comes organically (or naturally, though some might argue that anything humans create is 'natural'. I'll say, not, but that's a whole nother thing.) And so your sinuous flow naturally crumples into that shell.

    Finely crafted...

    In other news, I commence radiation next Thursday. Doc just called to say that the CT I had Tuesday tells him he needs to expand the zone to include the pelvic lymph nodes. So, yah. 34 straight days at 200 rad per. I wonder if I'll keep my hair? ~

    1. Doubtful. :P Losing the lashes and brows are the freakiest. Did they make the special model of your body and all? To make sure each pass is exactly where it's supposed to be? I found the whole radiation thing easier than chemo, and the results for him much better. Those months after were the last good ones. But his was always going to be incurable, so at least he had one more garden, one more summer...anyway,best of luck to you, M. Hopefully it won't be too exhausting, and it will do the trick. Thanks for the kind words on the poem. We hhave another deadly blast of hot air here this weekend with Glorious Leader and his cult of personality. Sucks.


"We make out of the quarrel with others, rhetoric, out of the quarrel with ourselves, poetry." ~William Butler Yeats