Sermon on Cold Mountain

–by Jose A. Alcantara

Blessed are the poor in spirit for they are heavy
with flesh – the wild grass pendulous with seed
the pregnant moon, the gibbous cloud –
even the squirrels are fat with feasting.
And though it were easier for a grizzly to pass
through the eye of a salmon, than for a rich man
to enter heaven, the roses keep shouting their riches
and the mornings are a glut of song.

Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit
the black-gilled fungi bursting up through gravel
the white flowers keeping watch in moonlight
the cloud shadows hunched like cows in the grass
the gray green glow of aspen trunks at four AM
the silhouette of clawed wings outside a window
the night like a bolt of tattered black cloth
giving way to a soft blue blanket.

Blessed are they that mourn the fallen petals
the brittle leaves, the silenced songs of morning
the hummingbird’s flight, the plummeted plum
the raspberry’s untimely demise
the sun’s southward plunge
the ice at the edge of the pond.
Blessed are they that hunger and thirst
after equinox sake, for they shall see spring.

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