this is the only moment (species love poetry)

i can’t stop being in the present

noticing how the past tells me what i should care about and the future tells me what i should fear
and the past tells me what we forgot
and the future tells me what we must dream
but here

i breathe in
noticing the gift i too often take for granted
not knowing how many breaths i have left
i want to spend them

i have done so much, so many tasks
but what has mattered most
has been the listening
to the thirsting dirt
to the spiraling wind in the wake of
to the drumbeat of ant feet moving abundance with a million hands
the sacred erotic of pollination
the orgasmic opening of mushrooms
pulling the yes for miles underground
the innocent violence of predators
feeding their children
the way the wild wastes nothing
the way the cedar gives me permission
to pray

i thought someone else
had all the instructions
and i, stumbling and following,
praying to become worthy,
must admit i have been grieving and grieving
all i don’t know and don’t trust
and grieving so deeply
a world that is still breathing
anticipating failure
in spite of my visions

but when i listen
the universe is reminding me
i cannot be taken from her
i am never untethered from her roots
never beyond the whole
and nothing is lost, it is lived
and we are not here to win
but to experience love
and those who do not know love
are missing life in spite of all other accumulation

and when i listen
the universe is teaching me
that control is impossible
and the season will change
and enough is a feeling that cannot be measured
and the small circle is the deepest
and i cannot teach anyone what i have not practiced
and i cannot change anyone but myself
and i will never feel free in a position of demand
and i am already free
and we all are, and when we realize it
we cannot be contained

and we are never i
even when we are lonely
even when we distinctly suffer
even when we distinctly succeed
we are of lineage
of collective
of era
of farmers’ hands and strangers’ prayers
of singers with their heads thrown back
we are always dancing with our ghosts
and praying for our great great grandchildren
we are always the harvest

and the future is being decided
the future is being practiced
the future is being planted
in this breath
and this breath
and this breath

so i breathe in
noticing the gift i too often take for granted
not knowing how many breaths i have left
i want to spend them

Author: Adrienne

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Your uprising against the forces of darkness has got to do more than say "no." A fierce, primal yes should be at the heart of your crusade. (rob brezny, long ago)

6 thoughts on “this is the only moment (species love poetry)”

  1. Adrienne

    Thank you so much much for writing such a beautiful poem that moved through my body and helped me to feel whole today. That reminds me of what’s true. That made me smile and reignite my own truths.
    What a gift. I think you are the gift that keeps on giving. The voice I will hear in my head in the coming days.


  2. Adrienne,

    This may just be the most beautiful thing I’ve ever read. Whatever journey you’re on, my soul recognizes it deeply. Thank you for sharing your light, dark, and everything in between. Much love to you.

  3. Pierced my Spirit…with a small hole. Your message seeped into my Soul…deep. Moved the Mountain. Thank you.

  4. Thrilled to be a new reader of your beautiful work.
    This poem is just what I need these days. I plan to read it often.
    Breathing deeply as I do.

  5. I just got from the library How to Carry Water, Selected Poems of Lucille Clifton and spent an hour reading the intro and the first 20 poems, feeling the through-line with Emergent Strategies, which I’ve been reading for the last week, and now I am here, reading this poem, and feeling the through-line with Ms. Lucille’s poetry… Thank you for all you are bringing, to me, to this work, to this world.

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