to be unafraid of stars


at awareness brink
I listen to a deep sky sound
or some approximation
as pretending makes it so

just a simple muffle…
hands cupped upon my ears
to mimic cosmic waves
where stars hiss soft white noise
through a time brink tipping place
where…if there were air… there’d be
a blast and clank and clamor
of universes borning…dying

for there… no stars do masquerade
to twinkle…twinkle little
star light, star bright, first star
hopes and fears of all
the years are met in Thee tonight

no matter…
for I shall listen deeper
to hear my core blood pulsing
base elements…rare minerals
for water earth wind fire
that blast and clank and clamor
of always brink existence…
and I shall find the wisdom
to be unafraid of stars

Bonnie Marshall

Artwork by Gayle Hartman

dance card

dance card 2

for two hours

neckline wool itch
and rasp of corduroy
turned into cotton lace
and water swish of silk

her white Disney wristwatch
became a white rose bracelet
with blue sheen ribbons…baby’s breath…
her scuffed sandals had turned to satin slippers
and gold heart earrings glittered…pinched

dance partners…familiar playmates
edged a transformed great room
they’d decorated blue winter white
now…candle flicker for the fox trot
lime sherbet punch in cut glass cups

she suppressed laughter
at the dance card etiquette…
first to last dance pairings…
for she craved massed mayhem
of sled races and snow battles

yet she searched for his name
and found it twice…
then he held her in his arms…
and it was not child’s play

Bonnie Marshall
Photo: Betsey Dunn’s dance card from Miss Hall’s School

Moths…not Butterflies

Drab rebels have no day-glo colors.
Chromatic tie-dyed t-shirts
with hand embroidered blue jeans
are become gray hoodies
with camouflage print pants.
Separate and indignant
in nylon tent cocoons,
they listen on their iPods
to personalized playlists.
They mill around in habitats
where apathetic drummers

thump two-tone bongo drums.
Where is their Seeger, their Dylan or their Lennon  to sing a noble song?
Where is their Warhol or Vonnegut  to illuminate ideas?
Drab rebels you are moths…not butterflies.
Bonnie Marshall        
Repost from March, 2012

hunter gather


This was part of it…
to preserve rare Mojave cacti
from destruction of the
gypsum blasting mines

to be mildly appreciative
when pros told her a Latin name
cylindropuntia enchinocarpa
for shimmering silver cholla

she’d arrive predawn
drink coffee, choose tools…trident rake,
an arrow pointed trowel…thick gloves

yet her intent was always other
just to be there watching
the skipping stoned trajectory
of desert big brown bats
in flight to roosts in distant caves
their tiny bellies tight
from a raiding night…
of bronze carapace beetles
blood engorged mosquitoes
and dew sipped from prickly pear

they stitched night to dawn
on those color striped horizons
of awareness levels to ease her
to supremacy of sun

when her intent revealed itself
to celebrate life in harshness…
with the drought adapted,
the self-protection poisonous,
the sharp pricked keep aways…

and so she gathered wisdom
to take with her
from true survivalists

Bonnie Marshall
…or a persona thereof

Artist: Tina Bluefield

winter solitaire

once upon a zero day
bluster ice slick
secluded him inside
an introspective mood…
indecisive as the rain
to be sleet or snow…

he cursed everything
to numb his mind
from thinking…
hot chocolate burned his tongue
wool slippers ate his socks
a lock of gray hair kept falling in his eyes

then as he paced his limits
he surrendered…chose Gershwin
…Rhapsody in Blue…
brought a clasped journal
from it’s shelved hiding place
then…he browsed for her
searching with his fingers
for her words’ fragrance
to lift from paper sheets

Bonnie Marshall

Photographer: Albert Mohler