Poetry from Deborah Guzzi

Absolution’s Font


Await the zenith of the sun,

across the clay-courtyard beckoning;

barefoot I walked, heartstring undone;

Oh Lord, there’s love, no reckoning.


A soundless clarion of tears fall

toward absolution’s bright blessing;

within the domed sabil I call;

Oh Lord, there’s love, no reckoning.


The fountain’s dry, but not my eyes,

sounds of grace rebound, soft staying,

Amazing Grace sang such as I;

Oh Lord, there’s love, no reckoning.


We are but one beneath the sun

for all our fears and wandering;

all creation our companion;

Oh Lord, there’s love, no reckoning.


Let spirit rise on minaret

and phantom penitents come hieing;

all is well, we are God’s get.

Oh Lord, there’s love, no reckoning.


Amen Ra


The sunrise was like a fertilized egg

golden of yolk and flecked with blood;

it crowed to the mist-filled morn.

It ran over the hillside frying the vegetation.

The brilliant white albumen flowed

into the vague gray day.


The egg itself blushed at the flattery

extending pseudo pods of white

like rays outward against

the steel gray of the frying pan;

it’s yolk congealed a burgeoning

the celestial eye of Ra.

Boxed In


The crowded airport terminal writhes

an ant hill of humanity.

All the shades of man, present,

accounted for.


The biting winter air brash with cold,

kept at bay by layers of thick glass.

We, specimens unwarmed

by the magnifying rays of celestial eye.


Within the buildings metal, exoskeleton;

we travelers, corporeal, flow fluidly

or hunker down like scar tissue,

swallowed whole

by wanderlust.


Through parting doors with electric eyes;

we pace within conduits; we perch

like the trapped sparrows swooping

floor-ward, we peck at

French fries

and sip at fountains.


Mothers, fathers, children all

pick at their morning meals.

Their human clumsiness making

the sparrows forays seem dainty.

And amidst the white florescent lights;

babies sleep.


Riot in the Third World


The Sunday evening was balmy.

There was gunfire in the streets

but the  mosquitos were undaunted

in their persistence at reaching exposed flesh.

The old monastery had no glass or screens

to block the violence of sounds large or small.

The prayer flags of red, yellow, white, and blue,

hung lifeless from the peach stucco eaves

to the locked gate. Sleep seemed impossible.


Dinner was boiled to death

microbes of discontent apparent in the

open drains which wove through the pristine garden.

The monks, long gone now, left remnants

of themselves in the incense coated plaster.

Peace sought here was not found.


In this school for westerners English

was the binding force, the net which captured

the capitalistic dollar, the font unhindered

by even civil war, pilgrims huddled.


Raised on the pap of male supremacy

the diminutive men taught, as village women

washed the floors, the pots, the laundry from first light

to deep dark, war did not stop the drudgery.

Where they slept was unknown to us.


Monday arrived and the riots ended on cue.

Tourists again were permitted

in the crawling, dust clouded streets,

to vie for a path, a way, to the burgeoning shops,

through the alleys full of begging children,

past the hanging haunches of the butcher

and the rare bird vendors,

Westerners walked bare armed, sari-less

exposed, unrepentant, rude, striding

as if they owned the world.


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