Poems by Conway: “The Miracle” and Others

Advent is traditionally a time of quiet reflection and repentance, when we anticipate not only the birth of Christ but the Second Coming when God will bring justice and peace to the whole world. In America, where images of traditional families dominate the airwaves from Halloween until January, it can also be a sad time for those who are separated from their families by incarceration, war, abuse or estrangement. Advent gives us permission to mourn as well as rejoice, as in these new poems by my prison pen pal “Conway”, which he sent inside a beautiful Christmas card.  

The Miracle 

            Create unprecedented tones
                conjure tracings of a murmur

Our breath turns into sounds
as again I start these movements
straining for
an accurate use of words…

        While air drifts along
            with its light, solitary steps
                untouchable noise
                    dissolving the silence
                        into spelled words
                These fixed, yet faded fingers
                    pointing at nothing
                    but gestured dreams
        of an empty street
a diffused vacant voice
        more fragile; Than
                Threads of Glass
                        Eluding a Hurricane…

This song, even now
flees from a distant tongue
in a stalled unforgiveness

The only contact allowed here
are shadows crossing paths
stretching to know each other
They revel in the Sun’s light
off a wall, from left to right
indifferent to any bickering
speaking only their own language

a noiseless echo of everything
following, watching from behind
it belongs to man, bird and stone
unaffected by the wind even.

Strange, that no one thinks
to challenge that, that
belongs to no one, yet everyone
reaching for the horizon…

Everything is only for a day

Everything, is only for a day.
    Both that which Remembers, and that
which is remembered.

As we observe this Holy Day
    in reference to one’s perception, for
this series is not a mere enumeration–
    of disjointed things.

    Time is like a river–
made up of events which happen
    and a violent stream; for
as soon as a thing has been seen,
    it is carried away too.

Altogether the interval is small.
    Let the part of your soul
which leads and governs–
    be undisturbed, by
The movements in the flesh.

    We Remember our Dead.
When they were born, when
    They passed.
Either as beings of promise
Beings of Achievement…

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