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The Four Faced Wind

Poetry by Valeria Castellanos

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Palmetto Shadows

Off to the Shore

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“Off to the Shore” – My Digital Art – 2018

If I should have my way,
I would be off to the shore today,
Where the air is full of breezes,
And, the sky is full of birds.
The bright, clear, brilliant, liquid light,
Is cut into by palm tree silhouettes,
Lizards quick and slick,
Are hidden in the thick,
Spike shadows,
Smooth, gray driftwood,
Swirls in the tide pool,
Prancing, bright eyed, hermit crab fool,
Hovering yellow butterflies,
Adorning perfect turquoise skies,
Spring waves murmuring,
Beneath azalea mists,
All kissed,
By periwinkle sprinkles,
Breezes graced by silver gongs,
Invisible songs,
Water the color of the fishes scales,
Wave the color of mermaid’s tales,
Hibiscus the color of sunrise,
Sands of ancient oyster shells,
The color of kisses pure,
Jasmine white,
Perfume and salt.

I am an ocean of my own,
Composed of blood and bone,
Of minerals, metals,
And, mostly water,
Flowing under the surface tension of my skin,
An ebb and flow of emotions,
Premonitions, preconditions, preconceptions,
Imprinted on the space between time and God.

How could I be anything then,
Except a reflection of myself?
I am a fluid being,
Flowing with my currents.
Even when I am not at the edge of the sea,
I am required to bend with the tides,
Washed by weather and seasons.

These patterns cannot be understood.
They are larger than my perceptions.

The morning dew calls me by name.
I answer, my footprints sink in the sand,
In the morning tide,
Wandering, here and there,
My feet are bare,
Frangipanis are flowering in my hair.
I am bowing to floating clouds.

I am still young,
And, trying to learn,
To smile with all of my being,
Trying to find a way to live recklessly,
And, completely,
In the present.

March 2015

I Shall Dance with the Storm

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“I Shall Dance with the Storm” – Beautiful Photograph – Unknown Photographer

I shall dance with the summer, sun filled days,
And, with the purple banners of dark evening clouds.
I shall dance with indigo skies and roaring rain,
With laughter, with simmering splashes,
With thunderous clashes,
Closing in for the coming storm,
And, the changes in its wake.

I shall dance with shattering, cut glass showers,
In the rush of the quickening, twilight hush,
Because rain flows in my veins,
Because my thoughts are contained,
In the dreams of serpents,
Asleep in the crevices of the banyan’s roots.

I shall dance in the perfumed, evening haze,
Because my flesh has been hoarded and distilled,
By the flowering jungle,
And, together we are standing, with expectations,
At the edge of the break of the ozone.
We are wondering if the wind has a will of its own.
We are wondering if the lightning,
Knows why it is heating the heart of the clouds,
Green as the tree frog’s back.
We are wondering if the rain had decided, before dawn,
It would awaken seeds today.

All I ask of you is not to interrupt,
The wonders of this rain-is-coming moment.
This moment is important,
This moment of hush,
This silk-chiffon, gray-cloud moment,
Of falling jacaranda petals,
When tangled tentacles of moss are set aquiver,
In awful twilight’s purple,
And, the Fates, succumbing to laughter or tears,
Disguise themselves or turn their heads.

I know I cannot become a part of the storm.
I can become neither a sunset nor a Jacaranda flower.
I am only a witness,
Inhaling the air,
Ingesting the rain,
And, internalizing whatever it brings.

I stand against the wind,
In puddles of lavender rhinestones.
I am willing to stand, on my own,
Against the convictions of others,
Against the thoughts of ages,
Against beliefs in yesterday’s traditions,
And, tomorrow’s rebellions,
Willing to stand, if I must,
Against even the wishes of clouds,
And, giant, ghost-stained oaks.

I am willing to let the storm strike my cheek,
And, announce the decisions of the Fates.
I am willing to wait for the universe,
Poised on its turning edge,
To make up its mind about what to do.
If the future has a will of its own,
Does that mean I have none?

The heartbeat of the storm has turned,
And, she has begun to close her eyes.
The crescent moon,
As orange as the beak of the Ibis,
Has rent the veil of clouds,
Which open their mouths,
And, whisper into the sky.
“They say I have changed,”
And, “So have you.”

 

 

1998

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