Then Sunset

look and see
before it 
goes away.

the sun is best 
just moments
before the sky
goes dark.

she tells me
when it hurts
so very badly.

i see so little,
but i try to help,
but am helpless.

my sorrow is
her pain must
be hers alone.

i cannot feel it,
though it 
tortures me,
because i know 
she is in pain,

and i care.

the sun is best 
just moments
before the sky
goes dark.

Green Web

   my grandfather's
uncle saw the green
      and said so.

since then we too
   have learned to
      see the green;

      it surrounds us
and many of us see,
   but some don't;

or they say that
      they don't see,
denying reality.

some green things
   are terrific, and
   feed the world.

but others are
   very deadly, 

   as are some
toxic people,
      denyers of
      the green.

Rattlesnake Point

   from here 
      it looks
so different,

   and it seems
      like another
world, a wonder.

someone thought
   its name might
frighten tourists.

   so they put a
different name
      on the map.

      local people
laugh about it.

they know that
rattlesnakes are
      native too.

   they are not 
overly sensitive 
      about it.

      and if tourists
   are too scarey,
a good bite might
   set things right!

Ring of Fire

   mute evidence of 
long ago eruption, 

   cooling rocks 
swim in warm 
   pacific waves.

      a thousand
   miles away
a gentle breeze
   stirred a sea,

   and pushed a
surface droplet
against another
      and another.

   the pile rose 
and now waves 
      wash over
these dark rocks,

      we watch their
rhythmical arrival,
   hear a pattern
      of splashes.

they could be a clock,
   dividing our days.

      we might live
between wave peaks,
   resting in valleys.

      and how the sun 
burns down on us.

African Tulip Tree

African Tulip Tree

once they borrowed
   this invasive tree,
   brought from afar
      to hawai'i.

     it was imported
from a world away,
once transplanted
   it just got away.

spread like disease, 
      among a flock,
   we heard it so.

   so many things
we do will fail us.

   time will bring
   surprises that
      we cannot

our great works 
   impress us so.

      new evils
      seem to
surprise us;

but we may 
      still endure.

Coral Sand, Black Lava

white coral sand, 
      wet black lava,
   tropical seas, 
the summery sky!

      every day seems
a wonderful dream.

we eat shave ice
   but not much
      ice cream.

      a secret beach
seems such an idea!
down a private road,
(we asked the young
      guard for access, 
      quickly granted)
we were on our way.

   a narrow road on 
      white coral sand,
a gift from the bowels
   of many parrotfish,
   and we are grateful.

      a wonderful
uncrowded beach.
      we carried on,

to welcome shade 
      beneath hot
      sunny skies.

   in black and white,
feeling, no surprise.

Dried Thistle

Dried Thistle

sharp and prickly
to protect herself,

her tender heart,
   broken so many 
      times before.

and so proctected,
   we might also be,

except that there 
      is such a price
to pay for nearly
perfect protection.

      today it snows.
we hunker down,

protected from cold
by extra insulation,
   so we can nap on
a winter afternoon.

   a thistle flower is
a beautiful thing,
clearly something
   to be protected..