dragonfly photo posted by Buffy Silverman


My transparent wings

are clear ’til they shimmer shake:

discern energy!



With Their Wings

by Jean Nordhaus

                    —for Delia

On the evening you were born,
after the tremendous churning
that brought you forth, an owl
flew onto the rail of the balcony
where we sat, as darkness bled
from backlit hills into the sky.
In twilight, she perched on the ledge
measured us with wide, light-

gleaning eyes, then sailed off
on soft wings. Shades of my mother,
I thought, half-believing—the wide-
set eyes and level gaze.

For those who say the dead
have no more truck with us
are wrong. The dead are all around us
feathering the air with their wings.
They see in the fertile darkness
that surrounds this sac of light.
And in these hours we call them back
to steady us, who live in time.

“With Their Wings” by Jean Nordhaus from Memos from the Broken World. © Mayapple Press, 2016.

Pattern #18 Sphinx

"Bugs" Photo by Quenby

Photo by Quenby

black sphinx silhouette
face, breasts, lion, wings, cat, sun-god
savvy guard looks out!

Tongue Twister #41 Dragons


Dragons and braggarts and stalwarts
Oh my!
Fires and liars and quires
Oh my!
Wires and fliers and priors
Oh my!
Dragons with fire are fliers
Oh my!

Dragons with fire are fliers
Oh my!
Scales, wings and fins-claws that can sting
Oh my!
Rode one to battle, bare tooth-ed
Oh my!
Bawling and blasting and brimstone-d
Oh my!

Bawling and blasting and brimstone-d
Oh my!
Acrid and acid and ashes
Oh my!
Settled in sediment high
Oh my!
Sky nest for me and my dragon
Oh my!

My Holy Spirit (3)


Gripping talons, wings of protection,
Imperial power, lofty spirit action;
Soars above the world; discriminates ambiguity;
Spirit of Salvation, Redemption, Resurrection.

Imperial power, lofty spirit action
Aristocratic, noble Roman ensign
Radiant as the sun, high and weighty emblem.

Soars above the world, discriminates ambiguity
Balances justice, truth, equality:
Weighty actions, vast authority.

Spirit of Salvation, Redemption, Resurrection
Speeds to comprehension: Father, Son & Spirit:
Mother of all three: Continuity.


Owl Mask3
Crystal Owl1
Earthen Owl

In my lobby hundreds perch:
Facing front they’re all:
blinking, zooming, screeching, preening
Owls: gigantic, small.

Wear a mask; fly a puppet;
Owl my eyes; grasp a cane;
Sparkle glass; pierce a crystal;
Line them up: minor-main!

Sculptures staring, wood eyes glaring;
Wings poised to take flight;
Pull the string and glass wings beat
Fly to soar with raptor might.

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