After a Thunderstorm

as the storm recedes,
the heavy sweetness
of late Spring air
washes back over

trees grown heavy
with plenty
bow beneath
the great giving

a shudder of lightning
moves across the evening;
the Lover
rises and departs.

the patient Earth
has been
and we
who live on it
have been
and healed

and, once again,

--Mr. Gobley



Move your hand
In a slow circle
As you look out your window
At a squirrel.

Pass your palm
Over the dashboard
Of your faithful car.

Place your index finger
On the bridge
Of your child's nose;

And while you make
These silent gestures,
Think to yourself:

"As in each moment
You keep faith with me,
So I keep faith with you,
Your constancy,

And together,

This benediction
Will draw you
Into closer embrace
With the world,

Which will
Rise to greet you,
Each morning.

--Mr. Gobley


To the Hawk Outside My Office Window

It is hard work being you.

Your wings work angrily
To hoist you above the exhaust,
The spray of the fountain
In the midst of the
Chemically azured waters of
The office park's lagoon,
The waftings of the restaurants
Across the way.

You struggle above the boulevard
Toward a dome, a disk
Of unspoiled Spring sky.

You work by rising up
And looking down:
You circle above
The twelve acres
Where your meals move,
The marshy field
That somehow has
Survived as itself.

By the end of next year,
Those acres will be home
Not to you,
But to the likes of me:

The surveyor's stakes
Are already planted
At the corners,
Their red ribbons
Proudly announcing

Fly on,
Be fearless
On our behalf:
At least you know
Why you were made,
And you live,
Always rising
To better see

Even if,
Each day,
It becomes
A little harder
To find.

--Mr. Gobley


At my desk, on Monday morning, lacking will

First, i stack everything neatly.

Then, i go to the kitchen
for a cup of coffee.

i return to my office:
the stacks wait;
my duties deliquesce
like corpses in a morgue.

Is it time yet
for a mid-morning snack,
i wonder . . .

The red voice-mail light blinks;
i am astonished,
my reverie shattered,
when someone plunges
into my fish-bowl world,
all efficiency and effort:

i have come untethered.

My heart and soul are
But i am

In this slow,
silent lesson,
this steady acceleration
into the wall
of the World,
i brace myself

for collision
with my fears.

--Mr. Gobley


On Being Woken at 4:30 by birds

The melody is a mantra.

It pulls the Sun
From the horizon
And my heart
Rises with it,
Eclipsing the rim
Of my despair.

You will sing
Until the Sun
Has fully kept
Its promise.

My clock
Is an abstraction:

In this hour
When motors
Still sleep,
Your alarm

Means God
Has kept His word
Another day

And so must i
keep mine.

Perhaps only you
Can see the hope
In this new day.

My hopes rise
With yours

All that is possible,
All that is prayed,
All that becomes itself
With each new moment.

--Mr. Gobley


On Finding A Dime

To glance at a gray, translucent page
from yesterday's paper,
and detect a perfect circle;

To lift the sodden edge
of old news
and discover a silver silhouette,
a man of pedigree,
and, on the reverse,
some eternal flame--

This is the bounty
of life
proclaiming itself
for someone to see.

Today, that someone
was me.

Look hard tomorrow:
there is a message waiting:
some code,
some gem,
some blossom,
some treasure

from beyond you

will connect
to the Source

within you

and you will be
made new . . .

---Mr. Gobley