Clouds and Rain Ghazal

This coast on which I live now: a gift of clouds and rain;
the desert of my childhood—all bereft of clouds and rain.

What of the hapless ghazalcar, imagination a dry wadi,
then a challenge in the air he sniffed—clouds and rain?

On Titan, Jupiter’s moon, the clouds of methane shroud
a drizzle of diamonds—ah, you never saw such clouds and rain!

On Oregon’s misty coast, we mow our lawns in winter,
and cars grow coats of moss, all thanks to clouds and rain.

Comes the flood, you hitch a ride on Ziusudra’s ark, and bellow
curses with the bleating beasts: Inanna! what clouds and rain!

The weather of the heart, once all sturm und drang,
as one ages becomes a mere drift of clouds and rain.

So what’s the point, Dave, scratching your head,
tormenting your brain: nothing there but clouds and rain.


Researching Oneself

Know thyself, said Thales, after researching himself.
From Olduvai to Manhattan, man keeps researching himself.

The Bible made it simple: man was perfect, God’s very image.
It was knowing woman that had man researching himself.

I wonder about the man who first saw his face in the water—
did he glance wildly around to see who was searching himself?

What of the omphaloskeptic, studying the lint in his navel?
Ah, the exquisite self-abuse of researching only himself!

The international traveler, attempting to get away from it all,
endures intimate probing of others researching himself.

David is Hebrew for ‘beloved’; Lunde Norwegian for ‘puffin’.
Beloved Puffin! so much for researching oneself.