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Ronald Shields

The Invitation

Something is between us,
the eye of a needle,
a bitter pill, a road
with too many miles.
There you are
in your dervish world.
I am in my room
with a view of a door
closing on the bright light,
its final beam an invitation.

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What Would You Give

Kid fears bring comfort.
To the no longer young
they are faith in this world.
To those who have become the stranger,
the one whose gaze must never be met,
they are the fears of a time passed by
when the leap of malice has yet to come.

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Some Amazing Grace

Going down to the river in ivory robes
seeking sacraments
and the white heat of some amazing grace.
The Ghost is circling the congregation
amid an orgy of Cherubim
fresh from the sight of God.
There is hunger for the flesh and blood
and any innocent will do.

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Autumn

When there is nothing left to say
I will brush the cobwebs from my soul,
this rusted dented old soul.
Unfurl it, let it catch the freshening breeze
-a leaf waving goodbye to its season,
gone to join its tribe on the last breath of autumn,
waiting for the ground to break its fall.

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A Simple Dedication

What can be done for a love
that is a driving force?
Release your strange heart,
begin to know what you
want in the aftermath
of the storm.
In the bright finale of the
sun between the clouds
take hold of your dreams,
draw them out into the
open sky.
Hold them up, an offering,
and be a child in your dedication.

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The Hunt

Her face is a lightning strike
with prowling eyes
and razor sharp lips,
her tongue a dagger for an unfortunate heart.
She will kiss like an angel
with a viper's sting.
This is a dangerous love,
a scent that will not be denied.
Those hunting eyes pierce my swaggering shield.
The blood is up.
I am primed for the chase.
Hungry for the kill.

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Water Into Words

Like water they find their way to ground.
So I have names to give, stories to tell
words to whisper, words to sing,
words of reason and madness.
Some defy gravity, others carry the weight.
At times my words stumble over unfamiliar ground,
stutter, tie my tongue.
Silence gains the upper hand.
While the quiet gathers momentum
I close my eyes
and wait for the water to rise.

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The Photograph Album

We are looking at photographs.
You study my posture, my gaze.
I watch you change
with children at your side.
We look into the faded eyes
-wondering
why are we still here?
Two people who no longer exist.
What can we learn from them?
What have we yet to learn?
We know where we are.
We know when we arrived.
We know what we have become.
We know who is at fault.
Still, we do not know why.

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Comings and Goings

It comes and goes like a hummingbird
or snow in April.
When it goes there is a hole
and when the wind blows everyone can feel it.
When it comes the wind does not stop
but turns warm and moist with promise
like the landscape as Spring readies its empire.
It comes with a grip - tight
squeezing thought to a point
It goes, leaving me to feel everything;
until one day nothing comes or goes
and the bright release is all that is left.

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Mystery Date

You are a master of suspense
Hitchcockian so to speak.
The air is thick with confusion
I don't know whether to breathe in or out.
It is impossible to speak
you tie my tongue in knots.
The veil you wield throws darkness
not a sliver of light escapes.
There is a no vacancy sign in your eyes
no room at the inn and
the manger is spoken for.
Your expression is not blank
it is encrypted.
You are a mystery to me
and every clue a delight.

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