as she behaves, so will she be

I’ll be honest,
as I saved the spider
from sure destruction
and placed him gently
on the morning sill,
I wondered
if perhaps I’d earned
a bit of karma,
if maybe the gesture
would spare me
the sure destruction
of betrayals —
disappointments.
But everyday humans
don’t bide by karma,
never mind what gurus say,
so the spider went about his,
and I my business for the day
knowing this:
salvation, like love, is random.

Poem ©2017, Jen Payne. IMAGE: A bird perched on a tree branch with blossoms, watching a spider on a web, Katsushika Hokusai, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.

Un/common Dance

When you move to the beat of a different drum
there’s no cure for the blister that forms from the

dance

dance

dance

There’s no common book on which to lean your fears
no vow that forgives the misdemeanors of heart and soul

The way a fool would do…

Instead, you make a poultice from prayers
to no god and all gods,
a tincture of stardust and make-believe
to cool the heat of betrayal,
ease the disappointments,
and reconcile the little deaths
you know he didn’t mean

Forget the relievers and remedies
for everything that ails you,
just hide the scars with Hope,
kiss and make it better

Poem ©2017, Jen Payne. Image: The Dance, Marc Chagall.