The Canyon

Over the course of eons, the flow of water
Has shaped the stone,
The sharp edges smoothed and rounded
By the water’s constant flow.

To weep is an honest exclamation,
A reclamation of the soul.

The rock is old and knows the strain of time
But so too does the water, whose circulation
From mountain lake, to river, to ocean, to sky,
Is never ending.

You have touched the source of my pain,
Is it the mountain lake? Is it the sky?
I weep from my soul down through my eyes.

Just as there has always been youth,
There has always been the flow of the river.
Just as there has always been old age,
There has always been stone.
One was not just born, just as the other
Is not near dying.

Something new is being born,
Something old is dying.

The stone determines
The river’s course, and the river determines
The shape of stone. Mutability,
Possible by entwined fate alone.

I embrace you now because of our shared fate.
You let the tears flow as they must.
We are as stone, the river of time shapes us.
The river of tears binds my lake
To your sea. God is the mercy.
God is the space between.

An Impresario Stalls for Time

I will not speak my peace tonight
But declare my turmoil instead.
I won’t throw any shades over your eyes
Or dance around any subjects
Or mince any words.
This speech has long been in the making,
Yet, I will not, as they say, seize the moment,
Or even, let it go.
The moment will happen,
Whether I’m holding on or not.
I won’t speak of the Devil,
Say Grace, or the Lord’s name in vain.
In fact, if I do say the Lord’s name,
It will be a miracle, in which case
It would be with great purpose, indeed.
Do not misunderstand me, this is not
An exercise in rhetoric, and I didn’t come
To exercise my rights.
I came not to pass, nor act upon,
Time. In essence, time does not matter.
It is matter-less, vacuous, it does not eat
Breathe, sleep, or dream. It has no substance.
Let us disregard it for eternity!
I am here, simply, frankly, and indubitably
To be, and then be gone,
As fleeting and lasting as a song.
But don’t misunderstand me,
Though I am here now does not mean that
I am not also gone.
And though I may be gone later, does not mean
That I won’t be here later.
Ah, but look at me, already speaking according
To Time’s decree! Here, let the illusion stop.
When I say the magic word, the curtain drops!
One, two, three.
Silence. Someone coughs.

Daniel Senser is thirty four years old and has been writing seriously since he was eighteen. Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, he received his BA in English from the University of Cincinnati. His work has appeared in Penwood Review, Adelaide, Blue Stem, Jewish Currents, and Poetry Quarterly, among other journals. His new book, “Another Missed Connection”, published by Adelaide Books, came out earlier this year. He currently lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.