Song of the Trees, Voice of the River



Song of the Trees, Voice of the River 

Stillness     Fragrance rises

in a lazy curve

from     a single stick of incense.

In deep samadhi

I hear     the song of trees,

voice of stones


“It’s boring being a rock!

All I do is sit around.

I want to jump out of airplanes

and swim the butterfly

in an Olympic-sized pool.

I wanna’ be a race car driver

or a secret agent, drink vodka martinis,

and seduce sexy women in Morocco.”


“What I wouldn’t give to sit still like you,”

the river’s voice Doppler shifts to baritone

as he rushes away.


“Hey baby! Hey baby! What you doing?”

a magpie calls to a female.


“99 bottles of beer on the wall,”

sings a eucalyptus, “99 bottles of beer…”


Twenty years of meditation    Twenty years

of cold, monastery mornings

and I stand eyebrow-to-eyebrow with Old Bodhidharma.

After carefully untangling the tiny hairs

to separate our foreheads,

I see the disappointment on his bearded face.

“Me too, buddy.” I pat his shoulder. “Me too.”



Jon Wesick


Jon Wesick is a regional editor of the San Diego Poetry Annual. He’s published hundreds of poems and stories in journals such as the Atlanta Review, Berkeley Fiction Review, New Verse News, Paterson Literary Review, Pearl, Pirene’s Fountain, Slipstream, Space and Time, and Tales of the Talisman. The editors of Knot Magazine nominated his stories “The Visitor” and “A Story for the Rest of Us” for Pushcart Prizes. His poem “Meditation Instruction” won the Editor’s Choice Award in the 2016 Spirit First Contest. Another poem “Bread and Circuses” won second place in the 2007 African American Writers and Artists Contest. “Richard Feynman’s Commute” shared third place in the 2017 Rhysling Award’s short poem category. Jon is the author of the poetry collections Words of Power, Dances of Freedom and A Foreigner Wherever I Go as well as several novels and short story collections. His most recent novel is The Prague Deception.


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