Poetry

On Things that Begin with an Onion

One day a man began to wonder
If he should put an extra onion in his pocket.

The question nagged him until he became restless
So he threw on his jacket, then strode out his door —
Planning to walk up an answer.

But soon he came upon a woman so beautiful
The soles of his feet tingled to be in the same world as her,
And when she began to sing (la la la
La la la), yearning overtook him.

He was at such a loss what to say to her,
The words that fell from his mouth —
His own words —
Sounded to him like complete strangers.

“I like magenta too”, he told her suddenly,
Referring to the color of her spring dress.
“Especially when it glows in the moonlight
On those nights the cicada shake the air
Like a ship’s wake shakes the sea.”

His tongue stumbled, “But I…I mean….”

“Yes”, she said in a golden voice
That flowed with compassion and a deeper understanding,
“I see by your eyes you recognize my beauty,
But do you also see my scars?
And can you read in them my travels,
Can you read in them my stars?”

Then her tongue stumbled, “But I…I mean….”

A light breeze rose and danced away,
Six sparrows burst from a hedge
In a passionate snapping of wings.

The sun fell between gentle branches
To sway across the dappled lawn.

On the horizon, the mountains were
Thrown down from the sky,
Crumpled and piled up
Like faint blue linen rags.

Eyes now fated, met.
Eyes now met, smiled;
Eyes now smiling, bonded
As time cartwheeled by
Like an onion
Tossed and skipping down a hill.


This poem is a reworking and expansion on a poem posted several months ago.

17 thoughts on “On Things that Begin with an Onion”

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