Paul Schwartzentruber is sometime theologian and part-time poet who lives on Morrison Island, Quebec, Canada in the middle of the Ottawa River. He and his partner, Kathrin Winkler, write, paint and sometimes find themselves lost in the woods together.

Monday's Poem

© Paul Schwartzentruber

One would be enough,

if each word were simple
and simply put
together, in the place
to which it belonged,
in the ease
of the embraced.
A boy nursing,
a mole gone to ground,
a jack-pine tethered
against the wind,
the riverbed intently
the currents
that happen by.

One would be enough
if it satisfied the heart,
even an old one
often broken
and already full
of mysteries
and the dreams
of loss.
A woman crushed
in red metal, a broken-
winged crow,
a pond blackly
poisoned and
the goose braying
at night.

One would be enough
if only there
were ever enough for
the empty belly
and the bitter
thirst, the wandering
and the lustful
eye. A pale cheek
and glistening
mouth, a moon
caressing water, moss
exhaling mist and worms
working earth
the morning grasses.

If it would speak its word
to all the others,
settling among echoes
from every facet
of the rockface, know
the sands of the sea,
the diamond stars.
If it would call all syllables
against despair
and that most forgetful,
mocking laugh, sing
in my own profundo,
then one
would be enough.