Joseph Murphy

After the Rains Ended After the rains ended, lightrose up from the loamtwirling around stem and leaf, illuminatingwords Buddha had engravedon bark and twig. Wings that had fallen idlebegan to beat, carryinghope aloft, awakeningdesire. Voices began to be heard, singing in unison — human voices, voicesof sand and stone, thresholdand sill. It was then that a candle ignited — a newborn’s sighemerging from its wax,from its shadow.

Wanderer 1. Which way to go? Ahead,a grassy path, a patch of sunlight. But the sand keeps changing form. Oncea stepladder, now a peak. Shells leap up, scorching my fingers:the wind blares; coinsrefuse to wake. Which way to go? I drift,anchorless; no frameto stitch, string to tighten. 2. Finally — motionless. Sweet silence.A clearing. Fresh breeze, soft light. Before me,a wooden Buddhaseeming to ascend, unfetteredby thought.

Joseph Murphy has been published in a wide range of print and online journals. He is the author of four poetry collections, The Shaman Speaks, Shoreline of the Heart, Having Lived, and Crafting Wings.