BlueMundo No. 1

First there were the fields of flowers
blue mostly like the irises on Kalmia
I remember from summer’s windiest days in Boulder,
and there she was, in all that fragrant & waving cerulean,
not noticing anything but the horizon ahead
a blur of strong & positive blue
all this loveliness to send to you whenever you need it I thought
and not just horizons but other blue lines as well,
for this very day the sun has crossed the equator-
nature’s self-repeating paradox
summer to autumn
eternal blue equinox

how Dixie had written us all,
Kathi died this morning at dawn.
The skies are bright Azure.
and in that lyric sweetness we felt reassured
somehow, and there was profound presence,
deep & blue like the sea, like parrots
and the coastline in southern Mexico

All I could send was love & poetry, Melody sighed
and I thought, what better tribute, really?
perhaps poetic form itself was borne out of sorrow
such as this, the need to find a perfect home
where the words can live
when there is no other place for them;
poetry like wild flowers, then..
like wreaths of woodland perfume this worded incense

My Cherokee man took sage & meadow herbs
& feathers gathered up from the ground
beneath the pinyon jays’ piney bowers,
but flame would not come easy to the mix,
and the smoke was sparse.
I grew restless,
I had wanted there to be prayer
until the forest off towards Arrowhead
suddenly caught fire and surprised us both;
sky gave way to blue smoke
and that was the prayer

The tv news today filled
with this one specific image
broadcast again & again on every channel
the front pages of nearly every newspaper;
that George C. Scott has also passed away,
only a few hours earlier;
and this irony was not lost on me, no-
for one of my fondest memories of college days
was first seeing Dixie in military drag
as Gen. Patton, on stage reciting
George C’s monologue from the movie
and I can’t help wonder if maybe Kathi didn’t think:
there is an image I can use, those riveting eyes,
broad-shouldered strength
a tadasana salute for Dixie..
this is a perfect time

Baby Kathi,
that’s what Dixie always calls her,
and she was Baby Kathi
right up to the day she up & floated
away into blessed blue mundo,
and I think this is not a poem
for her as much as it is for Dixie;
I think this poem has already said too much,
that Kathi would probably agree with me;
and I think she will forever be Baby Kathi,
ever faithful to her stacks-of-canvas-&-oils
sister paint-brushing all our
memories & skies brightest Azure

In loving memory:
Kathi Elder Burleson
Oct 7, 1957 – Sept 23, 1999