Quarantine Altars

Marie Marchand
Feb 12, 2022
Image Courtesy of the Author

I kneel at the petunias with palmfuls of water
and because nature prizes reciprocity
the purple velvet choir rains hosannas over me.

I greet the stately Vanderwolf pine
whose silvery pom poms bounce in the wind
on the vibratory frequency of joy.

Our sagely Ginkgo might live a thousand years
because nature’s resilience astounds.
(Some ginkgoes survived the atom bomb.)

My mother and brother mingle in the island
beneath the benevolent Buddha and
blossoming camellia.

Rather than collecting dust on the mantle,
ashes mix with detritus and seeds of marigold
becoming new life.

Prayers intensify as I spin, spin, spin–
a dance of enlightenment for dusky foothills.
I become blind aliveness in the wind.

Because nature sheds time without regret,
every soft rivulet of air that runs along my arms
carries the timbre of forgiveness.

Published in WyoPoets’ 2022 chapbook Emergence.



Marie Marchand

Poet Laureate of Ellensburg, WA. Author of Gifts to the Attentive from Winter Goose Publishing. mishiepoet.com @mishiepoet