Burning Island

O Wave God      who broke through me today
   Sea Bream
   massive pink and silver
   cool swimming down with me watching
                     staying away from the spear
Volcano belly Keeper who lifted this island
   for our own beaded bodies adornment
   and sprinkles us all with his laugh—
                     ash in the eve
   mist, or smoke,
   on the bare high limits—
              underwater lava flows easing to coral
                     holes filled with striped feeding swimmers
O Sky Gods      cartwheeling
   out of   Pacific
   turning rainsqualls over like lids on us
   then shine on our sodden—
              (scanned out a rainbow today at the
                     cow drinking trough
                           sluicing off
           LAKHS of crystal Buddha Fields
           right on the hair of the arm!)
Who wavers right now in the bamboo:
  a half-gone waning moon.
                 drank down a bowlful of shochu
                          in praise of Antares
                 gazing far up the lanes of Sagittarius
                          richest stream of our sky—
  a cup to the center of the galaxy!
                 and let the eyes stray
  right-angling the pitch of the Milky Way:
                 horse-heads   rings
                 clouds      too distant to be
                 slide free.
                             on the crest of the wave.
Each night
O Earth Mother
  I have wrappt my hand
  over the jut of your cobra-hood
  left my ear
All night long by your mouth.
O   All
Gods   tides   capes   currents
Flows and spirals of
     pool and powers—
As we hoe the field
  let sweet potato grow.
And as sit us all down when we may
To consider the Dharma
  bring with a flower and a glimmer.
Let us all sleep in peace    together.
Bless Masa and me as we marry
  at new moon         on the crater
This summer.
Other works by Gary Snyder ...