Gratitudes of a Dozen Roses.Poem.Aberjhani



This rose of spiritual gratitude placed at the feet

of a Rasta Warrior Woman showers the earth

with sweetfire and hosannas and early morning glory.


Beneath an African moon shining silver poems

and a river of orchards singing purple praises a black rose

bows her head like a black swan humbled by her crown of jade.


Birdsongs weave grace in southern midnight like wine-drunk

fireflies. Inside this music of earthly spheres

a bronze rose pulses unspeakable peace.


For the sake of a mountain where heaven smiles at heaven,

for the sake of streams rushing sonatas toward the future:

a dew-covered delight shakes crystal secrets from her red velvet bosom.


Crawling sleepily out of dreams tendered

upon pink petals of quiet ecstasy everlasting and everlasting

an island-flavored perfume echoes the scent of a rose.


Roots of a new beginning spread piously forward

into vines of passion and leaves of revelation,

healing petals from the thorny joy of an angel called Jah Gabriel.


A blossom like the naked mystical eye of truth.

Leaves like hands praying down thunder and burning and rain.

Stem like the backbone of a good strong heart.


What is more powerful than the killing crucifixion

of desert heat commanded by a sun with no mercy?

The perfect shade of a flawless rose afloat above the earth.


With its leaves so rich and heavy with elation

and its crimson face made brighter with visions of divinity

the shadow of a certain rose looks just like an angel eating light.


The thorn is a bridge spanning the muddy depths

of agony and sorrow so that one may on the other side

dance to the drums of the rose of joy.


This rose of pearl-coated infinity transforms

the diseased slums of a broken heart

into a palace made of psalms and gold.


And this one is of eternity. It never stops opening.

The beauty it shines is the same as the path it travels in and out

of paradise, every second, of every hour, of every day that comes and goes.



–by Aberjhani (from Visions of a Skylark Dressed in Black)


 Publishing/Editorial Consultant
author of Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance
and The River of Winged Dreams


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