Authors and Poets
Authors and Poets

Photos used with permission from the Academy of American Poets

Last updated:
September 5, 2018
Lori M. Cameron, editor

Reconciliation – Randall J. VanderMey

Spring 1998, vol. 2, no. 1

Reconciled, reconciled, the word
was like a piper’s tune
far away, sugaring someone else’s air.

While anger hardened to a hammer
in my hand, while pride
found temporary nesting in my hair

I couldn’t breathe my blessing
to the wind. To be reconciled,
I thought, would make me die.

It would be tantamount to giving up
an eye. I’d have to unseam
my skin and let a stranger in.

When word of blessing, unanticipated,
slipped from the soul’s keep,
it was, of sorts, an end,

making stranger friend. An end
of tit for tat, of black lists,
of nightly cauterizing flames,

of the goblin self, antique high on soul’s
shelf. When love piped on these lips
there was no slipping back:

reconciliation flowed like oil
of highest worth, so rare,
so fitting homage to the maker of earth.

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