There is an internal landscape,
a geography of the soul;
we search for its outlines all our lives.
Sometimes the world sifts its clod of troubles
into a rain of primordial sand,
while waiting on you to sweep your armful
of strength through its last mountain and the land
around it escaping the pinned borders
of space and time. It smoothes itself (devoid
of fear), waiting on your humming words
above it, singing from the outline of joy,
Waiting on the shapes that have not quite reached
the intricate details quarried in your
fingers, the playfulness of your first touch
where suddenly hope is the mystique
of a signature drawn in front of you,
winding its meaning through the hours of dust.
© 2002 Barry Ballard
Pace, Rosebud, Hollins Critic, National Forum,
The Florida Review and Quarterly West. Recipient of the
"Explorations Award for Literature" from the University of
Alaska and the "Boswell Poetry Prize" from Texas Christian
University, Ballard has also published two prize winning collections:
Green Tombs to Jupiter (Snails Pace Press Poetry Prize, NY, 2000) and
A Time To Reinvent (Creative Ash Press Poetry Prize, PA, 2001).
's sonnets have most recently appeared in
He writes from Burleson, Texas.