rebalancingToday, in Sue Reynold’s divine Sanctuary Sunday – a full day to dive deep into words, to come at ideas, images, and stories in fresh ways – she offered up as a prompt Thomas R. Smith’s poem, Baby Wrens’ Voices. With the invitation to use the first line of the poem, “I am a student of wrens,” as a jumping off point, I took the cue and wrote this poem:

I am a student of bodies.

When they let fall their clothing

Their defences sometimes also fall,

Their stories dug and tunneled

Through skin, muscle and bone


Who’d have guessed my school

Would be so near and so vast,

so dense with text

I read with palms, fingers and knuckles –

Each body a tome of human braille


When they lie themselves down

On the place I prepare

With pillows, soft sheets, a lightly fragranced lotion,

And the floating music of harp or flute,

They offer up more than

Their coveted time or their shiny coins


Because I love best

Warm breathing humans

Who expose their longing and give up

Their pain under my hands,

I am a student of bodies