Lodestar Quarterly

Lodestar Quarterly
Figure reaching for a star Issue 17 • Spring 2006 • Poetry

writer's block

Paul Ocampo

the breath of morning after a storm, listen
quietly the footpath with dabs of green shades
brown pools topaz sphere, discern
streams of dew from the fingertips of pine needles
trails of a papillon rain dance, smell

if only I could dip my finger in the collected pools:
a cup of jasmine, holy water font, a puddle
ripples the words rush in waves
a symphonic crash against the mind's template

the instrument is the chisel
dot the i's, cross the t's
of the fingerprints on the new sheet
pick a childhood memory whispers of
serenity to accept things I cannot change
courage to change the things I can
wisdom to know the difference
insert the . [period] at the end.

Paul Ocampo lives in San Francisco. He graduated from UC Berkeley with a degree in English literature, taught English in Korea for a season, and assisted Maxine Hong Kingston in editing her forthcoming anthology Veterans, where his short story "Butterfly" will be included. He is the editorial assistant for the science and medical journals PLoS Biology and PLoS Medicine and is deciding which MFA program to attend.

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