A poem. Now, let’s go to the Wildest Place: the Heart of All Souls Eve and Day

October 31st leans heavily into November 1st. It is All Soul’s Eve crossing over to All Souls Day, and Día de los Muertos. The Hungry Ghost Festival of Japan & Vietnam, is now passed but continuously moving the hearts of the living in the Pacific since September. This “inter-region” is the whole of the worlds. The frivolity is over, the party rubbish cleared, and now we honor those who slipped beyond the veil, but still influence or straight up guide how we move through our current world. It is my parents I’m thinking about this dimming day and a moment abstracted in a photo. The word “parents” is more abstract then the perfect photo: this is Dorothy W. and Millan M. Hostak. They are the two beautifully formed persons seen reflected in the photograph below. I am past their passing(s). But, I am still in the hold of their adventurous and bold love for the world, their humility, brilliance and often grandly chivalrous gestures. I also have some questions about the moment in the photo.

They made rivers

it made rivers
-to millan & dorothy on all soul's eve
© Vincent M. Hostak, October 2019
 
while you were enclosed in each other's attention,
the warmth must have been incalculable
and I thought you rolled your sleeves
to style to the camera.
the field of energy must have been immense
and bright, even as you looked away
from each other for the portrait maker’s cue.
was that all that could distract you?
and what of the sound?
was there any other song worth hearing
then the one humming through your hearts?
 
had you any idea the moment was moving,
that it would radiate toward generations:
sons, daughters, granddaughters and great, nieces, nephews
or anyone who examined the evidence of light
burned and polished into this silver salted paper?
or that the restless light wouldn’t be, couldn’t be still?
could your sweet minds caress any other thought
on that occasion? or were they a jar so brimful
it could only hold all that the day gave you?
 
would it surprise you to learn the outcomes:
the successive fields of new energy in the world,
the sweetness in our blood that made us
hopelessly romantic, yet hopefully spirited?
would it turn your heads to learn that our
painfully acquired realism would never spoil
the honey in our veins?
maybe you’d barely be astonished that your love
made worlds move like the snow-melt spring
coursing through newly carved and thirsty flumes
i see beyond the gate.
perhaps it would not astound you that
it made rivers.
 

Published by Vincent Hostak, vmh

Vincent Hostak, vmh, is a writer, podcaster and filmmaker. His poetry has appeared in Sonder Midwest, Tejascovido and in Fall 2020, the Langdon Review of the Arts. Vince is Executive Porducer of Crossings-the Refugee Experience in America Podcast.

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