Speed of Time and Light – a poem by Lisa Zimmerman

Speed of Time and Light

After a light sculpture by Collin Parson

The day after the dog died my friend
from Denmark wrote from dust to dust,
from light to light. These concentric
radiant threads agree—a ladder of light
to earth and back again, the journey
all souls take only to abandon here
on the mirrored lake of forgetfulness.


Saint Clare lived 29 years beyond the death
of her beloved mentor Saint Francis
who knew so much about the positive void of God,
who sat content at the banquet of hallowed emptiness.
He taught her prayer travels at the speed of light

so she became a bone-thin candle always burning, even
as she slept, her head on a smooth river stone, even
as she fasted for days on the silence
at the heart of bread rising, on air and sunlight
that filled and filled the holy void inside her.

Lisa Zimmerman’s poetry has appeared in Florida Review, Poet Lore, Colorado Review, Cave Wall, SWWIM Every Day and other journals. Her first book won the Violet Reed Haas Poetry Award. Among other collections are The Light at the Edge of Everything and The Hours I Keep. She’s a four-time Pushcart nominee.

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