The Second Hand – a poem by Joseph Murphy

The Second Hand

Names leap ahead like hunting hounds,
with the belief they clear the road
of the journey’s unexpected obstructions.
— Luljeta Llshanaku


When a mountain was reshaped by a wing,
coins fell from an emptied pocket,
and a second hand
shaped by Buddha’s breath

Names fell away as a gate opened
within an emptied jar. Ahead
a radiance, obscuring
thought, action, remorse.

Mirrors mirrored nothing;
words unrequired.

And when the second hand
turned again, Buddha paused
at the edge of a stream,
to watch our names sprout
from the loam at his feet.

Joseph Murphy has been published in numerous literary journals and authored four poetry collections, The Shaman Speaks, Shoreline of the Heart, Having Lived and Crafting Wings. He is a member of the Colorado Authors’ League; for eight years was poetry editor for a literary publication, Halfway Down the Stairs.

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