The truth of Agni

flight dawn landscape sky
Photo by Kindel Media on

The truth of Agni;

Fire consumes the illusion.

Trees walk on the black way

To the stars,

Trees who remember,

With the stones,

The earth’s enchanted bones,

The beginning and the ending,

The faces of the stones rise,

Red, gold,

Patterned in scars,

Walls of stone, tall,



The dragonflies

And the elven folk

Of long ago;

No one believes

In them now


They sang the truth of the stars.

In the ending – skies

Of gray

And white – oppression.

The smoke of time,

The embers

Of existence,

The age of blindness,

Of existential crime,


And war

Going now,

On the winds of time.

Shiva dancing both time and eternity,

In the stark

Winds that clear the smoke

Of being.

Soon, the bough

Of the oak

Will climb

Into the shimmering rain

Of Indra.

There, the face of Shiva

In the gold

Trees – twinkling among the leaves,

In a world so old –

That came before —

Yet shines again –


In the ever-glimmering rain,

In the train

Of flowers,

In the arc

Of ancient powers.


Written August 7, 2021

© Sharon St Joan

Hanuman, son the wind

shallow focus photography of monkey
Photo by Leonid Danilov on


Son of the wind,


Sent to free

Entangled innocence from rusted snares,

From the bitter clawhold of Ravana,

To guide the gold-winged butterfly,

The shy, dawn-eyed doe,

The nagalinga tree

Of skylit flower,

The brave host of bears

On the oak-hallowed hill,

The bright-songed messengers, in flight,

The belled, meandering cow,

The redwoods of ancient girth,

The moon-



Of silver gill,

Out from the chasms of desolation

Of a world gone awry

Back to the far, far

Reaches of the beginning – before ever time arose

Back to the shining lake of the mountain height

Hidden unseen in the green land of the star

Where mists of joy run

Like horses on the white river, wide,

Where the spring cactus unfolds gold and red.

A day to bring the innocent out, away

In the boat of the canted bow

That fled

Across the storm-bent sea

In the gale-churned hour.

Do you remember your flaming brand

And the fire that went up to swallow

The iron-souled city of Lanka?


Savior of the innocent, hero-son

Of earth and star,

There  –  hear the call of the raven chime

From the canyon of ill-kept time.



Son of the wind,

Breath of the earth.

© Sharon St Joan

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Where now?



Where now the dark-circling


Wolves?  Where the half-haunting


Moon?  Where the swift paws running?


Where now the mists


That rose above the lake


In the early spring?


Are the spirits all flown to that far country


Beyond the black hills of night


The hills of indigo?


Where butterflies flicker


In bright mythic




Where the great raven


Smiles in her cosmic




And ruffles her feathers in the cool air


Scattering stars across the open sea below?


Written around 2009

© Sharon St Joan

Photo: Rackam |


By the wave of the waters



Across the shambled ruins

Of empire,

The wild winds

Of innocence,

Shift the sands

Of bitter bones

And the fragments

Of forgotten footprints.

There by the wave

Of the waters of the great

Sea, the barn owl,

Who, of yore,


The falling

Stars, flits in moth-dreamed


From cliff to cave

In the silvered night

Where the stands

Of singing pines


The bright


Of the moon, whose cowl

Of fire


In the time before


From the mist-cloaked

Hill of haunting



© Sharon St Joan 2013, written around 2001


Photo: © Robert King | Dreamstime.






Heron of grace, blue buffoon


Of elegance


Stretching his endless


Wings over the moon


Wading on spider toes


Through still






Among glass reeds


That glitter in a radiance


Of emerald beads,


Beyond the hill


The world dips


Under lace of lavender


Into the ringed smoke of cities,


Fallen and gone,


While, in opalescent flight,


The heron slips


Upwards through the windows


Of many lilies


Into the open night


Of the rain-winged dawn.


Written around 1998


Photo: Great blue heron. Photo by Gary Kramer, USFWS / “If an image on one of our sites is not restricted and does not say it is copyrighted, then you can assume it is in the public domain.” – USFWS

Journey of the wolves


From within


The immortal




Of the lily


Arise the mists in


Which the cathedral


Of bright








All the winters


Of destiny,


Though the tall firs


List against the bone-


White hill,




The call of the moon invite


The wind-footed wolves to


Return across the night


Over the hinterlands


Of circled ice


Across the crevasse


And the mountain


To the peace of the timeless dawn.



Written in 2008


Photo: © Alexfiodorov |








When the tiger puts his paw into

The rising

Pool of mist by the riverbank,

Then will

The cry

Of all

The worlds be stilled,

While clouds

Of moons dance solemnly

In pale shrouds.

What wild lands have they killed

Now, those hapless hurlers of spears,


Of cities, and sellers

Of strange, stolen fears,

They who haven’t an eye

That can see?

Yet they too

Live at the behest

Of the mud-churning

Floods that fall

Fast on the dry



Is this mythic tiger

Who so gladly drank

Up time and eternity,



In the wide water?

Is it time to be done

Now, to follow

Him into the sky-blue


Land, to be gone,

Like the vanishing one,

Into the cavernous west

Where the great stones that hallow

The ground,

Shine gray in the singing


Where the black paws of the night run

On the rock, with no sound,

Where the winds ever go

Like white-toed moths, wafting

Among the gold cactus of the dawn?

Painting and poem by Sharon St Joan. To see a larger view of the painting, click here.

The howl of the wind

Pin up your soul


And sell it too

In the devil’s sale

For a hatful of dollars.

Isn’t that what you’re doing?

And does your soul bleed

Like the trophy

You pinned

Up on the bounty string

While the desert grew


Wrapped in the pale

Skeleton of the night?

A tale half-told,

Withered on the vine.

Did you kill the moon too?

It looks white

And all dead hung out up there in the sky

To dry

Where the pine


Rattles in the old


And the howl

Of the wind.

And the tatter-faced owl

Is watching,

Still watching

From the luminous cliffs, caped all in shadows,

Bending over to read

The bones of her toes.

A lost bell might toll

While she waits for the world to fold

Up into the far, silver sea

Of whales and sails, and coral shale

That will sing once again

In the bright


Deeper and blue.

March 12, 2012


Photo: © Dgareri / / A coyote