Dan Vera



This morning you are a blessing on four legs,
Nose greeting the snow before you
Tail brushing the snow behind you
your form electric in the falling snow.

What to make of this,
the world gone ecstatic white?
What to make of this,
dog with all legs four for happiness?
Black face with snowy constellations of delight?

After a while, you pleaded to come inside
with liquid brown eyes of anticipation.

In the winter of warring dread
we are all this dog wanting
to come in from the cold



What are the chemical properties of delight?

What physical law rules delight?

In which commandment did the Hebrew God command delight?

Does delight ever go on sale?

Does delight ever go on vacation?

What is the temperature of delight?

Who came first:  the delighted chicken or the delighted egg?

What are the elemental principles of delight?

If I dropped delight from the Empire State Building at exactly the same time you dropped delight from the second story window of your apartment, which delight would land first?

If day follows night, does this mean delight follows delight?

With a billion sparkling beings illuminating the sky, Is midnight the time of shimmering delight?

And if I feel delight at the twinkling of stars that long burned-out in the blue ovens of night, What is the half-life of delight?

An East bound train from Omaha to Denver is traveling at 110 miles an hour and a West-bound train from Denver to Omaha is traveling at 95 miles an hour.  They both leave their respective stations at the same time and the distance between Denver and Omaha is 537 miles.  How much time will it take the train conductors to feel delight at their meeting?

Is depression jealous of delight?

Do the bells at the top of the hill ring with anything but delight?

I was walking through the aisles of the grocery store when I stumbled upon a pyramid display of delight.  I placed one in my basket and proceeded to the checkout line.  But when the cashier tried to scan it, he couldn’t find a universal price code for delight.

                      “Price check on Aisle 3!”

Love is just the space between our danger and delight.



One beside another —brothers
Seven diviners
   of what lies beyond the truths we have uncovered.
One makes three, then four, then more
   until we move beyond mere numbers.

There is thunder over Denver tonight.
And of the million hearts we may never see
Here in the circle we make commitments
   we push the limits of earthly loving.

Electricity visits again
  and the black skies pulse with light —
     currents of power by some capillary action.

Sons kiss their fathers.
Sons kiss their fathers to sleep.
The rose-eyed boy remembers himself again.
We are not the sons they ordered
   with their patriotic dreaming.
We are not the sons they expected to come down the line.

But we unfold
   beyond such kind paternal ignorance.
We unfold within the measure of our time.
And we make peace with the fathers inside of us.
And we give birth to a hidden, long-carried joy within.



This cold morning everything struggles with the cold.
Even the honey requires extra effort to extract it from the jar.

This cold morning the sun will struggle to burn through clouds.
(Do you remember her fiery ease in August?)

The sky hangs low to the frozen ground.
We walk through cloud forms
(Are there constellations underneath?)

This ground is sacred
But is not holy alone.
This sphere is held
by an alchemy of perfection
Moon and sun
the gravities of distance and magnitude
form fire and ice,
wave and tide
Delight and wonder to the human eye
which is the only one to praise
such wonder with the tongue.

So, this day slowly glows to life,
The eye slowly opens in the sky
Love peeks in on us.
and the clouds catch blue fire.



I sat next to a woman on a plane
who astral projected her body
right out of her seat,
by my face,
and through the tiny window at my ear.

We were flying beside the Atlantic
and she only wanted to dip her astral projected toe
in the saltwater.

I saw her blue form flash through the air
hurtling towards the water.
She splashed her foot up to her knee
and just stood there
in mid air
a big soothing astral projected smile crossing her wide blue face.

Just as quickly
she zipped through the air like a blue bottle rocket
through the window
past my face
and into her seat.

"Pepsi. Diet Pepsi. 7 UP?" the passing steward asked.
"Pepsi please." the woman responded.
She took a long drink
turned to me and said,


Dan Vera was born in South Texas and lived in Colorado, Washington State and Chicago before moving to the District of Columbia. He is Managing Editor and Designer of White Crane, founder of Brookland Area Writers & Artists, MenKnit.net and a member of the Triangle Artists Group. His poetry has been featured in Shaping Sanctuary: Proclaiming God's Grace in an Inclusive Church, DC Poets Against The War: An Anthology, Red Wheelbarrow, and Raddish, and the chapbook, Crepusculario. His poetry has also been featured on Pacifica Radio's nationally broadcast Peace Watch program. He lives in the Brookland neighborhood with his partner Peter and their operatic dog Roofus.


Published in Volume 7, Number 1, Winter 2006.

To read more by this author:
Dan Vera: Evolving City Issue
Dan Vera: Split This Rock Issue

Kim Roberts and Vera on DC Author's Houses: Forebears Issue
Dan Vera's Intro to the US Poets Laureate Issue (Fall 2009)
Dan Vera on Four Laureates: US Poets Laureate Issue

Dan Vera: Tenth Anniversary Issue
Dan Vera: Langston Hughes Tribute Issue
Dan Vera: Floricanto Issue

His web site: http://www.danvera.com.