We only think the angelic presence is absent.
Even the malingerer has the Holy Spirit.
We are all spirit filled saints of the daily grind.

There is no attention as intense as an obsessive panhandler.
No one watches as close as the pickpocket of lapsed awareness.
We are all victims of our own lost souls.

Right now we are cheating ourselves of love all around.
How dear the small green turtle spreading to sun
on the highest point of clear bowl universe.

Where is the last black panther that waits the night?
The stars are the late summer streaking sky.
Somehow we will have to find our way back home
in spite of all the crimes – murder and torture
that have left us indebted, hurt and badly injured.
When, of course, we’ve been at earth peace home
                                                 all one thing along.


James Van Looy has been a fixture in Boston’s poetry venues since the 1970s. He is a member of Cosmic Spelunker Theater and has run poetry workshops for Boston area homeless people at Pine Street Inn and St. Francis House since 1992. Van Looy leads the Labyrinth Creative Movement Workshop, which his Labyrinth titled poems are based on. His work appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.