and paused the moon her slanted light
cornered eye wells the hollowed cheek
of seabirds dream your silence

for faded color concealed the pause
abated breathe did bite the billowed chest
and rested petal shall quiver blue

no land no moored crashing waters
know more the inner gears and spring
what autumnal rustling shifts you

the muted voices penetrate not the veil
fathom the mottled dream that holds the gaze
even layered gardens drift the yearning sand

of dead whiteness wreathed the shore
poor seaweed hung and lashed
her heart from the burrowed land

into such tangled reverie cannot awaken
the captured dreamer from its hold
nor can ascension of occulted Venus stir

to come back majestic on that third day
fully whole upon the tower and awaiting
a new ship crests the dawning light

for another era to approach warmed in hope
when quieted men shall find their peace
within the rosy bosoms of salvation and grace

and how pausing dust motes the hall
of sometime in September
how your mother’s laughter sounded
fathers face weighing the early light
waiting your arrival.

Renga Round
by Maysa-Maria Kristina Gadelha Peterson
and brother, Marco Francis Gadelha Ashcroft


beneath your giving tree

The Giving Treeagain we walk the boarded path
wrapped by shortening days
the places where once her green,
shaded, broad arms gave welcome
the center of our universe held
gathered picnics of playful laughter
moments that sewn us all together
scattered now by other things,
to fill your days with doing, dashed
dots across this plain, this cloudy sky
returning beneath your giving tree
whose detours would lead us onward
leans the hollow of our backs before
returning to the shadows of our lives,
and in our loneliness, find again,
another day waking far from home
to the twenty-seventh street bridge



Even the knowing doesn’t soothe

the calling up from under rocks

dark and sleeping haunts

rise to the surface

where they consume

the ghosts of limbs, storm torn

twists at the heart in places

unshared with anyone

for who would hear those words, your words

be still, little bird

be still

everything has its ending

beginning again

and again.

still searching


in the sunflower’s
the bluest sky
so gentle
your heart

a hush
the breeze
bending grasses
alto tones
of the chime
your voice

yellow hammock
a calm
the juiciness
our stolen pear
these gardens
your hands

and how
a cloud
never dies
it simply turns
‘to rain
a life.

time and space

It’s time we join together
Reveal the endless knowing
You’re never lost forever
Just feels so at the time

The mountains scrape the skyline
Divides the days in two
With morning comes a moment
A space that’s close to you

Some days lay blanket heavy
Enough to slow its passing spell
To pace the empty sidewalks
This home awaiting you

Your voice is ever fading
Into the wind it blends
A whisper once held softly
geography transcends

In reaching out through darkness
Fear fades into the dawn
Another day has risen
Your smile is now my song

It’s time we join together
Reveal the endless knowing
You’re never lost forever
Just feels so at the time

The mountains will remind us
What hopeful thoughts imbue
With morning comes a moment
A space that’s close to you

  • For Lina


The hollow

The empty spaces
Gaps that life fills
Another second more
Sand falls upon
Scrapes of before
A thing forgotten,
Broken or misplaced
Like cracks between
The sidewalk lines
A weed endured
Rain melted pain
Of early passings
Those soulful places
Echoing laughter’s tears
Your children’s songs
Already gone and tousled
The dream before
To look upon your hands
Cupped, outstretched
Slipping that which
Not anymore
Is solid enough
To carry,
Quietly fades.


the knowing day

SONY DSCas it was that day
the sweet sorrow,
tangled memories
my clumsy struggle
to fill the empty boxes,
nonsensical laughter
because what else
could be done there
facing the sober truth
your hand in mine,
the one that once
wiped nightmares away
now waiting the footsteps
the words that hung
across the room such,
barely understandable
yet, even the neighboring
old woman could hear
how the heaviness
melted the sunshine
as she smiled, telling
what good daughters are we,
these things between us
echo again and again
lingering quiet moments
trying to smooth out
the wrinkled sheets
of what remained
those heavy, heavy rocks
the burdens carried
yearning for comfort
that blush of grace
dismiss the fading horizon
the ‘awefull’ knowing
in the silence of day
watching the ocean roar
across the TV screen
while all I could say was,
“it will be okay,
it will be okay.”


those last few days
together wove
captive moments


those lucid dreams
your tender hands
knit the story


those notes divine
raindrops glisten
span the silence


those expanding skies
imprint reflection
lingers time


this fragile glimpse
our tangled heart,
our tangled heart



-Photography by Klaus Kampert


under lightning

Remembering you…

searching for simplicity

it was under
glow that there
the curves
love caressed
flowing waves
your knees
from under you
collapsed upon
the loamy lawn
rolling in
your arms
my waist
as tender lips
touched again
my hurricane.

– Previously published August 2008


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How the endless night
hugged your edges
made darker the lines

things that lie between
what was said and
what was meant to be

all alone, there, crumbled
in the corner space
knees held tight, anchoring

sorrow remained in place
while waves of loss
splinter the rock buttress

what held your grace
now downy sand
sifts through such hands

with vacant stares
reflecting yesterday’s stars
those fragile happenings.



Poema de Explicacão
(Para Yeda)
– Lina Gadelha Peterson,  August 1, 1960

Ah! eu me lembro
eramos jovens e simples!

Na verde as coisas
permanecem integras;

Nos é que sofremos
o longo tempo.


Ah! eu me lembro
eramos jovens e simples.

E essa tristeza de agora
e este cansaco nos olhos;

Vos é que descuidamos
da paisagem mais intima.


(Assim, o mar é nosso
as flores se entregam

Ao nosso gesto, a chuva
nos perfuma da mohado

E os carneirinhos ainda
são os mesmos eternos e puros!)


Poema de explicacão:
Nos é que morremos.

(For Yeda)
Poetic translation by Maysa Peterson, January 1, 2018
For you, mom because I promised to write your story. And so it begins…

Ah! I remember
when we were young and naïve!

The green things
linger and remain

It is us who suffer
as time passes.


Ah! I remember
when we were young and naïve

With this present sadness
and the weariness in our eyes;

It is you who discarded
our most intimate landscape.


(Thus, the sea is ours,
for the flowers to indulge

With the wave of a hand, the rain
makes us wet

And all the little lambs still
remain forever pure!)


It is us who die.