How would it feel to be a pencil sketch
that, though it isn’t finished, is erased?
I needn’t ask, for I’ve felt like this wretch
within a feeble, mortal frame encased.
Yet I have felt my life sketch has a point
and even there’s a purpose in erasure
that in the end I feel won’t disappoint
and with a faithfulness in this, I pray, sure
that what appears the end is just a start:
a sketch before a masterpiece of art.

Land Insight


You felt just like a drawing that’s erased
till there is nothing but an empty page
in what appears to be a dreadful waste
of everything from youth to elder age.
At different times, we all will be erased.
I pray that afterwards we will be raised.


Mario A. Pita

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As if you were afraid of your own shadow
and always watched to see what it was doing,
because you were convinced it was a bad foe
that you should spend your effort in pursuing,
you feared your shady character, your past,
and tried to keep it always in your sight,
but staring at the shadow that you cast
made you forget to look instead at light.
You fear your shadow self could swallow you,
but turn toward light, for it can only follow you.

Abuelo Shadow

Mario A. Pita

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The oaks that live beyond a hundred years
will not get bored as we are prone to get,
nor will they fall in love or quake with fears,
nor will they have a dog or cat as pet.
Yet still I feel that they have souls like us,
though they will not make artworks as we do,
nor will they speak with lofty words or cuss,
or sing and dance in woods a pas de deux.
They only silently will stretch toward light
and plunge deep roots in yielding ground as well,
serene and unconcerned with earthly plight
as roots, and trunks, and branches slowly swell.
Crows may fight in them and yell, “Caw! Caw!”
but seeing them fills me with peace and awe.


Mario A. Pita

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Human Firmament

Imagine feeling guilty for a cloud
that lingers for a moment then is gone.
It sounds absurd, but that’s what you allowed
to happen in your mind: you were a pawn
pushed around by every passing feeling
as though it represented who you are
till all the contradictions left you reeling,
and you, from your true self, were driven far.
But now you hold the clouds as they drift by
and know you are not them: you are the sky.

Cirrus Heart

Mario A. Pita

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Jewel Flakes

What jeweler fashions snowflakes, all unique,
each one, when closely seen, a crystal gem
that’s crafted with an artistry we seek
for making things as beautiful as them?

To those who answer that each little jewel
was sculpted by the laws of chemistry,
like water crystallizes when it’s cool,
I say the jeweler’s still a mystery,
Blizzard Vista

for laws, like those of physics, can’t explain
the reason laws exist, nor even why
these laws would tell the water to be rain
or geometric jewels dropped from the sky.

They all could be the same. Instead we know
Love’s artfulness expressed in flakes of snow.

Mario A. Pita
Sonnet read by Maria I. Pita

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Marian Affirmation

The queen of hearts is not just in a deck
of cards with which we like to play a game:
I hope, although I feel now like a wreck,
that in the end she’ll summon me by name.
I’m confident, though life is often hard,
the queen of hearts is more than just a card.


Mario A. Pita

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Noel Tales

A monument upon the lifeless remnant
of someone who had built a loving home
reminded me, in horror, I’m a tenant
in vibrant flesh condemned to vacant bone.

At dusk, below a slender crescent moon,
as stars adorned the winter firmament,
melancholy overwhelmed my mood,
for nothing but our deaths seemed permanent.

Delight dispelled my gloom: I was beguiled
when, back inside his home, I got to witness
his widow’s way of charming their grandchild
with tales of him, the evening of Christmas:

She lay beside the tree as though a present
and shared a gift of love’s enduring presence.

Mario A. Pita
Sonnet originally published in Lyrical Emissary

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