Anima Mundi

Found on the Keweenaw Peninsula,
I’ve been keeping it in my pocket,a
piece of unobtrusive umber basalt.
It gives me ballast as I go through the
day. My fingertips crave the texture of
the amygdaloidal vesicles,flesh
absorbing into rock. Pressed between palm
and fingers, registering resistance
of the eroded roots of a mountain.
A resonance travels through my bones,a
song of tumult and upheaval. It has
been through so much -liquefied by intense
heat, under pressure, erupted from Earth’s
core. Timeless, it has existed billions
of years longer than my human mind can
fathom, and will continue to exist,
long after I’m gone, patient, resilient
and enduring. Examined in the light,
speckles of silver crystalline flecks glisten
and the elements have tunneled a hole
through the unyielding surface. Hagstones, what
ancient people called rocks with natural
holes, believing the rocks possessed power
to heal, to ward off evil,and peering
through the hole,            imbued the finder with an
opening into other dimensions.

Anima Mundi
-by Julie Martin


Spanda is a Sanskrit term – derived from the root spadi: “to move a little” (kimcit calana) – for the subtle creative pulse of the universe as it manifests into the dynamism of living form.

My charm
from childhood
with a snug fit
completing the circuit.
The polar bear
bumping the tarnished seal,
the talismans tinkling,
an imprint
of my mother’s laughter.

-by Julie Martin

Catfish Jambalaya

With a towel slung over his shoulder
he sang while he did the dishes
in the kitchen’s golden light.
As orange scented soap suds filled the sink,
a few stray bubbles floated over his head,
a towel slung over his shoulder.
Rocking in a two step he’d twirl the towel-
Me oh my! Oh catfish pie!
he sang while he did the dishes.
Drying the lids of the pots and pans-
Son of a gun we’ll have big fun
in the kitchen’s golden light.

My father was singing – Hank Williams’ Jambalaya, but he slightly changed the lyrics substituting ‘catfish’ for ‘crawfish’ Linguists call this idiosyncratic substitution an ‘eggcorn’.

Catfish Jambalaya
-by Julie Martin