I remember that lilacs enfolded the night
in a soft June kiss,
a never-never land
of love in a candy store.
They floated like clouds of stingless bees
in mesmeric rivers of honey
around your tender face.
There was a sound like water falling
or clusters of little bells
or birds about to sing.
Sometimes I touch that lilac night
when your grave opens,
when dreams take us deep, deep
to love without time, without loss.
~ Helen Shanley
Helen Shanley was program director for Writers of Kern for many years. She may have been one of the founders of WOK. She held poetry writing critique group at her home and influenced a number of poets in our community, including Portia Choi. More of Shanley’s poems can be found at kernpoetry.com in the section “tribute to Helen.” Submitted by Portia Choi.