Saturday, December 11, 2010

Poem for today.

a splash of dust
peppers the street
where i do not go
no winter
will not take me
where i do not
know my face
let it be
another season
that binds me
to some unknown
fancy
i am not one
for cold
though it
gave birth
to me
it will not
take me
i will wait
it out
everything changes
eventually
but if
it should not budge
then i
will come calling
for you
i will call you spring

Poem from Tumblr posted Friday, December 10

(For @sweet_steffy)

tell me
is it your intent
to turn me
then turn
and everything
will tumble
away
look now
i’m ready
with my eyes
my mouth
and my arms open
and unguarded
and i
will remain open
to all possibility
but if you
turn away
if you
have nothing
to offer
then i am closed
a summer cottage
given over to winter
wondering who is it
that has my key

Poem from Tumblr posted Thursday, December 9

(for KristyV, edited slightly from the Tumblr version...)
This
is what loneliness
looks like
a room stripped
of all furniture
or a park bench
slumbering
under fresh snow
it smells like attics
on rainy days
or worn hymnals
on mondays
and it sounds
like a loon
breaching
the still of night
with its plangent cry
when it cannot see
even its reflection
it tastes
like tannic acid
or food left out
too long
for someone
whose absence
requires explanation
and it feels heavy
like humidity
or the anxiety
of anyone
awaiting execution
at best
it is solitude
and its worst
is despair
all sharp teeth
and a thousand
fathoms deep
like a dream
of falling
it is everywhere
and nowhere
one red rose
in a vase
on the table
a cat
curled up
in the sun
exquisite longing
a constant companion
like your shadow
or a star
sailing by
when even
your wishes
forsake you
that is
what loneliness is

Poem from Tumblr posted Wednesday, December 8

let no day
know we are here
they tend
to tangle us
in distress
and disarm us
with conflicts
when we should
be moving
together
into the eager
and sweet eternal softness
of skin

Poem from Tumblr posted Thursday, December 7

i was made
of dreams
that often
stayed awake
at night
i was made
of promises
that were
more dear
than a caress
i was made
of distant trains
emerging as swiftly
from nothing
as they returned
I was made
of hammers
the constant tick
of time
unwinding
i was made
of pools
of summer rain
staring intently
into the sky
i was made
of christmas
and snow swirling
like fireflies
over a frozen lake
i was made
of lamplight
that bathed
my room
in amber hues
i was made
of comic books
and super heroes
and wishes
for wings
i was made
of transistors
and top forty
every little hurt
became my own
but i
was unmade
the moment
my eyes
met yours

Poem from Tumblr posted Monday, December 6

what comes to us
is fragments
when our dreams
consort with their dreams
and die without us
without a word
but we do not
so much as want
or wound them
as we embrace them
too long
until they star
to resolve themselves
and they cannot stand
to be so ordinary
or remembered
because they are divine
when they are forgotten

Poem from Tumblr posted Sunday, December 5

when met
with those
who are
not given
to follow
you or
perhaps you
should suddenly
discover that
no path
becomes you
or perhaps
you see
no alternatives
then resolve
to make
your own
never following
or letting
any one
stand in
your way

Poem from Tumblr posted Saturday, December 4

i remove myself
from every thing
i can
from the traffic
the cul de sac
the convenience store
i remove myself
from the arcane
and the obscene
i remove myself
from the wild
and the weary
from the armies
and the arms
of others
from commitments
and kindness
and questng
and I remove myself
from the rest
of these words
until I achieve
the sanctuary
of solitude
knowing
one thing
all the while
i cannot
remove myself
from you

Poem from Tumblr posted Friday, December 1 called The Coming Atlantis

Go now
and submerge
yourself
in everything
you can
go down
and down
until you are
underneath it all
vast and uncertain
like a mackerel sky
before the snow comes
everything runs wild
and fast and fine
like mist
it sweeps everything
up
but wait
gestate
until no breath
animates your lungs
until you become
mythical, impossible
and free
and then
when you are certain
no one can see
or anticipate you
that is when
you rise.

Poem from Tumblr posted Thursday, December 2

your heart is what
and where am i
if not within it
your heart is when
and why am i
if not beside it
your heart is whom
and how am i
to tell you
that your breath
takes mine
far away
where i
do not know
my heart
without yours.

Poem from Tumblr posted Wednesday, December 1

a plane
passes
like a whim
blue cars
congregate
near the driveway
the fridge
hums
a nervous tune
the world
encroaches
on us daily
and I
embrace
your silence anew.

Poem from Tumblr posted Tuesday, November 30

i am going
to leave
these words
here for you
to make of them
what you will
words
like love
stars, night, kiss
dreams and snow
just to see
what you will do
maybe you
will say
the eyes of the night
are as white as snow
or dreams
are a shower
of love
i don’t know
or maybe
you’ll leave
these words
as you found them
random
with no context
whatever you decide
please know this
they are my favorite words
in the whole world
let no harm
come to them
when you take them
as your own.

Poem from Tumblr posted Monday, November 29

your heart
is a truth
i keep
to myself
i cannot
recall where
i found it
but i sleep
with it
at night
when the moon
is too obvious
and every breath
is a confession
that betrays
my love
for you

Poem from Tumblr posted Sunday, November 28

whatever is
for us will languish
if we are not
swift
each second
that we hesitate
is a moment
gone
forever
into your arms
or mine
it hardly matters
to embrace
or be embraced
is all
and anything less
is regret.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Poem: kiss

there
is nothing
i can say
that cannot
be more acutely
or intimately expressed
than in the confines
of one swift
and unexpected
kiss.

Poem from Friday, November 26 (Tumblr)

(For @neviegirl83...)

every victory
is a day
i can tell you
something new
each one
is rare
in its way
and hard won
because things
have a tendency
to fall away
from us
or they
are taken
away
against our will
you can
take me down
to bone
but i am here
it is
a loss
and yet
i am rebuilding
the scaffolding
is being taken
away
piece by piece
and i
will emerge
anew
soon
those eyes
that fix me
and say
where did you go
mine reply
i am here
as ever
and still
it is where
i am going
that matters
now
and i
will see you
when I
get there.

Poem from Thursday, November 25 (tumblr - a thanksgiving prayer)

come we
into this space
as open as
it discovers us
new and renewing
our hearts
which find
a solace
in the hopes
we offer
and the thanks
we give
for whatever
is for us
to share

Poem from Wednesday, November 24 (tumblr)

this?
is not music
it is bare bones
it is words
chasing words
chasing you
along sidewalks
chain links
and other remains
ever loud
and solicitous of
the ghosts within
the moment
that you reveal
your summer smile
and nothing more
but when
you look away
it is autumn
again
and i long for sinners
and saints
to tell you only
that i am here.

Poem from Tuesday, November 23 (tumblr)

those are dangerous days
that demand of us
a duet or two
in the tintinnabulation
the concatenation
of notes that ensue
we find
our voices
anew
and i find
the morning
in you

Poem from Monday, November 22 (tumblr)

when i began this
i did not know
what i wanted
to tell you
i only knew
one thing
that when you
begin this
i will be done
and gone
lost somewhere
far away
in thought.

Poem from Sunday, November 21 (tumblr)

do not put
your heart
in here
in this
small space
i left
for you
for it will
become entangled
in the unnamed things
that keep me
up at night
in clocks
in wings
and many
intangible things
like love
and memories
that do not
know you
do not
put your heart
in here
it will be
debased
by association
constrained
by description
disgraced
by association
with a yearning
that cares not
who you are
but only that
you are
open
to listen
do not
put your heart
in here
because i
did not
put mine there
put it here
because this
is over.

Poem from Saturday, November 20 (tumblr)

waiting
at the bus stop
the snowflakes
come
like birds
one by one
they gather
in your hair
which seems
more red
today
than ever
under my umbrella
i reach
to brush away
your little passengers
only to pause
as the ghosts within
those crystals
cry.

Poem from Friday, November 19 (Tumblr)

you remain ever
new and unfolding
mysteries before
my eyes and daily
i discover you
more dear than dear
or those gone before
the one you are
here in moments
like this but not
this and more again
remembering all that
i hoped you would be
startles me only
because you are more
and more and never
less than a phenomenon
or the constant revelation
there, in your kiss
where you and i
meet once more
with a thousand warm hellos
each a little prayer
preying on love

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Poem: Untitled verse for @beingtheo

the day lathered up

like dishpan hands

and the clouds

bump along

like a do do wah

or careless doodles

little salt shakers

just spillin snow

on unkempt neon

dreamin every instant

of the unruly night

but no never mind

they just bump along

with a fa la la

falling in line

like spectators

speculatin

what comes next

but that’s

the trap

they get plump

and ponderous

when they should

move quick

like a hey you

or a shoop shoop

instead they

like to linger

but will not

approach or answer

if you say

come in

or try to

dry their eyes

with no birds

to carry them home

they just bump along

they just saunter by

Wednesday's poem

my body is
a troubled cage
there are
no locks
and everywhere
i go
i am imprisoned
leaving clues
for you
to find
and thus
find me
even if
you cannot
rescue me
your cage
is a solace
of sorts
at night
when our eyes
dim and
our guards
are down.

Tuesday's Poem:Down to Stars

For @down_to_stars

down to stars
and still
we ask for more
the world
cannot contain
us
moving out
and often
trailing off
like the weather
until we are eager
hungry thieves
cautiously approaching
each other
sick with want
and other desires
nervously extending
our lips
to feed
our torments
to themselves.

Monday's Poem

when i made
my home
in november
i took down
the rusty banners
from the trees
and laid them
on the ground
and slept there
for a century
while my dreams
were filled in
with kisses
as soft
and wet
as snow

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Poem: No passenger

the days
dream us
too soft
i fear
i like
when time
is new
rolling in
your hands
the way
a ball
will do
but with
no past
this moment
gives birth
to one
and another
and we
move forward
only because
there is
no return
only because
we love
no other
tell me
once more
there is
no end
to this
or please
tell me
this is
the beginning
it always
feels new
with you
and i
know that
i want
no other
passenger.

Verse: Saturday's poem, copied over from Tumblr.

there is
no one in here
now
i did not
designate anyone
as a prisoner
every one
is free
to come
and go
as they please
but i
stand outside
your circles
and i say
nothing
as you
walk away

Verse: Friday's poem, brought over here from Tumblr

tonight
the lights
did not notice us
approach them
as we traveled
across the harbor
we were only
temporary pilgrims
with nothing
to offer them
beyond a glance
a smile
we were gone
in the span
of a kiss
but they
looked on
into the night
searching
for stars
to call
their own…

Thursday's Verse: Originally posted on Tumblr

i am not a silence
or something sharp
penetrating the air
like the scent
of memories
i am a coroner
exploring the death
of a moment
before it has
even passed
and i am telling you
it was as bittersweet
before you
as it is sure to be
untenable without

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Verse: for Miracles4Ring14

what will
you do
with your joy?

will you
send it
outside

with your dogs
echoing through
the canyons at night

will you
swallow it
in that moment

when there
is no breath
at all

will you
leave it
hidden

for others
to discover
by chance

will you
give it
away

to anyone
in grief
instead

will you
invest it
in hope

of one
small impossible
miracle

will you
let it stay up
all night

listening to
the moon tell tales
of imminent winter

what will
you do
with this

your inexhaustible
indomitable
elusive joy

that is
your life
your light

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Verse: Please do not go

please

do not go

gradually

the way that

winter

tends to recede

please

do not go

and leave

this world

without you

please

do not go

with only

the rain

in your wake

please

do not go

in the middle

of a sentence

or when

you have nothing

left to say

it is better

to have

your silence

than to be

without

Please

do not go

with kisses

as yet

unknown

or anything

that your hands

have not touched

please

do not go

so sudden

that there is

no room

for return

or goodbye

please

do not go

until

i am gone.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Verse: greetings

you
who called me
by my name

who did not
once think
to afford me

the sweet
discretion
of anonymity

i ask only
that you
tell me this

is there
nothing
i can do

to forget
that which
i was

now that
you know who
i am

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Verse: Maps

perhaps you are
in your own way
eternal
but not me
you can see
the cracks
these tyrannical little scars
that overwhelm me
as they spread out
unevenly
in search
of each other’s
tender embrace
each crease
a path
forming a map of
my life
where my nervous fingers
my tense toes
are borders
i never venture
beyond
even as
the edges fray
and more lines
form
look at my palm
this is where
i was born
and there
is where my travels
end
and the in between
borders on you
whether you are
eternal or not
i know
no other way
to go
nor where
i will be
i only have
my map
and it
is incomplete

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Verse: I am telling your story

i am telling
your story
without rain
without a hint
of summer
or any mention
of your name
i am telling
your story
reluctantly
but only
because
i don’t want
to leave you
vulnerable
to those who
would make
assumptions
about you
because
they don’t know
i am telling
your story
and starting
with the crush
of leaves
carpeting sidewalks
because
it is as good
as any place
to begin
i will
fill more details in
and presently
but if you
sense a hestiancy
it’s only because
i was
i am telling
your story
from the inside
one table
in the corner
where i saw you
waiting
for me
with a smile
of familiarity
how long
had it been
years dominoed
in the memory
and we
built new paths
much like
the brain does
after a stroke
but not a healing
something else
i am telling
your story
and i bring
in the snow
and Valentine’s
and one chocolate heart
i could not unwrap
because
your heart
was not mine
not yet
that day
was so cold
i looked
into the deep blue
curlicues unfurling
on your shirt
and froze
i am telling
your story
with uncertainty
only gradually
giving way
to what
we knew
but would not say
for fear
it would not
be reciprocated
i am telling
your story
and this is
where i put in
the confession
the long walk
the brush of hands
that kiss
when the sun
emerged
like a blessing
but more like
the sun
i am telling
your story
often
i know
and adding
little details
about your eyes
the way
you bend your leg
when you make
breakfast
how your hair
rests softly
on your shoulders
and tumbles when
you turn to look
at me
and that smile
that restores
mine
i am telling
your story
because
i know no other
that fascinates me
quite like yours
and yet
when i
am telling
your story
somehow
it becomes mine
forgive me
one day
i will get
this right.

Friday's Poem from Tumblr

the world
does not need
any thing
i have
to offer
the wind
absconds
with my words
the sea
distorts
my reflection
the sky
is an anvil
i break
my fists
upon
and one day
the warm wet lips
of the earth
will swallow
whatever remains
of me
just as eagerly
as i
eat a peach
in august
forgetting i was
ever here
so if
you approach me
do not offer
your name
or ask mine
and we
will never
be burdened
by each other’s
identity
that is
a lot to ask
of anyone
as fleeting
as a dream
as we
instead
i will look
for you
when i
close my eyes.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Verse: Tuesday's poem, today!

(again, tossed onto Tumblr...)

these myths
that portray us
do not tell
the whole story
nor do
the shadows
that mimic
our every move
but if i dream you
or dream of you
it is our story
your heart
that i attend to
and the morning
that i sing
the end of this world
is the day
i wake
without you.

Verse: Wednesday's poem today

(this was written for @onegirlrambles. I posted it on Tumblr, where I seem to be putting these first. And then I get lazy & forget to move them here. I tried to keep to three syllables for each line. I failed...)

those red leaves
ripe with flame
bow their heads
when it rains
as they cool
the waning day
breathes a sigh
and falls away

Monday, November 1, 2010

Verse: your want is whatever

your want is whatever

i am meant to be

whether you know

what you want

of me

or not

i want only

for you to know

you are ever becoming

what i love

even without knowing

what i love

which changes

as you change me

everyday and

unwittingly

your love

becomes me

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Verse: untitled

if you
do not see me

when nothing
approaches

with an all
consuming silence

that takes
my voice

instills me
with great doubt

and removes
all traces of me

i want you
to know this

i cannot recall
a day

that i did
not love you

even when
the silence

was just
between us

even when i was
so distracted

by the everyday
that i neglected
to tell you.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Verse: untitled

if you
would understand
the sea

you must
first look
at the stars

to see
how they
float by

if you
would understand
the night

you must
first look
at the sun

to see
how it
illuminates everything

if you
would understand
anything

you must
first look
at a dream

to see
how it
eludes you

if you
would understand
love

you must
first look
at longing

to see
how it
becomes you

when you
are not
here.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Verse: A winter poem for @gilesmarie

first is the frost
a shroud
of stars
that falls upon
fallow earth
without so much
as any wish
to hold on to
and then
the bare trees
slip into
their coats
thick and white
like whipped cream
its wonderful
when it
is new
when the clouds
are mackereled
and the air
is crisp
and brisk
and we catch
sight of our breath
before it scatters
like chickadees
and yet
nothing compares
to watching
the streets
crawl under
fresh linens
woven by fireflies
darting about
in the amber glow
of festive streetlights

Thursday's Verse: Poem for someone who needs one. Originally posted on Tumblr

the love
that you wish for
the love
that is
as fierce
and indomitable
as you
and yours
is waiting
for you
where you
cannot see
and you
will know
you have found it
or it has found you
only when
it has completely
overtaken you
and it will
soon.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Verse: untitled

when you come
for me
and you will
eventually
cloaked
as you are
in anonymity
i will be
ready
because i
have already
surrendered.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Verse: untitled

take back
the night
it is interminable
take back
the bruise
that is your kiss
take back
the goodbye
in your hello
and this silence
that i
reside in
take back
the day
we met
and give it
a name
to make it new
and take away
your veil
of sleep
and see
me trembling
with love
for you.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Verse: The Butterflies

come

and i

will wrap

my wings

around you

here

in a dream

of life

that abounds

with you

quick

before

the day

absconds with you

and the wind

reveals all

of my secrets

that even

my memories

do not know

that i was once

a child of fear

but that was

so long ago

come

into my wings

i am calling you

from the embrace

of an evening

i am falling through

where is the grace

if not

in your eyes

come

into my wings

tonight, we rise.

Verse: Sunday's poem, today!

(I put this on Tumblr on Sunday and forgot to copy it here...)

if you leave
in winter
spring will not come
to console me
if you leave
at night
what morning
could comfort me
without you
the light
of my life
no dreams
would sleep
behind my eyes
no songs
would sing me home
you would
unwittingly take
every color
every aspiration
when you go

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Verse: mouth

mouth
on hungry mouth
devouring each breath
before it leaves
the lips
we slip
into the small hours
between light
where we die
and dreams
cry for life
that we
cannot live

Friday, October 22, 2010

Verse: autumn did not often

autumn did not often
occur to us
even as it sacrificed
itself, each day
and threw its garlands
at our feet
we only saw winter
over her shoulder
approaching us
with haste
and we wept.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Verse: Moments

after entertaining
one another
with our secrets
each moment
discards itself
in haste
forgetting that
it ever made
our acquaintance
and we
let them go
like lovers
in the night

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Verse: my heart

my heart
is not my heart
it is yours

it is
with you
wherever you go

and experiences
your joys
and sorrows

as intensely
as if they
were mine

which they are
for it is you
love

who is
the heart
of my heart

which is now
and always
yours.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Verse: ballad of Lucyspet II

i am
on my way
back home

where i
am meant
to be

which is not
where i am
now

desire lines
my face
with regrets

and even
my dreams
do not understand me

older than
ever and yet
still alive

i want only
to know
one thing

who is it
that waits
for me

on my way
back home

Monday, October 18, 2010

Verse: untitled

the scent of
our shadows
fills the night

see how
they revolve
like planets do

and under
the soft covers of
a moonlit sky

every star
shivers
from wanting you

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Verse: i love the light

i love
the light

the way
it circulates

how swift
it suffocates a city

how it defines
a space

the way
it frames you

how it catches
your soul

when you are
not looking for it

how it reveals
you are home.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Verse: love is not here

love
is not here

though i invoke it
with a word

it is
not here

it is in
the tickle of rain

the sympathetic gaze
of memory

the cool melodies
of coltrane

the sighs
of a summer's night

the candor
of a smile

but it
is not here

unless you
are here

to know
i love you.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Verse: Randomisms

For @randomisms, who asked me to write for the word randomisms. This is the result. A failed attempt to be random in that I tied all the fragments I had together....

wind creeps word
by wordless word
through unkempt hours
of ocher songs
spilled by coffee birds
gone to ground
in the bleating black wings
of autumn’s undinal embrace
which denies us
until we cry out
for witnesses
to the confession
an avalanche
of epiphanies that
our sleep drawn hands
design with the silence
of a sky which
does not recall
when we were born
and will not sigh
when we are not here
to wake it.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Verse: this is just to say

this is
just to say
i love you

for all
the reasons
you know

(your eyes
your calm
your smile)

and all you
think you cannot
be loved for

(every freckle
that knows you
more intimately than i)

and if i
should die
in these words

my love
for you
will prevail

my love
for you will
remain here

in these words
which are
no longer mine.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Verse: you whom I love

you whom i love
not because
i know you love

but because you
are near
and present

even when
i am not
in need of love

or deserving
of a love
that is yours

which makes
my mouth ache
with anticipation

i move
from want
to want

and keep
myself ever
in love

with you
i am more
agreeable

even when
i am not
pleasant

or present
and yet this
is the constant

i am in love
as deep as it
is in me

and you
yes you
whom i love

not because you
love me
but because
i love you.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Verse: untitled

until
i know
for certain

all magic
is just
illusion

i will continue
to believe
in you

for i
am in
your sway

Monday, October 11, 2010

Verse: love did not fall on me

love
did not fall
on me

suddenly
like a spring rain
or salvation

love
overtook me
gradually

like
an army
advancing cautiously

when i
realized i
was in its sway

it was
already
too late.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Verse: I fall for you

(NB: M'lady, when asked what to call it, proffered this.)

the leaves
are loathe
to lose
their green
lest they
forget themselves

they wave
as we
walk by
your arm
in mine
as always

you know
that i
love autumn
the most
even more
than spring

because autumn
feels like
a respite
from summer
so cool
so crisp

whereas spring
often feels
like winter
lingering on
after snow
has gone

better autumn
with colours
that reveal
themselves gradually
each day
that passes

just as
you, love
reveal yourself
to me

Saturday, October 9, 2010

verse: untitled

all the love
that loves you
beyond and before
this moment
may not be
acute or actual
as this moment
that we clutch
so dear as a dream
but it is constant
and continuing
to love you even
when my body
is absent
and my voice
is a memory
that cannot recall
how i came to be
in your heart
where i always am
as if i were ever
anywhere but here

Friday, October 8, 2010

Verse: Simplicity

(for @onegirlrambles)

even before
i start
i am taking things
away

others
add details
here
and there

and yet
i endeavor
to leave things
out

i always wonder
how much can you say
without saying
anything at all

will silence
and empty spaces
carefully deployed
suffice

for if i
were to fill
every available
gap

there would be
no room here
at all
for you

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Verse: mirror move

even before
i found myself
in mirrors

it was
too late
to change

and when
at last i met
my reflection

i discovered
we had little
in common.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Verse: i miss silence

(inspired by @lucyspet)

i miss silence

and the untold hours

that i spent

in its company

plumbing its secrets

i miss its stark certainty

and its merciless calm

the cadence

of its voice

the way the warmth

of its breath

silenced me

the way it harbored me

like a refugee of the night

and how

it would scatter

at the slightest sound

just like mice

when you turn on

a light

there were times

it was so tangible

i could touch it

but now

amid clamor

and chaos

din and drone

it is hard to find

apart from sleep

which is fleeting

i grieve its passing

as you would

mourn a friend

i miss silence

more than most anything

you can name

i miss silence

and i struggle

to maintain mine.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Verse: in the span of a kiss i love

in the span
of a kiss
i love

i became
loose and
began to expand

almost like clouds
raw and ripe above
with rain

i began
to forget my feet
my name

one kiss i love
after another
and another came

i like
the way
they roll by

the tenderness
with which
they die

they way
they alight
like dew

in the morning
on my lips
where you reside

in the span
of a kiss
i love
i sigh.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Verse: contrast

as autumn
ignites everything

the elms, oaks
and poplars

my neighbor
climbs a ladder

to adorn
the flaking shingles

of his
aging house

with a warm
winter coat.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Verse: apart

to be a heart
in search of a heart

like the moon
yearns for the sun

it is
a lonely pursuit

what keeps us
apart

is part of
the attraction

loose limbed and
finite

we are fine
and fair and wishing

we were rare, still
we are apart even

when we are enfolded
in an embrace

because i can always
see where i end

and you
begin.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Verse: if to begin

(for @blondhousewife...)

if to begin
is joy
then start here

your arms
can embrace anything
not yet born

or be born
in this instant
and shine

what you illuminate
will become wild
or new

and, eventually
part of you
if you are open

to everything
that is open
to you.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Verse: i go to love

i go to love
when i do not know
where else to go

it is
not anywhere
that i can see

but it is
everywhere i am
and where i am not

it is
waiting only for
anyone to happen by

and it is in me
ever and always
just as you are
in me too.

Verse: when nothing i am

when nothing i am
meant to be

what matters what
you recall of me

when nothing i am
but memory

what matters what
you let go free

when nothing i am
that you can see

let silence be
your elegy

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Verse: until i was expressed

when i was
unexpressed
i was timeless

i had
no gift to give
but i listened

until my ears
were full
of rain

and my mouth
was as dry
as sand

and when
i was expressed
at last

i found myself
awake and attached
to everything

but no thing
quite captivated me
like you.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Verse: somehow if this

somehow
if this becomes
impossible to know
then grant me forgiveness
please

i was trying
to reach beyond
conventional expression
to tell you something ordinary
in an extraordinary way

too often i take
my counsel from
the stars, the moon
their tintinnabulation
is irresistible to me

i forget
to ground these things
in the calm
in the warmth
of lips, and hands

in those familiar
and immediate places
where the most pure
form of expression
resides

but if you like
my words then
let them be
a balm
a snow

and know this
that i love
love most
when it is
expressed by you.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Verse: you in love

you
in love
with a body
well and wonderful
will find once
upon a time
to come
that body
unfamiliar in ways
you cannot touch
or tell
yet you
in love
with a body
well and wonderful
will find you are
unafraid to love
what is not new
and was not old
when you were
a body born
in love.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Verse: Just so

if in
this expression
of love
there is
not enough
of love
know this
you were
well loved
even before
it was
expressed here
and you
will be
loved after
and ever
beyond expression
and even
surely beyond
these hands
and how
they reach
for yours
almost instinctively
like flowers
will stretch
their faces
up toward
the sun.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Verse: you are the weight

you are
the weight
of a smile
and spreading
ever like
a shadow
over me.

Verse: You

i am not
without you
wherever i go
there is you
with me
or i
remain impossibly here
even when i am not
wearing your smile
on mine

Verse: kneel

whatever becomes
a confession
confides in me
before it can
express or expel
the hunger for grace
or forgetting
but it does not
forgive

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Verse: nap

i take
the day
where there are
no colors
to wander by
your sleeping hands
which do not
even hold a sigh
or inscribe
the air extraordinary
with expectations
that you
are waiting only
for me to say
wake up

Friday, September 24, 2010

Verse: untitled

no eyes
in my heart
but yours
to see me

no mouth
in my heart
but yours
to kiss me

no love
in my heart
but yours
to feed me

no one
in my heart
but you
sustain me

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Verse: Familiar

(Running over some familiar ground, thus the title...)

Tonight

the sky

will be

a harvest

of stars

the moon

will swell

with pride

and I

will bid them all

goodnight

grazing

in fields

of untended dreams

until morning comes

to collect us all.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Verse: I have two enemies

(inspired by a tumblr post by @Xytrex)

i have
two enemies

but they
are not mine

their enmity
is not mutual

but i have earned
their hate

the things
that i have done

i did when i
was unsupervised

and i cannot undo
nor repair

however much time
elapses

i have
two enemies

but they
are not mine

to me
they are

no more
than strangers

i bear their hatred
like a scar

and i
know this

if i have
any enemy

in this world
it is me

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Verse: Shock

(For @angelahelga)

the shock

of your mouth

on mine

is like

a zipper

catching skin

and i shiver

in anticipation

that our lips

will meet

again.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Verse: clarity

this is
transitional

it will
take time

to unfold
you must open

and let things
fall away

or embrace
something new

too often
i close

when things
seem impossible

and i
nurture winter

in my soul.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Verse: Question

one breath
of fear

the undoing
of all i hope

how does
my heart negotiate

such pressing
moments

as a skylark
that adjusts

to a shift
in the wind

or as a leaf
that falls away?

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Verse: Lucyspet's Reverie.

(Happy early birthday present @lucyspet. I hope this is okay...)

it is

so warm

the sand

seeks shade

between my toes

funny how

the sun

bleaches everything

but my skin

turns brown

i find

a space

for me

and unfurl

my shadow

the waves

foaming and frenzied

like lovers

they reach for

the shore

and retreat

just as quickly

as if

they touched

too soon

i am looking

at the sky

the calmest sea

i know

not a ripple

but for

a distant band

of cloud

crouched and curious

on the horizon

yet not approaching

it looks

like Culebra

la isla chiquita

the last virgin

and Flamenco

where the sand

is as soft and white

as new-fallen snow

even the relics

seem natural

acclimated and quiet

like they forgot

what they were

much like anyone

sometimes,

i forget myself

here is home

but it's not home

i live there

and in summer

and on a strand

of sand for

as long as i can

i make a space

for me

and my shadow

and though

this bottle

of beer

is sweating

the air

has the scent

of autumn

i sigh

summer is

in retreat

like the cloud

and Culebra

and the waves

i leave

a space

for someone

and go

where i make

a home

at night

in bed

the sheets

fall over my skin

like waves

i feel

tides inside me

rocking me to sleep

and i encounter

summer anew

my true home

is never

so far away

my Culebra

my isla chiquita

my summer

my ocean.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Verse: Duet

with our warm appetites
we did seize silence
like a hapless child
and draw from it
an unconditional surrender
to the sacred hymn
of our insatiable love
and in the morning
that followed
we taught it
how to pray.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Verse: Garlands

For Garland Jeffreys. He'll never know how much Escape Artist, Ghost Writer and Don't Call Me Buckwheat have captured my soul.

One day
when we meet

if we are destined
to do so

i will take
your hand

and say
to you

take me
to the matador

and if
you nod

and smile
then i will
call you friend.

Verse: quotidian

Every morning
i seek
to embrace
the sky
that the earth
denies me.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Verse: atlas

i carry

the world

with me

wherever

i go

it keeps growing

and i wonder

how much more

i can take

hope

is too much

to hold on to

and expectations

weigh me down

and memories

accumulate

like a heavy snow

and still

i bear it all

wondering what happens

when i let it go.

Verse: no thing

sometimes

i wonder

what is there

that i can offer

this world

and the only thing

i can think of

is silence.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Verse: Song

there are

many songs

i sing

but yours

is the only one

I know by heart

and i sing it

always

every day

softly

when you

are here

and loudly

when you

are gone

to fill

the space

without you

everything i love

in this world

is contained in

that song.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Verse: Wordplay

(a poem for @bekkimeehan's birthday, which is tomorrow. I give it to her now in case she doesn't like it, giving her plenty of time to exchange it for better...)

one down
and then

where did
the year go

focus
one down

this should
be easy

but thoughts
are like spiders

busy spinning webs
in my head

i look
across the table

and see
you smile

one down
often purple

five letters
possibly prose

one down
words puzzle me

they are
like butterflies

you cannot pin
one down

another letter
another block

this one
is Y

i like the way
it converges

O
so pretty

one down
and i

look up
again

and fill the space
that remains
with U

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Verse: invention

once
we made shadows
of our fears
and pinned them
to the wall

now
those same
shadows
they bear
our names

and hope,
which doesn't
recognize us
anymore,
fears us most.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Verse: untitled

we make names
invocations

we fill them
with our memories

until
we are empty

and that
is when

we make
a silence

and hang it
in the air

nothing stops
but us

not the birds
or their songs

nor the clouds
that assemble

curious crowds
uncomprehending

if they cry
it isn't for us

or anyone
at all

and that
is what hurts

more than
anything

that nature
doesn't remember

that day
like we do

Friday, September 10, 2010

Verse: prisoner

naked
as nothing
and lies

i confront
myself daily
in the mirror

and deny
defy
what i see

it
is not
me

it is
just
a frame

and one day
i will
be free.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Verse: how to tweet

This is for @kattcalls. She suggested I write this. I don't know if it is poetic. But it is based on how I tweet.

say
what amuses
you

the less thought
the better
sometimes

it can
become
labored

and don't
worry
so much

about what
others
will think

you tend
to second guess
yourself

in fact
you should keep
your head down

that way
you avoid
the drama

even
when empty
try

it helps
to keep you
primed

your voice
is as valid
as anyone's

and
on equal
footing

but
always
leave room

in your
idea and
for others

to fill
expand
and share

that
is where
the magic lies.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Verse: When to speak to the sky

here
is what i
have found

overall
clear conditions
are best

clouds
only cause
distractions

also
never speak
during the day

there is
too much
traffic

or at night
too many people
making wishes

your voice
is likely
to be lost

no
mornings
are optimal

when it
is fresh
and new

before
it has decided
on a mood

you never know
you might
make it smile.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Verse: how to start a poem about love

here is what
i recommend

start with the eyes
but be careful

they cannot
be green

they are jade
or emerald

something precious
but better

particularly
if inspired

like
a spring morning

glistening
with dew

that kind
of detail

you will discover
is very important

to let her know
they sparkle or smile

that is when
she knows

that you
notice things about her

and that
is when

you have
her full attention

the rest
is up to you.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Verse: how to disappear

first
is the physical

a gradual
retreat

until
you are alone

even
in close proximity

and then
come silences

that become
prolonged

until
permanent

after which
there is

a forgetting
of details

and certain
days

until you
are unburdened

by remembering
and memories

yours
theirs

that is how
you disappear.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Verse: after the hurricane

we did not
go to night

it came
to us

curled up
on the couch

in the living room
so we went outside

in search of
available light

sitting on
the back veranda

the leaves
all a-bustle

a warning that night
was near by

we decided
to retreat

back inside
in our living room

we lit candles
to keep it at bay

and it sat
silently

watching the wax
drip

like a second hand
winding down

knowing it would not
be denied much longer

until at last
we evaded night

the only way
we know how

in dreams.

Yesterday's verse: Earl

the wind
was a cauldron
of autumn

stirring
the leaves
into a frenzy

until
a yellow one
broke free

pirouetted
for a moment
then fell away

sailing
down sheets
of rain down

to perish
wordlessly
in a rising sea

as my window
wells up
with tears.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Verse: Atlas

in the land
of idle chatter
i remain
silent

because
i swore that
i would keep
your secrets

and i will
carry them
with me
where i go

all the while
wondering if anyone
will keep
mine

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Verse: you walk your ghost

you walk
your ghost

where i cannot
be seen

new york
or paris

but never close
to home

that would be
awkward

you walk
your ghost

and everything
is rearranged

waves
become clouds

rivers shiver
and willows sigh

and autumn
reveals herself to you

throwing her tunic
at your feet

you walk
your ghost

and haunt
everything

the starless night
familiar songs

rooms where
you dim the light

so they
can't pry

this verse
and me.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Verse: Untitled

sometimes i wonder
what was it like
when the moon
first encountered
its reflection
in a still lake

it must have been
something like
the very first time
i looked into
your calm green eyes.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Verse: Song of Tammy P.

For @tammyphinney

every day i
chase light
i seek chance
and change

and i
try to catch
conscience
by its short tail

but the world
remains the world
whatever i do
wherever i go

so i
am grateful
for the night
which brings silence

it reminds me
to sit
to embrace promises
i made

to make
an invitation
to others
with no restriction

this life unfolds
for anyone to discover
but it belongs to me
and you.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Verse: Vampires

we were ghosts
before the bruises
set in

before we knew
which shapes
to take

before
we had names
to distract us

before blood
had even tasted
our hunger

before the wound
of your mouth
spread to mine

before
we joined
the feast

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Verse: Sunday Morning

they
inch along
in the shade
as if
to avoid
the eye
of god

but i
walk by
in the glare
of the sun
insurmountable
seeing only
blue sky.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Verse: Conquests

i see you
compiling an index
of names

pushing
the night aside
like a stranger

denying
even heaven
a home in your heart

and as you
go forth
confident in your stride

i ask
only this
of you

do not pass me
without so much
as a goodbye

at least
will you let me
introduce myself

before
you dismiss me
with a shiver
of recognition.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Verse: untitled

i
while we
were looking
up at the stars
wondering
what they are

we did not notice
that they were
looking back at us
wondering
who we are.

ii

if you
are not
a star
then why
do you
illuminate me

i am
not here
to shine
i am
only here
to dream

and i
only dream
in this
one brief
instance of
pure love

when we
are brave
and unguarded
when we
say goodnight
and embrace
the dark.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Verse: Kisses II

your kisses
are safe
with me

i keep them
sheltered between
my lips

until
you are ready
for them

until
you are ready
to give me
mine.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Verse: awake

every day
is a letter
slid under the door

open it
and the room
floods with light

if you
can swim
you will not drown

just reach out
with your arms
and rise

and all
your dreams
will fall away

settling
under the bed
where night lies

waiting only
for you
to close your eyes

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Verse: how to be photographed

it is much easier
when you
concede nothing

just give them
a blank canvas
to work with

let them project
what they want
on you

and you
can see yourself
as they see you

you become holy
because you
attached nothing to it

not your fear
not your rapture
not your soul.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Verse: Lake

(For @gilesmarie)

the dust
of the day
is settling

and the lake
is like glass
now

a mirror
a frame
for everything

for the leaves
that wonder
who they are

and bristle
at the sight
of themselves

or the sky
unsatisfied
with its reflection

dismissing the sun
and unveiling
countless stars

in the cool night
i see
its breath

quiet and calm
a frame
for every thing now

a frame for life passing
in moments ever ending
like this one

a frame
for me
to shatter

as i
slip beneath
the sheet

and float
out of frame
into the night

in a dream
of life.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Verse: escape

tired
of the constant
surveillance of
my shadow
i taught him
how to dream
and i
have not seen him
since.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Verse: Untitled

you know
we will become
ghosts eventually

time will not
bend to allow us
more than these shapes

but we can foreshadow
patient glances
in infinite eyes

etched in oak
and set in time
pieces will collide

we can bring them
with us
it's only natural

to want
is to realize
you love

and could be loved
if you can
embrace your shadow

it will weep
but only
for a moment

until you
let it go
it isn't you

any more
than you
are me

but i
made a nest
for you

a place
ever arriving
to meet us

until
we are ghosts

Friday, August 20, 2010

Verse: five minutes

i enter
the world
early

when the sky
hazy on the details
of a long night withdraws from me

when people walk by
with their dogs
without a word or glance

when the vendor
at the corner store
sneaks out for a smoke

when the rush hour buses
go out of service
and roll on by

when pigeons look down
quizzically from pitched roofs
trying to make sense of it all

when there is
no milk for
my lover's tea

when i
am open
to inspiration.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Verse: fireflies

we will rise
to meet the light

and illuminate
each other

when we are
captured by the night

a warning
to those who prey

do not attempt
to extinguish us

or lead us
astray.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Verse: The secret language of travelers

what day
is it
today

we left
a month ago
or so

and since
then there was
Maryland

close to
Baltimore but
not there

maybe
a state park
or a gothic church

not like
that time
in Florida

three days
were well below
freezing

more like
Arkansas or
Corpus Christi

but not Quebec
at least
not yet

was it
two weeks
or ten days

the Smithsonian
alone
would take a week

and more
particularly down south
it is congested

to sit and eat lunch
in an old train
someone has imagination

so many friends
never travel
so much unseen

life
must be like
a waiting room

but we
move on
restlessly

looking for
something
perhaps an end

you never know
you might catch it
unawares

hiding
from us
in the trees

waiting for
a chance
to pounce.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Verse: untitled

one thing
about the rain

i tend
to listen

more intently
when it whispers

than when
it rages

if only
because

that is when
everything matters

that is when
its secrets
are suddenly revealed

Monday, August 16, 2010

Verse: where i am

this is
where i am today

not beyond
or between words

though they may
seem too small

they contain me
just as you do

as much space
as i can

i take
and yet you expand

until I am gathered
safely in

dreaming of
new words

to contain you.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

verse: when nothing becomes me

(for m'lady)

when nothing
becomes me

when this
arthritic language

no longer knows
your name

and my eyes
hold no dreams

eager to be
introduced to yours

to unravel
your infinite mystery

do not forget
what i was

when i
was yours

it was in
that brief time

so much
like spring

when nothing
became me

quite like you.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Verse: analysis

too pretty
to be told

i hold
your story

here
in my heart

waiting only
for someone

to ask
where I find
my heaven

Friday, August 13, 2010

Verse: You do not belong

you do not belong
to morning or anything
so eager as me

you are not
in this breath
of silence

nor are you
in this brief
and modest verse

your eyes
are words
that are unspoken

but let them speak
soft if you will
a kiss perhaps

one look
could this moment
unfold me

and my life
will begin
and end

in the blush
that is
your smile.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Verse: Concession

when transfixed
by your eyes
i think

anything
you ask
i will do

and yet
i do resist
some times

and i
do not know
why

i swear
i will
give you anything

and yet often
all i give
are words

and all
of them
are borrowed

they are
not even
mine.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Verse: Unrequited

now you know
how the day
retreats

how can you
look at the sky
and not shiver

it is so blue
it makes me
sigh

to know
i will never
embrace it.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Verse: Begin

born and bare
everyday

and gasping
for air

awareness
takes hold

slowly
details reveal

the senses
fill themselves in

and you
become you

even before
your eyes open

mine
find you

to leave
a kiss

to keep you
safe and warm

when i
rise.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Verse: twilight

somewhere
i walk

where my feet
do not know

the ground
abounds in endings

ever rising
to greet me

without fail
they whisper

rest but i
prevail

it is not
so dark yet

that i cannot
see you.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Verse: Birthday poem for m'lady

in this love
i want nothing

more unfolding
when and wow

the fluttering
of my heart

will not begin
to tell

you are in me
like love is

these lungs
ever expanding

to embrace
and hold

the air
you breathe

and to not
let go.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Verse: somehow your hands

(Tomorrow is m'lady's birthday. If you follow her on Twitter, wish her happy birthday then. I wrote this as a gift for her, in a car, this morning, on my BlackBerry. I made some editorial changes and additions, but it is 95% the same as the fevered note I made.)

somehow your hands
have seen me
before this

and loosed
into the air
i soar

in impossible wonder
and words wanting
to know

the how
of here and now
which is unfolding

urgently
in a shorthand
of finger strokes

my soul
a canvas of
slight and seeming

feathered phrases
i won't recall
but for the mysteries

that you
have mined and met
in me

Friday, August 6, 2010

Verse: Hiroshima

as i
gaze upon
the chalk outlines

a grim, hollow reminder
of a brief moment
so long ago

i wonder
what is
there to offer

to comfort
those who are
the departed

water
to quench their thirst
for life

a silence
that complements
their own

a voice
too conflicted
to take a side

or this
a hope
for never again
again and again

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Verse: predators

walking by
the sinister knots
the barbed wire
that snakes around
the abandoned school
where my mother went
the windows
that remain
look like black eyes
at least the ones
that are not broken
or boarded up anyway
i chance to see them
brown as oak
and huddled
conspiratorially
in the long grass
singed by the sun
moving careful
and slow together
so as not
to raise suspicion
so as not
to let their prey know
that they are approaching

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Verse: sidekick

(for @niclone)

winter
has a way
of sneaking up
on you

after
a while
it gets into
your bones

and
that is
the instant when
you know

that
you should
find someone you
can love

someone
brave enough
to give love
to you

yet
heroes are
so very hard
to find

so
if I
am not asking
too much

perhaps
you would
agree to be
my sidekick

and
we will
live a secret
nocturnal life

together
prowling restlessly
for the promise
of adventure

while
the streets
that do not
know us
sleep.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

verse: target

when i knew
what my voice
was for
it was already
too late
it had cracked

when i knew
what love
was for
it was already
too late
i had betrayed it

when i knew
what fingerprints
were for
it was already
too late
i was imprinted

when i knew
who you
were for
it was already
too late
i was a target

Monday, August 2, 2010

Verse: Room

i want a room
where everything leaves
by way of night
except us

a room
to wait out
strange seasons
the sun in its phases

a room
of farewells
and returns
as is our custom

a room
to store
all the desire
we cannot see

a room
that is boundless
inscrutable
and ours.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Verse: unmasked

(@imreddy4u suggested a poem about masks. This is what I came up with...)

when you
are as naked
as the rain

and laid out
sumptuous
as a feast

then i
will remove
my mask

and lose
the longing
in my heart

within
the deep ridges
of your fingerprints.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Verse: untitled

once
upon us

time began
to tell a story

in an enormous
repulsive language

that our secrets
somehow defy

they remain pure
they remain ours.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Verse: exhausted bliss

(today's poem draws on suggestions from @seaempire & @tsaphanbabe)

who are you
when no one
is watching

do you alter
your course
or are you constant

i would not change
those who would not
change themselves

they tend
to resent
such intrusions

yet i change
when you
are not here

i am silent
restive and plagued
with doubt

and i
blame you
for that

because you
are not here
to hear it

time
tells me
to be patient

even as it
murders each moment
mercilessly

but i
make a resolution
instead

that next time
when you are here
i will be more attentive

i will catch
exhausted bliss falling
from your lips

and sew it
into a song
for you

and i
will walk
in your shadow

singing it
when i am
a memory

singing it
when i am
alone.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Verse: Intermission

(Unwittingly inspired by @Miracles4Ring14)

at night
when everything
is peaceful

i let
my wonder
wander cautiously

you never know
what you will
encounter

when the stars
enrobed in onyx
thirst for shelter

the moon
is solicitous
of your company

and silence
is a secret language
of longing

that is
pure and impossible
to master

and incapable
of calling you
by your name.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Verse: intruder

somewhere
far from the sky
far from
tiny satellites
that yearn
to illuminate you

i approach
hesitantly
bearing only
a kiss
to decorate
your warm lips

for they
are the crucible
for the coup
that is yet
to come.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Verse: i lose my heart

i lose
my heart
to you
every day
in increments

this piece
has burrowed
deep into
your eyes

that one
resides in
your smile

this one
is nestled
in the
small of
your back

and this
piece goes
with you
when you
leave here
for work

and when
there are
no more
pieces left

then i
will be
your dream
your ghost

then i
will be
gone.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Verse: Bird's song

(for @bird42)

this is
a letter
to sleep

a memoir
recounting
late nights

when 3 a.m.
was just
a taxi home

or one more
bottle of wine
before bed

and you
deep and filled
with dreams

would penetrate
all of my
struggling senses

lingering
with me
well past dawn

those sweet
nights and
generous mornings gone

it was
not you
who left

i gave
you to
my babies

and 3 a.m.
became a time
of negotiation

a time
to navigate
an uneasy truce

between you
and them
each night

until
they learned
to trust you

in that stark
dark crucible
a bond was formed

now i marvel
at how they
sleep deep

yet they
never submit
for long

i think
they grow
tired of you

so soon
3 a.m. will be watch
and wait

to make sure
they get home
safe

but if
you ever pass
by here

and you see
the light
is on

come in
i will pour
the wine

and we
can catch up
or reminisce

about the nights
when i wrapped myself
in your coat

and slept
in your arms
until noon.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Verse: soft morning

sunday arrives
once more
without fanfare

the cool morning air
is not so bold
to knock at our door

it waits
instead for us
to come outside

where everything
is vague
and hasty as a sketch

so we
fill in
missing details

adding dog walkers
with a brisk
purposeful stride

crows cackling
at some joke
unknown to us

drowsy oaks and elms
stirred from
their slumbers

by jubilant hymns
and the chatter
of occasional cars

and clouds that drool
at the scent of
bacon and eggs

the sun
is content
to sleep in today

and i have
lost my voice
to the rain.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Verse: Raspberries

in the morning
i eat raspberries
purchased from
the grocery store

succulent
and joyous
they always leave me
wanting more

my mouth
begins to water
before they even
touch my tongue

packed and shipped
from california
i used to pick them
when i was young

ruby red
and dimpled
i place a handful
in a bowl

like a sunday
kind of loving
it is best to
take this slow

Friday, July 23, 2010

Verse: Because

i received
no instructions

there is no reason
for this offering

that i make
every day

it is just
something i do

and will
continue to

even now
in this

my time
of famine

i beg
of you please

let me
feed you.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Verse: addicts

it is
of no consequence
who we give
ourselves to

the light
portrays us
as ghosts
when we surrender

we lose everything
in that instance
even our fingerprints
deny us

only the sound
of our voices
restores us to
our identities

and we
look up
to see
what it presages

just as
our history
rises to swallow us
from below.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Verse: Next

how strange
this is

i close
my eyes

but our shadows
are still dancing

and your mouth
is pressed against mine

you animate me
with each breath

and i
surrender my fear

and i
learn how
to survive.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Verse: summary

the language
of love
is under siege

be patient
we will transform
the reality together

even as
our breath
overtakes us

one by one
like waves
assail the shore

revealing the things
that we recklessly
abandoned

in the
invisible republic
of night

see how
they approach us
with caution
now.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Verse: slip

broken
by your song
i sighed

all the secrets
i carry
are not mine

but they fed me
in a time
of famine

and all i ask
is that you take them
from me

and
in doing so
make me yours.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Verse: 5:45 p.m.

i saunter
along chebucto
passing bronze boys
shirtless, glistening

a girl
on a trampoline
briefly escapes
gravity

sweltering branches
laden with leaves
grateful for the breeze
but too exhausted to move

sprinklers spit
tiny sparks that sizzle
as they are swallowed
by the sun

and the air
has caramelized
a perfect medley of sugar,
tomato, vinegar and spices

so sweet
i yearn
for just
one taste

but i
content myself
with frozen
sugar water

winter
never seemed
so far away
as now.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Verse: 1:18 a.m.

muted gold
and hazy silver

the lights
hover, bleary eyed

barely noticing
passing cars

tiptoeing
around the corners

because you never know
who might be there

looking for
their shadow

wandering
into the night

calling
your name.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Verse: goodbyes

(based on a true story...)

in the morning
when you depart

we say goodbye
blowing kisses

i reach out
to catch them

slip them
in my pocket

so soft
and warm

just one
small gesture

to say my love
leaves with you

when you go
just as yours remains

with me
always.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Verse: untitled

(at the last minute, this became a poem for @feckedyfecker, through a crucial but minor addition. Offered in the hope someone somewhere thinks similarly of her. And thanks to @kattcalls, who really should be writing these herself...)

love
sleeps here

locked in
an embrace

a dream
lights up your face

your eyelashes
flutter

like the wings
of a blackbird

your skin
as delicate as silk

and i
watch you

reluctant
to break the silence

too much in awe
of it
to say a word.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Verse: wordless

first
i exhausted
the sky

tucked it
in behind
some clouds

i turned down
the tides
revealing the shore

the delicate
filigree
of the foam

cold
and wet
on my fingers

and then
i lay down
next to you

and sang
until you fell
asleep

and i
let my words
rest here

nestled
in my notebook
they waited

for silence
to tell me
what's next.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Verse: Rehearsals for retirement

(the title is stolen from Phil Ochs.)

it's time
for change

time to find
the way

time to let go
of the ten thousand things

that i
cling to

how will i
know the world

if i am
not in it

i am
an empty vessel

every day
filled to the brim

until i
spill over

and start
again

until
the cracks appear

what is there
that we cannot break

physically
metaphorically

hearts
tissue and bone

everything
breaks eventually

even you
and me

and you
know me better

than I know
myself

none of this
is new

i'm just
reprising

every day
writing

a rehearsal
for retirement

and every time
wanting it

to be perfect
it could be the last one

that's the thing
who knows

but this
you should know

if i never
say goodbye

i've left so much
behind for you

there's evidence
everywhere

to discover me
anew

and if
by chance

we do not
have occasion

to say
goodbye

i'm glad i met you
on the way.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Verse: water

water gives
and does not
starve

it flows
where we
do not know

shifting
winding
frozen

yet always
essentially
the same

you and i
empty ourselves
and yet

we maintain
our forms, distances
and differences

even after
the dream
of sitting

and forgetting
that which was
our given names

we negotiate
our way
with hesitation

to places
we have never
been before

and the water
it will
nourish us

it will
take us
there.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

verse: night shift

(Today's poem is by request for @eyeseeyouarein. I asked her for a word, theme or phrase. She gave me several words. And this is the result. Musically, I was inspired by Scott Walker, and Night Time, an Alex Chilton song, in case you want to set the mood.)

at night
silences are
temporary, uneasy
truces broken
by cries

here among
the dead
the dying
and those
who plead
for mercy

the steady
slow drip
that anesthetizes
the pain
that touch
alone could
never dispel

here where
machines breathe
and pulse
writing lines
that spike
then plunge
and level
stretching out
long past
life itself

here where
no thing
is assured
and all
are vulnerable
i am
ever vigilant

a bride
in white
i give
my hand
to everyone
and anyone
in sickness
and health
as long
as i
shall live

that is
my vow.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Verse: Morsel

(based on a dream recounted by @juicymorsel. Apologies for the ending.)

at night
i close
my eyes
and see
the sea
inside me

i hear
it call
my name
asking me
to dive
to follow

but i
hold fast
it is
a long
way down
from here

just imagining
the drop
when gravity
hastens me
to her
terrifies me

and when
i think
i just
might jump
i hear
a voice

a name
i heard
years ago
when i
was nine
not mine

'the bells
they ring
for annie.'
i don't
know what
it means

and suddenly
my ears
are ringing
is it
school bells
church bells

it could
be christmas
it could
be sunday
for all
i know

one moment
of grace
the sea
in me
claims as
her own

just before
i am
revived, restored
to the
waking world.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Verse: Epistle to Her

(so... @imreddy4u asked me to do a poem. As always, I asked for a starter - a word, theme or phrase to work into it. She sent several phrases that are constants in art, particularly love songs. But the fact they are constants does not in any way diminish their power. Or their veracity. So, I worked on it, incorporating some notes I had jotted down from a book on Tao. And then I focused on my muse... m'lady. So, while it is still @imreddy4u's poem, m'lady's spirit is in here. I hope this Epistle is more elegant than didactic. It was probably best that I left out @imreddy4u's musings about why kittens & puppies are cute, but not baby rats...)

how can i
live without you

you may as well
take the music

of the universe
with you when you go

and all the stars
i pin my hopes on

would be just distant
anonymous lights

i would cease
to wonder

how deep
the ocean

how high
the sky

without you
in my life

your love
returned me to love

that expresses itself
to you

in this moment
and every one after

and if i
should lose my form

i remain
calm knowing

you are
my center.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Verse: engulfed

we
who are lovers
love

we
who are stretched
by insatiable gravity

embrace
each other
as always

we
celebrate the pleasures
of the unknown

and
oppose clamor
with our calm

begging
silence for one moment
more

yet
beyond this love
where we live

somewhere
the sun is kissing
the sky

and
i am engraving
your name next to it

with
each and every
breath.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Verse: the secret life

(by request for @mytweecwetlife)

i
in my secret life
i go with strangers

i suppress the urge
to howl, and sigh

at every transgression
i see, real or imagined

and they don't know
they perish in haste and hate

in a single thought
it thrills and repulses me

ii
in my secret life
i dream

of wealth
and ease

that i
am someone else

intricate, elaborate
tableaus unfold daily

in my waking hours
and subconscious

stretching far beyond
the realm of possibility

and ending
when I hear my given name

iii
in my secret life
i find you

the hard thrust
of our hips

betrays the softness
of our flesh

and our voices
hide in whispers

far from the prying, public noise
of the world outside.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

verse: Cicadas

(After reading my Autumn poem, novelist @KMWeiland wondered if I could do a summer poem. I asked what to include, and she gave me a list of ingredients. Though some of are not local, I did my best to incorporate them all. Except meadowlarks. I never said I was a good chef.)

walking home
this evening

everything feels
impossibly close

it's like that line
from that old movie

this the anvil
of heaven

the cottonwood
aglow like fireworks

and even the sun
is moving slow

inching to the horizon so
it doesn't break a sweat

and lingering there
as the clouds roll in

waiting for
the cicadas

and the celebration
yet to begin

intoxicated
by the warm air

their muscles
contract, relax

in a symphony of castanets
and fingerclicks

and the thunderheads
respond in kind

tears of joy
pool around my sandals

and my toes
quench their thirst

grateful for
this small blessing

the dog days
are upon us.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Verse: Tammy's Song

i was born
a child
of snow

and i went
as far west
as you can go

sought out
the sun to tattoo
my skin

so winter
could not
find me again

the snow
in my veins
became sand and sea

warm rains that
dissipate in an instant
baptized me

from the peak
of Pu Ľu Kukui
to the shores of La Perouse

home is not
where you come from
but the place you choose

others
will make this pilgrimage
and they will not stay

they merely hear
the trade winds
but i am in their sway.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Verse: camperdown elm

beneath the bower
the canopy of branches
that bend like arms
and tangle like serpents
in a self embrace
i count the strands of leaves
ribbons of green
like party streamers
that deny the persistent sun
and marvel at how still
the pond water has become
the illusion of nature
slowing down, catching its breath
when it's only me
that is the most amazing magic trick
of all.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Verse: bring the rain

(for @yourjoye)

when you come back
next time
bring the rain

i've forgotten
the lovely sound
of its listless voice

the way that
each drop perishes
in an instant

accumulating
on the window sill
like ash from a cigarette

i love those
lonely moments
the most

when there is
no one else
to tell our dreams to

when the only light
is the tired eyes
of street lamps

peering into
our apartment
from below.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Verse: autumn

(For @GenniferwithaG)

this
is a season
of frivolity

of sand
sun swelter
and short skirts

and though
i do find much
to love

in summer
i prefer
autumn

people say
it is a season
of decay and death

but for me
it is a season
of vibrancy

a season
of bustle
and many returns

return to work
and school
to structured time

to mornings
as crisp as corn flakes
or fresh sheets

to leaves
with lips
of fiery reds

that stretch out
their arms
to fly

and to the harvest
when the earth feeds us
from her soft bosom

before wrapping us
in snow and singing us
to sleep.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Verse: aspirations

(for @EAwrite)

i want
to be
a butterfly

i want
to forget
words that injure

i want
to weave
beautiful illusions

i want
to awaken
into calm

i want
to let go
of many things

i want
to dream
of magics

and i
know that i
want too much

how can i
stay close
to shore

when i have
tasted the water
from mid-stream?

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Verse: today is a poem

today
is a poem
that will not
wait

it is
inscribing
itself in clouds
like a skywriter

it is
pooling
like rainwater
in the school yard

it is
rejoicing
in church bells
and wind chimes

it is
regaling me
with stories
of traffic and weather

and i
am scrambling
to get it all down
before it gets away.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Old Verse: Valentine 2009 poem for m'lady.

Your eyes
are infinite and invincible
like a summer softly sweet
no, let's say
maybe a green million miles
of meadows
or aisles of
crowned oaks, no
pearly strands of
effervescence in
a champagne glass or
tinsled stars against
the onyx canvas of
an autumn evening
or emeralds that do sparkle
like a sun-kissed sea
that's it, the sun
Certainly, they are not
unlike that distant star
for they stimulate
and illuminate me
a tiny satellite
in your vast universe
ever grateful for
the warmth of your gaze

Verse: tonight

tonight
i count the strands
of moonlight
dangling
from midnight's ceiling

tonight
i dispel
each sleepless moment
with a single
breath

tonight
i can hear
the sound of
my one true voice
my heart
singing me to sleep.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Verse: Variations on a theme

(I could not bring these together as one, so
i
today i am
an empty bowl

i am not in love
but it is in me

if you put it there
if you feed me
with your warm wet lips.

ii

today i am
an empty bowl

put me outside
to gather weather

and the day's mood
will determine mine

or strike me
and i will resonate

serenading you with
my morning song.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Verse: Peregrine

(@Juicymorsel gave me a crumb, and I used it as seasoning to prepare a meal based on an idea that popped into my head this morning. Thanks, Morsel...)

point your self
skyward
and rise

breathe until
the air reveals
its original name

and hear
the cry of every
longing heart

their aspirations
collect in the fingers
of your immaculate wings.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

verse: reason

(forgive the rhyme)

in the moments
when i forget

that i have
reason to be

your smile
slips through

my dolor
to remind me

Friday, June 25, 2010

Verse: explanation

(I don't like to write about writing, and yet I did...)

i was silent
for many years
until i knew
what i wanted
to say

emptied myself
of everything
that was not essential
so i could
focus on that

after much deliberation
i settled on this
which will be soft
and not hard
to penetrate

knowing full well
that sometimes
my words carry more weight
when I say nothing
at all.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Verse: reflections

when you
are done
with my reflection

please
return it
to me

so i
can put it
back in this mirror

and keep
my eye
on it

not because
i don't know
what i look like

but because
i want to remember
who i am

so often
i lose myself
in you.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Verse: recollection

what was it
the moon was pointing at

as we slow danced
in the parking lot

and Syl Johnson's keening falsetto
sweetened the air

i thought it might have been
some future as yet unknown

but most likely it was
something we let go of

when we gave ourselves
over to the night.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Verse: Saturday morning

in the mercenary morning
when i have sent
my dreams to bed

and taken my place
at the kitchen table
with the morning paper

i note the bend
of your bare leg
as you slice an orange

the way your black robe
nestles into your contours
like i do, at night

how your hair
hangs softly on
your shoulders sleeping

and I'm thinking
there is nothing you could feed me
as nourishing as a kiss.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Verse: downpour

(apologies for going back to the well so often, but the muses requested this...)

sensing
the day
is vulnerable

the wolves
are gathering
now

faint tracks
in pale blue
ripples

skulking
and sneaking
they seize the sky

tear it
with their
fierce teeth

and more
again
until

the sky
is obscured
by thick grey fur

and as
they howl
with hunger

saliva
hanging from their
clacking jaws

finds
its reflection
below

and dives, in torrents
for the only love
it has ever known

it's going to be
a beautiful night.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Verse: Intrusion II

i saw you
at the market

veiled in silk
except for

your sunglasses
and your hands

reaching for
your purse

the only clues
to who you are

framed
in your fingerprints

and i wondered
if you chose your veil

or if it
was imposed upon you

and i wondered
why that should concern me
at all.

Verse: Intrusion I

sensing the wind
the leaves
begin to shiver

their excited whispers
growing louder
until

they see me
approaching
and fall silent

waiting only
until i pass to
continue their conversation.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Verse: Seasons

(I admit this is more of the same. I admit there are only two seasons. I admit this was influenced by Pete Jolly. I admit nothing.)

i was not here
in summer
when you painted me
with your phenomenal hands

i was shivering
on stand by
under the crystal lake
of a winter night

i had not yet
begun to imagine
the warm sun
hidden behind your eyes

i had not yet
begun to dream
until you sowed my eyes
with sleep.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Two verse fragments for June 18, 2010

i
in a time
of certain
uncertainties

i became
a shadow
and followed you

until you
turned out
the light

ii
you
can have
the wind

all i want
is for you
to give me the rain

and i
will feed it
my insatiable thirst

Swimming: a Haiku for @earlfando

the lake is my sky
and when in her cool embrace
i become a cloud

Haiku for M'lady

such hungry candy
so deep, those emerald eyes
i am overthrown

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Verse: returned

(a kind of apology to @amuirin)

i searched
for a sky
not buried
under stones

i searched for
the night in my veins
and epiphanies
at noon

i searched for
a chance to say
something, anything
new

and when i found
i was empty
i borrowed this
from you

here it is
with my apologies
i should never have
taken it out of context

i should never
have taken it
without asking you
first.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Verse: Exorcists

(inspired by a tweet by @amuirin)

tonight, do not tell me
what you are

tell me
what you are not

introduce me to
the things you won't admit

the refugees
of other lives

you harbour
in your heart

a time
before this one

press the words
and make them cry

until they peter out
or break

and i will
will harvest mine

until there is
no adversary among us

no night buried
in the soil of our souls

and when morning arrives
with fire in her eyes

and says
it is time to rise

what we do
in that moment

will determine everything

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Verse: Clouds

what is it
the French call it
barbe a papa

it is
such an evocative
image

reminds me
of the midway
roly poly vendors

and those wisps
of spun sugar
that melt in your mouth

winding around
the cardboard tube
like strands of hair

it's such
an easy comparison
don't you think

let's say
they're like boats
unmoored

waiting only
for the wind
to catch their sails

and send them
drifting across
the borderless blue

until
they have vanished
from sight

i doubt that
they'll take much notice
of us as they pass by

safe here on shore
even the rain
doesn't know where we are

Monday, June 14, 2010

Verse: some poems for June 14, 2010

i
the light this evening
is much too bold

it keeps hinting
at things as yet untold

but i ignore the shadows
it is throwing at the ceiling

contemplating the colors of tomorrow
it is reluctantly revealing

ii
spent all day
trying to coax
the night out of hiding
and now it comes

when we merge
it will remember nothing
of its birth
at all

it eagerly feeds
on us
astonished by
its insatiable hunger

and scars our mouths
with its bright teeth

iii
tell me what
can be turned away
that seeks you

even hesitation
resists the temptation
to tell you to wait

my heart wants only
to be your instrument
if you will play me

because
without you
i make no sound

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Verse: song of nothing

how do you measure
distances

in sighs or in
the slant of a shadow

me
i use silences

i've been listening
intently and yet

you haven't said
anything at all

it's never the things
we say that puncture us

it's the things
we don't say that wound

deep unseen scars
that bleed through

become ice
and melt us

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Verse: nothing

Today
i will not
be born

in circumstances
or audiences
to perform any task

i will not
take on
a shadow

nor give
myself
a name

i will not speak
or seek
any counsel

i will not
dream of dreams
they are burdensome

and i will not
create anything
to remind you i am here

i will be
more quiet
than quiet

with only
the sound
of my breath

which is
essential to
give me away

and the beat
of the heart
you can't hear breaking
is mine.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Verse: three lil poems for June 11, 2010

i
every second
is a surrender

negotiated
in confessions

sit until
there is no sound

and then we
will begin to ripen

ii
to whom
will i return
this voice
when i am silent
once more

iii
the future lies
in hungry maps
that consume
our energy
and idle chat

if we learn
to wake
in hidden moments
when the night
has tethered itself
to the chair

like us
it is afraid
to give up
what isn't necessary

it is afraid
to let us wander
into the morning
in case we
don't return

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Verse: regrets

she left
with later
not love

and i
did not
run after

to say
lover, wait
your kisses

take them
with you
and please

come home
soon.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Verse: fevers

(inspired by @amuirin, though she didn't know it...)

i slept
in your hair
all day

time
did not make
a sound

as its folded hands
swept from
the outside

not even
the wind
to lecture

the trees
on how
to sway

i wake and
drink from
the empty chalice

that is night
nodding to the ghosts
gathered for the feast

the clocks
stutter as
i gaze upon you

each moment
dies in a bead
of sweat upon your brow

and my heart
disintegrates
in a series of sighs

the air
is too swollen
to hold in.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Verse: Freckles

(for m'lady. And for @lucyspet, in the hopes that, one day, some one will tell her something similar. If it is familiar, it's because I've talked of this in other poems, but never so direct or isolated.)

one day
i swear
i will count
them all

but for now
i am
quite content
to taste them

i told you
i never could resist
brown sugar
and cinnamon

Monday, June 7, 2010

Verse: tocsins

faint
the sound
much like collywobbles

or
when you
overeat, but growing

steadily
louder, closer
and urgent until

bang
the swollen
sky erupts suddenly

and
the rain
begins to fall

darkness
is disrupted
by white flashes

visible
even with
my eyes closed

dreams
swirl away
like dishwater draining

and
the rain
is something like

ants
marching, filling
every empty space

every
crack in
last night's sleep

widening
them until
it is damaged

beyond
repair or
attempts to reclaim

curious
the clock
says not yet

as
you fall
into my arms

alarmed
seeking shelter
from the storm.