Friday, July 31, 2020

poem

Leviathan

The mystics have it all wrong:
You were never just a wave
Rushing rotely in to shore

Waves may not know they’re water
But I recognized the arched back of your crest
Just before it broke against the beach

You can say waves are transient form
But I’m certain it’s your sea spray alone
That burns my eyes when you crash

I’ll gather what’s left of you
Swirling in the frothy oneness
And riptide us out to the deeper sea

Where the sharks circle
The whales, the stingrays
Beneath our braided vortex.

Un-hold your non-form,
As we wait for the Leviathan
Try to snatch our woven void

Let it thrash and thrash
The vast blue surface and never
Be able to drag us down

7/29/20

Sunday, July 26, 2020

poem

Poem for a Friend on his Birthday


It takes eight minutes for the light
Of the sun to reach the earth.
We’re stuck in a state of perpetual lateness,
Always lagging a little behind the universe.


They say when you gaze upon the stars
It’s like seeing a million years into the past.
Mulling upon my own life elapsed
I wish I had cast a brighter glow.


But here, this day, let us transcend
The laggard dimness of everyday life.
Today we laugh, lose time, feel seen, are found.
We'll try (and fail) to catch up,
Recapture some of the lost ground.


Let us today flash a spark
That becomes the deep abiding light 
Someday seen from a future darkness.
Today, tomorrow, till the end, 
My steadfast, ever-shining friend.


7/21/20

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

poem

Downhill

Summer morning
Flags hang flaccid
Syrupy air
Thick enough to
Dog paddle through
Even the dew
Is salty like sweat
All you can do is 
Get outside and play!
Go ride your bike!
Around the block 
Around the block
Down the Beatty St. hill
Whoosh of cool breeze
Never lasted long.
Getting older is torpor
I rarely venture forth
Always seems like 
Way too much work
Stillness, glistening skin
Languid slowness
The lethargy of midsummer
Waiting for the fall
First frost, low clouds
The sound of the green
Getting sucked clean 
From worn out leaves
Yellow then brown then
A crisp crunch in my fist
Opened to the wind 
A sudden scattering
Like confetti
Like ashes


7/21/20

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

poem

Chaff 


Let’s learn to make jam
Spend the day picking berries
Laughing at our blue stained hands


Let’s learn to make flour
Thresh our own wheat
Winnow seeds from the chaff


Let’s learn to make soap
Wear aprons and goggles
And boil our lavender lilac oils


Let’s choose a way
To frame our days 
As a series of complicated tasks


Let’s pretend we don’t care
What happens in the end


We’ll start with winking irony
All the while


Earnestly hoping
Our warm biscuits


Loaded with sweet jam
Are indelibly delicious


Lick our fingers and
Forget to wash our hands.

7/14/20

poem

Song Of America

I obey the klaxon
Of metal against metal
Sharp against skin
The crunch of dry bone
Walls red speckled
Sirens too close home
Lock-down drill, get in,
Get under the desks
Just move, don’t think
Rhythm and melody
Rhythm or beat
Bright light clink
Of bullet into tin pan
Alleys dark, unlit,
Play hit after hit after
Hit

7/14/20

Thursday, July 9, 2020

poem

Superpowers

Given a choice of superpowers
I would opt for teleportation:
To be way the hell over there,
Time warp tripping,
Snap my fingers, someplace else,
The realm of pure imagination.
No reason, no rhyme,
Beyond the bounds of space or time,
Limited only by the whims of desire.

But all superheroes have a weakness.
My particular Kryptonite
Would be a humble acceptance,
A nostalgia for the known and near,
A sense that everything I needed
Was always just 
Right
Here.

7/9/20


Tuesday, July 7, 2020

poem

Cemeteries

Symbols that have meaning:
Words,
Numbers,
Etchings in stone.
Scars,
Whistling winds,
Stacked bones.
Scatterings of dandelion seeds,
Parachuting to new homes.

7/6/20

Sunday, July 5, 2020

poem

Comet

I once thought that true love
Was when someone saw your real face,
The way you saw yourself
When you liked yourself,
Which was a Halley’s comet event.
Ha, that’s not true;
You've always exaggerated your discontent.

What if what she loves is like this poem:
A trifling splurge
Of rhythmic words 
And heartfelt momentary truth?

What if all she sees is the once in a lifetime
Flash of your phosphorescent tail
Just before your core of dust and ice
Rounds the corner on its ellipse
Through the vast darkness of space?

What if all she really sees
Is a shimmering of earth-bound fireflies
In the stillness of midnight skies,
The polished void of black glass,
While the universe flows
And your real face
Is long long passed.

7/5/20

Friday, July 3, 2020

poem

Vantage Point

We are all just a vantage point,
Random pull-over panoramic lookouts
Off Shenandoah’s Skyline Drive,
Dusty detours to desert sunset vistas
Along scorching southwestern highways.
Shattered mirrors, scattered
Shards of rhomboid glass
Reflecting views
Of a world desperate
To see itself.


7/2/20