Thursday, September 20, 2012


Felled trees reveal rings of scorched bark from infernos past
and below the stump
the roots remain locked in their nursery stone
where seed had clung to split and crevice
until they grew through living rock to reach the soil

surrounding fields grow pretty with waving grasses in rich loam
to succumb to snowy blankets every winter before
and every winter after

Outside Noises Against Inside Walls

Outside noises against inside walls
shape the morning trudge
from bed to bath to breakfast
Until the corners of her mouth break like dawn
The only smile undiminished in the flourescent lights
Unfrayed among the cowards clinging to their duty

Electric Brain Cell Topical Storms

electric brain cell
topical storms
gnash their mitochondria
whilst decisions sit serene
in the eye untouched bemused

lighthouses came first
the jagged strands surrounding
rose from the seas
in reverance to the solemn structures

Departure Thrives In Morning

Departure thrives in morning
when the drowse still beads on our brows
like glistening dew on flower thorns

Regrets alike, real and imagined, gather
Somber in their traveling clothes

Goodbyes and promises to meet again
hover low like punctuation
waiting to make us into epilogues

A Near-Gone Scented Teacup Candle

a near-gone scented teacup candle
sputters in a cardboard cadence

cloying ginger tea leaf fragrance
clings to her hair still chestnut damp
from the monsoon shower an apothecary
of clouds rumbled onto her

hinges on the cabin door long ago
fell red death masked
and the door in last dance with it
now lies quantum in its frame
half-opened or half closed

he knocked anyway and waited
she shook her hair and turned
waved both beckon and permission
in one gesture wrought for him

in candle flickers he reached for her
fingers threading a loom of palms
and then with brief unwoven hand
she pinched the flame to sleep

Trinket Words She Hung Around My Neck

Trinket words she hung around my neck
glassy globes reflecting all the things
I wished she was but wasn't

Artisan apologies for a lifetime of weakness
a mnemonic sleight-of-hand smearing
luster over rusted empathy

She received me as a possession
reducing passion to pornography

Her gifts glittering brightest
before they shattered sphere by sphere
into cutting rains of silvered glass

I left her as she stared smiling down
into her thousand dim reflections

Her face every twinkling star
in a wine-red universe

Yellow Hawkweed Claims The Garden

Yellow hawkweed claims the garden
choking seedlings in their sleep

We'd fought them, once, spade and claw
clearing flowerbeds of strangling vines
revealing red and purple riches
that others envied but you refused to cut
Insisting nothing dead is beautiful

I agreed with you, in the end

Presented as you were
your hands folded, frozen buds
your face a snow lily
in a vase of polished wood

A Susurrus of Turning Pages

a susurrus of turning pages
wakes me when she reads each morning
her flurried fiction allergy
triggered by the world she woke to

"Care you nothing for waking life?"
I murmur from beneath
dawn-shields of blankets
and a pillow helm

"Only you," she says
and flips a page
"and the mirrors to the art I love."

I dreamt of nettle stings
and her honesty annoys me
"Nothing else? Suppose you one day wake with child?"

"Foolish man" her eyebrow arched
"our child shall be all those things."

I do not argue further
which she knows means I love her madly
and her mastery of worlds
bound and unbound

When We Turn To Little Things
Architects, we call ourselves, as we build
big bay windows to our minds
only to draw rich red velvet curtains across them
so peeking out we can deride passersby
for their ignorance of the splendors within

Designers, we call ourselves
as we blueprint and measure and trig our way
to another reflection in a city of mirrors

Sculptors, the title vainly clutched to our chest
as hammer and chisel carve out
the same crumbling letters to make
the same flaking words as everybody else

Clever, we decide at last
that we are alone to hide in the dark and pain
with our scars and despair

Clever, because if we ventured too far we would see
that so is everybody else

Clever, just like us

Love, Then, We Shared As Clear Water

Love, then, we shared as clear water from a stream
whose source unknown and destination hidden
satisfied our thirst each time we came
shuddering breaths and mouths dripping

That night you had to work and I got lost to see you
When I found my way to you a computer screen sat in for the fireplace
and I read data over your shoulder as
my hand stroked your breasts through your thin cotton shirt

We were not done becoming yet
and while we loved easily what was
neither knew the esoteric art of loving the person that did not yet exist

Because we could not see our stream
though our paths were parallel
You or I or the stream became an ocean
and hard to drink

And sunrise now does not reflect us in the water

Mornings do not find you warming naked
against my chest as we debate breakfast
or just making love to nourish other appetites

My hand stroking your breasts, gently, a question for the heart beneath

Mornings, now, find us both apart
alone with our answers
and the laughter of a stream
that has not yet found its ocean