Friday, June 12, 2009

without blood, struggle or sound

Marsh Abattoir

The heron waits - - -

in first person,

turning from blue to deep violet
in reflection

beneath a sky insinuating
orange peel orange and pink flamingo pink,

- - - for the kill,

without blood, struggle or sound,

beneath an iridescent paintbrush of plumage,

conspicuously inconspicuous and conspiring
in whispering not even the flutter of a feather
to a listening wind intent on rumor and innuendo,

changing shade, changing shape,
shadows shifting, cloak and dagger,
in the tired light as it lies down with dusk,
last, low squinting shafts aglow and illuminating
a frenzy of winged insects, frenetic above the water,
the only movement evidenced in this staged frame,

a portrait without premeditation,
a watercolor without motive,
a still-life more perfect than any murder, any prayer

and without a God to pass judgment
here in this marsh abattoir.

photo by arthur morris

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

between capricorn and cancer


Holding myself /

Time, the sun
Stand, relatively, still /

Between Capricorn and Cancer /

The time, the place
without seasons /

Holding the Earth still,
In place, in time,
Long enough to notice /

My arms
Holding myself /

Cradling the moon, the stars,
Minutes and degrees /

The amniotic, hypnotic
Lullaby of the sea /

Swaying, rocking
Both of us to sleep /

photo of henry miller by arnold newman

prince of light

The Summer Sun We Are Stalking (Vampire Winters Slain)

Walking between the spring blooms,
the sweet-wet-sour of humid baby's breath
embroiled in thick air, hanging like a garland of garlic
worn 'round the neck, warding off, if only for here and now,
all the sleeping-vampire winters we have slain to arrive alive
at this brief eternity, a promise of immortality taunting us, teasing us
with a coo, with a sigh, with a bat of an eye from this little prince of light -
The longest day of the year still on its way, like a shining white shield
against blinding darkness, against the deaths we almost forget,
remembering all too well the night's closing blooms instead -
The full moon's blood-let pale, glow illuminating
the footprints between we leave behind,
our steps gone west without them,
carrying on, carrying the son,
following the summer sun
we are stalking -

Monday, June 8, 2009

drowning the dreams

Murderkill River

Weight me with stones.

Throw me off a bridge.

Watch me sink in the water.

The better parts of this life, bouyant, surfacing,
will catch the current away from the what I left behind
to a whirlpool of reality drowning the dreams of another life.

photo 'bridge over murderkill river' by elderoot

Sunday, June 7, 2009

my own worst enemy

Shark Cartilage

Swimming endlessly
in a sea with no beginning, no end.
Swimming endlessly
to stay alive another hour, day, decade.
Barely keeping
madness at bay as I glide in deathly silence all alone.
Barely keeping
ahead of the cancer I have outswum for 100 million years.
Preyed upon by
the very instincts that keep me alive, keep me in constant motion.
Preyed upon by
the same razor rows of teeth below the same dull, black, lifeless eyes.


Punch-Drunk Love

love's jab slipping quick
beneath a cage of brittle rib,
knocking the wind from lungs,
sapping the strength from limbs,
punch-drunk, sobering heartbreak
beating me and leaving me senseless
in a ring, for round after punishing round
with only a memory, a sparring shadow, to box

photo: 'hanging boxing gloves' by ernie friedlander

Saturday, June 6, 2009

wind, rain and cold


out of my skin,
exposed to the elements
i must weather, whether or not
this consumption of wind, rain and cold
harsh realities will overcome my accumulated
immunities, impunity is not an option to consider
upon further consideration as i stand naked and manifest
before God, before Love, before Life, before Death in defiance
of never ending at an end, knowing I will never feel this alive again

Thursday, June 4, 2009

crooked finger paintings

Bring Me Your Love

Bring me your love.

I cannot feel a thing without it.

Desperate, braille rantings of the heart,
crooked finger paintings left for you to find
upon our sweating and swollen bedroom door.

Bring me your love.

I cannot feel a thing without it.

for Wes and Doug Baker

There Is A Light (That Never Goes Out)

there is a light
even at the end of this tunnel,
even at the bottom of this abyss

and she is there
still standing in its glow,
brighter than a thousand suns,
phosphorescent and illuminating a path
for all those who loved her to follow in her shadow

in memory of sandy baker

gone global

With Or Without Us

over a lifetime,
in the rooms we fill with
the detritus of our existence,
in the dust covered collections,
some sense of ourselves left waiting
to be discovered after we return to the dust
carried to the four corners of a world we only knew
from the mementos, coins and keepsakes we collected
in an attempt to anchor ourselves, our memory to this globe
despite its insistence to spin on through the dust with or without us

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

from the silk road

The Barter For Better Days

sleep come swallow me,
take me away from here
in the sway of your arms,
from hours wrought with
iron-forged tests of will,
from minutes weighted by
millstones burdening patience,
from the silk road i sleepwalk
trading days for nights as i go

take me away from here
for now and no longer
then return me to burn
the bridges i cross over
again and again in transit
toward the eastern sun,
awake in a dream so real,
reality itself must submit
to the barter for better days

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

a line nonetheless

At A Push Pin On A Map

A circle is a line,
not one so easily recognized
but a line nonetheless,
like from here to there to here again,
just the same as a line on a map
denoting where a journey began
and where it will come to an end,
at times in fact to find a new beginning,
sometimes ending up where we once were,
moving through memories, geographies
in simultaneous motion
with simultaneous emotions marking
a country mile as the crow flies
circling from time to time
over terra firma and familiar
never wondering, How did I get here,
instinctively knowing, I have already been here,
before deja vu could ever have hoped to arrive
and so here I sit at a stop along the circle,
at a push pin on a map that I placed
in this spot at some moment
only to find myself staring at it
here 25 years and so many miles later
down a line away from the same moment,
looking over my shoulder at the curve, the arc
of a line, a road stretched out behind me
unable to see where it began
as it angles away by degrees,
180 from where I am going,
360 from where I have been,
completing a perfect circle
for the moment, from a moment,
here again then gone again
and maybe even back again
somewhere down the line.