‘He introduced me to the Sun, forgetting we’d already met’

He introduced me to the Sun, forgetting we’d already met
Year ago when we’d lie together on the hill our front.
We’d dance in the rain, we’d grab hold of the rope swing
Toss ourselves into the river, tumbling down, laughing.

Now he acts like I haven’t been waiting in the back
Loosening my grip on him, raised on the promise he’d
Bring me back out into the light before I wasted away
Like an illusion, now I am under the pressure, cracking.

I wade into the water trying to baptize my new day
He said to me, “You were the only one. I was going to waste
Without you. If we do not runaway, straight into nothing,
Stand in the wake of our pain, it will all break down.”

With respect to The War on Drugs’ Under the Pressure written by Adam Granduciel

A Balloon Let Go

The balloon our sorrows filled
like helium floating upward
we held earthbound too long.
I looked at you and with eyes
swimming into one another’s
heart. The wordless answer
spoke by opening its hand
giving the sorrows flight
until they burst like the sun
rising on our horizon
whose orange melts
across the darkness
allowing the deep blue
meaningfulness of day
to arrive
to stick our hands into
to find the star
to light the remaining days
like an umbrella of softness,
under, we hold one other close
when the rain falls as
little drops of inspiration
drawing us closer and closer
until we melt into one
flash of lightning
at last, released.

Song of the Week: Bjork “Army of Me” and a response poem: “An Army of Me Met Met at the Door”

An Army of Me Met Met at the Door

An army of me met me at the door
and kicked me in the balls
so hard they rolled off my tongue
like ben wa and dropped
like a teenager’s waking up one morning
with a sticky surprise

An army of me met me at the door
and laughed in my face
until i had to laugh right along with me
ha ha ha, roll on the floor, jackass
and look at the teenager you became
30 years after it was hip

An army of me met me at the door
and came in for a scotch
he had it neat, i had it messy
with ice that melted
into a puddle deep enough
to go and drown a little sorrow

An army of me met me at the door
and we decided to hang out a bit
turns out he was good company
and so we decided to become one
and just get on with it:
the rescue squad was exhausted.

Continue reading

God Giggles

Finally,
They begin speaking the words they had been collecting from their stories.
Words that no longer have any real meaning, because,
Perfection cannot know everything.

I pause to ask God, “Choose one or the other:
Omniscience or Perfection.”

He says, “One or the other, Friend?
For you, I chose to be a man;
Though it was a woman you wanted, right?
So perfection seems to be too much,
But I do know what you really need.
This broken conversation that you knew would
Hurt…
Does.
Have it, though,
Like a debt that needs paying.
Someday you will know everything, too
And agree that nobody’s perfect.
Something so obvious,
Those who know nothing at all
Will chuckle.”

God giggles as he meanders away.
Then they continue the conversation
Looking for meaning in their story,
Finally.

Image: Saturday Evening Post
http://www.saturdayeveningpost.com/2017/04/11/post-fiction/classic-fiction/faithful-lovers-margaret-drabble.html

On a Hill in Wales, Father and Son

For my Father, for my Grandfather, for my Words

1.

To the beginning son, go back with me
Remember how I stood beside you when…

No, you only remember my absence.

Here we return with precision, an arrow
Fired by the great Tell who reveals us.
The apple on our heads, the gift of Eve
Who saw in us the beginning of Love.

2.

On a hill in Wales, Father enters me
Not with punishment, but with his sadness.
Fills me with a beauty that consumes me:
Simple sheep graze on green grass on green hills, 
Too many verdant hues to name. The blue meets us 
Compassion like the sky hosts metamorphs: 
Clouds, lurking innocent children of beasts 
Whose anger gave us this green, gave these sheep.
Gave us wool that warms us in winter.
Gave us mutton that fills our hunger.
Beauty these gifts represent enters
Me like Father returning to the land 
Of his own. “Get on your knees, son, sorrow,
You must feel it now.  These gifts given you 
Lie in waste like blood in scaled veins. Look up!
Through tears, I show you once again! This time, 
I will humble you and you will know Love. 
With it, do good like storm begets spirit. 
Rise up, face the life I called you to live.”

3.

I got off my knees and climb the mountain
To toss the precious that ruled like a curse
Masking my Soul, invisible to me,
Led me to the river to steal fish
From mouths needing food,
Kill those whose only crime:
The place of their birth.
I became Monster
A monster does not know exists
Until 
The mirror sees past the blush,
Through the mascara of a mask painted 
In green rooms of youth only to be smudged 
By the tears of life’s stage.
Now, the Father 
Who returns to me, kneeling in supplication, 
Yells,
“Get up! Climb, son, climb. Go find the path
To treasure granted by breath that fills lungs,
Breathe out songs only one Soul will echo,
Love that will be the melody of Life.”

When the Doll Broke (for Emma)

When the doll broke, shattered on the floor
What did she find inside the dusted shell?
Did daddy leave a note tucked away in the leg –
Some words that would remind her of a love
He promised would never fade like the linens
The doll wore everyday, no matter the occasion.
By the time she discovered it, would her heart be
Repaired well enough to beat a regular rhythm
When she saw his name or remembered his picture
Turned down on the dresser with the other dolls
Collected on his travels, now just dust-laden?
The good book talks about dust to dust, and this
Dust feels like the blood from his heart when it
Was admitted to the floor of a life left with crumbs
Of a plan, of a hope, of a stitched patchwork claim
Of promises long ago tossed in a barrel over the falls.
Now he walks down the path that had the better claim
Having blazed the trail back to that divergence
In the yellow wood. He stared down both again,
With a deep sigh, saw the trodden one and turned
Away from it, choosing instead the one his heart
Called him to take when he wasn’t listening, when
He thought its regular beat could not be trusted.

Image: Girl Accident Broken Doll by Henri Guillaume Schlesinger (German painter, 1814-1893)

Long Johns Conceal Love (for Bobby)

“Long johns, my friend, we need to put them on to stave the cold”
It feels colder these days than when as kids we built snowmen,
Rode our flexible flyer down the hill, brave and reckless, laughing.
We wake in the morning with stiff fingers and an unusual chill: 40?
New England would laugh a collective laugh at our need for layers.
Yet, here we are, in our pit, in our mire, seeking rock for our feet,
Fingers numb to the bone, the pain we feel hard to diagnose, known
Inside our souls, yet we only share part of the details, what our shame
Forgets to hide as we try and abate our shivering flesh, ripped away
From the bones that once held us upright and strong as we climbed
Back up the hill once our laughter filled the valley of drifted snow.
Are we far from those teenagers now? Without conviction I say yes.
Yet, the 17 year old looks down on me in my wasted state of weakness
And knows he is already the better man and turns to his mother to say
“I will be edgy and cool without a diploma.” “We have to watch over her.”
He doesn’t know about long johns or laughter in the snow drift valley.
The blades of the flexible flyer have rusted. My sins have overcome me.
I have become poor and needy, and look up to this little Lord, help me
Do not delay your thoughts, chill climbing my bones needs a blanket.
Do not conceal your love, cover me up, so that all might see mercy.

I believe this was a collaboration between me and Christine Ray, or maybe it was just something she said that prompted this piece, either way. She deserves her usual credit for her faith in me, for her faith in my words, and for just being a general Badass.

Spend some time with her and her amazing network of beautiful writers!
leap in:
The Path My Feet Must Follow

Image: Vineyards and Snow, by Julian Merrow-Smith
Postcard from Provence: a daily painting blog, fresh daily since 2005

And Dali Melted Into Matisse

How long had my heart been in pieces on the floor?
How long had I looked at the pieces needing a dustpan?
Mopping up the blood that just attracted ants,
I picked up the broom from its handy storage spot
Between the refrigerator and the wall, tucked in like
A child robot awaiting its moment to be a real boy.

Everything felt surreal, like Dali raised from the grave
His mustache in tact. Somehow, the ants began to march:
A retreat. The blood became mercury, congealing together.
Each piece vibrated on the floor until magnetic attraction
Thrust them across the tiles making a whole throbbing
Vessel that sucked back inside its ventricles the blood.

The broom robot boy turned his head and looked up at me
As if to ask a question it had no words for, so I spoke them:
“Make me a real boy, Geppetto,” and reached down to pick up
The newly formed heart in my hand. My chest opened its wound
As the boy whispered one word: “Home.” Inside the empty space
The heart fit so nicely and Dali melted into Matisse, dancing.

Image:
Henri Matisse, The Dance (first version), 1909, The Museum of Modern Art, NYC

Greek Gods and Human Wine

Tonight the sun sets over the bridge tunnel
Leading up river
Leaving behind gentle purple
And kind orange glows as gifts
Like Greek gods finally calmed
Leaving behind their warring heroes
To sit and drink fermented ambrosia.

What they do next,
takes your imagination to swans and other creatures
Humans adore, us fragile-hearted beasts.

They play inside the colors
Just beyond our reach
Until we open our reds, whites, roses and browns
To try and catch them
In our fuzzy mind,
As fleet as our fragility
Allows.

Tomorrow the sun will rise as it did today
The glowing pink down river
Equal in gift
To the night
That passed.

We have but one choice,
One choice:
A step into the colors
That black yielded
Like a bridal vail
Lifts
To kiss life
And live
And love.