Christmas Tree

There is nothing but quiet retractions
Plans I’ll never see

Save for one devious mission
Set out specifically for me

The mist clings tight as the snow
Forgives around my branches

Though distant sounds sinister cut
Through this morning in flashes

The children’s laugh pierce deeper
Than the cat’s claws in spring

I know that facade and the
Serrated teeth it brings

The veins in my wood rage unseen
Against tradition’s tapestry

Busy orange beanies speckled white
Round the bend as I curse my ancestry

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Shade of Love

The fire’s embers pulsed against their death, waving their essence as a tattered white flag clashing frantically against the coming night.

I told her that dying fire could not be reborn, that the universe has known countless fire, but none the same.

She sat between my legs and laughed at my words.

“You demand little, poet. You slide easy through the night and shade the in-betweens.”

I told her that crying and laughing often is the only way I knew to squeeze the essence from the sponge we call life. If we aren’t careful it will retain all of us, a secret forever.

She kissed my neck and threw a rock into the sea.

“Love should be free and full bodied, don’t you think?”

I listened to her and inhaled her scent though fractured hues. Our stilted shade of blue blended with the night and washed out with the tide.

Stoking the smolder, I wondered at her whimsy and how it danced with her immovable spirit. I didn’t respond.

We sat and watched the fire whisper its final secrets we would never think to keep to ourselves.

A Gift

My heart is in the work.

Who can truly say that? Too few.
Those who are down trodden but full of
objective opinions on the ravines of life.
Who’s fire hasn’t gone out and if it has
they refuse to acknowledge the night.

The foolish. By certain metrics.
Their hearts in work the world
refuses to acknowledge. Holding tight
to within knowing without is without
a certain perspective. Theirs.

Never bored on a rainy afternoon,
never scared they’ll be taken too soon.
Mortality is a gift who’s pressure they
dance in, when they remember its presence.

Most of us wish mortality away with all
the times we are alone and can’t stand
ourselves. We would rather be bored
for eternity than face the forge of our
passions and fears.

And while we search for our hearts and wish,
they break open their sternums, exposing all.

And they work.

To The Poem That Escaped Me

I was not looking to possess you
undress you or even stage a rescue

from the danger of losing you
which was only brought upon me

paradoxically by your pouring presence
flowing down the back of my forehead

I remember your shape, vaguely; how
your corners bumped into my brain stem

as you drove in your stolen car from
one side of my head to the other

I will call you “the sunrise” as it seemed
that was what had funneled in through

my retinas, deeming the physical light
unimportant and teasing me with the notion

that the sensation of the tangible
dancing incorporeal through our minds

is the greatest miracle no one ever
writes about. Perhaps because

we always seem to forget.

Alice and the Lost Boy

“Fallen down one of your tunnels again?”

“Aye, just as you can’t stop laughing.”

The jovial bounce in her step echoed
the sound of his brain ricocheting off the
walls of his esophagus as it tumbled down
down down.

Wonder and hopelessness look very similar on the
surface, feel very similar when taken by the hand.

She fondly wove her dialogue with threads of
nostalgia, courting the paintbrush of life.

He pulled off smiles as his mind bubbled in the pit
of everything he thought had been and everything
he supposed this was.

Her eyes were taken by the moment and danced among
the stars. He was in a mood to be forgotten.

premeditated

Panicked past selves claw inside buried coffins splintered
20 years spent methodically killing kindred
We’ve traded the shovels out over the years
Exchanging crushes with 4 inch screens with forgotten fears

Plots of old time movie clips on repeat
Splotchy film bubbling over old time defeats
Superimpose the faces of those we love
Sepia stained expressions impossible to dispose of

Equipped inadequately to handle this race
It is no big surprise the surprises we face
Some innocuous occurrence turns us inside out
Among our guts we find what we’ve forgotten all about

Aim for distant lands as lions claw under the hulls
Drowning in wake while water invades maned skulls
Horizon vanishes to a mirage in the sea
Only to reveal what the lions could truly be

Fire licks behind our eyes as we ignore the dose
Without space colonization revert to morbid and morose
Lessons we mistook embedded in chests we never hated
Panic plot equip aim fire. Premeditated.

Palindrome (If Projector Sheets Could Hold Hands)

Read yourself backwards and find me
reaching out through the bending black

Pivot on that punctuation you once placed
and find the run on sentence of my madness for you

Twist and love and bend to reach me
be patient as I echo you

-not repeating your essence, but acting out my own-

In real time with yours
in this fractured mirror existence

Place my overhead projector sheet soul over yours
see the jumbled mess splayed on the wall

A tangle made by two patterns pure
only deciphered when seperated

And placed side by side.

Peculiar

The light refracted in such a manner that it transcended genres and met my eyes as nostalgia.

Photons transmuting to little messengers alerting my bones to the presence of your ink in my blood.

The breeze shifted waves of grain with such splendor that I took pause at my own frivolities.

Barley seeds sparring with my dissolving kernels of guilt tumbling through the underbelly of a dry ocean.

Peculiar, how external stimulus can plunge one’s soul back into the reverently internal. Peculiar, how our gates unlock.

Peculiar, how our drowning need to escape a present of our own construction will convince us of certain novelties. Like the delicate dance between the breeze and our brains. The personal poems a sunset writes our lost loves. The frayed stitching of loss and growth we thread through these mediums.

What other creation can we net for our own assurances?

Never Swim Alone

The plateau I panted on rocked too and fro after
you pulled me up and your eyes were the only
thing that kept the image of granite twisting
to sea foam at bay. Here in this rocky range we
set out though now my head is filled with doubt.

We were attempting to summit.
You stopped my plummet.
Though the smell of salt is so strong
I’m held at pause as if something is wrong
and even though we want to carry on I’m
suddenly suspect of the bubbling liquid seeping
up through the cliff.

The sun beats down the same as it did on
the climb. As I drive our company’s flag
into the peak the ground gives way and my
flag is now an oar being pulled through the algae.

What I mean to say is I believe we throw around
the word epiphany way too often as if we have
some semblance of what the notion of solid means.
We celebrate our moments of victory and rest
while I believe our perches mock us in jest.

Is it possible to start searching harder while
we stop searching all together?

But I suppose we only have our retinas
and I shouldn’t be so harsh.

I wrote this today because I saw ripples
in the hillside and boulders warping into
waves and the blood of the bodies stacked
from the seafloor masquerading as trees
in the valley below.

And I saw your hand help me up over a ledge
I didn’t know I dangled from just as the
gravel formed rows of serrated teeth and
the crabgrass grew gills.

Now I don’t know if my gear is really
fear or what even to hold dear on
this rocky outcropping I dread to truly be
a whirlpool.

We are climbing the wrong mountains because
they are oceans yet somehow our pickaxes keep
us buoyant enough to love and to kill.

All I know is the only image
that seems to not flicker from land to sea
is that of you and me and pressing deeper
into that seems to be what God meant
when he told us to Love Him.

Kings of Old

half-written intentions
semi-formed imprints littering
the basement of my brain and
the paths i’ve carved the same
don’t be angry with them please
don’t cite my actions they have
no dog in this fight no
signs up in defense

while i wish i could breathalyze
my patterns and take them back
to the station

my best bet is to barrel role back
to ’98 and sit my deafening pulse
down for interrogation