Thursday, February 20, 2014

To the surprise of absolutely no one

I was a prolific sonuvabitch as a kid. I shared some college stuff last time, but here's work from even earlier, high school and junior high, in particular. Some fragments in this bunch, but the prosody is surprisingly solid. Might be worth revisiting and editing. Soontm. Oh yeah, and also, prose poems. Hell fucking yes, I actually wrote prose poems. And they are like astoundingly religious. I tell people how close I came to becoming a priest, but I've apparently blocked out most of the memories of my piety. This is like discovering a thousand shares of some tech stock if only that wasn't nothing at all like this. Lastly, ellipsises are used to indicate fragments. And yes, I'm aware that isn't a word.


stretches a cat before the fire
  his eyes rolled back reclined
no sight in nature so deceives
  as the languid lion thus defined

the king upon a velvet throne
sipping bloodred wine refined
his tyranny veiled in tears of gold
his ruthlessness denied...


the sun falls from the sky
a dropping diamond from on high
brilliant with the brilliance of forgotten years
burning with the fire flame ablaze in stolen tears
whisked away by the wind at dawn and dusk
scattered to the morrow in rain and dust
the sun is only just as bright
as all the stars shining at night

"mimsy in the barrowgroves"

a witty man once told me
the toucan knows--

i asked the man just what he meant,
he said it just goes to show
i cannot guarantee you anything
that birds all swim or fish have wings
they might, who knows,
what the future brings
or what might come with tied shoestrings
and long nights of Paris flings
everything that might with reindeer ring
these are all the sorts of things
of which a poet often sings

"a rocking chair"

It's the autumn afternoons I miss the most. Just sitting in a chair, surrounded by nothing and everything, by morning and by evening, by all my fears -- which were few -- and all my hopes -- which were so many. Innocence, I remember. I didn't know but I didn't care and it was the second that was the more important.

I would watch the smoke from the tar fire, burning illegally but I didn't know. Watching birds fly fleeing from the smoke--I might have guessed but didn't care.

Then I looked into the smoke and saw a dream--and I smiled. Now I look into the wispy screen I see a dream and cry.

The quiet fear of suspicion. The brief, furtive longing of kindled hope.

See the smoke roll across the lawn, on wheels turning as inexorable as time. In the tendrils of burning leaves are the ashes of forgotten dreams, scattering to the four corners of an ever-collapsing globe, scattered by the wind that wears away mountains into valleys. A complement to passing time, the breath of her exhalation as her indrawn breath summons storms to suck away years so does her wind wipe away any hope of a future.

What can be built to survive time? Our hands are not so able as the fists of our creator. No, man cannot create save God destroy. Only one aspect of our person can endure. It is that which concerns ourselves, the cog in the machine of our story. It is that which permits one of us to live and threatens another with untimely death. What can be made, can be unmade. But what we feel can never be taken away.

A thing to survive centuries, in songs, poems and memories. An emotion that endures beyond reason.


A flower, an ancient flower. An eternal flower, like the rose in our hearts it does not wilt. In our hearts the flowers still grow, in an everlasting spring. They do not know winter but for the cold chill that brushes them when we stray. They know only spring, which, though the wind blows, is always bright and green. The flowers in our heart are blooming, waiting for the day you come to claim them. Until that day the sun of your smile beams down on us from afar. Like this flower, the pink everlasting, the rose in our heart will never die. So it waits, that you might pluck it, and wear it as you will that our love joins you, bound to the flower in our hearts and this gift of an eternal flower we give you now.

"love poetry for christians"

i'm wasting my time
    trying to find other ways to heaven
while there are a thousand ways to fly
all of the best ones linger in your eyes

"that's a hell of a volta"

do not follow the lilied path
there is no rose in the garden;
only the petals of dead blooms
with the brown dirty ground around them

there is no water in the fountain;
only the tears of those who walk by
and cannot see the sky above them--
do not fall in the drowning pool

in your arms are the memories
of warm summer days at your home
where we wrestled in the piles of leaves
and never left the other alone


only in the mirrormere
is your reflection truly pure--
peerless, gazing in the waters of your soul--
there's an artistry to your face
a vaulted beauty held in no other place...

"before it's where"

before Thumenicledes breathes northern air
before the pillowed sky falls down
it is in the grass whispering there
where the earth curls close around

before the truculent sun rises in the east
before her palette spills across the page
it is in the thunderous breast of the priest
where commanded to the stage

before the morbid dawn of uneasy summer
before the flowers begin to bloom
it is in the eyes of a mighty gardener
where he sinks slow in gloom

before the birds begin to sing
before all the world shakes off its sleep
it is in the moment of dancing
where for a season we forget to weep

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