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Friday, August 30, 2013

Cut In

Without you,
A new year feels as sharp
 and wounding as the blade
of a new knife.

 If I could,
 I would let you cut in,
 So you can finish
 this dance with life.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Humble Requests





















Edvard Munch "The Girl in the Window" (detail) 1893





She tip-toes toward
the parted curtains,
where this celestial lamp
has come to meet
and unfold her hands,
to carry her humble requests
to a magical place
of mercy and rest.

She does not plead for more
or weep over less;
Only asks to protect
the dreaming souls
who've loved her long
and loved her best;

To wrap the present of this perfect night
in cotton sheets tucked in tight--
with unraveled hair ribbons,
 and slow stretching streams
of a sleepy midnight
 yawning moonbeams.

She hears nothing but
the nodding branches
of each tree's proud approval.

Her lips utter not a single
sung or whispered word;
but a protective breeze
traveling along the glow of her skin
lets her steady pulse know:

That her heart has been answered;
That she has been heard .


Submitted for:
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Monday, August 26, 2013

Girl On The Moon

I am the girl on the moon--
a girl who only knows
the curious, peeking,
quiet light of the stars;
The one who occasionally
has long distance chats with mars.

I am the girl on the moon,
fully embracing the harvest--
as gravity moves further,
and further
from my floating thoughts.

I am the girl in the sky
watching the web
of dark, immortal space
catch earthly questions,
as they blink by
like the traffic of evening  fireflies.

I am the one
wondering if there
is an answer for every
pair of empty hands.

I am the echo
in the cave of a hollow heart,
when endings and beginnings
rehearse their passion
for a movie kiss.

I am just a girl
on the moon.
And love is just a boy
on a drifting cloud
that once passed through me.

I am the girl traveling in circles
with a glow so far behind her--
sadly accepting
no bright new time will ever find her.

Friday, August 23, 2013

A Cousin of A Prayer

Sometimes I have to put her words down
because they feel like something
 I've been holding all my life

Not as easy as the summer beach
Not as tired as an overcast day
but she offers flight over pain
Sand and slow rain


the kind that will always show up later
in pockets, and shoes

frozen,
in the forgotten crevices of winter blues

the kind that will walk in without wiping its feet
and never apologize for leaving traces
of where it has been or what it knows

The kind that only a garden grows

Not gospel
But a cousin of a prayer
somewhere between
 heavy breath and light air

She destroys all indoor sources of time
forces me to rely on the sky
to tell me where my shadow should be

I forget lessons I've read,
the time I wake,
or went to bed.
Too often a dying memory
 makes a widow out of me

But I never forget a feeling
Emotions tend to pile themselves on top of me

And she's the only thing
that could ever set me free

If you see her around,
Pay attention.

Her name is Poetry.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

To The Depths of Whatever I Am

I can't remember
the first time I was called a poet
or by whom;
Though I do recall
something within me sank
to the depths of whatever I am

That's an intense responsibility,
you know...
Do I even have a choice in this matter?
Or is this like a given name,
stamped on my birth certificate?
Did I check the box on my driver's license:
"Will donate organs, blood,
observations of life and the human spirit"

If this was given: Why me?!
If this was chosen: Was I drunk?!

We won't even discuss
whether or not I must
or must not be great--
Or if I can just keep it simple
on the surface,
and rhyme about the food I ate;


All that, and my pride aside--
It doesn't even matter.
Someone pushed
a roller coaster ride
Straight through my chest
and my heart is alone,
screaming in the front seat--
strapped down
by a lifetime of words

First words
Last Words
Words soaked in late evening summer sheets
Words stuck in traffic
Words naming babies
Words Coming Home
Kind words, apologizing
for the wrong that other words have done.
Words needing someone.

Some frogs complain about being green
So I shoved some black and blue pens
in a bindle,
and headed out to trade them,
with hopes that I can leap over this crazy scene

Do you know how many poems
a poet can give birth to?
And some don't even grow up to fit their name.
I never got my body back
after that first stanza.
My head feels like a thesaurus's bloated twin.
And I'm poet-tired
from all these early lyric cries
and midnight feedings.

Sleep doesn't call me anymore--
won't even spend the night on a weekend,
or admit that we had something once.

This is rarely a day at the beach
But I'm forever shaking off the sand,
And even if I don't leave my pages
out in the sun--
aging lines appear,
and rhymes form
like freckles everywhere.

Staring at this mirror,
through young, but weary eyes--
I can only surmise,
that one day,
my hands will cramp
and not recover,
finger tips still stained,
prints leaving evidence of passion,
 and the tumult of a mind gone mad;



And there is very little doubt,
that on their way out
those final words
will read:
Oh, God! Why me?

But there is fire in fear;
A bright secret
slips through parting clouds,
and a voice
cowering beneath a soft sheet of breath,
whispers...
"Thank You!"




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Friday, August 9, 2013

Winter Boots

Closed Eyes
Stole the dawn's colors
from my skies.
And if that's the end,
I see what you see--
Darkness, and trouble.
Fearing a sober mind.
Intoxication only made it double.


So much loss
Yet there is so much within me


My pen glides along,
tracing over hills of grief.
On my head,
rests one autumn leaf--
a snowflake falls beside it
to threaten its veins.
The leaf hardens.
A crisp truth.
No life remains...


Hollow boots,
fading
in this bastard of a blizzard;
No feet to fill them.
 No burning sun to will them--
Only stale, heavy air
to forever still them.


So I watch promises
break through the hourglass,
and stare at all the goodbyes
 my bare feet long to pass...


While whirling shadows cry
your empty winter boots
 kill the summer grass.



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Monday, August 5, 2013

Shaking Hands With Poets

She sings songs with her eyes closed
her voice let's you know
whether their blue or gold
Her words change color all the time

She's spent the better part of her life
shaking hands with poets
with a long hope
that maybe there's a line on a palm,
 that'll remind her of who she is
She doesn't know for sure,
Not anymore.

There's no calendar
with days
marked with okays
to take out the crazy;
So it stays.

Did I mention she'll take a rhyme
like a dime
on a floor?
even when her heart isn't poor;

But sometimes she's the one to leave one
under cushions,
or rolled beneath a coin machine
Spinning on the dirt,
and places where bending may hurt;
Where schedules pull her away
and time is too busy
 to bother to flirt

In her room
there's a closet full
of disorganized letters--
On cold days
she pulls them out
and wears them all at once
like layers of sweaters

Most of her thoughts
are waiting behind
a railroad sign
near an old abandoned train
she wonders
if she leaves to meet them
will she go completely insane?



Sunday, August 4, 2013

Soul Mates

Pardon me
for noticing,
but the loneliness in your words
closely resembles mine

I couldn't help but wonder
 if we are soul mates.

And if we put our words
in the same room
and stirred them together
would they make love?

Sign Language

What if you put down your worries for a while
there's a blank canvas so lonely in the corner
let's join our hands together in sign language
to explain the beauty we see in it
and ride the wave of its rising smile

We can fill it with a few tall things
that refuse to conform to borders
and stretch all of our blue
into calm skies and still waters

You spoke with your head down
of all the lovely things you had once
your words drew them so well...
Lift your head now
and see the wonderful present
that past can slip through your fingers and spell

There now,
do you see?
What should be
is really what could be
and somewhere it already is
waiting in a place made for you

So when you feel
your impatience boiling
remember
that you are not waiting for happiness
happiness is waiting for you--
just hoping you'll be flying in
any minute now





Saturday, August 3, 2013

Here Comes The Month

Here comes the month
down a narrow aisle
my eyes only half-look
because if they allowed the entirety of the vision
they may never watch anything else

I never thought I'd see a ghost march,
until now--
if you haven't, I'll explain how--
the movement is something like a missed beat
it walks in places we skip
the eerie hum of the piano deepens with each slow blink
the notes press themselves into me
almost like the player is sitting on my chest

The music compels the stillness into a moving confession:
I don't remember you everyday
because my mind is not the place you left
when you went away
and one can only recall something once forgotten
But if remembering could trace you back to life
I would force myself to forget every night
in each of the rooms you never entered
in all of the dreams you never visited

And I ask for no moment of silence
because your laughter is like fairy dust
you sprinkled it into my life
and it stays with me
even after all of the fearful shaking
even after relenting to sad exhaustion
 under clouds breaking...
Your happiness is still glitter on my mind
I hear it, and I know you're okay
So I know it's okay, for me to be okay, too.




Thursday, August 1, 2013

Untitled

I can’t remember
The colors that surrounded the day
When “us” first discovered its life
When it entered this realm
Without the background noise
of all the “to-dos”
over the pretty dresses and sparkly shoes
posing on a red carpet moment;

I just know it was quiet
And it was everything.

I won’t call us love;
That word hasn’t meant a thing
Since a million machine-washing cycles ago--
So faded and half the lettering has peeled off
Now it’s barely wearable, or worth enough
 to throw in a charity box

I won’t call this a blessing
Because I know a higher power
Must have so many more important things to do
Than push together two ordinary, imperfect souls
 such as me and you

In fact, I won’t call it, at all.

This is too eternal
And it travels without direction
through so many avenues

At times, it is so fragile,,
So human that it fears its own death

So sweet
as it recognizes comfortable moments
And rests with them
 no matter the time of day


If  I could whisper a hint
I would say,
 It is the only place
Where I’d go forever

It is what we need
In a time of humanity
 Testing the strength of the surface
Poking the layer that exists
To keep the lows from rising
And the highs from falling
So they don’t collide and become lava

This is a million places
And a billion feelings
That all blend into one truth

No, I won’t call this anything, at all.
I will let it be a gorgeous secret
For others to learn on their own
A glorious surprise that happily 
darts toward them
 and jumps on them
After a long day of trying to get home

I won't call this
or cut and paste a word
from the dictionary

We both know
This isn't something that needs a name
This only needs to be