The sea is high again
today, with a thrilling flush
of wind that circles us
like the willows that weep
around the lines we draw
in the dirt.
her wrinkles when she smiles
to remind me the world
circles heavenly bodies
in its own time.
goes low if we wait long enough
& still the stars circle her
hair dancing on the air
so we wade deeper tomorrow.
That memory we used to share
comes asking for blueberries when I close
my eyes. I see a kaleidoscope.
Purple juice carries more than it thought
when pinched between fingers that just a moment ago
You tried to ruin me but I know
tomorrow jumps two ways. A shooting star tells the tale
for only a moment, extinguished on descent,
though its arc burns red against the black
as if the contrast should surprise us.
The fire reveals the fruit.
Standing in the mirror
she failed to divine
of a universe just above
the horizon. Unseen
distracted by visions
of reflected glory, her dreams
begged for sunlight.
The astronaut neglected
to recognize the gravity
of the situation,
but with luck she will
seize the opportunity
another daybreak illuminates, light
the star-point hopes
lost among the dark.
Colors are not frozen, shyly hiding
In the shadows while hinting at
a deeper shade. Colors can be different
colors, attacking us with their brilliance
or assaulting us through blue dreams
that search for softer complexion,
a complexity of consciousness.
Color may dance in musical hues
of pixelated pigment only I can hear,
telling stories too bold for black and white.
A brutal world craves absolutes, leaving us
to unearth our own meaning where we may.
A colorless tale has no heart. Let it go.
We will find warmth in tinctured breaths.
My murky memory extrapolates the smoke,
pixelated recollections somewhere in the cache
that clears itself (a grasp slackens)
as I hasten to replace lost echoes
with reminiscences to come,
not forgotten among the ash,
rising if we dare stretch hereafter.
The future — always fuzzy like sleep
that won’t rub out of our eyes — changes
every time we look at it, as we push forward
carrying the momentum of those better angels
urging us to grow our own wings
and launch ourselves to join those
refusing to leave progress to others.
Time will tell what tales we create,
Proceeding only where we dare.
The tree stretches like a snowflake,
a white quilt whispering winter along
evergreen branches, lulling day
to sleep while cold quiet announces
the end of another year.
The tree earns another ring, thankful
for moderation in all things living
and dead. Moments of profound insight
from regular cycles leave a peaceful chill
in the air, holding me close, shivering
in the still afternoon sun.
In the end we still look to what comes
next, hushed faces in the setting sun
bracing against the cold, aware
somehow the light will return.
I revel in the in between, the moments
that cling to my swiftly failing memory
like a sock from the dryer that refuses to unhand
my shirt — something electric to embrace
the shocking windfall overtaking me.
I feel fortune’s stroke in this,
a lamp post spotlighting those moments —
unforgettable dots on a map
they blur past scurrying to the flashier dots,
leaving the in between her to us.
We must remember as we bravely parachute
to our final landing place to make the most
of all the lasts – a last meal to energize
our breaking body, last words to inspire
those not jumping though clouds, last visits
with passing specters sharing last goodbyes.
A death bed is just one last stage, one final
curtain call before an audience left wanting
more, grasping at minutes as they dissolve
between clapping fingers. Where does
the time go? Where does anything?
Winds blow in without warning
and dissipate just as quickly. Change
can revitalize whatever breezes
haven’t swept farther down the road.
Our end is an end, one of millions every
day that taste salty on pursed lips
aching under the weight of uncertainty.
I will not waste mine. With my last
dying kiss, I’ll noiselessly thank you
Somewhere beneath the waters
of another dream washing the day off
I slumber through the dark, uncertain night.
What is life but a series
of best guesses, sailors choosing a course
without stars guiding them? We swim,
arms flailing, struggling to keep our heads
above the salty tides pulling us
somewhere – better?
With the sun I’ll break free of this repose,
swim this way – or that
way – guessing at an island paradise
I can almost see beyond the reach
of my freestyle fingers, stretched straight
like they taught me. I’ll keep kicking,
keep moving, keep ahead
of the currents – but for now I rest
my weary legs, my arms.
We are all connected. The woman
in line at the grocery store
too tired to say no to one more question.
The young man scanning the Skittles
his arm a pendulum absentmindedly marking
time. And me at attention
with the world while my phone
shows zero bars and I long to march on.
We all crave serenity. The woman
thinking of a euphoric cacophony of silence
that a mouthful of candy may bring.
The young man clocked out and finding
ecstasy absent the din of beeps, glorying
in his moment. And me raptured
from this world and returned home
where my wifi vigorously absolves me.
My mother told me it would all be okay,
but I’m inclined to believe that
things were simpler in her
womb, in the dark about the blights
perhaps best left out of the spotlight.
A warm shield from injustice
with the first breath of my origin story,
Mom carefully pulled back the veil
through childhood, slowly acclimating my eyes
to a world waiting to blind me
with harsh truths and cold, naked reality.
Perhaps I’m okay. I don’t know another way
and I’m inclined to believe that
things – though complex – deserve
the light, and I can see clearly
because her hand pointed the way.
I prefer to call deception –
that duplicitous imposter
born of self-aggrandizement
amid seasons of otherwise warm
dispositions – a fraud
whose hazy outline bleeds lies
portend a vague shadow
of a home where earthly browns fade
his intent from the start.
The fox who outfoxes (or do
I mean outguiles?) no one cannot
reach the tree, leaving
with only sour grapes, paws scratched
among the pretense. Thorns stir us
from the artifice,
stubbornly refuse to reflect
in a home where truth fades
and we arrive at the end.