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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The stationary traveler, ten

My wet palm’s printed
On black glass. It unsettles
A minstrel’s dead smile.

Monday, May 30, 2011

This calm is brutality

Farther, farther, where you have forsaken glee
take to knee, and have that good cry.

The wind’s stopped ... caring
how the twilight comes,
if it comes it can come
with pigtails and a little-girl skip
or baldness and an old man’s stride.

Our bruise of sky has turned from
a heartless purple-black
to a gassy planet’s sickly yellow.

The leaves are out
again, exhaling greens.

Against their backdrop
who can be afraid of sparks to fire,
for we future fallen?


This weeks prompt from A Wordling Whirl of Sundays uses a dozen words taken from the Wallace Stevens poem Domination of Black. Check out the poem, and the prompt site to see how other's have responded to it.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The stationary traveler, nine

Each green seed of thigh
high grass seeks an ear. Their waves
reach me on parting.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Albert (In Praise of a Pug)

It’s been said
“dogs grow to resemble their masters”
maybe
we’re drawn to those who resemble us,
not like Narcissus,
but grabbed by the familiar
kiss of a kindred give and take.

Albert’s pug face shouts wide
ranging expressions. Most
are in a key of indignation.

Those few times,
happy times indeed,
when the joy does
come, ... it comes so overwhelming,
he snorts and puffs, he hops
and prances about His tiny body
can never contain it
and he lets it spill
all over me.

Friday, May 27, 2011

The stationary traveler, eight

The spoiled sun inhales
fog shrouding distasteful brown
lands. Leave me, sourness.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Monday, May 23, 2011

In this time of rapture, moonbeams scatter

When you weaned me from the waning moon,
its milky cusps, winking welcome
moods of starry surrender, I was lost
to my reflection rearranged
roughly on the window’s pane.

Don’t take flight yet, you said,
first take the light’s left hand
and keep it from the misbehaving oak,
its frightening reach.

There are beehive-capped angels
swinging there beneath, and they’re angling
to gather moony souls
together in false hope.
Their absent promise is absolute,
and absolution.

They’ll utter their nothings,
utterly sweet, if you let them,
and lull you with their yellow tongues.
Fly away with this light you now hold
and risk the falling.



What better way is there to celebrate surviving the rapture than with a wordle? You can check out this week's prompt and all of the wonderful responses to it, by visiting A Wordling Whirl of Sundays.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The stationary traveler, five

Thicket walls stand on
the writing of longer lives.
I can't feel my hands.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Friday, May 20, 2011

The stationary traveler, three

The world I saw is
Worlds beyond me, red-shifted
Small measures of time

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The stationary traveler, two

To every season
there comes a time, out of turn.
Days, I’m not at home.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The stationary traveler

On another side
of understanding, I’ve lost
it, all hope for home

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

We fall away from the forest

The man, somewhat less than
environmentally leaning,
falls down, making a definite
sound in protest.

The forest, far away
and dwindling, may or may not hear
his unkind sting. It’s none the less,
not interested.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Fast-food notions

There’s no need for me to start
in, when a stop’s been
abridged to little more than
a pause and a wink at
the romantic thought
pleasant but stony bridges
once came between
coming and going.

They’ve substituted it –
the dirty and rutted
road leading up –
to a smooth black surface,
with a broad white stripe
and a textured mat
of margarine yellow,
hard rubber bumps, that
will teach us, what
shakes us doesn’t have to slow
radials slurping us in through
the drive-through.

Some things are worth the wait,
like the wind-up voice
behind sliding-glass,
and its brandishing hands
eking us our infusion
of copper coins back
and flimsy paper sacks
filled with a rural life
filtered out through industrial
chimneys, then patted
down to a few
salty, groundbeef patties.



This is in response to the most recent prompt at A wordling whirl of Sundays. Check out the site to see what others have contributed.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

For all those who've known a Michael Francis Lynch

I read Michael Francis Lynch
lived twice, but differently
as two different men
and was killed
on the same day
in the same tragedy.

We’ll mark it, that day
(and both of him,
and those more than two,
thousands of others)
with twin reflective pools
set within twin absences.

Above the one,
northerly facing
spaces carved out of bronze
may recall one
Michael Francis Lynch.

Above the second
southerly gazing, similar
spaces taken from similar bronze
may recall a second
Michael Francis Lynch.

How will they know,
those who knew
either Michael Francis Lynch,
which of the face-filling blanks
holds which?

And if by the same
slim chance as two
men with the same name
finding the same end
on the same day,
they, all those who knew them,
choose the same bronze
and search it
for the same spaces,
whose face will they find
in those empty words,
and will the other still unread
stand for anything more
than emptiness?



I read a short piece in the New Yorker ("The Names" by Nick Paumgarten, 5/16/2011 issue) about the National September 11 Memorial due to be completed in the fall. It dealt with the difficulties the designers had arranging the names of those who were killed on the bronze panels ringing the two cascading pools where the towers stood. Among the 2,982 victims were two with the same name, Michael Francis Lynch, and it was decided that they should be listed on separate panels.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Lessons from foreign gods, No. 4 (Iktomi)

Iktomi inches to me.
His trip has eight furry legs.
His trap is eight black-ringed eyes.
He’ll walk me too willingly
into his world-weaving web.
Words I spin, strengthen its strands.
The pull teaches me, new tricks.



This is a re-posting of this poem, because the Blogger gods decided to embark on a massive Fail and eat the first try from yesterday.

Iktomi is not actually a "foreign" god, but indeed very native to this land the Europeans so skillfully swiped (and re-swiped as many times as it took). When I encounter him, I try to escort him outside where he can play his tricks on the squirrels and the possums.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The dreamy promise of this vast wasteland

Half-asleep in a fog
of blanket and pyjama
I slip through flickering
channels of static-drenched drama
and the hiss made by bickering,
childhood-imprisoned ghosts.
A heavenly spokes-damsel
flirts me to my host
using a slink full of crackle
and the oddly addictive pop
of mis-stressed syllables.
The offer on the cluttered counter-top
is a bullet-point bible,
leather bound for an easy-income calm,
and thrown in with the assured salvation
of an outstretched palm
to slap me away from happy damnations
he’s conveniently catalogued.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Draw it away from the lake

It’s then, your breath shifts
Off that reservoir of cool.
Corners rise up, slow.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Giving in to the clichéd on Mother's Day

Ahem, it's for the many ways I haven't said "I love you"
Oh, I know, it goes without saying, or even doing, when
T-shirts, circulars and greeting cards all proclaim it for me in
Achingly florid fonts, dripping with pastel sentiment, but
Each year this day brings with it an advertisement-teased doubt.
Erring on the side of their callow self-promotion, I’ll give you this. I love you.


With a special "I love you" dedicated to my mom Marina, and all the women out there who make this world a more welcome place for the rest of us.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

The lines don't last too long, at the dollar store

For her, winter’s not a season,
it’s the clichéd age.
It has been, for ages,
and it’s made sad
patches of her greasy black hair,
those slicked back hairs now licking
the back of her frosty white scalp.

It came in with a wire, this winter.
You can’t see it,
but there had to be a wire,
a wire to tug at her lip,
to drag down her hip,
to pull her foot out
to its permanent perpendicular.

She didn’t come in alone either.
She’s got her fella with her
and he’s a tall fella,
on the go and going,
going on
with a heart that beats him
humming-bird thumps
while he hovers
figure eights around her
and the impulse rack,
his two salty-sweet feeders.

The winter’s lost its bark outside,
and she’s losing hers,
but it doesn’t stop her from barking,
I ain’t paying for that ... 
even before he’s got a that
for her not to pay for,
so he beats it back
and nudges his beak
in the lost blossom of her neck
to half-kiss and half-calm her,
I’ve got my own money.

Too late, she’s at it,
the front of the line
and she swipes it,
$41.02
off the plastic card
for a cheap plastic bag of chips
and two twenties back.

Then, the wire
lets her flash the cashier
that stolen-spring’s smile
before she and her fella
face it together
the end of her winter
out through the door.

Monday, May 02, 2011

What the hills get over is, you're far away

What the hillsides want,
you can’t know. They scribble
dark matters on the stream below,
and they train their animated whispers
to piggyback the summer wind’s
fiery bellows. Moments later
it reaches you, their angry murmur,
but they won’t teach you its meaning,
only the sustaining double-
vision of a revenge that will come
first, with a thrumming ache
and then their resilient thirst.


Another week, another wordle. Check out what others have contributed at A Wordling Whirl of Sundays, the site Brenda Warren created to keep us wordle junkies properly fixed.

Sunday, May 01, 2011