Saturday, January 15, 2011

In the golden light of sunset - the sparkle of the day that was - the promise of the day yet to be and the sheer beauty of the moment...

10 Poems - On Being Trapped

In a Mind Rush

Pounding thrashing
scattered clashing
cymbals in blood
light bright, sound
blare,limbs paralytic
in the chamber of
mind rush


In Tract Housing

My parents drove
Each Sunday
To look at houses
I walked with them
The good child
While my brother
Waited in the car

Walked through other
People's lives
Found the bedroom that
Would be mine
Peered at their trees outside
Left with their cooking
Smells in my hair lingering
As I slept in the room
I shared in our apartment

Each Sunday my parents
Drove to look at houses
Fragments of other lives
Clinging to my shoulders
Inhaled into my lungs
Houses large and lovely
Streets where oak trees reached
To meet each other

Until one Sunday
My parents drove
And stopped at acres of
Plowed overturned land
Separated by plywood sticks
Numbered close and
Anonymous as soldier's graves
We walked all of us through
The mud until my father stopped

And pointed at the stick in
Which we would live our future
In that cemetery of surrendered
Imagination I held close the collected
Flotsam of floating memories
Of all those other houses
Held close the keys to my
Eventual release from
Mediocrity of the stifled soul
Trapped within the pride of my parent's


In The Hourglass

I used to look at hourglasses with a passion and a joy
Peeking back from time to time it was a favorite toy
The lovely way white sand gently dropped grain by grain to
Intrigue me with crystal curving wasp waisted rushing through
I used to look at hourglasses joyfully from the outside in
Bewildered I am unclear when it began that I started to see them from within


In Longing For A Teacher's Approval

I loved Mrs K. with a fifth grade girl's single minded devotion
She wore dangling turquoise earrings and spoke of traveling each ocean
She said that I was special and let me write away at will
I loved her for the lacquered chopsticks in her hair, but more for how she saw me still

A child, she called me an artiste and flattered a young adoring hungry mind
So when her good graces threatened should not surprise anyone that I became unkind
Because I loved Mrs K. and she a little bit loved me
I overlooked the many ways, in fact I'm sure I loved her for her eccentricity

On the day she did a random search of book bags and picked me
Emptied it out onto her desk for all the class to see
A pencil with a chewed off tip, a crumpled paper, an orange rolled off to the side
Nothing yet embarrassing, nothing necessarily would I hide

As she went around the room and asked my classmates for any feeling
She stopped and found a side pocket drew out a comb stuck with hair and sent the class off reeling

Because I loved Mrs K and wilted at her disappointed stare
A lie slipped loudly from my lips, "It is not mine, not mine, that disgusting comb right there

It is my little brother's I'm carrying it for him today
And to my shame I did not recant as she told me to go get my brother and bring him there that day

My brother was so happy when his big sister appeared at his first grade classroom door with a note from Mrs. K.
He skipped down the hallways holding my hand softly singing all the way

Once there he stood crew-cutted smiling at Mrs. K's desk alone in front of the room as did she in a booming voice to him say

"You are a dirty little man" waving my comb in his face and never once, then or since, did this little boy, his big sister betray

My blood beat thick and hard from my heart up to my throat to pound into my ears
As I sat silent in blatant betrayal's shame in the name of misplaced love trapped freshly squirming through the years


Within The Skin

Here within the skin
Runs the wild blood
Of endless pampas passion
Pounding toward the outside
From the held depths of within


In The Box

Waiting among the jumbled masses
Yearning to snap, to crackle and
Ultimately to pop
Needed only the catalyst of milk...


In From The Rain

In came I at the end of the storm
Soaked through to the skin with icy rain
I six or seven weeks old abandoned once again
Too young to believe in the spoken eventuality of spring
Of which the elders told mystically the unseen shifts would bring

Too young to conceptualize the marsh grass
dry, the blue skied sun ablaze in the sky
Too young to believe in clouds of butterfly
Driven forward by the simple wish not to die

Came I to the door and mewling stood
Until it opened and into gargantuan
Heated arms lifted and I folded into them apparently for good

Was I wise?
When in I came
Warmed in those flanneled human arms
Dried with a towel from icy rain
I lie on floors polished to a shining glow
warm, clean and fed I see myself grow

Outside the glass the wind howls
The trees now iced and bare
Would I have lived to test the mythic spring
I know not that, know only this one thing

That should the time actually come when
All outside transforms to warm, scented green
It will through 'pain' of clean impenetrable
Glass by me, safe, ensconced, separated,
Looking out from within - be not ever felt, yet ever seen


In Fear Of And For You

They've grown tired
Of telling me to leave
Of feeding me words only
To watch my tongue to roof of mouth cleave
They've grown tired and accustomed to see
The yellow purpled fields of fists
You leave on me

They've somehow accepted that the light in my eyes is burnt out
My voice unsustainable though it might infrequently shout
I've watcherd their sympathy, fear, concern melt finally to steely disgust
They do not understand that stay with you, for you are weak,
I forever must


In The Big Cheese

Higgly, piggly my friend Jim
Marched to the cheese though
We all tried to stop him

Higgly, piggly, my friend Jim was sure
That he could safely eat, leave and return for more

Higgly, piggly, my soon to be late friend Jim
Stuck, crushed, bleeding out onto that hunk of cheese
As life drains from him


In The Lifting Mist

T here in the misted fields of
R endevous to come
A rmed only with poetry and Jane Eyre
P roclaim boundless affection
P roclaim forever love
E ver resilient, ever sacredly faith full
D amned in the shimmered reality of the later, lifting mist

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Celebrate Our Humanity

In this time of grief

and bewilderment

celebrate that in spite

of chasmic philosophic


from Arizona to Alaska

and all in between we

are one

united, indivisible and

in the wake of unspeakable

violence yearning with

singular human, humane

compassion for peace

and harmony

moving this great experiment

one step closer to the ideal

of one country, of-by-and-for

all the people

starkly jolted from ivory towers

and jargoned catchy rhetoric to the reality

of the crimson common blood that

runs in all veins and can be spilled in senseless

insanity or protected

it is simply up to all of us

to grieve the tragedy

and in the common grieving

celebrate the opportunity

to do better...

With respectful memory of those who on a bright Arizona day, lost their lives, with respect for those who were injured and in honor of those who courageously put themselves in harm's way to help. And, to paraphrase Jon Stewart - with grateful recognition that despite rhetoric and abstractions in reality we ALL continue to hold the capacity to be horrified.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Celebrating Oliver? (the formerly orphaned now Lord-and-Master kitten)

I am celebrating
so they tell me I will see
that in November
during the challenge
a tiny kitten adopted me

at first he melted in my arms
and wooed me with his feline charms
so vulnerable, his energy
in apparent perfect synchroncity

I thought I was doing a wonderful deed
rescuing a helpless ball of life
a few days of shelter and hand fulls of feed

Harbored a few romantic notions let them unfurl and begin
when I thought the little one female thought
perhaps this visit was from my little Muse, Kaitlin

I am celebrating so they tell me I will see
the little one that turned out a fellow to be
Who is now beginning to become his own 'person,' jump and run
Savoring each soft look of the love affair with my husband he has begun

I am celebrating so they tell me I will see
the joy of sharing my life and psychic energy
as he taps each surface of my home
claiming each and all including both of us as his own

I am celebrating so they tell me I will see
the shattered silence of my quiet energy

Believing that there are lessons to be learned in all
I attempt surrender of life space and throw myself into his thrall

From Boy to Man

With my womb like a ship in a bottle you slid as an unseen foot I pressed
Until six weeks past the time of “any minute!” you moved
from a Madonnaesque notion to become the adored infant son I wonderingly caressed
On first day home I accidentally stuck you with a pin
And at the realization of your pain in my heart truly a mother did begin
You turned over at two days although they said you were truly six weeks old
I cared little for their time-tables, thought the movement genius and quite bold
Your long awaited delayed grand entrance, perhaps did your precociousness enhance
As you stood at six months and said your first word ‘Hello!’ at anyone’s merest glance
You swam under crystal turquoise waters as instinctively graceful as a creature of the sea
And broke surface with that infant pealing laughter sun spattered, salted looking straight into me

Each moment held its special wonder, from first step, to full out run,
to pointing out the alphabet before sentenced speech had yet begun
I knew I had longed for you, but could not have conceptualized the joy, the purest fun
Your mind became your own and thrilled with thoughts that tied perfection with a shining bow
Like the time at two when you hugged me tight and said your heart with love did “overflow”
And so it went on and on and so on and on did it go
I did all the things that mothers do, the little league games when I’d glance down quickly when a ball you’d miss
And catch your eye straight through and at a run come in, grin and share the bliss
I held you in my arms and danced and whirled you through day and night
Until you were far too old and mature for such a sight
Soon you held your palm up to mine and dwarfed my own
It was clear that the time was here and you near fully grown
I soaked in your proud introductions of your mother young and cool
Left you at college with a cheery bye a smiling face swollen and sufficient tears to fill a pool
From that slide, side to side, within my womb as on an unseen foot I pressed
To graduations, speeches, award dinners, office openings I dressed
Each moment celebrated with a truly incomparable and somehow unspeakable joy
With complete understanding that each event moved you to the world’s man from my boy
And as you shifted, I moved too, step by step, beginning center and over incrementally
Continuing to celebrate you in the sparkle light as I attempt a graceful exit stage left -
forever lovingly

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Quartet of Poems on "Dread"

The Shaking Head

I fear the shaking, shaking head
above the doctor's back while I sit
on an exam table iced with unspoken dread

I fear the shaking, shaking head
as the doctor inevitably will turn
and I must hear what needs to be said

Rolled Eyes and Sighs

I dread the eyes that roll
into sighs
on the waters of future
conversation when
interest in me turns
to bored barest polite

The Empty House

I dread the single pair of footsteps
echoed on each floor
I dread each solidly shut unopened door
I dread the silence of the fork on the plate
as I eat
I dread the smiles I'll force when out of my retreat
And secretly in a place never to reveal and shamed to see
I dread the possibility that of relief that it was he not me

I Dread The Blankness

I dread the grasping for a word
I dread the question in eyes as I struggle
to be heard
I dread the dead spots, blank and filled with space
I dread the knowing that I will soon not know time, person or place
I dread knowing that this may come to be
I dread not living long enough for it to be a possibility