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nothing much

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey” (19)

Cashel, Co. Tipperary

several years ago

for several years

nothing came to entrance me

more specifically

doors entranced me

the emptiness of doors

the simple lack of existence

led me further to rooms

and bowls cups and spoons

it wasn’t the rooms the doors

the bowls cups or spoons

but the pure embedded absence

nothing was useful

nothing was transcendent

the emptiness the lack the absence

(January 25, 2020)

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disambiguation

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey” (18)

I’ve been here before

floating adrift frightened

the water is cold

a door opens

I walk through an emptiness

to arrive in another

I’ve been here before

this time the people are blue

and the music hasn’t started

a door opens

air rushes in

to fill the space

I don’t want to repeat

but no one is listening

and patterns are seductive

years later

the same song plays

I dance alone

I’ve been here before

a door opens

I step through

there is no dream

there is no metaphor

the wind is silent

(January 23, 2020)

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how poetry asserts itself

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey” (17)

he alludes to a poem as if others

know what he thinks about before he can

speak which in this case means before he can

think his thoughts being like Rube Goldberg

devices clacking along tripping springs and

traps which propel the odd idea along

tangential routes until finally falling

into its assigned slot and everything

stops and silence expands like waves of water

rippling across the surface of a lake

eventually lapping the far shore

where a small boy plays with a wooden boat

never once thinking about poetry

(January 23, 2020)

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amorphous

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey” (14)

forgetting the pattern of fear

and doubt tangled about me

I fall out of sleep and remember

what parts of myself I need

to continue some resemblance

of the day the inessential shades

my ghosts as darkly as the essential

each shifts its position evasively

when questioned like a cat

slips through shadow and grass

(January 21, 2020)

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the future was a threat

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey” (12)

in school we were always on the move

field trips to museums to math class

with Mr. Buesing to middle school

to high school to college the future

was a threat brandished like a whip

by degrees our world turned

then it stopped and I stumbled

and found myself here in the mud

like a body dropped from the door

of a passing car

(January 18, 2020)

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Squirrel

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey” (11)

she skitters part way

into the empty street

stops stutter steps

grasps the road

trying not to fall off

then leaps back

unsure what’s next

*

I rarely know

finding myself

now as if

it made sense

yet knowing I’m wrong

*

I turn

without reason

as a car

crushes past

(January 16, 2020)

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with options of desire and defeat

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey” (8)

I don’t want

to be a salmon struggling

upstream to spawn and die

exhausted and decayed

nor

to be swept downstream

with broken branches and silt

into a churning sea

I want to be

a catfish

calm and content

deep within a silent pool

(January 12, 2020)