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It’s a Familiar Enough Lie

With a headful of sighs,

I move from room to room,

stand in the doorway, then turn,

followed by dark regrets

which waited to slither back 

from all the obvious corners.

I promise myself again

as I slip further away: 

it will only be a moment;

then days, then years vanish

before the wait will stop,

before I walk out the door.

(September 19, 2020)

Featured

past imperfect tense

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey: (68)

“I cannot keep my dreams straight.”

-Franz Kafka

some nights most nights

after a whiskey or more

years if not decades

swirl like blue smoke

at my feet

and I forget

where I am as time

falls away like an old drunk

stumbling on my way home

the familiar story

the soft path alters

and strangers step out

of the dark laughing

vaguely  and I have forgotten

why I’m laughing

then laugh again

(June 23, 2020)

Prey

Since I am 

no snake

sloughing skin,

I hide my scars 

in an imagined other.

Not the obvious,

oblivious sheep,

but one more wary,

who waits

along the edge

knowing fear,

knowing

like rabbits:

one step left,

one step right,

without calculation,

equals death;

and any

volition ends

with a quick flutter

of feathers,

and the talon’s

sharp pang

lifting one

toward heaven

like a song.

(October 1, 2019)

Dreams Interrogate the Day

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Questions

which remain unanswered,

as if on a student exam,

befuddle me. I wonder

the possibilities: lack of time,

lack of knowledge, lack of trust.

Some stay silent, although known,

because the question

was never asked—or

never formed

clearly enough to be able

to be asked. Or I feared

the answers might be

the ones I desired.

 

(August 19, 2018)

solve for X

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you present as a variable

an x or a y

an unknown desire

 

to provide an outcome

for a question

I did not know to ask

 

each only opens one door

to slip down the hall and out

is to dance the wet grass alone

 

or sit near the window and sigh

as one grey day blurs into tomorrow

with your answer left unresolved

 

I do not know where to go

within the variables of my heart

 

 

(February 11, 2018)

 

 

 

 

To Hesitate

original

 

Always on the periphery

Of many misunderstandings,

She slowly dances alone

Along the firelight’s flickered edge:

Almost blind,

Almost about to see.

 

Shadows sway the light

Back and forth like a lover’s

First dance. Neither’s willing

To take the lead; both desire

To surrender. Their bodies

Cleave each to each. She cannot

Read his intent, nor its

Inevitable consequence.

 

(December 26, 2017)