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Sunday Morning

In downtown Baltimore

Years after he died

Lou Reed sings from the sound system

Of this corporate hotel lobby.

This is funnier

Than it should be.

I am almost sixty years old,

Attending an English teacher convention.

Back in Austin, hours later,

I casually toss herbs into the mortar,

And without thought, begin to grind:

“I don’t want to know…

All the streets you’ve crossed

Not so long ago”

(November 24, 2019)

Ars Poetica: The Fiction of Truth


Since I do understand the importance

Of narrative, I tell stories without

Telling stories, like now, as I write this

Poem. I’ve created a fiction of me,

Truthfully, yet still a grounded fiction,

Who is speaking to you, someone absent,

As if we were strangers ordered to share

A rough table in a pub. But instead 

of talking about the local football 

team, or rudely about the government,

I talk to you as if you are in love,

Listening, as I speak, rather than write,

These simplistic thoughts upon this blank page,

And pretend you did not leave years ago.

(January 11, 2019)

We Walk to the Witch’s House in the Wood

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It was a place to go.

It promised us more.

The past had nothing,

but anger and fear.

 

The witch smiled,

because we knew

she was a witch,

but entered freely.

 

Compliance, not cages,

held us to her.

It was easier to

submit, than not.

 

We live in fear

of a better world.

 

(June 2, 2018)

Nothing Beyond

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No words tonight to push back

Against the dark lurking close,

Nor books, with their comforting

Runes, to solidify the chaos

Which prowls about the house

Like wolves on the edge of a fire.

 

I desire affirmation—

A coherence to believe

Beyond the tremors which buck

And warp my life’s lassitude.

Yet, there is nothing beyond

My own shallow thoughts

To assuage the vacuous

Profundity of my days.

 

(January 10, 2018)