All Memory Wears Nostalgia’s Taint

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It’s not fair to compare

one to the other where secrets

are apropos to a love affair,

or some distant war as far

as that goes. Yet, what’s to be

done to stop it? What metaphor

within yourself were you willing

to sacrifice? As long as one

doesn’t mind water swallowing

your words, it’s simple enough

to drown in any nearby river.

I, too, hold my expectations

at a distance in order to live—

I’m not sure what occurred,

or even if we were just lovers.

 

(August 15, 2018)

Opened

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The line demarks a space

opened in the word—

As I speak, I see

the air tremble like glass.

The length of time left

demands fealty to the page,

to a resonance with a past

that is only there in mind.

An open window no longer

distorts vision, nor withholds

access to a world other than

the tight confines of this room.

 

A vein runs my arm’s length,

spilling blood across the floor.

 

(June 15, 2018)

Recorded Evidence

Unknown

 

I stand beneath layers

of my sedimentation,

as if the very air

has turned to silt

settling to the sea floor.

I know no tendency

toward an escape

beyond a calm acceptance

of the fossil formed

from what used to be me.

A configuration shaped

to a shell implies a notion

of what it once meant to be

a creature alive in the sea.

 

(April 25, 2018)

Cough

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clotting into a thick mass

dread drops like cottonwood fluff

throughout the soft afternoon

 

I cannot breathe this darkness

too many knots of decay

to choke like thorns down my throat

 

each morning I spit a bit

then find scraps of redemption

as I stumble out the door

 

a new day’s dark-red dawn blurs

a simple numbness unfolds

inevitable and cold

 

I gasp and look to the sky

hopeful I will breathe today

 

(November 30, 2017)

 

A Fool Gains Self-awareness

His soft gestures
of seduction fell
unnoticed, or, at best,
unremarked, saving
him from himself
through his awkward starts
and vague stutters.
From fear or prudence,
he let go of what
he never had. He now
brings a dull clarity
to how he wants to
remember that moment’s
infatuation– the seven
year obsession still
whispering in his ear
like the slow pulse
and flicker that remains
the next morning
from last night’s fire.
(February 3, 2017)