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Drama-Drama Mama Gets Dramatic Instead of Writing a Poem

they said, then she said, and can you believe 

it that this happened, then that happened too,

and I said that she should say, but then she 

went and said that this was just way too much 

to stand, much less believe like Santa Claus;

I am so upset that I stabbed myself

with my pen, and wondered if I would die:

but first answer me this: “if you’re tattooed

on your lip, do you have to hold the lip

the whole time, or do they do that for you?”

as she stared into space holding her lip 

lost in the quandaries of everything 

not involved with the task which was right there,                                                

and not there like an answered Zen koan.

(February 28, 2020)

Lightning Ignites the Core of a Tree

All around him, the forest burns,

uncontrolled, beautiful.

The warmth reassures him

with its certainty.

His fingers burn; the flesh

chars as on a spit.

He turns, searching;

but she is gone, if ever

she were truly there.

He stands alone,

arms outstretched.

Flames leap through the trees;

smoke swallows the sky.

(December 10, 2019)

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)