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Weeks Before Winter Solstice

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                                      “and I am

out with hanterns, looking for myself”

                        –Emily Dickinson

Despite the lights in the house,

The darkness penetrates.

It assumes positions in corners,

Presumptuous in its domain.

Like lions pace a cage’s confines,

I am lost in loops of thought

Looking for a set of keys

Which will let me inside.

Yet, there is no rest within

Nor without which can comfort

Enough to bring a closure;

Locked in my obsessions,

I worry each item in turn,

Tangled like tumblers at a fair.

(November 26, 2018)

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)

Dream Journal #34: He Promised No Promises

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You were a dream, as was she,

but neither of you were the dream.

She kept shifting from dark to light.

Both of you were, simultaneously

light and dark, entwined like lovers

tangled in a kiss. He watched, intrigued

and somewhat guilty, as if a voyeur

peering through bedroom blinds.

The dream kept returning to you

and her together, but not together;

separate in your costumes and colors:

red and black lace against warm skin;

a part of the ambient background

reasserting itself again into day.

He woke often, then returned to you,

in the dream, with her. The dream

turned the morning back into itself,

until where each of them left off vanished,

like promises which were never made.

 

(May 7, 2018)

Dream Journal #33: Projections

 

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She infused your words with hers

as you did not say what she intended.

The words in the letter in the dream

swirled and slipped across the page.

You began to read like a film voiceover,

then her voice became stronger erasing

your words as she spoke your confession.

You knew she knew you knew she wrote

to you she thought; but was unsure

the letter, your letter, her words said

as much. If only she did not know

the letter, as her desire, was a dream;

and no amount of bland exposition

could explain away her obsessions.

 

(May 2, 2018)

in between

new-baby

 

I am told they say the language

is always already there waiting

to speak to hear to wallow in

like in omphalos blood coated

before the nascent cry cuts

sharply through the thick air

 

I have lost my metaphor

which becomes my metaphor

absence replaces other semblance

I suppose one cannot escape

language’s chains as they rattle

like bones in a cup the words

we speak in guarded greeting

each morning each to each

 

(March 23, 2018)