forgive us this day (135)

“lesser christs of dim aspirations”

—Apollinaire

as an early spring front approaches

and dark clouds push across an empty sky

the first line begins the separation

from who I once was to what I’ve become

the slow dissolve from silence

into a momentary resistance 

to the callow acquiescences

and the nodding submissions 

imbued in these day to day devotions

this moment turns without motion

without thought as though it were

not there as though I was not ever there

as i was not the day before nor after

but only now in a field arms outstretched

the cold rain washing softly over me

(April 25, 2021)

Solace in Hope

All day the rain fell

Soaking the cold winter ground

The year ends tonight

(December 31, 2020)

self-flagellation

The words I have

are enough

to tear

my flesh from bone,

to feed 

the ravenous voices,

the hundred mouths

which peck,

and gnaw, and savor

my base 

foundations

as if blood.


They are enough

for this—

(August 21, 2020)

source

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey”(73)

beneath this static

this white noise

silence flows


unnoticed

pervasive

the river’s source


as in prayer i kneel

cup my hands

and drink


(July 9, 2020)

dark earth

from a work in progress: process, not a journey (60)

obsessively the earth gives birth

to its dead rich and fertile

safe inside itself unseen

unvoiced like ecstatic dancers

beneath a moon-bright sky

the earth lifts the rose

the oak twisting and throbbing

into the air so i burrow deep

beneath the black soil a worm

gnashing rocks like prayers

until i find a darker god

and somewhere in the black clay

an old woman natters

lost in perpetual disappointment

and a death skull’s bored laugh’s

trapped in his life’s delusion

(May 7, 2020)

to define is to limit

poetry is nothing

poetry is everything

poetry is thought

poetry is words

poetry is silence

poetry is emotion

poetry is gibberish

poetry is vague

poetry is ambiguous

poetry is precise

poetry is concise

poetry is babble

poetry is light

poetry is dark

poetry is mind

poetry is heart

poetry is hidden

poetry is everywhere

poetry is pervasive

poetry is absence

poetry is laughter

poetry is tears

poetry is love

poetry is hate

poetry is simple

.

poetry is nothing

poetry is everything

poetry is metaphor

poetry is plain

poetry is complex

poetry is slant

poetry is curved

poetry is bent

poetry is straight

poetry is cubed

poetry is convex

poetry is obtuse

poetry is infinite

poetry is hermeneutic

poetry is occult

poetry is transcendent

poetry is god

poetry is zen

poetry is buddha

poetry is Christ

poetry is religion

poetry is atheist

poetry is glib

poetry is serious

poetry is dirt

.

poetry is nothing

poetry is everything

poetry is earth

poetry is air

poetry is fire

poetry is water

poetry is elemental

poetry is irrelevant

poetry is submission

poetry is dominance

poetry is coy

poetry is rude

poetry is blatant

poetry is obvious

poetry is obscure

poetry is orgasmic

poetry is impotent

poetry is sex

poetry is flirtation

poetry is destruction

poetry is resurrection

poetry is creation

poetry is filth

poetry is shit

poetry is dust

.

poetry is nothing

poetry is everything

poetry is breath

poetry is death

poetry is ice

poetry is tongue

poetry is bowels

poetry is piss

poetry is you

poetry is me

poetry is us

poetry is other

poetry is privilege

poetry is poverty

poetry is gender

poetry is genderless

poetry is cadence

poetry is dissonance

poetry is power

poetry is gravity

poetry is nature

poetry is voice

poetry is spit

poetry is sight

poetry is blind

(April 11, 2020)

politics of fear

from a work in progress: “process, not a journey” (34)

as i drive to work each day

at eighty miles per hour i slip

between concrete meridians

and rattling White Freight Liners

the eighteen wheelers heave

and pitch in the next lane

like fat cattlemen at an auction

on the radio news of war

and poverty of graft and greed

play out like melodramas

without an easy denouement

the girl remains on the tracks

the train bears down the villian

laughs world without end

among the grass beside the road

my ghosts slowly sing in whispers

this is the time we have become

this is our time to overcome

(March 4, 2020)

Daily Prayer

“we are our own prisons.”

            –Joel Brouwer

barely audible

tumblers click

into place

words turn keys

jam snap off

and trap us here

telling the same tale

confident the end

will change for us

confident the end

will not end for us

as it always has

forever and ever

amen

Pentecostal

A dove descended

to peck out my tongue;

I gargled the names of god,

and spit blood flecks,

like splatters of ink,

into my broken hands.

I read without words-

the nuance in gestures,

rippled patterns on a lake.

Oblivious to the obvious 

writings on the wall, and

without hope of redemption,

I mouthed my prayers

to any statues I came near.

(October 7, 2019)

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)