Broken Telegraph Lines

Stop. I’ve said too much

to you. Stop. Like smoke,

I hold traces: conversations,

finger tips along my arm.

Stop. I cannot. Stop.

Love crushed me. Stop.

Still you run rampant

through my poems. Stop.

For years without reply.

Stop. I want you still

To say something. Stop.

What vague answers

Can I give you? Stop.

Other than this. Stop.

(November 21, 2018)

Mother

 

Not from any petulant resentment,

Nor a lack of matriarchal love, but

It does not bother me much now

That mom died a decade ago.

Worry distracted her and kept

Her distant. She wanted me

To be something she wanted

To be, without regard for me.

Her love, no doubt, was sincere,

But was obligated, and entangled

With obligations in return with

A thousand hair-thin lines to untie.

Like rags, I wring my hands, like her;

And wish, like her, I was someone else.

(October 8, 2018)

Problematic Musings

 

Unless a care be taken to repair,

happiness is a tenuous lacework,

fragile and personal; the past

and present knot, like fate,

into seemingly intricate patterns

where one thread, time-worn

or simply stressed, snaps,

and the whole unravels into dust.

It comes to a question of hugs

or hurts, as if the two could easily

divide along traceable fault lines,

rather than entwine like caduceus.

I am conflicted as to the intent:

to be wary, or to pretend content.

 

(August 2, 2018)

The Weight of Regret

Court-Weight-Scale

to lost friends

 

The weight of silence

is not the same

as the weight

of absence;

anymore than the weight

of disappearance

can be the same as

the weight of being left.

 

The weight of forgetting

is much lighter

than the weight

of the forgotten—

for it does not carry the weight

of all that can be remembered.

 

(July 25, 2018)

Clay Feet

 20100701-father-lifting-daughter-600x411

 

to Lilith

 

I am no god to grant permission,

nor to watch your struggle

and pretend I know any more.

I want to lift you into the air,

to hug you close to my face, but

you are a grown woman now.

I flounder along in my own life.

The easy problems— to kiss

your stubbed toe, and all be okay—

have grown exponentially,

until I am as lost and incapable

as I think you feel. We all subsist,

scrabbling among the rocks searching

for that tasty bit of explanation

that will cause it all to fall neatly

into place, which never happens.

We are all lost in our worlds,

doing our best to love each other.

 

(July 3, 2018)