Honi Soit Qui Mal Y Pense

Look, Sunshine,

the strippers at the club

are like the aurora borealis, but

never would I presume to tell you

the beauty of a jiggling moon.

I have too many privileges to grind

to toss that kind of monkey wrench.

Beauty,

after all, is the truth we pursue; and

never would I presume to tell you

how to pass a lonely afternoon.

(November 22, 2022)

Yet

This is my story:

a prelude to nothing

beyond this moment.


This is my story

as I tell it today

unrevised, unfiltered.


This is my story:

different than yesterday,

different than tomorrow.


This is my story

I must tell to myself

each day, every day.


This is my story;

I have not told, yet.



(November 16, 2022)

Vacancy

A student tells me

she cannot hear an

inner dialogue.

How lonely she must

be to have silence

as her only thought.


A flame burns without

a flicker, alone

in an empty room.

It illuminates

itself and the walls 

along the light’s edge:


nothing can be seen;

there are no echoes.


(November 13, 2022)

Absence

“there is no absence

that cannot be replaced”

—Rene Char

She sits in a hole in the room

where time drifts like dust motes

through sunlight. There is no time

anymore for resentment, or anger,

to fester their dark intentions.

Everything fades. The half-life of names

expands absorbing our vague desires

in the absolution memory grants

with each revision. She is tired now.

Patchwork obligations, like cages

without keys, contain her reasons.

In her way, she is dying, as are we all—

an obvious cliche, yet rituals

daily provide us with parameters

where we feel most comfortable.

Life is painful enough. Outside the air

clutters with snow, and rime forms

along the fence line. She watches the door.

Once, long ago, someone knocked, then left.


(November 12, 2022)

Wish List

You ask what I want.

I have no answer

that is not abstract:


Happiness, less drama, less stress;

no flagellant memories

laced in guilt and blame;

time to think;

time to move about the house;

time to take for our life.


time to remember:

who I am;

who you are—


to find ourselves

together again.

(November 9, 2022)

Position

“To see a world in a grain of sand/and a Heaven in a Wild Flower, Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand And Eternity in an hour”—-William Blake

An eternal pause

which opens in a moment

then vanishes


(like a leaf fall breaks

the still flow

of the autumn air;


or a stutter step

in a dance

almost breaks rhythm;


or a match flares

an aura briefly

as the wick takes flame)


is where we are,

always.

place holder

in the dream this time

I wrote a line to start

then again inevitably

I woke to remember

nothing but the sense

that something had left

something consequential

something now absent

like the vacancy we fill

each time we move quietly

through an empty room

something that’s always there


outside the dream I write

myself through the delusion

that I have something to say

beyond my mundane day

beyond my awkward cliches

beyond my last glimpse of land

where gulls screech to the wind

their sneers of mockery and desire

where I’m stripped of my words

and left alone with what I am

a tongueless mouth gasping

for air beneath a dying sea

(October 20, 2022)

Causal Vacancies

Mist moves through the trees

which loom overhead.

The why of my way

trails vaguely behind,

catching on branches

like tufts of soft fur,

clinging to the briar.

The negligible

wind falters then dies;

and, the air thickens

as the earth reaches

for the distant sky

like a supplicant

to an absent god.

My Thought Provides an Easy Prey

My cliches wander in

with a negligent ease.

They have no compunctions

with rude visitations.

Like a tabby stalking

a yard of a neighbor

who fed her once

years and years ago,

they simply stray from

the page’s periphery:

an easy image

returned to repeatedly,

providing a brutish clarity

to a violent mendacity.

(October 6, 2022)