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Accounting of FiguresMy mornings begin with a lost story
About dim rooms and loved ones, erratic, shifting
The timeline I know, sucking back their lips
And baring familiar teeth - it takes some minutes
Most days, it’s going forward - breathing
Through a wet rag, biting a spoon
With sore gums, eating little, old fires
Casting my shadow as a long spoken
Each step an act of fleeing.
Some days take less effort.
When I believe in my inertia - mark of forces
Withstood and trancelike obedience
To survival -
The fricative hope of yielding to every overdue
Experience - those long places far hoped for
Seem to match my stride.
I forgive the hard days. What they stole
And replaced, their forced winter
An act of healing, an important sidewalk
Waiting to be found by our feet - now,
Kneeling Glorydoesn’t matter anymore. There are two
Possible explanations for why this happened.
You were a traveling light from a kneeling morning -
Your fingers struck me, and a new man answered, rising,
Together setting out.
You were the hope of an answer,
Spirit painted in a tall mirror,
Lonely, waiting for my prayer,
Waiting to make me forgive myself
And, laughing, kiss you through
The glass, hoping that by some magic
To make it tremble and break
Deadly joy, not trembling, exploding,
A mist of wings scented and barbed
With what was dead, inhaled as a fever
And, afraid of the begging softness, afraid
Of their influence, I lowered the lights,
Rolled you into the shadows, until I learned
How to celebrate beauty.
Or, it was that cold Lacey sidewalk
Yelling, striking a familiar drum beat
In my chest, when the right man answered.
She is the kneeling glory, rising
With me in the dark of every personal
Morning, kneeling at my side again
Every night I dim the color of my body
And slip si
Accept That You Will Get WetCareless parents might tell their children
Not to go into the dark, inevitably
Make cowards - half a triumph.
Inert mass in a state
Dwell in your native lair, preserve
Those lawless impulses which find
Friendly footing in your heart.
That hydra-headed beast, secret
Affinity towards evil that sways
ComfortlessUndo this work of theirs,
Absorb them as lies -
Poisonous minerals providing
Doubtful relief, but we prefer
The unqualified possible.
Any wish to amend our faults is met
With an open violence, each individual
Discovery of a moral sense leaves us
Commonplace - actual motives
Are an obvious relief.
Our task is the cultivation of consequences.
That calculated friendship denied
Repeatedly, that wet rag smothering
The face of beauty, and our nature
Justifies such severity.
Self-regardIn any situation, it is unlikely there is a key -
Unreality favors the stage, that reflexive
Illusion of vain glory and servile rage
At whose feet we heap applause as tribute,
Refusing to acknowledge the painted wood
Of a well dressed puppet.
This position of limitless pretend, more real
Than looking into a mirror, finds ways to love
Itself too much, becoming a cypher
For our heart burnings - our desire
To feel what others are.
Avoiding villainy is an excuse,
That failure to love ourselves convincingly
Enough. Both hate morality for the same reason -
It is unlikely there is a key.
Limited Success Settles DeepOur old letters taste holy now,
Taped to the wall, always falling
Off with the photographs of my father
That never stuck.
Tuning the landscape to your specifications
Conflicted with my bandit’s life, repitition
Of desertion overtakes the death of light,
Versions of stowaways dragging stories
In shoe boxes.
Disappeared travelers know my name,
That cold steam vanished, those socks lost
And, kneeling, bargained for with the settled
Necessities and the sheltered can be brokens
What I Know About ClosureHours of light follow you,
Strangers with unfinished business.
As a scientist, I try to tighten down
Your stubborn fingers, promise
That the pilot holes won’t hurt,
Because the sway of “anything for you”
Makes my tongue slowdance with the letters
Lost in the fire.
Heavy miles prove the dirt appreciates the blues,
Barking dogs chasing the way home out of view.
Stowaways were meant to go missing, mistakes
Need pioneers to threaten what might
Be lost - far away street lights
Barely looking at you.
The Humble Escort Turning GreyI am vanquished -
Kneeling on the shore of a lost idol,
Acres of car bones hide a natural remedy,
Algorithms destined to dance,
And I am vanquished.
I am dead gears clacking,
Fish mouths draining acres of shadow
Coiled on the hot stones of a fleeting nighttime vault,
And I am vanquished.
I am tired gutters cradling rain and troubled moss,
Acres of sagging fingers worshiping apparitions
Beneath their nails, cadaverous streets dropping down,
And I am vanquished.
A Temporary CarnageThere is a sibilance between wind chimes -
A path for serpents through sharp
Prairie grass and down the runnels
Of martyred remains. Cinder slag
Left by the lions in the field,
Their many mauled femurs yawning
With the pleasure of being bodiless.
I am intimate with the discarnate,
Those unreflective bits of rust
Which burst flavorful on the tongue,
Like broken plates and red blooded
Just a rogue coin clanging in the wash,
Soon to be removed.
the truth about growing up
1. It's easier when you don't think.
1. It starts early,
on a cloudy day when you recall
the 'childhood memories' of
two summers ago,
that's when you start your backslide into
2. On the bright side
you won't notice this until you're
good and ripe in age,
so maybe it doesn't matter
3. That tightness in your chest?
The feeling that you're not ready
to take on the rest of your life; it
4. It stews in the pit of your stomach
makes you doubt,
but there will be days when you look back
on the mountains you climbed -
the raging rivers you crossed -
and you'll have a sneaking suspicion you were
more prepared than you thought.
5. There's nothing like your own bed.
6. Laundry will never smell right
without mom's sweat and tears.
But you still have to separate lights from darks,
keep the zippers pulled tight
and the buttons unhooked.
7. There is comfort in your parents' presence.
8. Things change
the future gnaws and rips
Stranger's funeralUnder the clouds
Under the rain
Staring at the coffin
At a stranger's funeral
We're all alone
Feeling the storm
But not the pain
For he's but a stranger
And the graves around us
Are just there
Keeping us company
During this empty moment
LullabyHush, my baby,
Be still, don't cry.
Lay with me
A little while.
Close your eyes,
Slow your breath.
Hear your heart
Inside your chest?
Your heart is strong,
It guides you well.
Be sure to listen
To what it tells.
I hear him now,
Outside the room.
It won't be long,
He'll find us soon.
Now close your eyes,
Slow your breath,
And rest your head
Upon my chest.
CarolineYou loved the fire
of rogues -
imperfect men who shot up
the endings of the day
and drank down
too much beauty.
And like one of them,
you bellied with rebellion,
felt his tense seed
toil where women
and craved his notoriety.
Poor girl -
his verses won the day
and the call of words
was too fickle a lover
for any constant star.
Don't blame yourself -
are more attractive
and all poets are
AliveA ray of hope shines during the
Long restless hours
I keep enduring the task of
Vanquishing the darkness with the
Energy from the depths of my soul
WishCardLet the rays of the sun
Bring happiness and light into your house,
Let the sun bring you lovely gifts.
Let your heart's music free,
Let your smile to light up your face.
I wish you happiness and joy.
things to tell you before i leave for collegeto mrs hatcher:
i promise that one day i will write that poem you asked me for
(the only thing you ever asked me for)
and i will finally tell you that you deserve
so much more.
to mr. walker:
i promise that i will not pity you.
i promise that i will not envy you.
i promise that you will always be part of my forget-me-nots and marigolds.
i promise to always be grateful.
i promise to be careful.
i promise to be crazy.
i promise that i will remember what it feels like to be needed
and what it feels like to let someone who needs you down.
i promise that i will never resent you for asking for help
and that i will always be there when you do.
i promise that even sixty years from now,
i will not be surprised to find a letter from you in my mailbox.
i promise to always remember what it felt like to be young and crazy with you,
how scared and lonely we were.
i will remember that we both survived it,
and that we'll survive this, too.
Words from Another RoomWooden dinosaurs can be coaxed
To follow, if they know you, whispering,
A voice of drapes gently shuffling,
"Be good, son," and they do
Tell my hostile nerves,
Swayed by a red and wintered wind,
Perfumed by the smell of old
Shirts, "Be good, son." Would you?
I heard you, when your light yawned
And limped down the horizon, descending,
Like a dull shadow over your bleached face,
Heavy on your wet eyes, fading, whispering,
"Be good, son."
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