Tuesday, November 28, 2006

POEM - Birthday

Today,dear Friend,
Wonder Mother -
Sister Embrace -

I faced the gravity
Of your birth -

Of its weight and girth
Of its importance in everything.
In the worlds you hold up;

In the post and lintel love you share;
In your frailty but especially in your strength,
All gift wrapped, curly ribboned, taped.

You came to me
As a whisper of joy

As a shared cup of gratitude
In just knowing another pilgrim
Who shares the search, I am better off.

Today, dear Friend,
Wonder Sister,
Mother Embrace,

You were born
And even the cold November
Morning seems satisfied.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

POEM - Fish

This fish feels
Like oil to me
Its bony dorsal
Fin pricks like
Glass into the
Thick of my hand, lies
U-shaped, flat broad
Body pressed bent
Into the fat flesh -
Still struggling
After being
Removed from the
Water for hours.
Not alive, yet
Keen for living.
Dead, still I hold
Refusal in the
Palm of my hand

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

POEM - For Lila (On The Event of Her Christening)

- Fiore adornato -
Whose name rolls off the tongue
The way waves slipcover beachhead -
Adding and subtracting sand
Creating and erasing land -
Dear Little Peanut!
Unearthed treasure!
"Li-La" -
Musical appellation,
Springtime syllables,
Oh, Peace that we seek -
Make us blithe, make us meek,
Find us worthy.

POEM - Crow and Gull

Crow -
Great birthmark on the blue
Skin that is sky -
Dark spot in flight as drear
As insomnia -
Somehow, is able to catch
The easterly light when it is fresh
Just right
Transfiguring him
Into Gull.

Monday, November 20, 2006

POEM - The Guitar Player

Guitar notes pour out copper like bourbon
Everywhere, set free like helium balloons
Adrift, with wagging heads, like protozoa,
They celebrate what I love most about you.
The guitar player keens every liquid note,
Bending pain as if professing heartfelt love.
It is like that large open heart of yours,
Those radar dish eyes that hold everything
Whenever you look at me, recalling what
I was before my need for walls took hold.

It is a language of waiting,
In a dialect of tremolo, these
Notes scudding like evaporated love
And every bad decision ever made -
All real joy is held in the great sustain,
Isn’t it?

Love disgorges itself from that guitar,
Through the sound hole, percolates in languid
Fashion, this chisenbop of the heart,
Finger spelling for the deaf and mute in me.
The guitar player hugs the curves of his instrument
Just like your shape, the one I feel beneath
My hands, tenderly gripping frets,
Hands that slide along a slender neck,
this movement that evokes metallic squeals
Of chords changing flagging the progression -
The best of me is reflected in the woody warmth
Of you, in rounded smooth ways I can never explain,
The way the varnish reflects stage light.

This is just what this solo conjures up
In me, like voodoo, simple plucked strings that
Pull open the gates of everything that
I guard jealously, in elongated
Notes, longing to release a wanting
That I can barely even acknowledge
To myself in broad daylight.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

POEM - Four A.M.

Four A.M.
Who do I think I am kidding?
I lie here trying to cheat sleep
Again. Maybe this is how death
Will come to me, in a creep, not
In one violent blow but as
Theft of my own replenishment
Bereft of loving refreshment.

Who am I trying to kid?
This gray flat garden terrain is
My breakfast these days; an oatmeal
Lacking the flavor sleep provides.
Mid-November sits outside, with
No recallable visage. A
Crayola carpet, wall to wall
With absentee color. Even
Light is limp with a sleepless verve.

So I get up because playing
Games in my head this early in
The morning, before the birdsong,
Before my dreams are done, flapping
Like film spun off a movie reel
Incomplete and unwatched, just seems
Wrong to me. I get out of bed
To face the tombstone white page
Empty and alone again at
Four A.M.

Friday, November 10, 2006

POEM - A November Crazy


November light splurges burnt ochre
Over stone and ivy walls, making it
Seem older than it really is:
It is the face of a drowsy day
Begging for a little more sleep,
Beneath sky as flat as tin foil, deep
Cartoonish, a cesura - the peaceful
tension of clinching day and night's release.


At the shelter I looked into
Institutional eyes as dark as
The horizon, we ate soup and bread
Together, you laughed when you said
How much you loved your grandchildren
And crack cocaine; how this place wanted
You to surrender and that you were
Just not ready to surrender yet.
You left to return at eight so that
You could get a cot because those
Were the rules if you wanted a place
To sleep that night and November cold
Is nothing to fool with. So we shook
Hands and your smile grabbed back and held me
Like cement until we separated.


I find myself sitting in a November crazy
Watching things die, circling the drain.
I carry all my things with me too,
Just as you do: artifacts of home,
Fossils from another age, as you do.
I feel unkempt, just as you do.
I feel invisible, unable
To be heard - just as you do.

Who will slog through the muddy fields to help?
Who will lay unctioned hands upon my
Forehead and squeeze the demons out like juice?
Everything resides with great tenderness
Just behind my eyes, if you look carefully you will see it.
Peace tonight is torn bread and strong black coffee.


I shuffle around the city within,
Looking for a warm place too, as you do.
I am just as lost. It is as though
A marble sized life is dropped into
A space that is its own universe,
Between a quark and a hard place, blind to beauty,
Unable to climb out, as thin as smoke
Mixing with the raspy November air.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

POEM - Morning Lips

A red roundness
Like lips that aim to kiss –
Raising a morning
Good gentle healer,
That starts the day
Off, cold but light;
Smudged like pastels,
On cheeks,
On eyelids,
On forehead,
On lips –
A round redness
It is a hunger.

M C Biegner

Saturday, November 04, 2006

POEM - Paths

All paths are divergent.
Wandering like a lost child.
Attempts to hold on just empty us,
Like a knocked over tumbler.
Parallel paths, circular ones –
They all deliver the pilgrim in us to us,
Explorers that we are
Though pretend we cannot be.
Feeling like a homebody as a wanderer –
Just a little,
This is all I ask.
The mortar and brick
Of lives hold back the
Great wingspan that is hope.
Waiting in us,
Hiding and colorful like an Easter egg.
Fear and laughter and love
Are qll the ingredients we need.
All shall be well, my dear,
And all shall be well.
What you hold for me as unspoken
And what I hold deepest for you,
This is what is most true.

Friday, November 03, 2006

First Date

The door to Trey’s studio apartment flops open and there in the middle sits a bed, worn around the edges; a postage stamp really. Trey was just an odd acquaintance in my life of many odd acquaintances like Melissa the trans-gendered handy-man/woman or Carl, the painter friend of mine who climaxes at the smell of fresh latex paint.

I liked Trey in high school well enough. We knew each other slightly, no romantic interest then, but we lost touch over time and now, here in the middle of my life I sought him out; like a scent, I hunted him. Over drinks and dinner we catch up. He changed but not much. Now standing at the doorway to a room that was square with rounded shadows for corners there was a hazy smoke wafting into the room like a Holy Ghost. We face the bed like newly-weds: all six foot four inches of me and five foot whatever of Trey. The sudden thought of a Chihuahua mating with a Great Dane pops into my head. I shudder at the idea of Mexi-danes being born. I step in.

“Drink, Kenny?”
“Kendra.” He likes the homoerotic feeling of calling me Kenny, but really I only let people close to me do that. I knew Trey as a “trisexual” as in “he would try anything” when it came to sex. Now, side by side, facing the bed in the middle of the room and feeling claustrophobic, an enveloping feeling grabs me. He touches me and it’s like a roller coaster as it climbs that first hill, the car angled steeply back and there is that clicking of the chain that pulls the cars up that fills you with suspense like a tea kettle. Just beyond a shadow, I could make out the figure of a taxidermied gray wolf in attack pose, teeth bared, hair up, rear legs poised to leap. Trey sees me notice the stuffed wolf and offers no explanation of it.

“Like him? His name is Bart the Alpha male.” The voices in my head start: “Please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird.”

Then Trey: “Want to check on my collection of gray wolf scat?”
“You know wolves have been known to nurse and raise other species.”
“Want to try some she-wolf milk later?”

Inside me alarms are going off: “Please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird.”

I swear that my lips are moving as I internalize this, but Trey doesn’t notice or maybe I only think I am moving my lips. I spy a small kitchen area with a pot of coffee on a burner. “Coffee?” I say, trying to smile but am only able to manage a crack across my face. “Please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird.”

We talk some more and he seems pretty much as I remember him in high school: bookish, diminutive, nerdy but in a now-nerdy-is-hip sort of way. Once again, images of Mexi-danes dance through my head as I realize that sex in any position with Trey is going to be YouTube fodder for sure.

“It’s been a while, Kenny.”
“Kendra” I say and I now I am worried that I don’t know what he is referring to: sex for him? (Quite likely). Sex for me? (Uh, yeah.) Or just the time that has lapsed since we were in high school together? (An interminable infinity).

So the evening passes with the dull thud of city street noise outside: relentless and just below unbearable. Finally, he says to me: “So”… and he lets it hang right there like his laundry.

“I was sort of hoping…you know…” and now I find myself both drawn in and pushed away by the possibility of having sex with Trey. There is Bart and the wolf scat running loose like a toddler without parental supervision in my brain, but still I consent. Jesus Christ, what a girl has to do to get laid around here! And again like a Greek chorus: “Please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird.”

I say yes to Trey, let’s – as though we were talking about painting the ceiling together. I slip into bed, into dingy sheets, a dinge I can see even in the dirty gray light tossed about like the clothing in the room. The darkness is not complete, it’s veil-like, not hiding exactly, but revealing. Trey, now naked save for his thick wooly socks, ambles over and gently lifts Bart and places him under his arm. He brings Bart over and now I too am naked, beneath the sheets, eyes wide, the spilled milk of my skin whitened by the mercury vapor street lights outside. Trey pets Bart gently. “Please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird.”

Trey places Bart under the covers. For a brief moment I am a mountain climber losing my grip, suffering from altitude sickness. I can anticipate the fall. I can taste what is going to happen next. Bart’s fur brushes up against my legs and crotch, my skin now at a full gallop. Somehow, Trey gets on the other side of me and spoons me. Like a sliver he takes up no space at all and crushes against Bart’s dead fur, I feel Trey’s warm springy pubic hair. “Please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird, please don’t let this get weird.”

I settle back, breathe deeply through my nose when Trey - in what feels like slow motion - reaches over and with the gentleness of a loving mother, turns the top sheet of the bed back.

“So he can breathe,” he says to me.

So he can breathe?

I hear something snap. I mean I literally hear something snap or at least I think hear something snap but it seems so audible. I’ve watched Silence of the Lambs enough times to know it all. Hadn’t I yelled at Jody Foster during that basement scene when the killer donned the night vision goggles? When Jody is hunted and all breathless and desperate, didn’t I scream each time I watched: “Run Jody! Left - Lookout behind you!”

So I bolt tripping over everything and Trey’s head swivels like it is on a ball bearing. My body is fully extended now and I slam into a shelf I missed on my way in. I dress in the street and I don’t stop running until I am safe at home.

At home, I start to wonder what sex with Trey would have been like. Would he have mounted me from the rear, doggy style and bit my neck repeatedly leaving marks for everyone else to wonder about? Would he have howled – actually howled? But then the headlines of my mother find their way into my skull: “Woman Found Assaulted In Grizzly Murder” with detailed descriptions of my jugular vein ripped out and entrails found in the fridge of her old high school sweet heart who had this obsession with her.

“We were not high school sweet hearts,” I say out loud to no one but the headlines in my head that buzz around me like bees.