Tuesday, February 19, 2008

POEM - What A Heart Is Good For

A heart is the cloud which waters
The desert that life can sometimes be:
It floods the arid grounds of fear.
It is the moist early morning air
And the spectacle of a putty red glow
That bloody dusk dances
In distant skies like fire.

It douses the thirst of all things
With the sweet waters that travel
Very long distances only
To find a path back to me.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

POEM - The Constant Companion

His are hard hands, long and cold,
Encrusted with dirt that makes a corrugated skin -
Solid, stiff and stony hands
To do the work he was made to do.

On Ash Wednesday, dark hands
Smudge me black as soot -
I - I carry my father's fleshy hands
And impressible heart,

Pulpous as loam -
As obliging as a pornographic dusk.
I hold a tight leniency for all things in this world,
Yet, still I declare fealty to the constant companion

Whom I wear on my head like a third eye -
Who waits with me, as still as first snow, while I sleep;
Who watches over me, as I roust to face the day,
I dispatch him as just one more errand to be attended to

At some future date, just another appointment.
Pain waits to be assuaged by the constant companion
Who carries my name scratched deep, deep,
Deep into the mystery that is his breath.

POEM - Lenten Prayer

I shall give up being right for Lent –
I shall give up the comfort of being among the chosen few –
I shall deny consumerism three times before the cock crows –
I shall admit to myself that at the core of each of us is fear,
That we share it, that we deny it, but that we share it.
I shall take great comfort in being lost –
I shall dance to no destination,
To no timetable, to no schedule –
I shall be consoled knowing that everything
And everyone I need is wherever I am,
Whenever I arrive, if I ever arrive:
With or without luggage,
With my shirt on inside out,
With or without two forms of government issued picture ID,
With or without a husband or a wife or some significant other,
With or without children,
Without that Grammy,
Without that Pulitzer,
Without that Nobel prize.

So I shall give up being right for Lent
And set a place at my table for Doubt
To come and break bread with me,
For we are no strangers.

Subsistence takes the shape of a pinwheel
With a great, big, erroneous, loving, foolish
And empty heart, holding anchor at the center
Waiting for you to fill it up,
And slow the spinning just a bit.

POEM - When Fly Married Frog

“Marry me,” said Frog to Fly.
Fly considered the offer.
She considered the advantage of moving on up
Just a smidge in the evolutionary neighborhood.
Her diet of rotting carcasses
And wild pungent fermented shit
Made her first question her own judgment.

“The marriage between a fly and a frog is folly,” she thought.

But to Fly there was such an attraction in this idea:
Never being alone,
The imagined feeling of swimming in water,
The stability of land access over flight –
It all excited her into a near panic.

“A husband!” she mused but knew deep in her fly heart
How it would take her some time to grow
Accustomed to his green skin
And his propensity for hopping.
She would wear his skin by proxy,
Finally, she would have an exterior life.
To touch,
To feel things on the outside of her body,
She imagined herself as green as spring.

“Marry me,” said Frog to Fly
And a tsunami of giddiness swamped her
Making her dizzier by each second,

Feeling desired she grew desirous;
Feeling wanted she suddenly felt wanting.

“Never was a love so true, so constant
So pure and intact!” she thought.
Never, too, was a love so ravenous -
As Frog croaked just once more,
And with a “schloop” of his tongue
Pulled Fly in and swallowed her whole.

Her final thought was gratitude
For to Fly, to be consumed by one great love
Was the highest form of being.

As she was slowly digested,
Deconstructed, embroiled by Frog’s digestive juices,
As she disappeared particle by particle,
The experience confirmed as true everything
Fly believed about love.

Frog’s only response was a gentle burp
Which sounded oddly enough
A little like the words: “Marry me.”