poetry

plus ça change...

mood indigo, 1997


muted music floating up from the room below

dancing, swaying, tipsy together across this creaky floor,

and you, whispering tasty lies, nibbling my ear,

tellling me all those things every wide-eyed girl

in her best blue dress yearns to hear.

Should I be astonished, or pleased, or just “well, of course,” about having written the same thing, essentially, twenty years apart, one from the point of view of a young woman, the other (directly below this post, click the arrow on the bottom left) an external view of someone clearly much older? Yeah, I’m all the ages I’ve ever been, still here, still me, so all of the above, I guess.

What I’m wrestling with, though, is the writing of two people each waltzing to the music that floats up from below, but they are on opposite sides of the wall. I can see the whole thing pretty well, but the telling of it might require a gift I have not received. Still, I persist for now. And while I continue to mull it over, I’m going to work on a new sonnet.


mapping metaphor

When we bought our first home computer in 1996, we had a free Compuserve account, so my introduction to the internet was through forums there, particularly an old time radio one populated by stereo geeks and deejays, who taught me a lot about all manner of things, and a poetry forum, where I learned both how to read and write a poem. Those guys were so sharp, and I still think of them with real fondness and awe, after all this time. Plus, I took up poetry to improve my prose, and it worked, but I ended up liking it for its own sake.

These days, I miss writing poetry, but mainly I miss feeling like I have something to write about. This being National Poetry Month, I thought it might be a good time to give it more of a concerted effort than I have in awhile.

Writing a decent or at least readable poem is, for me, both done in an instant, and rarely ever finished. I like sharing my thought process, and I hope someone out in the ether enjoys seeing early formations and later iterations created slowly outside of any useful timeframe. Epochs undefined.

But as to topic, all I can do for now is mirror the kind of visualizations which came to mind so many years ago, so many miles ago, when I was relatively young and full of spirit, and hope they foster new ones, as well. Let’s start with an easy metaphor.

Topology

topology

seeking nothing more than a formless connection

a quiet ethereal [sort of give and take,]

they begin a slow tentative waltz

dancing to the strains of music playing on the distant side

of these old plaster walls…

 

The words in brackets are written as I hear them, but are too lazy, and I'll probably change that whole line. 


Oh, because it's National Poetry Day.

Just to get on the board, a bit of nonsense, wish I felt like doing it right.

willful attack of malaise
whose will? not my own
drifted far from reality
reins slipped from my hands
no bargain made
no measure taken
no treasure left behind—

and just as pointless if I write it in French.

ma pulsion poétique a fini
les rênes ont glissé de mes mains
mais je ne peux pas résister à un défi
avec le jeu de mots je suis coquine
...

Perhaps I'll finish that some time.


Fluid Dynamics

Now is now,
In luxury, taking deep breaths
Learning to breathe deeply all over again
at least for today
today is today
tomorrow’s wheezing just a concept
like tomorrow’s lunch and dinner
yesterday’s forgotten nature
it’s all one and the same—

Wu wei, sprezzatura, chickadees, chicken breasts
a tree with a bent trunk that still reaches for the sky

—and all this,
this drama, confusion, chaos,
greedily or angrily or desperately drinking in of lies
drowning in a shallow pool of incalculable demand…
this, too, shall pass.

Vortex-street-animation


Someone's Mother

Today I learned of the death two years ago of someone I once knew,
barely and briefly.
I can see her face, almost, skimming over the surface of a previous decade
I remember her glasses and her long hair
and looking down at her as she spoke with quiet nervous energy;
hardened with confidence worn out
not yet worn away

I know she loved her girls, but I remember little else.

 

Maybe I'll revisit this later.

Her name was Michelle.


through smudged glass

Autumn arrived this morning on a crisp steady wind.
Birds crowd the feeders with messy greedy fervor,
leaves drift from trees to form a light blanket over the tangled grass, sorely in need of a
final trim before winter rest.

This afternoon’s rain will bite rather than soothe.

Smudgedglass


nexus

Something I started in 2014, decided to experiment with it for awhile. It might be a poem, eventually. Got to detangle and simplify, and so forth.


Inhaling, eyes squeezed shut, time imperceptibly halts

a bicycle with muddy tires appears, and you,
panting with effort,
having just avoided careering off the railroad bridge

You lean toward tiny flickering flames and wait for time to move forward again
almost wondering if it can without your permission
or perhaps if it will,
leaving you behind,

and so you blow
realizing that when you again open your eyes,
nothing will have changed at all

wax dripping onto frosting like it does every year
it will taste about as good as you expect it to taste,
just like all the rest that once were and are not yet,

but your heart still senses that the space between beats
could last as long as you want it to,
even forever,
once you stop working so hard to fill it all up.


sonnet v: mark two point a billion (2015)

Cloak loosely knit, leaves safeguard Summer's solace
sharply angled sun's warmth rendered frail
Laid to bare, her Eden stripped and cheerless
Harsh mirror reflects cracks beneath the veil
Stiff from chilled air hands craft ersatz beauty
awkward schemes to echo artless youth


In wintertime her grace is draped in duty
Allure on ice, charm banked low in half-truth
(betimes ablaze thanks to gin and vermouth)

Through long dark nights her restless mind composes
vernal gardens flowering in romance
While winter-weary silver form reposes
Subconscious spark ignites a fervid dance

 Though woman's bloom in softness fades away,
her Eden blooms in richness from decay


sonnet v: unfinished (2013)

This is a work-in-progress...

Cloak loosely knit, leaves protect Summer's solace
sharply angled sun's warmth rendered frail
Laid to bare, her Eden stripped and cheerless
Harsh mirror reflects cracks beneath the veil

Stiff from chilled air hands craft ersatz beauty
awkward schemes to echo artless youth
In wintertime her grace is draped in duty
Allure on ice, charm banked low in half-truth
(betimes ablaze thanks to gin and vermouth)

Through long dark nights her restless mind composes
vernal gardens blooming in romance
While winter-weary silver form reposes
Subconscious spark ignites a fervid dance

Though woman's bloom is fading day by day,
her garden rebirths from last year's decay