Tag Archives: #life

LIFE’S PUZZLE

I chanced upon an exquisite puzzle one day

It was TINY in size and easy to touch

I did not want to figure it out
but just to hold…

\I turned it this way, that way
— any way it would move! /

And at times interlocking pieces
would come and go.

Eventually I closed my eyes
and relied on touch and faith
and found it much easier to navigate
Life is such, that way.

simplicity.


IN ANGUISH I AM ALIVE

IN anguish i am alive. As we are whenever
a tear drop has always meant. Fiery and
at times absolute coldness – of all
recorded time and as our yesterdays have
confounded minds always forward toward
a dusty death of revelation.

Always (sometimes?) told by a poet full of
anguish and unrequited love —
that which signifies Nothingness.

:: 10.13.2021 ::


TIME IS NEVER OWNED

OH time is never owned cause time is always loaned
you can never give more to it and you can never leave
without leaving a piece of you
so the yesterdays we were others
today we believe we are we
and how life can help one
believe we’re better than yesterday — hold up yourself
to the Living Light: i once was youth and now ageless
so believe me.
And how the sun rises
and how the seas undulate
and hearts beat…
time is never owned.

:: 08.18.2021 ::


MURDER IN MY WORLD

i am the life
i am the death
i am fueled by
adoration for you
you are my whore
you are the mother
to my poems.
and i will never
leave you.

i ate the edge of time
and pulled my heart out
placed it upon the rock
of gibraltar like a gun
to my head

and how the world murders
words.  oh i love misery
and find energy in love
so in time…in time.

And how you counted stars
and tasted all your scars
and how we feel the same
flying away toward Mars   .

Into my world i lead you.

:: 08.18.2021 ::


WHEN RAIN STARTS FALLING DOWN

There are cemeteries that are lonely, graves full of bones that do not make a sound, the heart moving through a tunnel, in it darkness, darkness, darkness, like a shipwreck we die going into ourselves, as though we were drowning inside our hearts, as though we lived falling out of the skin into the so

And there are corpses, feet made of cold and sticky clay, death is inside the bones, like a barking where there are no dogs, coming out from bells somewhere, from graves somewhere, growing in the damp air like tears of rain.

Sometimes I see alone coffins under sail, embarking with the pale dead, with women that have dead hair, with bakers who are as white as angels, and pensive young girls married to notary publics, caskets sailing up the vertical river of the dead, the river of dark purple, moving upstream with sails filled out by the sound of death, filled by the sound of death which is silence.

Death arrives among all that sound like a shoe with no foot in it, like a suit with no man in it, comes and knocks, using a ring with no stone in it, with no finger in it, comes and shouts with no mouth, with no tongue, with no throat. Nevertheless its steps can be heard and its clothing makes a hushed sound, like a tree.

I’m not sure, I understand only a little, I can hardly see, but it seems to me that its singing has the color of damp violets, of violets that are at home in the earth, because the face of death is green, and the look death gives is green, with the penetrating dampness of a violet leaf and the somber color of embittered winter.

But death also goes through the world dressed as a broom, lapping the floor, looking for dead bodies, death is inside the broom, the broom is the tongue of death looking for corpses, it is the needle of death looking for thread.

Death is inside the folding cots: it spends its life sleeping on the slow mattresses, in the black blankets, and suddenly breathes out: it blows out a mournful sound that swells the sheets, and the beds go sailing toward a port where death is waiting, dressed like an admiral.

:: 06.05.2021 ::


RELIGIONS AND HYPOCRISY

DROPPING from the sky as a rain drop
i feel so good dropping from my life
i feel so very alive and the skies weep
and my soul sings.

i don’t believe in your religions or hypocrisy
and i feel like a drop of pure rain
my Soul is bare

falling down into the soil & feeding a new
seed of a flower and i feel so good —
oh yeah.

Don’t take my photo until i’m born
and i don’t believe in your sanctitude
i don’t believe in your lies
and wonder what my parents think of
me now

To give a Soul for a Flower
A soul for a flower
yea.

:: 05.11.2021 ::


THE SILVER AXE

He wondered with horror how so many memories, so many forms to be branded on his skin and engrave there.

Then the wet rattle of a twisted throat, and he beats his last breath to his knees, gazed on from above as the wheezing thing sagged, and began on his shoes.

One God looked in that one eye of him, took in the whole writhing weight of him, and, from the spine of that beast, blew the darkness that will not let me alone!

It is yet again where we find the Poet’s Muse. Her eyes are green, and they pierce backward and forward even into his head and his heart, his brain and his soul.

I have been chained to this post for six months and now I am to be hanged, it’s a winter morning, half-light.

The axe’s face is pale; its teeth are ready to cut; the poet stands slack-jawed; and waits with a satisfied grimace.

She smiles with blind malignity; I am hanging here, she begins, and her voice gears in his head, makes him mad with every anger and whimpers sound with a silver-sparkle, It is another wish shattered, this one made to whittle the Golden Ace’s life down to a ring so narrow and brutish and pale and inhuman.

The writer cannot see her but his ears are mad With unspoken sounds.

She has left dark-green circles.

He had tried to fill them with wonder and beauty; she: they’re her, only more so, every blot and abrasion cunningly and by dark cunning by her own hand, ever more revolting; why the hell did you bring that creature with you?

There is nothing for you to do, (the axe growls). You cannot even reach me.

I told you that I wanted the axe.

Then are you sure you’re not just nervous?

I am telling you nothing.

The truth is harsh.

This is not true.

Well then stop worrying.

I am telling you nothing!

The Poet looks up in alarm.

The axe comes down, it makes a hideous, brassy sound.

And it is still: I am telling you nothing!

Her face is as white as that of the blade.

He is sweating.

I do not want the axe, he says finally.

I am coming down!

A chuckle.

The axe’s blade is laughing.

The Poet spins in place, does a somersault, lands on his feet.

He moves fast.

At the touch of his right foot he has snatched up and spun into the air, caught, dangled over a canyon by the thin tip of his finger.

There is a rattle in his head.

Okay, okay, he whispers, I am coming down.

He lands and slumps, panting.

His face is flushing red, his hair disheveled.

He grins through the tears running down his face.

Just me, he tells the axe.

You are alone in this awful place with all the stupid, insane weirdoes.

Where is the fun in that?

This place is for people like you, not me.

He is in a mood.

The axe slashes through the air, a silver blur.

The Poet leaps into its path, somehow knowing, somehow having seen what it will do before it happens.

He leaps back and the axe cleaves the air, then comes down to strike his left foot, where it clatters on the ground with a dull clatter.

He starts to bend over to pick it up, but the axe’s weight is too much for him.

He stumbles to one knee and falls to his left side.

The axe rests, not quite pointed at him, but ready, at his right leg and stares at it, mouth slightly ajar.

The blade is warm against his right leg, the handle warm against his cheek.

He gets himself up, he bends over, picks up the axe.

He kicks his right leg up, the axe goes flying past his body as if to his left, and he stretches his left leg out to catch it.

He pulls himself to his feet and does not bother with the blade and bends down to retrieve it, and reaches, but there is nothing there.

The edge is dull. Within his mind and he frowns, picks it up, holds it up in front of him, glances behind him.

The axe is nowhere to be found. But it is mentally within his hand.

He looks at the blue-gray sky, frowns, turns to walk along the canyon wall, head down, watching for the axe.

He waits.

The axe sits on his shoulder, blades jutting up into his neck or so it feels.

Yes! he thinks.

The axe.

It is not true.

He is all alone in the world.

And an old man.

What do you expect him to do?

He thinks about the little old lady he saw in town today, and starts to weep.

:: 04.23.2021 ::


FIRE OF HEARTS

THE bad weather had subsided. \the sound of the spring equinox heralded the falling of a silence on the world. In the village, a few village men, young and old, sat around the long dining table, eating by candlelight. The village elders had gathered to select a new sage-the young had no wisdom, yet the wise men desired the young-and so they seated the young with the old, and none left alive would ever know. Before the elders sat the long table, with an old flint spear on it, it was cold to the touch as it glowed in the light from the candles. \(but it was worth it, it was the knowledge that I will not return. \) one of the young men said: \((I chose this spear, because, when it strikes, the spear will be split in two. Half of the spear will go out to become a bird, so the wisp of a spear can fly around, being a bird, and think about what we had, and whether to go on. Half of the spear, the half that is left, will come back to me, and I will become wise, and then I will guard it and understand the power of flight, and perhaps build a new village with a thick stone wall and and a trapdoor into the next world.\)) \((a warthog man-creature, \) another young man said, drawing into words his inability to remember his family and friends. ((I thought of my parents, my relatives, my village, my friends, but my home and my parents are gone now, so I do not miss them in the way that I could, if I could recall them again. They may as well not be a part of me now, any more than my eyes are part of my body now that I see without them.)) \((but what of the village, of my life? the wisp of a spear? what shall I do with it? \) the young man asked. \((I think I will remain with my people, but I do not know why I feel the urge to guard it. All I know is that it is a burden I should not bear, so I will not leave it behind. I suppose that in the end, knowing is not knowing, and the answer to the question is as elusive as before. And that is my answer to the way ahead, at least for now.\)) ((the other young man, here, said: I think I will go home to the city, and live among the people I grew up among. I will remember the things of my youth, but not the sorrows of my home. I will continue to be a father, a brother, a friend, but I will not become a part of that grief, it will not be mine.)) \((and then they said: That will be our voice, young man-creature, that will take flight like a winged dove, flying far away from us, flying away to a future beyond us, far away from our sorrows, and far away from our questions,\)) ((the old said: With what voice? what is there to compare with the way that can song that speaks words we could not have? I speak the deepest wisdom of the elders, and yet it is another mouth, another voice, and yet it has it own power, with words so beautiful and profound. Look at the blood of your children, and remember, look into your wife’s eyes and see, hear, hear, hear our song, which will return to us someday. Our words will leave us, to be another’s song. But our song, which was our voice in the first place, and remains ours by right, will return to us someday. It is not the way ahead. Yet even in that deathly quiet of remembering, you will know us. You will know the words that we sing, for they are our voices in the darkness, that will return, if we are lucky, to us. They will not sing the words that we have said. We will sing a new song, the song of our next, better life, which has more meaning than this one. The words that speak of sorrows, of homes and families that are gone, the deaths of young and old, those words will all have to be lost, for we will lose ourselves in the voices of our children, if we continue on.)) \((the young man-creature took some of the spear-wisdom that was given him, and drew it into a kind of pouch, and a strap of leather. He then cut his wings away, and his hair, and changed into the likeness of the wisp of a spear, with hair of copper and gold in it. He went to a chamber that was like the eyes of a hawk, and looked out at the world through its eyes, and looked for a long time, at the passing of the years. He was the first of the owl-creatures that would travel, the first to leave his home and leave behind the old, dark-lit chamber, and go to a different life, away from the old and sorrow, and into the new and waking sun. The old of the dark chamber that he had entered, the wisp of a spear, the old but dearly-held wisdom, the owl-creature, the other man-creatures, all lived in the chamber with him, in that world that he had created for them.))

:: 03.30.2021::


VEGETABLES

VEGETABLES, summer sun, a touch of salt and chlorine — his take on Italian art restored by frescoes who I don’t know well and a hundred times better than it says so — almond and lime ginger lime broccoli baked on a day during a season where there isn’t any snow and everyone outside to have a picnic on the one flower in the pool that everyone is using to make salt with since everyone can slather it all over their bodies and throughout their bubbles that they carry everywhere with them yet also simmering in pools and those that surround the one they are doing it in that the length of a slip of leg is not about how long the youth can stay and carry such things in his youth and how others have never felt as they were and how how he has never looked into their eyeballs knowing that the greenery remains awake, in a world that has been turned off and some even have forgotten how to look and still are drenched in cool water, and the scent and the texture of what it is in you and around you the fragrance of the space and the darkness and the sweat and the heat and the syrup and the celery that goes along

:: 03.28.2021 ::


FRAMELESS HEADS UPON EMPTY WALLS

On the single side of my art song—my parodic air—the loveliness is perfect
because I am “last in the line.” When you sit there pondering how you got
from here to there, you forget to be there, and the years hurry by like birds,
yet without wings.

Maybe that is what poets mean by the grass between the toes: it is the kind of beauty
that strikes me as singular, and then makes me forget where I was going.

Could that be the air I am inhaling, that gorgeous little dew, the sort of fragrance
that one asks questions about. That one is good, and leaves you for another week.
I am not asking about the individual, about the wit or the sex, that one; the other
thinks she is too good for poetry and wants to hang out her pants.

The trees on Central Park West have not only dimples, but very high struts.
Many passers-by make like jumping spiders and creep along the white beech bark,
tearing off the strange multicolored pods that are the leaves of the American locust
and varnish the unenclosed bark.

For a while they seem to be all yellow, then the green reasserts itself and they all turn red.
Red like earth, red like hell. I say what I mean. Why do we make so much of appearance
and so little of meaning? If you were to sneeze on a weekday you’d make a million dollars. I’m lucky
to get one or two dollars a day for my poems, and that’s all. All my life, I’ve been scraping
and clipping in hundreds of un-sexy places. I once walked out of an interview with a magazine
that had hired me because I was willing to work for peanuts. So I said to the editor,

“I think you have the wrong guy. I’ll get a job in a steel mill, or on a frickin’ airplane,
anywhere I want.” He seemed to like that, but I can’t remember what the magazine did later. I suppose
it was less than they wanted. But that’s what I mean by avoiding the cheap. I mean always for the mind
and the intellect, as if one day the outer world were going to fall apart. When it does, maybe it will be like a tenement balcony—the floor’s going to fall out from under us.

My best poems are about love and death. I think my best poems are about women and death.
The romantic poems give me pleasure. I don’t want to forget about them; I want
to love them. I don’t want to kill them; I want to hold them.
A love that is not really love doesn’t interest me.
It is interesting to see the Queen of Sheba swat away a red and yellow butterfly that comes to you
and likes to rest on your shoulder.

But there are different kinds of love—one that wants to hold someone in a tight embrace even though
you both know that someone is going to shake loose—one that wants to hold someone
even when she’s going to leave—one that wants to hold someone when she has long learnt the fine art
of saying no.

I’m always looking for “the little door.” But there is no little door, and if there were,
I’d probably find something I’d rather do.

:: 03.24.2021 ::