Category Archives: Age

“He Sits Another Monday”

a thought

“He Sits Another Monday”

He sits  another Monday…only smiles tonight. His words are glass,
Illumined, yes,…but no light strikes him and he can no longer see the page.
His hours leased over years yield nothing in eternity but sardonic age,
Invisible, a painted thought distracted by what’s been asked
Of him, years of cold neglect, and all those miles.
Still it’s not enough. If not tonight, then, when?
No doubt in time, but wait! the breezes grow to winds again,
And, where there are currents, other images, other trials.
…the summer’s wounds have found their mark…
Is this the time for words? a second poem? a signatory fire
Lit to get it said, perhaps to induce a faint desire,
Another phrase–there are so many–another cigarette’s arc, a spark
So much to feel, so much to taste when once the sap begins to seep?
Nature’s not so conjured, the outcome’s sealed and in time all thought will cease.

“Philosophical Principles”

Aquarium_colorful

“Philosophical Principles”

Philosophical principles daily posted pass
Me by; I can see nothing. I thrill to what I sense
In worlds beyond the simple physical; I have no defense
For case. The economics of the street come hard and fast
As I am walled out or worse, within. Relationships
Quite simply, cast doubt; I am alone. The trick is in the chip;
I am become obsolete. Psychics set my soul on edge, their tips
Much greater than the check; I get no reading. Doctors seal my lips;
Somehow, the Ph balance in the aquarium is wrong; my fish
Have died and husbandry’s beyond me; I tend to use
A bankcard. Thoughts elect to the elusive next to
Tarot cards there upon the shelf, perhaps a shade above a wish
And whisper, far beyond the random tea leaves that interrupt
My golden mile, and so I drain the coffee, and throw away the cup.

“The Greatest Sanctuary”

“The Greatest Sanctuary”

The greatest sanctuary saves, preserves, and seals
The last and latest treasure; final fears are entertained
And in the end repeat themselves penultimate in any age
That’s spent with nothing left to say. The morass of months reveal
Themselves as names, the briefer moments cast in isinglass,
And hung above the door as witness to emotions borrowed to defend
The journey of both giver and what it is that’s given–split ends
That pass at times for purity of desire. Consternation, then, at last
Effaced, those few peas remaining within the pod will spend
Themselves while outward bound to what is after all a dream
Or merely someone’s lunch. They groom together–the sheen
Is frayed–delay is shame when every effort to confirm or to renew offends.
Reconnoitred, what were formerly evergreens
disclose themselves as deciduous devotions
That decry their former riverbeds as puddles, watersheds of desiccated oceans
And long dead seas. . 

“Sonnet in Honour of the Feast of Mashíyyat” or “Will”

Bahá’ís throughout the world gathered yesterday evening after sunset or today before sunset to celebrate the First Day of the Month of Mashíyyat [Will]

IMG_1886

“Sonnet in Honour of the Feast of Mashíyyat” or “Will”

We bear witness to it in the station of a still
And changeless vision, cosine as it is to truth.
Volition reigns with all, and rules
To govern its existence will
Continue till the thing no longer bears its seal,
Its sign, its talisman nor sacred stamp
Of manifest yet hidden Lamps
By Whose Light truth’s revealed or is repealed.
There is no greater will than this. We are
Witnesses, the signatories of deeds
Of lingering motives, contracts, seeds
Of instituted factors in the sole
And universal changeless Will and Goal
Whose pages neither bend nor fold.

“Accolades”

immunity

“Accolades”

There are no lasting accolades for what occurs
Before discovery, precedents to concepts, antecedents to the rank of names.
Armies of delusions gather at dusk or dawn—semi-colons it seems—but the aim
Of all is change and nothing seems more real nor more absurd
Than that the sun simply is and continues to be. Perceptions, artefacts,
A vast compendia of condescending clues confound perfections
housed in all the usual places.
Conceptions rear palatial visions, rise and all but disappear where fear displaces
Inner sight and gainsays personal sovereignty. Look again and act
Upon a limpid canvas, more, a pristine marble so easily cut and again defaced
By innuendo or what pacifies the common view
of every art and all science in the debris of afterglow; if judged immortal,
What, then, of the beauty of a single rose reborn through centuries, millennia, yet reduced, detritus as investment in a single angry fist? The bridge and portal
Through which both eyes view and progress signs can never be erased.
Creation’s grace is testimony to the morning of eternity; oneness firmly grasped
Ensures velocity, immunity, and detachment from all that’s passed.

“Within”

Pieper_Invite

“Within”

Within proximity of the cavern sits the hortatory proclivity of the moment,
Illusory porch mouthed in rock―remedial tomb
Of things―both here within and there without this inner, upper womb
To manifest what it is to be fashioned with the weight of sentiment,
Centre, concentric circle, ever flowing water, external wave
Of casual and monumental passion. To the outward, toiling; inward, bound
Beyond addiction and the need of source, resource, sound,
Deceiver of the whole. So, too, are we the humoured and pleased
Along the way. So it is and continues to be the breath of reckless, ceaseless ease
Within a tethered bulk, discomfort in a sometime suit, garment
Knit within itself in gravity to objects in a firmament
Of space of yesterdays skies and spaces signed today; resigned, a race
And fulcrum, grace of instinct bound within Plato’s Cave imagines virtues
lit with but a glance within the Upper Room of Christ
Provide a circumstance of perpetuity no matter what the price.

…art at top by Joshua Pieper…

“Transitions”

“Transitions”

Transitions, troughs and floodgates
Swell before the crops are in;
Appointments rough-hewn begin
From centuries’ wealth in soils. He hesitates.
Lamentations of the classic farmer’s touch
Bestowed on something that was expected
Neither to outlast the seed nor tip the balance but once elected
Audit landscapes from the past and serve the sudden rush as much
As circumstance permits a well to gush and choose another path.
He was a teacher; was, and no doubt
Will continue to apply the torch to oils of souls
Whose mission is to lance the boils of youthful wrath
And freely prime the wells of mass miscalculation of the myths,
The babbling and cursive powers of hubris and its shibboleths.

 

“The Body’s Built for Stretch Marks

alzheimers

“The Body’s Built for Stretch Marks

The body’s built for stretch marks, peculiars, indictments drawn from lines
Reserved for bruises, random ancient scars received at childhood,
Subtle abuses leading to arrests, differences in the artificer’s sketches, would-be
Blind catastrophe to a child bound for trial. Etchings, wounds, fine
Byzantine rites of passage penetrate the masses gathered in their schools
Of fantasies as testacies: for the ignoble, pastimes; the chosen, noble death
Certain. Pride of station, booty, brazen badges pinned to what is left
Of that old shirt or those old pants, and in the end, the glass is raised to fools,
And myriad mirrors of Alma Maters. “Yes,” she said, “Lose that baby fat,
She said, but she was lying as she sliced another quarter pound of butter
For the stir fry as dairies churn to pave the way for satisfaction and utter
Joy at dinnertime for the calf, an unction for the stomach, a hardening heart,
Vanitas sanitarium omnia vanitas, and then some for the cat.
All is vanity if clutching at the straws of life,luck and liberty to boot
To generate bravado in hopes that render all his finite questions moot.
Catwalks above his life’s pavilions, sidewalks in a decent neighbourhood,
And nursing homes dot the landscape while all declare,
“You know, the Devil made me do it!”
Who denies the processes of thought, the fine idyllic conduits
From “Why not me?” to “All I am is what I should
Be,” whispered while whistling down alleys and paper routes. The avenues
Conjure images and constructs preserved en bas relief in two dimensions,
Melting icecaps in an ocean of invention and intervention at the mention
Of a third. “To whom and what for?” He wonders at the dews,
Fresh-formed deadlines, spinal taps and tallies, and reams of “Things to Do”
And all before the door is closed and locked, keys deposited at the main wicket.
Who’s survived to say that winter’s haze might raise the need to buy a ticket
To some gilded paradise conspicuous on the fridge, or a cruise for two
Along the coasts or toward the navel of the nation
As he remains at home inured of all such thought and aggravation?
So wide the miles to peace and once again some pompous reconciliation
As the Parthenon limps through yet another year
and cancer strikes the very spirit of the Holy Temple Mount.
In the malls of Washington and London the body count
No longer matters to the kids at dinner while the recapitulation
Of the days’ decapitation give reviews on CNN no rapt attention.
Nolo contendere” say they, the salt of sorrow’s “single spies”
That marshal once again in “battalions”, with no word nor photo from the skies
Above the glass-lined pulpits of the ‘ulamas of cable news scansion
of only slightly less innocuous city gutters, the catacombs of dubious mention
All along the Tigris, the Congo, above Solomon’s mines on the African Horn.
They know their losses simmer silently in the chambers of the heart;
They know their worth in sovereignties and ulcerating boils apart
From what is said of foes on Fox or activists on board the unborn
Born again processions that occupy the parks. Landmines litter, braying gospels
of long’s and short’s, the meretricious glitter scribbled hastily
on chits strewn throughout the bar codes in the canyons of every market floor
Just as surely as autumn leaves attest what may be God’s penultimate bounty,
Blatant warnings in blood atop the sash of every second church door.

“You Own the Year”

“You Own the Year”

You own the year and years before you
As I the year and all that’s passed;
Your signs are rising, eternity is steadfast.
Quo vadis, then? I who serve eternities am overruled
By sheer numbers, countless previous dispensations viewed
In retrospect and circumspect in vast
And spacious notions of impermanence and impasse.
I see before the fact in part, imperfectly at present, pursued
By spoils of the war and coupled with a dubious acquired taste
For bitters, an acerbic memory gained close at hand or lost at sea.
Nothing in this world is or is so stable
That it is not utterly dependent, created, removed and recreated on the table
Of bounties throughout creation; what God has willed to use or waste
Shall be not be more or less than what it is and what is not shall never be.*

***

* “Protect me, O my Lord, from every evil that Thine omniscience perceiveth, inasmuch as there is no power nor strength but in Thee, no triumph is forthcoming save from Thy presence, and it is Thine alone to command. Whatever God hath willed hath been, and that which He hath not willed shall not be.

There is no power nor strength except in God, the Most Exalted, the Most Mighty.”

–His HolinessThe Báb, Selections from the Writings of the Báb, pp. 190-191

“By Day, the Toil!”

Wrting

“By Day, the Toil!”

By day, the toil.  Just so. At times the ache
Returns, but somehow, nightfall must come. Perhaps
It is the hour, or something in the newly evening breeze, but laps
Throughout the day are then for someone’s sake
Forgotten, and he simply sits before the fire,
Or there, outside beneath the bluer, richer hues
Of cares and harsher edges of desire
To carve, to whittle, to embrace a life at once recused
In poetry, metre askew with so  little harmony, alone
Not so much in sparks, but in the riot of results.
He waves his hand and even owls listen; bolts
Of lightning in his voice again do not groan
But gently call to sit beside him in the light
Of distant days remembered in the call
to rest with him through the vanity of his night.