Category Archives: Aging

“But If I Loved”

“But If I Loved”

But, if I loved, there’d be no stumbling here,
No word, no moment spent in canvassing;
No south-bound sound, no! no jaundiced ring
Tone, no telephone—assuming no fear
No understatement—pressures here applied
To maudlin tracings follow no trump, no expression
No! no consummation in the passive key,
No suppression
Of fact, no fire in hyperbole, nor just plain lies.
Then I’d be forced to die, or something close
To leaving if I could:
But, I’m not made to feel so good;
I only wish I were; and just suppose
I should,
I would.

 

“I Found the Little Girl Alone”

…recollection from a day of teaching some time ago….

“I Found the Little Girl Alone”

I found the little girl alone, a leaner ladybug
Forlorn and crying in the cavern of the Cafeteria quite late
One afternoon; she sat with lunchbox and an empty plate.
“What brings you here?” I said. She just shrugged,
And said she didn’t know. I asked if she shouldn’t be
In class, and would she like some help to find her way?
“Oh, no!” she said, and then a lengthy silence. “I have to stay
And hurt a while until I’m done!” To me
She looked so small so delicate, and worn, so “Why the tears?
“My best friend hates me, and I don’t know why.”
“Well, what, then,” made her think she couldn’t try
To ask her friend just what she’d done? “That,” she feared,
“Will make it worse! She told me she’s got another friend at home
And now she took back her ring, and I’m here all alone!”

…I managed to walk the little girl back to her classroom, and in she went apparently in a kind of daze.  A few weeks later, I saw her in the playground laughing and seemingly happy as a lark, but from that day forward to the day she showed up in my senior English class, whenever our eyes would meet from time to time in the course of years of crossing paths and there was always a kind of sobriety in her glance that expressed thanks for having heard her and again, for having never mentioned that afternoon again.

“And When He Looked Again”

sun2

“And When He Looked Again”

And when he looked again, he saw the two suns
Rehearsing illusions in the river’s voice, the highest good,
The other lost within himself; the tidal mirror could
Not bear separation from the source, one
In signs, yet silenced, ever flowing in what it did
In passing. Crudely graced, seducing visions perfectly,
The first declared itself a certainty,
Its faith a recreated memory, its secrets hid.
In less than seconds, there was nothing of the rival left
To view. A single pebble and the river, too deserted,
stretches seamlessly, the cleft
Between the golden orbs become a prism,
the heavens suspended twice, the right, the left,
The recreation of creation, binding immortal mortalities,
void and substance bereft,
The heavens and the earth; breathless, lost within a common interlude
Where visions set themselves through perpetual accident and certitude.

sun-light-reflections

“Confirmations”

“Confirmations”

Confirmations late, perhaps, but guaranteed;
Never ending certitude, the consolation of pieces
The tattered ends of surest re-creation and redress,
The eyes trained to see all between as weeds,
The winded wilderness of detraction,
Thoughtlessness, yes! but cannot tarnish the polished thought.
Win or lose, the matter’s been decided; ought
Escapes the scrutiny of the watcher, a refraction
From within illuminating all that’s without
And damn the static in the wavelength. Repercussions
Riddle doubting minds and incidental mental defections
From others in the cast. The curtain rises, scenes begin
And with or without climax or denouement, a lifetime of delights
Will out in time. But who feeds the candle in the late nights’ softer lights?

“Winter’s Nod to Season’s End”

“Winter’s Nod to Season’s End”

Winter’s nod to season’s end and something’s changed, but he has
Fond remembrance in his veins and what remains of velvet skin,
Elastic reach, and exultation ever on the rebound; that once mighty fin’s
Bent perhaps to one side or the other with the tides. He’s come in last
Again; there’s no more north to his days; his dorsal sags–
One of many signals. What was wont to win against the odds
In all winds, all waves always gives sway to simple treasures. The pods
Have someday left him, or is he merely leaving? Here he lags. He’ll find sad pleasures in arenas, nearby bays, or just beyond the nets
Where all the lessers still pay for what they find. His presence draws
But cannot make a living. There comes that sundry sudden pause
Too many, and he’s trapped within an unforgiving inlet,
Or soon will be. He’ll not heed the signs, he cannot feel the warming;
Friends and family call to him but he can not hear the warning.

“The Finite Question”

the-finite-universe-richard-ortolano

“The Finite Question”

The finite question—Thank you very much!
Will do me fine, my friend, nothing more’s
To grasp; not “Why?” but jewels of “Who?” or “What?” The core’s
Chorus at my reach within a lifetime. Touch
A heart within my passion’s fields and ask me “When?”
Or “Where?” or even “How?” and I am whole
No more than any man must be, for when I troll
The deeps for useful answers to finite human ends,
I come equipped as any in the crowd
Because I walk the earth, and from the mind
And human blindness come all answers to the blind,
…And be assured we are all blind. The infinite, the “Why?”a loud
And brash defiance in defense within the foam, “I am no fool,
No prophet! I speak nothing from divinity,
but from a simple earthly rule.”

“So Easy to Desire”

V_MAG_NICK_KNIGHT_SUMMER_2011__V71_NICK-KNIGHT_HR3

“So Easy to Desire”

So easy to desire these miracles. But think
On this! Where’s the catch? the marvellous sleep
That comes to mind? what promises can keep?
What tests in time the price in days to come? These drink
To fortune, progress, and better days; these Sadducees of success
Attract millennia condensed within a briefer purse of seams
And hedges, hems round all for whom and what dreams
Of self and eternity? Beauty;s forplay and something’s earned but divine redress
Requires questions in the hours to come, those latter thoughts of distress
And wonder on some encounter in the looming longest night of nothingness,
Nemesis in paeans, time and endless waiting; rhymes are stress
Enough! these poesies and all that scansion in between lie flat, a wilderness
Of costs in hasty elevation of hymns that breathe the urge to to right a wrong
While in the time it takes to read this ode, its pen is dead and gone…

la plume de ma tante, indeed!

…art by Nick McKnight…

“I Might Have Said”

fire7

“I Might Have Said”

I might have said a kinder thing,
But at the moment something came
To mind that raised a salute to its aim
And forgot the target. Like the pebble of a classic sling
Shot, true but misaligned, contention is as varied
In its course as its atomic weight. Aimlessly, intention
Grows inward against itself, layered, ingots of invention
While the season’s end comes forward wary
Of its purpose, hubris, perhaps! steeled in enterprise
Far below the nature of its own creation. Self apprised,
The archetype is compromised by its own adminstration, surprised
By no less a thing than what it is—perfection, antidote to crisis—
More, but less than what it was. Where nothing reigns, love remains
Supreme within its station. Where light and fire are both abstract,
a moment’s immortality rests with nothing gained.

“Naked”

karaflazz

“Naked”

Naked. The word marks itself in age; comments, ends
Infirm; naïveté, by now estranged, is all but gone;
As brightnesses on brilliant surfaces blur along
The way, volition evaporates. Where means were, now are subtrahends
Abandoned as antecedents vanish while the veils are rent….
Wonders laced with repetitious evensongs
Fuel silences, memories in chorus, hosts to throngs
If not multitudes to deal with what is spent
No longer expected, witnesses perhaps, to another lifetime.
There is no sure repose within a posse in martialed sally
Down foot-sculpted steps that undermine the slopes of my Holy Mountain,
Chosen by ambition in men, piety in pilgrims in endless fountains’
Futile babbling from the masses, swamps and natural brine,
Subtleties of light upon lights in phatic summits knowing nothing of valleys.

…photograph by karaflazz…

“For Once”

A_drop_of_Slow_Fall

“For Once”

For once I have no rhyme; I have a single thread in hand
Sufficient, taut, but lacking will, the fleeing of the day
Gains nothing more than hopes that though these seeds withstand
Incessant winds and in this land with others waiting, held at bay,
The times will once again point out the way
To action: I have been and am alone too long,
And while I sought this place, I cannot stay:
The air’s too close; the light, the pattern’s wrong.
From the womb in solitude–’I could not bear it all
Forever. And when I leave this place, I’ll sing
Again, and join the others in the hall
Who wait for me, who cause the bells to ring.
Solitudes–’these friends, these single drops–so deeply call:
I did not make myself nor does a single drop a waterfall.