Category Archives: Appearances

“Quietly, Adventists”

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“Quietly, Adventists”

Quietly, adventists, circumstances, events will tilt and, tossed,
Belie their source, defy all purpose,
Lost in ballyhoo and bombastic noise loosed
In garments of comedy and nether-tragic costs
When of a sudden, lack of audience
Stifles spittle churned and turned to gauze and cotton candy
In spinning queues of mental traffic; what comes in handy
Mauls the maudlin, crosses lines and fences
And while so much the better for CNN, barely scores
On Public Television. So much the better
For lessers or worse, the editor’s opt or letter
To the begetter of just another ad, progenitor of national lore;
When the edge of justice touches drifts of reason:
Even the planets and the brightest stars retain their seasons.

“I Am On or Off”

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“I Am On or Off”

I am on or off with nothing in between
And as I speak with few, some, or not
At all, to crowds or to the wall, I’m caught
In queue to glimpse the mind seen hiding high above the catwalk, the means,
The glare of someone’s thoughtless headlamps along a cold deserted road, eyes
Ablaze, altogether missing in the sketch.
I’m on my way to Canaan Land and far beyond,
A prisoner to some casual frog in my own back pond,
Declensions of a small plot of rooms stretch
Before me pleasingly. I have at once
Both everything and nothing worth the time
To move, vague velocities and straightened lines
Within the present augurs solids’ in a liquid balance. Suns
Aligned, I maintain the weight of fingers on the keys;
With so little depth in what I say, I am the simple universe at ease.

“I Could Have Called”

“I Could Have Called”

I could have called last night, you
Know; you’d have answered, of course, and we,
Removed, should conquer these deserted walls; the you and me
Expressing wonder and ecstasy de facto that two
Fine tunes in a single space find nothing in our words;
No lyrics, no grandiloquent prophesies, no binding ties,
No coy deception, fitting deposition, or bold-faced lies
To truss up seams, loose and dwindling ends; just birds
Of prey whose festive table breeds in fables, birdseed, curds
In whey–nothing offered, nothing taken–
Gilded fare in a God-forsaken
Intercourse that breathes perhaps in syllables, but nowhere near a word,
Stentorian sensations that somehow subdue a nightly desperation,
Declarations masked in stilted mantras ripe with endless repetition.

“Between the Particles”

“Between the Particles”

Between the particles, seeds, whole galaxies
With beings monstrous in physique by grace
To be or not to be of any consequence; a place
Of high dramatic action, energies, prolixities
And all that is the chaos and confusion here
Among us there between the millions, there
Where no present eye beholds the plan; fair
Throughout minions of the wide arena sated, dear
To those whose measures are diminutive
But in such numbers as we cannot command,
Or catalogue; and even here may be the death of man
In servitude to what is life to them, disease to us, illustrative
Of powers to the nano only recently imagined:
We seek where there is nothing; we see mountains in grains of sand.

“What Peace of Mind”

“What Peace of Mind”

What peace of mind can find a living here?
Pundits’ fantasies will not stop the tears, the midnight cries,
Incessant lies, and still the public yearns to know what we despise
From commentators and the late show comics. Do we fear
The truth and turn the other way when asked
If what comes down the pipe is truly past
Our tacit understanding? Reasons? Seasons? Are there tasks
Beyond endurance here, or is it always first and last
A matter for the courts, the press, and cold realities
That simply digest information and ingest lucid cosmic facts:
There’s them that’s got, and them that’s wracked,
The rich, the poor, the lack of morals backed. Atrocities
And blessings rank as equals, ours to fricassee, ours to fear.
There’s them that’s got, all right, and them that no one hears.

“Feel the Fear”

“Feel the Fear”

Feel the fear in all things blithe; death,
To see what only mystic pages sign and still it’s too damn cold;
Nothing’s moving. Reckon talismans, medallions sold
For incense and bouquet; breathe once and then the second breath,
Friend. Taste reticence itself and all things flee; barter sovereignty
And youth and place the sandals at the door. Terse and curt,
They will renege, prevaricate, and standing still
their high fives fly. They flirt
With no one but themselves, their flesh disports with rude obscenity;
Daggers, canines, grey-lined barbs of cultured mumbled sympathy
For mothers long in heat, hesitant but nonetheless disposed to saying
Judas had his reasons.
Politely cut the losses, righteous piracy embroidered on the sleeve–
The tattoo leaves no space for pores–pluck the fruit,
reschedule colonoscopies.
They’ll make you know they love you;
scratch the surface, pick the scab.
And why not? If things go wrong, all is veiled,
steeled in memory, forgotten on the slab.

“They Move So Well”

“They Move So Well”

They move so well, they troll; they stroll
From this side of wagers to the other,
“Done!” and back again, smother
Goosesteps with mother’s deep affection, roll
The wholes in one and on a paper napkin map
Contingent strategies in sporting bars of habit and choice
Their viscosities of taste and controversy, simulated voices
Registering rapt concern from teleprompters
for whom it may concern that takes the rap
When leaders do not function as they should.
If what’s within the box is not ajar,
It will be soon, adagios of alarm
As phantoms masked in mortgages, just as whales, must surface
By the waters of eternal Babylon to their height in purpose.

“The Innuendo”

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“The Innuendo”

The innuendo woven not so much in the fantastic,
But in experience, a living witness within a precocious cloud,
A view to forward motion, counterfeit because in itself it is allowed
To be but never adequately traced: inertia has no station; static, elastic,
Yes, but to no greater purpose.  These, the chords of oneness in righteous bond
Cannot be but bastard confirmations of the spirit’s sparse but potent
Progress, motion, goal’s, the irritating “now” but well beyond the quotient
Of “then again…..” But there’s not it. There is no special wand
Nor spirit guiding, none the precious gift beyond simple accident in bands
Of language, maudlin to the ear which is to say we may embrace not knowledge, but the inordinate love of what the ear may be gifted to hear;
We may glory in what the tongue speaks, and its wonders to suspend the fear
Of dwelling on the absolute, mere ciphers written ingloriously on the sand.
And if, by chance, there is a point to these sentiments and if pernicious—these
Fine words—it is the soul and not the author, penned such thoughts with ease. 

“The Adagio Begins”

“The Adagio Begins”

The adagio begins; I am so very old this afternoon.
I drop prescriptions at the pharmacist,
And, while I linger, phatic melodies persist
Perniciously; cornered by exchanges with the clerk. Soon
The neighbourly welcome wears a little thin in me,
And while she might have had me read
The blurb she found in yesterday’s discarded need,
I found myself a little on the run and disinclined to be
The latest in this evening’s causeries, her chance encounter, leisure’s
Fodder in the daily bond, another rerun of the previous day’s events
That even when fresh and in the bloom of youth were set
Ajar in previous matinees. Politely I decline the pleasure
In the “breaking news” edition of the hottest feed of tips
On vitamins, deodorants, and balms to soothe the driest lips. —Once

“Your true traveller finds boredom rather agreeable than painful. It is the symbol of his liberty – his excessive freedom. He accepts his boredom, when it comes, not merely philosophically, but almost with pleasure.”
Aldous Huxley
[1894-1963]