“But I Have Heard”
But I have heard the most disturbing news that’s troubles
Waters in pools of endless strife and Bethesda’s all too chronic pains.
These! malignant vines, stinging Stygian lines injected through the veins
And made to order on the thought of natural patterns formed of stubble,
Kneaded, twice redoubled, swaths of circles in the crops, alien to all I know
And only hinted at in mild sporadic phatic comic conversations
Minted in the teacups of late night radio listeners, ejaculations
From the ever-ready savants hoarding hours in the climax and the show,
Recurring flotsam leaving baffled masses in the night. On review,
There comes a newer, fresher definition, the specious form and image
Of the natural spectre of the fiend that pays no homage
To the needs of Êblis, Cain, or any of his crew, but centers in the purview
That displaces all philosophy among the latter Philistines while Abel’s told
Rapacious angels suck the spirit nigh to death of any living soul.
Posted in Imagery, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Poem, Poetry, Samsara, Sonnet
Tagged Delusion, Emotion, End Times, Existence, Illusion, Immortality, Lyric Poetry, Mortality, poetry, Sonnet, Tragic Flaw
“A Single Digit’s Secret”
A single digit’s secret is the outward sign, then two; begin again
And all becomes nothing. Friction is the willing conversation of the elements,
Induction, intertwined interpolations; equity, evidence
Of heat expressed in growth and progress, in the main
A corner filigrée cut of crude credulity. Intelligence,
The Sculptor; magnificence, the Marble; both unknown
And evanescent. Potentials―crops and fruits―are honed
From ancient scans in sands and recipes, and what is sent
To press or put to bed eludes both novelty and ingenuity.
The poet knows what cycles reconnoitre in redux and La Ronde.
What will be has always been while what is seen
Is simple resurrection but with a difference, credulity
In the repeat, as when immortal rumours couched in histories set
Themselves as precedents while external forces hedge their bets.
Posted in Age, Aging, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Poetry, Samsara, Sonnet
Tagged Age, Aging, Delusion, Emotion, Existence, Illusion, Immortality, Lyric Poetry, Mortality, Separation, Sonnet, Strife, Tragic Flaw
“To the Gods
They Were Just Apples”
To the gods they were just apples, not at all
The toy of choice and destiny for mortals, unrighteous manna for the fool.
Three golden globes wondrous formed from pools
Above—Asperges me, Domine—no, hardly, and, still it was that one such ball
Made purity of lust for he who blindly chose both certain menace and war.
And as effects of it–to altar boys absurd–embroidred that sad tale,
Strange to say the queue contains the other two; but truth cannot grow stale.
All seekers know that in addition to nonesuch beauty were two gilded orbs
As potent as the first, but put away, sequestered, perhaps installed
But never used or loosed as lean domestics in the fall
Of men and simian alike throughout all ancient mortal halls.
And to this day the two remain en extra, secure, moot within the walls
And great receiving rooms of one remote clandestine tower;
The first, unbridled Wisdom, saddled proudly on the second, naked Power.
Posted in Apples of Paris, Imagery, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Poem, Poetry, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets, The judgment of Paris
Tagged Apples of Paris, Beauty, Power, Wisdom
Painting by Jim Daly
“I Suppose I’m Moved”
I suppose I’m moved, and while we’re on the subject
I’ve thought about what you said the other night
About the greater scheme of things, the flight
From genes to the collective, the singular, the object
Without form or substance—and guests. The two united for the trip
Till death, it seems, ignite some familiar spark and they must part. It’s true,
The children see nothing much, no objective clue,
No lighthouse to indicate where they’re going as they slip
From one rude awakening to another; the challenge
Of success or failure, nagging hunger or sudden release
Within the same recurring toss. We then sleep, the keys
To what comes next appear as just another darkest accident in a collage
Awash, so loosely thrown together that the world would probably call it art.
Still, we never cease to seek our truths, our lights, our candles in the dark.
Posted in Age, Aging, Imagery, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Poem, Poetry, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets
Tagged Age, Aging, Emotion, Existence, Lyric Poetry, poetry, Relationships, Sonnet, Tragic Flaw
The audience of epiphanies in green
Crowns the brow and eyes as a single emerald.
So great a bending of the intersections, captured, held
Between the fingers or applied to the temple, harbinger of what may seem
To be a truth with absolutely nothing unnatural in the stream,
A common siren in calling to the seed of things to come, an eloquence
In concrete countenance what is today and future joy, the consequence
Of action filigreed with no attachment beyond the need of skill to redeem
A certain benefit; perfection’s living glance. Perhaps a useless ornament,
A thing revered, brought out to greet the light
And catch a glimpse of seconds in the hour, bright
And subtle richness conjured, a manifest adornment
Of my soul’s ocean against the scrim that is my naked palm:
A silent sentiment and evidence of more than
static lightning in an ancient psalm.
What was hidden for millenia is all right there on the table where you left it.
—Odd, but somehow sans the reading
I am aware that in the seedling’s
Notes are dangers; the ruby there beside it advises, “Keep it
Where it lies. Who prizes opaque lustre knows not every oyster carries gems
And while it might behoove me to investigate
This latest uninviting hostess tight within her shells, still what’s the going rate
For priceless pearls and an eternity
of fresh desire and its newly polished dividend?…
I cede the need to overcome the last and greatest disappointment;
Addressed in forced and anguished expectations on the spot
Of least resistance placing protocol and proper sequence bought
Above and well below the natural value.
I will not seize the gem whose predicament
Will always win. While yet here, the stone has greater value than what I take
To be mine own, but death devalues all currencies in the natural estate.
Posted in Imagery, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Poem, Poetry, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets
Tagged Existence, Lyric Poetry, poetry, Relationships, Sonnet
Joy! Is there an in between the rooms, the space,
Interpolated moments of what had always been attraction, snags
That could not be ignored? Bruises in subjunctive rags,
The memes of “just beyond” but well before the second race
That sat in apposition that as of yet
And probably never was apprised. Still well astride returns
For what was, in fact, a blister-burn
A meal gone bad despite precious preparation, set
Aside because she stayed too long that night.
And while she stalled the supper went too far
Beyond the call to matter for what was about to happen: purposes marred,
The banquet withered on the table, fallacies in candlelight
—Removed—to favour what rays in tandem breach in
Of sun and moon that frame the shadows of a single word.
Posted in Aging, Imagery, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Poem, Poetry, Samsara, Sonnet
Tagged Emotion, Existence, Lyric Poetry, poetry, Relationships, Sonnet, Tragic Flaw
“So Tired Tonight”
So tired tonight; the late nights rarely float;
I am here as much as there and wondering in myself when
If ever I will see the stars as well I once knew them. Then again,
The myriad monumentals, the smokey smell of creosote
From aging wharfs, the former headiness of worry,
The urgencies of thoughtlessness and giddy
Private joys of knowing no one knows the silly
Things I want to do. Night birds and a flurry
Of noted messages here, and over there, again the sun
That must soon rise high I see with it all
The weight of clear desire to rearrange what’s left of my small
World; and as for that lost ambitious excited little crab who cannot run
But sideways in what he takes as his private room, he’ll never make it back,
You know, to where he started as so easily the tides will smother both our tracks.
Posted in Aging, Crab, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Poetry, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets, Tides
Tagged Existence, Imagism, little crab, Lyric Poetry, Mortality, silly things, Sonnet, Sonnets
“He Looks Away”
He looks away from all his eyes allow
Because he has so much to leave obscure—
And don’t we all at times!— by habit inured,
He’ll reveal a spark to whom he vows
To walk a space, and possibly as with a pride
Of poets. Level phrases here and there arrive
To aid him as he rails against the tide
In early evening; his soft protesting tug, a brief aside
To all who indulge him; does he think to bid
Us well in all our journeys, slightly off and odd
Within our minds while he applauds
His audience daily? To our faces thinly hid
Within his voice and avatar, he’s guessing as he tests
Available living icons, shibboleths, and all we would address.
…Painting by Carl Spitzweg…
Posted in Age, Aging, Imagery, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Poem, Poetry, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets
Tagged Imagery, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Poem, poetry, Relationships
“A Pilot’s Flame”
A pilot’s flame and ambergris, fire and smoke, these privy orizons
As dews appear upon the sight of buds along an early summer’s talk
In the blind behind the backfields; still there is the chill,
a brief Nebraska morning’s walk
Through the shadows’ tides’ abiding shallows
in the breath of dawn; the garden
Path because we share so little
of the masters’ growth in blossoms’ bargains’
Fruits within us both and spare none, no idle chatter,
indeed a pittance of a fee for angels; pillars, cornstalks,
Arm in arm—so much can lead the way to joy within a cosmic room—locked
To one to yet another and another in the repetitious staid negotiation
of noxious clouds and dark but sterile clods, the feeble vain
Attempt to mask indignity in stride until desire’s destination’s
Reached—we know by stealth to find a symmetry in solutions,
Solace in respite from the others at the solstice
of that brief but potent spot.
A proper pole to pierce the continent,
a place we’ve never seen and always sought;
I need nothing more to see your face, to read your book
to savour proctors for procrastination
For the sake of pleasures found in greater prisms
for a lighter thought than pure imagination.
Posted in Affirmation, Angels, Antithesis, Clods, Cornstalks, Dawn, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Midsummer, Nebraska, Poetry, Prism, Procrastination, Pyrrhic Victory, Relationships, Respite, Shadows, Sonnet, Stealth, Synthesis, Thesis
Tagged Ambergris, Double Sonnet, Emotion, Existence, Imagism, Love, Lyric Poetry, Nature, Nebraska, poetry, Relationships, Sonnet, Sonnets
“Oh, I know”
Oh, I know it”s been said before but bears repeating:
Unless a man embrace estates, his sense
Of eternity, his gifts of endless strife and goals of regret intense
Enough to merit periodic casual to shameless open weeping
In the corridors; unless the deadly abyss of every night’s sleeping’s
Prone to breach and rupture within his dreams or by the clock;
unless ‘neath the lens,
His page is thus combustible by the light focused upon a spot,
his joy depends
On something well beyond his own heart’s contumely,
his gates–his paradise, his weeping–
Fall well beyond the storehouse of his eyes and its catalogue of fears,
His light is changed to fire in tragedy and myths of talismans that guide his way.
Again, unless all this is welcomed well before the final hour, his pride will swell,
His vanity implode, and circumstance becomes
a euphemism for all he sees as hell.
Remember please that breath and breathing signify that death is ever near
And in these final years, satisfaction’s just another word for nothing left to pay.
Posted in Age, Aging, Certitude, Death, Fear, Hope, Hubris, Imagery, Imagination, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Materialism, Mortality, Philosophy, Poem, Poetry, Pride, Pyrrhic Victory, Samsara, Sleep, Sonnet, Sonnets, Spirituality, Stations, Strife, Tragedy
Tagged Age, Death, Existence, Imagism, Immortality, Lyric Poetry, Mortality, Poem, poetry, Pride, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets, Strife, Tragic Flaw