Category Archives: Passion

“Dark Witnesses”

“Dark Witnesses”

Dark witnesses record with eyes that never were
When I was young and only dreamed of what was left
In life to me out there, some single beauteous breath
Of God’s own living spirit; and as I recall we all were sure
Of it, and not at all concerned as days flew passively
Away and left us glued to what was here and now.
We saw no further than what was just beyond the bow
Of some shining barque, stillborn, sailless but massive
Still. And as I gaze today on all that came eventually, I think
I saw where I would be one day, and in these latter hours smile
On what that meant and whose small eyes were set so many miles
From where he sat amazed. My own children’s children sink
Their eager toes so deeply now into the sand and squeal in praise
Of joys I knew I’d never know in what remained of all my days.

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“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. . 

“The Cello Hours”

“The Cello Hours”

The cello hours born in satisfaction’s flowering
Struggle for the taste of sunlight’s ambered
Quotidian pause between yellowed evening song in embers
Of any passion’s flames, the body’s needs, so immediate, so towering
In the vertical for lack of space to run;
Steeper slopes too raked; some desperation’s blotting out
What memory’s suns’ refuse to yield–the stout
Resolve, the countenance of all volition’s fruits undone
By now and all but totally forgotten in the dying folds of coals.
We rush from one safe haven to another.
Absurd, but on this earth tectonic shifts that smother
Linger in the soul and while all the world’s aglow, the body sees but single goals
In search of yearning for the satisfied in every earthbound swarm:
“Touched or touching, now I tell you friend, I must be warm!”

 

“Briefer Images”

“Briefer Images”

Briefer images at dusk along the street and wonders
In me--who is that woman? Street lamps, yes! the moon
Or worse that slaps us both; tarnished, and in a tangent off some June
From long ago, memories in a travel log of time when I still blundered
Through the odyssey of all my fears and slumber seemed forever light,
The blush and dimming of the spots somehow pleasing to so many peoples,
Then, and still I stood to hit the queue  to see her eyes.
Distilled prayer beneath the steeples,
Midnight trains and feeble seats in Greyhounds,
uses of the every highway dedicated to gemutlichkeit
And the momentary! More, a never-ending wanderlust and steam
To drain the festering boils of youth in rhymes of two dimensions:
Points from “A” to “B” to “C”, perhaps to “D”, and mention  The here and there of this I saw or that within what dreams
Concealed in endless intercourse in the night and I so moth- like in the rites
Of great mahatmas in repose amid the golden spinning wheels and kites.

“Sonnet in Honour of the Feast of ‘Ilm’ or `Knowledge'”

Bahá’ís throughout the world gather this evening after sunset or tomorrow before sunset to celebrate the first Day of the Bahá’í Month of ‘Ilm [Knowledge]
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“Sonnet in Honour of the Feast of ‘Ilm or`Knowledge'”

What he knows is what he tells himself,
What Êblis whispers to him, what unfolds
Within; which is to say there’s no Golden
Ratio beside what’s stored so neatly on the shelves;
Which is to say that knowledge forms his selves
In all there is, all that can
Be earned, and later learned; which is to say this man’s
Passions’ orison’s once removed from childhood’s saturated wealth
Is innocence abused, its light’s defused,  dissolving into ruins at the edge
Of his own mother’s womb to repeat the keys and chords of Cain.  His test,
A recurring scream; his dreams in ruins, the colony is resettled. Let it rest.
And cease the plaintiff cry for more when the ore and samples’ core
survives the crucibles’ age-old pledges.
Light resolves to virtue, fire to vice; what, then, but God’s own spittle
Can be so disparate from heaven…or in the end can the Golden Calf from hell achieve so very little?

“I Anticipate the Moments”

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“I Anticipate the Moments”

I anticipate the moments. I survive,
But there’s not it–the fireflies sweep
Through me as sheets
Of rain and sleet within a tired mind. Contrived,
My expectations are a tepid fog compared
To what I feel when you are with me. Now
I see I cannot trust myself to disallow
Disguise and art; when face to face the errors
I embroider come unravelled right
Before my gaze and I am bound to show
Without what should remain within. Even now,
I cannot recreate myself in time to face the light
Of what I am, so plainly seen by you and all our gods, and I deny
I ever waited, wanted, longed, or even cared to see your eyes.

…painting by Susan Aldworth…

“A Pyrrhic Victory”

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“A Pyrrhic Victory”

A Pyrrhic victory at best, hours after yet another year’s
Bitter cold before the coming estates of sweat, insurmountability’s
Surmised but never publicly revealed. Accountability’s
Moot when age transmutes abundant copper into gold, drowns tears
With astringents of patent patience, maintenance, and losses dear
But ever too late for death to gloat no matter the audience. Flexibility
Of course is needed, reticence too calm for promiscuity
And not a whole lot larger than regret and nothing left to fear.
What then, comes next; what must? What highway markers point the way
To some fresh spring or more than nocturnal notches at the oasis?
Longevity rests its case while youth is lost in grasping straws
And twigs of self-control with nothing guaranteed to thaw
In time for dinner. Long since the urge to worship heady homeostasis
Yields mere noise, the debris of mindless predators at work or play
Whose highest aspiration is passion’s demand and supply of endless prey.

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…paintings by Jeanette Bessette…

“Hesitation at the Station”

“Hesitation at the Station”

Hesitation at the station. She met him there,
His buttercups and bouquets to her denial;
He was quiet lavender, stillness in his soul, no guile,
No subterfuge while she forecasts in this affair
But possibles, toi, toi, toi! But they knew then and there
The harvest would be bleak, potentials in the miles
Are all but melted as they speak of exiles,
Signs and images they no longer seek, the glare
Of barren tables—little more than feet
Between them—expanses and catastrophes,
The warped and weary sets and semblances
That conjure bile and even stranger consequences;
Oil slicks, creosote, and fear of breakfast bars and sheets
To match an asset and demand that does not grow but atrophies.

“He Lingers”

“He Lingers”

He lingers to the left then for years and more;
She satisfies herself with seconds to the right and even less,
A glance or two at captive lantern lights and sparks addressed
To moths who do not know the reason for
Their fascination nor what sweet dangers lay
In this or that confection spread between days and weeks with little time
To verify the obvious–candles all but disappear
in sunlight and words that rhyme
With fire usually point the way to fatuous invection,
the pox of every yesterday;
And in the convalescence of the early dawn,
her doubts evaporate like myrrh she’s quite forgot
When she airs her rooms as if the purpose
in his witness were merely balm for pain–
All her earthbound joys share the momentary contents
of a rural mailbox, shelter in the rain
For those who still receive their letters with the circulars. Caught
In fantasies defined in galaxies that disappear at sunrise
there remains the death knell of worlds,
The casuistries of nouns and adjectives
that sue for peace beyond the pale of words.

“I See no Quiet Here”

“I See no Quiet Here”

I see no quiet here but qualities designed
In favour of the best the litter and line will offer,
The latest of dynasties of inertia, coffers
Open without the slightest cover charge, signed
In classic calligraphy with what hovers in the herd.
Dressed to kill to take one’s fill of benefits
And freebees, clowns and frowns and shoes that fit
The going price, sound bites to the latest word
From centres deep within. Commitment to yet another holy empire
Risen high above housed buttressed in steel and glass
And all that lasts beyond the skylines but to the limits of the present past,
And futures giving voice to promise and advertisement that inspire
Confidence and, ultimately, perhaps, yes, another royal firm
Or two to add to those that must germinate and cheat the pedestrian worm..