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.
Posted in Age, Aging, Lyric Poetry, Poetry, Sonnet
Tagged Age, Aging, Existence, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, poetry, Tragic Flaw, Wisdom
“Be Careful Here”
Be careful here, my friend, truth can burn
But cannot bring you down; a given is a given:
A man is fooled within himself; he will be driven
In and of his own delight impelled at every turn
Toward the Qiblah of his creation as the sun
Will rise from his East, recline and resign
Toward his West. As the rains decline
From highest peaks seduced to run
To oceans, so, too, creation brooks no barrier,
No alteration in its prodigies. Light ordained
Is not the lamp, nor within a wick retained,
But consecrated in the oil; its properties tarry.
Be assured. Energies within the lantern reign;
Where comes the spark, no light can be restrained.
Posted in Lamps, Light, Lyric Poetry, Poetry, Sonnet
Tagged Certitude, Existence, Immortality, Lyric Poetry, Mortality, poetry, Sonnet, Wisdom
“Gold Bars Soar”
Gold bars soar that may or may not be there as dollars rise and fall
While doves and hawks lose feathers and the bourgeois stain
Their corporate tablecloths; numbers genuflect as mortgage rates
And candidates trade places in the spin. Who sleeps in the caterwaul;
Who stampedes for attention in the networks’ nightly call
To arms not heard since Boston; whose cotillions root for the notorious? Bait
And bombast never fails; the remedy is ever there and altogether late,
Meticulously timed by someone out to fill the stadia and malls
With never ending seasons’ greetings and wherewithal
To keep the vital signs of spinning polls and sardines at the gates,
Martin’s dream is deemed appropriate for the calendar and numbers integrate
The use of steroids and youthful thrall so no one drops the ball.
Who needs another change for heaven’s sake as one size fits all:
…And who really gives a damn with elections in the fall?“
Posted in Change, Dollar, Dross, Duplicity, Fear, Gold, Hubris, Idolatry, Image, Imagery, Imagism, Inflation, Lust, Lyric Poetry, Materialism, Media, Morality, Obama, Poem, Poetry, Pyrrhic Victory, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets
Tagged Business, Dollar, Gold, Imagism, Immortality, Inflation, Lyric Poetry, News Media, Poem, poetry, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets
“I’ll Not Wait”
I’ll not wait till dawn to praise the sun;
Shadows follow closely where I sleep; this night must end:
I’m guaranteed as much. What, then? Tomorrow? What? Again
A word’s delay a world away is all, so, patience me. The midnight trains still run
Their course–stampeding to the east to crawl back westward–and catch
The rising or the setting cosmos all along the local milk run. Coaches
Matter not, jettisoned or newly recreated in the Milky Way, we approach
Our destinations, dusks or dawns in proper times; passengers dispatched,
Who only seem to arrive at destinations previously booked
And so we do not blithely cease to live because we wait
Upon a final station or dream of tracks not even built. Medusa guards the gate
That turns all nightly plans to stone, and we her momentary shades that looked
To make the journey know the Night Train only claims a means to ends
Through mirrors while season tickets mark what joys the daybreak sends.
Posted in Age, Aging, Astronomy, Destiny, Ends, Existence, Experience, Fate, Helios, Image, Imagery, Imagism, Infinitity, Lyric Poetry, Means, Midnight, Nightrain, Poem, Poetry, Providence, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets, Sun, Trains
Tagged Age, Aging, Change, Destiny, Double Sonnet, Existence, Fate, Imagery, Imagism, Lyric Poetry, Night Train, Poem, poetry, Samsara, Sonnet, Sonnets, Sun, Trains
“The Winter Hours”
The winter hours are safest for
The plow; they so easily provide excuse to keep
On moving in despair here to hopes of there with deep
Devotion to the task. No bus, no métro car,
No walk through cobalt icebound parks
Allows the luxury of lingering admiration.
Exposure of limb, hands, feet,
He’ll not remain in temperatures that have no heat
With trusts that have no memory. Transportation
Only occupies his thoughts, no time for sparks,
Nor accounting in the arc of sirens to the eye;
No genuflection to the fleeting moment, distraction on the fly.
Of course, the beauties of certain summer’s wealth
Welcomes him in time, but in the hour he relies on stealth.
“These Single Seconds”
These single seconds, presentiments of all
And nothing in eternity, everything in being
So alive; so much ado for yet another death in Venice, the seam
Of what is past as in a single passion’s pall
So sharpened in the moment that its cut
Is never noted until the point of infection. Minutes and the hour
Record a simple causal pause, time enough to harvest flowers
That surely wilts conceived so thoughtlessly. But
In the common flush of extremities, the blush, the rush, the flow,
This now is always yesterday’s dream, tailings of self-deception,
Always what has happened just before, some weak inflection
Of realities and truth but crudely reckoned, a seed yes! newly sown
That only time can nourish through nearly seven times ten in years
In swaddling veils of unmitigated grace and holiness in arrears.
Posted in Age, Aging, Lyric Poetry, Poetry, Samsara, Sonnet
Tagged Age, Aging, Certitude, Death, Dreams, Existence, Immortality, Lyric Poetry, Mortality, poetry, Relationships, Sonnet, spirituality, Strife, Tragic Flaw
“Still, It Is Within”
Still, it is within another winter’s votary’s thought at last;
I know I will not be with you here beyond the death
Of these same embers in the hearth, this house arrest
Of days and nights so beauty-worn. I am the fast
In winter’s moonlight bringing closer all who see
So little lit save in one another; days begun, recessed
Before their time. And so it is with graduated rest
From daily obligations, time enough to dream, at least to seem
To one another safe enough for one brief season, a familiar in the close
Encounter with so little interest but in the present evening’s run
To fetch a cow within, a log from out back, to secure the sun
But barely born. The moon grows reticent as the rising orb discloses
Evening weeds and as we build fires and take the steam.
The flame’s worn warmth is strong and so is loved…and so must it seem.
Posted in Age, Aging, Lyric Poetry, Poetry, Sonnet
Tagged Age, Aging, Existence, Mortality, poetry, Relationships, Separation, Sonnet, spirituality, Strife, Tragic Flaw
I’ve been so very parched, so cold and harsh,
So desiccated here within the rind
Of once ripe full and fulminating brine,
Its fluids rife with subterranean marsh
Imbued with life and action on a barge,
Upon the so-called Styx that ever winds
The hither-thither bends of caves and mines
That Aztecs and their victims roamed at large
For ceremony’s sake and led the charge
As Moctezuma fell across the line
From fantasy to apathy refined
By noxious repetition of his entourage.
I never thought to check the latest almanac
When common sense became my cul-de-sac.
Posted in Age, Aging, Lyric Poetry, Poetry, Sonnet
Tagged Age, Aging, Apathy, Aztecs, Cul-de-sac, End Times, Existence, Fantasy, Lyric Poetry, Moctezuma, poetry, Styx
Projection rules in those who deal in faith;
Like knowledge, faith can be acquired,
Manuals and rudiments desired
Each day among the hustlers give weight
To notions second only to their fees.
And what of practices, factions, seams that line
Grand curtains with magic, emotion, atmospheres so fine
That only children are attracted–they and bees–
The rhetoric’s so sweet. In possibilities
Truth is honed. What were only trifles
Traffic as much consolation for the poor as riffles
To manipulators, mullas, priests, and rabbis
hell-bent on hyperbole.
Distraction is the only holy oil to those who will not heed
The warnings, common sense, and wreathes of mental weeds.
[5 May 1813 -11 November 1855]
“Listen to the cry of a woman in labor at the hour of giving birth— look at the dying man’s struggle at his last extremity, and then tell me whether something that begins and ends thus could be intended for enjoyment.”
She’d doubted little but that she’d seen
The years erode in apathy; her reticence,
A lofty presage, the onslaught of age and common sense.
Few would guess. They’d cauterized intentions
and but for the rising of the occasional dream
In time might well have honed her fears but then she’d met herself
And found the chance encounter oddly pleasant.
He’d elevated loneliness―a badge of honour in youth―an essence
Among the many rites to be stacked neatly on the shelf,
And in time no lasting nights, no respites sealed; revealed, prayer’s the thing
Retained between the shadows, stale perhaps at times like flowers
Pressed between a journal’s soulless leaves, natural powers
Collapsed within a hidden room where only sunbeams and dustbunnies sing
Anywhere but in the rain. Banalities whispered endlessly, axioms, hesitation,
Then, between the beads, metered patience dwells just this side of resignation.
Patterns, tedious to the casual connoisseur of callow circumstance,
Whose aunts and uncles–convalescent cynosures–apply the appliqué
That bests all daily bread but adds nothing to the liquor save signatures
That serve as ligatures and borders between circuses
Of disingenuous serendipity; floral blooms of in between,
And on the other side of propinquity ane wider welding weeds
And creeping things visible but moments past the age of puberty. Seeds
Of adolescence are careless where they land, despondent with obscene
And righteous rage at opportunities of eternity and propagation. It is just so with common inmates as well those in military congregation:
Universal laws claim exclusive rights to the infinitive in subjugation
To principles set down by God-knows-what the conjugation.
We witness, then, in every accident a recusal of the spheres,
What flowers, tadpoles, insects, and the whole of mankind fears.
…painting by Valery Vetshteyn [Валерий Ветштейн]…
Posted in Aging, Lyric Poetry, Poetry, Sonnet
Tagged Aging, Existence, Lyric Poetry, poetry, Relationships, Sonnet, Strife, Tragic Flaw