Drain

The words grow strained and rusty now.

They’re murky and unclear.

Is there no need for writing now?

I’ll read them, if you’d hear.

So much to read, so little time.

The shelves of shelves are full.

We need to know our better selves,

the tug becomes a pull.

The words are circling the drain,

no washing them away.

Our better selves do not exist.

Let’s finish out the day.

Safe Are You from Love

Safe are you from love, dear heart,

and safe are you from light,

the soft light of the candles that will make her ‘yes’

so bright.

Safe are you from loving touch

and warm embrace and smile.

Safe because with passing time

you harden all the while.

Safe are you from smiling eyes,

and soft and soothing talk.

Safe are you from kisses,

and the long, romantic walk.

Retreat from love hereafter, heart.

Your scars, at last, have healed.

Seek not new love, nor happiness.

Stay lonely.

Silent.

Sealed.

Within This Pit of Poems

Within this pit of poems I am abandoned,

bereft of thought, and will.

The images that once assailed my senses

grow faint and blurry,

leeched of color and pleasure,

fading to sepia,

to black and white,

to black and void.

Once, they clamored for attention,

but now they only scratch at the walls,

more from reflex than any desire to flee.

I long to escape as well,

but here, among that which I also cast aside,

I realize there are storms in the world above me,

and blood and fire and stone

surround me on the surface.

And so I clear a space to curl in on myself,’

content to sigh and dream,

unfinished,

cast down,

and left to fade

in this pit of poems.

Pushing Off

And so I set myself adrift

on a capricious sea,

prone to unpatterned winds and

uncharted currents.

The danger of being caught between

two symbiotic, warring gods

is less dangerous and painful

than what I leave behind.

Whether my new home will be a bright new shore,

or the briny ocean’s silted bed, is for them to say.

As I push off, there is no one there on shore to share a kiss,

and mourn and say farewell, no one to witness the wake I leave save for the

dull grey gulls, and the cirrus clouds suffused with color by the rising sun.

And yet I travel on with hope in my heart,

to fill the lonely days by a loving hearth,

as the cold of Time draws close, and

all I am and was called to be,

is complete.

I Want to Call You Beautiful

I want to call you beautiful.

I see the question in your eyes, like slow moving water

under thick ice,

just beneath the surface.

I cautiously tap the word with my mind, and it tumbles down

onto my tongue, waiting for me to say.

No idea as to how you’d react, what you think,

or what you will say

when I give the word to you.

I swallow it, leaving it unsaid, and stash it

with the thousand other times I wish I didn’t.

And whatever tears you might cry,

and whatever else may flutter your heart

if I did,

are trapped again in the the ice that returns

to your gaze.

Are we mad at my silence, or relieved?

I do know the question in your eyes will resurface,

and I might even be ready, at last.

I want to call you beautiful before

the moment

and me and you

have past.

Unblended 2

‘You’re pretty for—‘

a novelty, a one-night stand, a fling.

‘You’re pretty for—‘

a light skinned girl.

A ‘lovely little thing.’

So I’ll put feelings in your heart

I think that you will like,

and when you give your heart to me

I’ll take the match

and strike.

A Rising Wish

Don’t wish upon a falling star.

It comes back to the ground.

Your wish will go unrealized,

and never will be found.

Rise high upon your tippy-toes

and stick it in the sky,

where like the stars, it ever shines its light into your eye.

Yes, wish upon a rising wish

just as a kite flies high,

within skilled hands, sharp minds,

strong hearts.

And wish it til you die.

The Imperfect Art of Life

My life, this life…

a scattering of

impressionist-ic drips and smears

that never make the canvas.

My life, this life…

A vandalized mosaic

of broken tiles,

discolored and on display

in a ruined museum

where only unadmiring vermin amble,

sightless in the dark.

My life, this life…

An ugly black and white photo,

where the only things in the light and shadow

are predators and prey.

My life, this life…

Misfired pottery that leaks,

or perhaps a clumpy lump of clay

molded by broken fingers,

a child’s misshapen sculpture

used as an ‘ashtray’ in a house where

no one smokes.

My life, this life…

A rainbow’s broken, dissipating arc,

a defiant banner of hope and beauty

across a barren sky and a dying land.

This life, my life….

An imperfect work of art,

bright with colors, rife with rust

laced with cynical hope,

veiled in gossamer trust,

and glued with love as fragile as unpainted seashells

waiting to grow stronger

despite the odd feeling of

emptiness inside.

Muttered Rage

In the muddy, midden corners of its cage

my rage

mutters, stutters, hiccups, sobs,

and folds in on itself

like a

dying flower.

Hate and anger climb to the surface

with sharp spikes and strong ropes,

as I work to cut their ties with

love’s violent sword.

Darkness dots my spirit like lawn weeds

and whack-a-moles.

The decayed and rotting past seeks to

coddle me, cuddle me, clobber me,

and sing the listless lullaby that induces

paralyzing ennui masked as sleep.

At the end of this gauntlet stands Death,

coated with cold, and patient as river stones

waiting to to wreck me on sodden, craggy points that

will break my spirit like rotten boughs broken off

a vibrant, growing tree, and

scatter my flesh

like fish bait.

And nightly, as the sun wanes and the moon waxes,

I realize that after all this time,

the cage was never locked.

Unblended

Unblended

Disposed

the innocent souls

of the abused.

The product of

big, sweaty bodies

and hard grunts

against soft brown bellies

in the small hours of the night

turning mourning.

Taken by light skinned people who enjoyed

the pleas and cries of the ‘savages’ to not be violated.

And so the innocent souls were taken:

to steep cliffs, swift rivers, unmarked graves,

and left in the darkest of shadows in the

deepest of cold for the beasts and birds.

The Black women stripped of pride,

of clothing,

of their own children from their own loins,

who would not bear the sins of unbidden masters.

Even the pale women of the false gentry demanded

the progeny of broken vows be slain, and sometimes

did the killing.

So many innocent souls

born to sorrow,

sent back to their Creator

by Black hands that would not

swaddle their shame.

Bed-wench hearts broken,

beating in Black breasts

that would not suckle and sanctify

the cries of their rapists’ sins.

Black bodies blighted

by blended flesh,

bloated by foreign sperm,

took back their lives and rid the world of others,

but never reclaimed their own

innocent souls.

The Unblended,

blended still.

Loved,

forlorn,

and forgiven.