There Were Days

There were days

of new love, good friends,

accomplishments,

awards and rewards,

accolades and victories.

There were days of

laughter and warm fires,

music and feasting,

soft touches and tender kisses.

Like waves that crash

and return to the sea,

leaving the loamy, sizzling foam

of happy times behind,

I watch them go with growing gratitude,

and graying hair.

My full heart cries and whispers thanks,

having known those splendid days.

From Painful Places

It’s not cathartic, at first,

this opening up, this outpouring.

It fill up with all the

scabs, blood, pus, and bile

of life’s blows to your mind,

to your body,

to your soul.

It reopens wounds and

unlocks memories,

but to not release it

turns you

into a dark alley in a deserted place,

forlorn and forgotten,

trash-filled and filthy.

But either way,

you’re empty.

 

Love is Not Wasted

I stand here in this wet snow,

in front of the steamy warm coffee shop

where I first saw you smile at me,

blush and turn away when

I returned it.

I watch you walk away now,

your red umbrella

bright and festive

amid the gray and weeping clouds

as you leave me.

And I have to hold on

and believe that unlike

the last unfinished cups

we had together,

Love is not wasted.

Land of Lingering

I walk among preserves, not people.

A world-weary wanderer, tired of travel,

but restless in his soul.

These stone-and-ivy ruins,

these empty, rain-slicked city streets,

these dying forests,

these deserts, almost empty of sand,

as if the gods turned a celestial hourglass.

The preserves hail me in greeting,

weep in their newly refreshed grief,

wave to me as I pass,

chase and curse me in their suspicions.

Their children run up to me,

and sing to me,

tugging at my clothes and hair,

encircling me in their singsong games

that light up their ancient faces,

their silent laughter fully roared

in echoes of time.

The musicians still play their festivals

and drip the ghosts of their notes,

that hover, not knowing where to go.

They all linger, just outside the senses,

like flickering lights on the sea.

Instantaneous glimpses of what was,

and what will be again.

‘Wait for me’ they say, ‘we will return.’

I long to sit and eat, and rest,

but over it all,

the  emptiness and solitude

move me ever onward.

My own presence lingers

among them.

I hope it brings them comfort.

This Rain

This rain
falling from grace
doesn’t cleanse.

It is an
acrid, acidic,
biting, bitter thing,
searing my soul,
leaving blisters as it
burns.

It is neither
purging nor purifying,
just a rage that caught
the dusty detritus
of a life lived
alone,
aloof,
apart,
yet with a longing
for vibrant passion.

A life weary with isolation,
abandoned tradition,
and sad resignation.

Unable to rise
from its own ashes,
it covers itself in them,
and tells me everything
will be fine.

Crystalline Quiet

Snow-swept,
these softened crags
belie their lethal silence
with a peaceful scene
of still and silent lakes
of ice, and mournful windsong.

The cold tranquility of the whole
speaks to something
inside.

A longing for beauty unattainable,
love yet unrequited but holding
a glimmer
of hope.

*************
An explosion of spring!
Life in hiding
resurging with new energy
of colors and songs

The crowning note
in the music of
our spinning world
among her sisters.

We welcome now
the challenge of a new
slow-dawning day.