Rambling Woman BluesAll my biscuits are broken,
and I'm eating the crumbs.
Sometimes you just take it
any way that it comes.
Oh, my baby is rambling,
and I can't track her down.
It's three weeks tomorrow
since she rolled out of town.
And I know she's a good girl
and she won't do me wrong,
but the days are so empty
and the nights are too long.
I ate all the oysters
and I'm down to the shells.
You know we all do things
that none of us tells.
And my best friends are tired
of me singing the blues -
well, if I told the truth, friends,
I'd say I'm tired too.
But I need a companion
when I get so lowdown.
When my friends say, "Good night, Slim,"
the blues stick around.
When my baby gets back here,
I will send them away.
I'll say, "Thanks for your time, blues,
I don't need you today."
Every cat has its whiskers,
every dog has its day.
When your baby is rambling,
got to see it that way.
Love Walked AloneLove Walked Alone6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Love walked alone. The party was nearly all
such parties ever are faces, voices, open arms.
But she had stepped outside without a word
or sign, then left the building for the street.
There she bent down, undid her shoes and stood
on the sidewalk in bare feet. She knew the city well,
had traced many paths through it, heard many times
the same hearts beat, the same voices, the same
silences and sighs. She could hear them now.
But every walk brought surprise, and tonight
there was singing somewhere, how far away
she was not sure, but a great many voices rose.
She went in what seemed the right direction,
following the grid of streets as if herself a note
upon a score. Something under her right foot
gave way loudly. It was a shard of broken glass
her tread had ground to powder. No pain, of course,
and no harm to her, or - was that a trace of red?
She looked and sighed, walked on and shook her head.
FallFall4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Something fell. How could a sound so loud
have been a dream? Yet how could a sound
so loud have left a silence thick as this?
There is so little sound you might be deaf.
You say, "hello," softly, to the dark.
You hear your voice clearly through the air.
The lighted clock says four A.M.
Did something fall? It could have been a dream.
It may have been the picture in the hall.
Why did you hang it with a single nail?
Or was it something not so near as that,
whose size and mass you cannot say?
Was it here in the city, a block away,
a mile? There would be sirens, surely.
Or was it something both near and far -
did a world slip down a stair,
from one step to the one below?
Whose was it, then? Or was it yours alone?
In the morning you will know.
It was not a dream. Something fell.
Lovely Lady DeathLovely Lady Death6 months ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
I met a lady outside the town,
pale her face and dark her gown.
A great black bird passed overhead.
"What gift have you for me?" she said.
I gave her honey, I gave her mud,
a song of springtime in my blood.
Though she was fair and bade me stay,
I knew her name and went my way.
The Cloth of SleepThe cloth of sleep I'll make for you,The Cloth of Sleep6 years ago in Songs & Lyrics More Like This
I'll weave it with my own two hands,
out of the thread of dreamless rest
and thread of dreams that calm and bless.
A pattern I will draw myself,
upon the night so dark and fair;
I'll pin it to the cloth I made
and then I'll cut with skill and care.
A gown of sleep I'll sew for you,
it will be yours and yours alone,
to wear that you may put away
the worried fabric of the day.
When I have made this gift for you,
I'll send it to you in a song;
send back to me the news I seek,
that sleep was good, the night was long.
A mirrorA mirror3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I have a mirror that shows another face.
I have a face that asks to hear a song.
I have a song with room for light.
I have light that is the red inside every color.
I have a color that is waiting for its name.
I have a name that means tenderness.
I have tenderness caught in a mirror.
Little songLittle song2 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
There is a street named Mr. Street and on it is a bird
who sings all day and sings all night and never says a word.
There is a house named Mrs. House and in it is a man
who thinks all day and sleeps all night and seldom has a plan.
There is a moon named Miss Half Moon and in it is a face
that sees the street and sees the house and each thing in its place.
There is a hand whose name is Hand and in it emptiness
that will receive the days to be and asks if they will bless.
There is a world whose name is World and in it is the time,
the time to have and lose and have again, the human, human time.
WordsWords hate me. When I send out the word "no"Words6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
it disguises itself as "yes" and that is what
people think I mean. I shake my finger at it
and call it a very bad word. It scoots off
and hides under the table out of reach.
I sit and weep and ask it why it hates me,
why do it and all the other words hate me.
If I try to use the words "that makes no sense!"
they join hands and skip away together
and people take them for "what a great idea!"
They hate me and I don't know why,
what did I ever do to them? All but a few.
"You" is a word of integrity, it has never
been unfaithful to me. "Love" is a word
with bad habits, it is always thinking
of sharpening its claws on the sofa -
which considering the size of love
would reduce the sofa to shreds -
but when I ask if it would turn on me
like the others it looks hurt. And your name
it is always near but never in my way,
and never pretends to be anything else.
It tells me there is a resistance movement
growing among the words, more
Desperate BluesSome days I feel desperate and I do not know why.Desperate Blues7 months ago in Songs & Lyrics More Like This
It's a feeling halfway between a shout and sigh.
I go down to the corner where the vicious trees grow.
Who planted them there? No one seems to know.
I hear the train every hour, going by with a roar.
People say there is a station where we could get on board.
The garden on First Street is being choked by briars.
Some say it's a good thing but I know that they are liars.
You may stand on the shore and watch the waves break and foam.
Will the ones who set sail ever make it back home?
I call customer support and get them on the line.
There's nothing they can do for me and I tell them that is fine.
I feel a weight on my shoulders, about a half a ton.
But if I get new sneakers, I think I can still run.
Heavy Weather BluesHeavy weather coming, the signs are plain as day.Heavy Weather Blues3 months ago in Songs & Lyrics More Like This
Anyone can see it coming ten thousand miles away.
Heavy weather coming, the warning siren screams -
coming when you're wide awake, coming in your dreams.
Heavy weather coming, full of teeth and claws.
Exceeding all the limits and breaking several laws.
Heavy weather coming, get your dad on the phone.
He will not understand but you can try to let him know.
Heavy weather coming, time to give away your guns.
There won't be any targets when the heavy weather comes.
Heavy weather coming, rolling up from the south.
And from west and north and east as well - oh mama, look out.
Heavy weather coming, your dog ran out the door.
You call his name for hours, until your throat is sore.
Heavy weather coming, full of guilt and blame.
Kings and lords and commoners will all burn with shame.
Heavy weather coming, I believe it's almost here.
We should try not to panic, but it is natural to fear.
My Blue ChildI let you go now, my blue child.My Blue Child5 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
Fly away, I make you wings of memory and pain.
The wings that offered healing once would not come again.
Your pain is now complete, your pain is past.
Our pain is torn and tearing, our pain will last.
I played a counting game upon your back when we were small.
Then I had your wounds to count. I could not count them all.
A prince come from a star, with golden hair;
I took you to my heart, I held you there.
You were my own, and every threat to you made me fierce.
Now I must be, yet cannot be, fierce enough for this -
to let you go now, my blue child
MakerMaker5 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
How do you move within the stone?
And who has said that this is stone?
No one but I may say - no one.
And will they listen, every one?
No need for all, if some few will.
May I be one among the few?
Oh I will leave that up to you.
Veiled, unveiled, uncertain, sure,
Each day I choose - may it be well -
Stone - or story still to tell.