Before You Say ItThe setting matters
for such a word;
it has fallen too casually into silk,
entangled itself in lace,
and skittered past the private lights
before it found itself upon the ground;
and it has worn different patterns;
the pink tint of empty streets
made it more meaningful
over the crowded blue skies of midday;
and it has died in the coffee cups
of pellucid mornings
after the flame danced erratic in the breath
that set it free,
hacked at shadows on the wall
as it fell to me limp on
and as it was tossed from a departing cab,
and stumbled in newspapers
the sunrise gathered patina stains.
So never as the sun sets, or by an ocean please;
they are reserved for the future,
and I shall like to wander them
The Night And Beaches
I lose you in the clear blue sky
like an ocean,
the heaviness and weight of your love
delivered in warm breath,
and quiet dusk
gasping in the coffee cups
of pellucid mornings
set free all too
In Search of an Old RecipeDown a wintry lane, where streetlampsIn Search of an Old Recipe8 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
rise from dimly lit snow hills and the
town is lightly covered in frost,
I pass an old neighbors house and
a village café. The gurgling noises
of a brewing pot and the sugary smells
of rising dough
always met with long conversations
or quiet contemplations, an old friend
or a new friend and a hint of the past.
Something that started the day and
ended the day with company and
a dash of hope
that time can always be paused
and people can always gather.
And behind the rising steam of
tightly gripped mugs, you can always
find laughter, stirring its warmth around
tables as we reminisce.
And sugar is sprinkled over cookies
and pastries the way snow is over the world.
And no matter how far away,
I can always make it home
on nothing more than a memory.
Perhaps these are the ingredients to make peace,
down wintry lanes, where feuds are blanketed
and grudges melt away into cups of coffee.
Mural In The GlassFall once fell in colors here,Mural In The Glass5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
you could hear the rust whistle
merry go rounds
still swinging from the hurried departure.
But they are sounds of another time.
is lost in the grey
as rain falls
a heavy patter, a baby's bare feet tapping--
I see the mud tracks fade on the kitchen floor.
I hear the door close in its hinges.
was once uncreased;
among gnawed pencils--
an attention deficit.
Later, the folds of my lids sunk deeper,
dusted with charcoal;
a sophisticated gaze hung on a wrist
Abandoned ChapelThe parish waits now,Abandoned Chapel6 months ago in Free Verse More Like This
the loneliness of corners
crawling outward on walls
chipped away by the wind;
cobwebs align them
like the membranes of memories,
the cut of a jewel in a broken window,
gathering in a mesh of strands
a new Mosaic)
My eyes seek out the sermon,
paint no distance
between headstone and cloud;
elegies topple each other
in their climb to heaven
(beneath nick and scratch)
as light needles the shade,
breathes new fire over candles,
measures the weight in these empty rows,
breaths that haven't ceased being prayer.
ShadowsShadows9 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Their lullaby is the guttered water
falling into sewer drains;
Their fragmented dreams are
of tumbling leaves and taillights,
disappearing into the nighttime hues.
They wake to the stampede of suits and briefcases,
Their blankets have blown away.
Drifting in the wind with yesterday's news.
Forever NightShe didn't look back, she couldn't bear to. Back there, there was too much pain, and hurt and hate. No, instead she looked forward, but there was nothing there either, just an endless stretch of road, ribboning on forever into the distance. Infront of her was her future, behind her, her past; she was torn between two worlds. But she couldn't go back, not now she knew what she did. She took one step out onto the road, out of the safety of the light, into the darkness and cold. The light behind her flickered out and the night engulfed her. She felt a breeze blow her hair, as if taunting her, reminding her of what she'd done. A scream sounded and she panicked stumbling along the road before tripping and falling. As she lay there she cried and an owl screeched, mocking her and shattering the void of silence. It was only now, as she struggled to find her footing, did she realise that the scream she heard was hers. Again, reminding her that she was truly alone with darkness as her only frienForever Night10 years ago in Mystery & Suspense More Like This
The woman with the garish...The slugs chewed jagged crownsThe woman with the garish...3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
out of brand new ecru tulips,
and the rain filled them up
until they drooped,
made lazy by the weather.
But Spring blew smoke
like the woman on the park bench
smoking a Pall Mall
and whispering into a black cell phone,
her bright red boots toe-deep in water.
Her umbrella, spine flicking drops
into the flower beds,
yet to bloom,
made the park look gothic
But when she left,
her breath steam
against the air,
boot heels clicking
against the stone
The flowers peered up,
Blinking against the rain.
distinctionThis is what I cannot understand.distinction3 years ago in Philosophical More Like This
There is an understanding that nothing is ever black and white. Good can be achieved through bad means, what's wrong can sometimes be right, and if you turn right for long enough, you eventually go left. Boys can be girls who fall in love with girls who sometimes think they are boys and the lines between everything end up irreversibly blurred.
Or so I've always thought.
But this is a line that cannot be blurred. This is the only remaining clear-cut line that separates black from white as perfectly as a color wheel. And that is the fact that everything is until it isn't. We are until we aren't. We breathe until we don't. We live until we die. There is no gray area, no matter what the talk of doctors and comas and life support and brain death might say. Your heart beats until it doesn't.
This goes beyond just life and death. Emotions are until they aren't. As are moments, definitions, seasons. Two people falling in love, well, some of them inevitably cra
ScrutinyAnd when I am formulated, sprawling on a pin,Scrutiny6 years ago in Open More Like This
When I am pinned and wriggling on the wall,
Then how should I begin
~ T.S. Eliot, "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
I am going through the keyless gate
to watch and wait,
to wander here and there among the proud,
among the white and old whose wisdom rots, repressed, untold:
the soporific royals wreathed in leaves of gold.
And to them I shall read aloud from the Book,
read of the sins their lips have took
and upon me they shall look and patiently reflect
I am lost in my own depth, I will say
in a slight, impartial way
(for I lack violets and an antic princes love)
and they, floating through their channels deep
dare to drown me in my sleep and in their orisons remember
So shall I be a queen bone and ash,
of crawling worms and sullied, melting flesh.
Kissed by death, I shall burn upon a pyre
knowing only distance and desire and, rising from the fire,
I shall step with soft, unfettered feet
this side up.i am sending youthis side up.5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
an empty box.
please fill it
with all fifteen
pieces of my heart.
and i expect
all fifteen pieces.
i am sending you
five-sixths a sheet of paper.
on which i pretended to write
a letter about how i am not
a porcelain doll
that you may play with
whenever you please.
[and throw in the closet
whenever you don't.]
i am sending you
your kiss stains.
it took three bars of soap
and five hours
to scrub them all off
i am sending you
salvaged from the bridges
that i burned.
if you squint, it looks like
a pair of lips rolled around
the words "fuck you."
i am sending you
every song that reminds me
BorderlineI dreamed once that I saw your face inBorderline3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
my mirror, rippling prolifically like
water on glass on my face,
and then I was drowning, and I
too fast into your watery eyes.
Without imagination, prosaically as you
could, you told me you
loved me and hoped we'd meet again
soon. I smiled, propri
illuminate my heartSeptember falls outside his window and the two-story house feels June. Time tilts here, the days canted to the left like the apple tree their grandchildren planted sometime last winter. It hasn't grown much since then, a few leaves on dry branches but no blooming flowers when spring arrived.illuminate my heart4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Today his fifty years seem like thirty. Sitting up in bed is easier. He doesn't feel as weak as before. The Pacific breeze touches his hair, chills his pale face and he thinks, Maybe Anna and I could drive down to the beachfront today.
He rolls to his side. She's burrowed under the covers, a blue blanketed lump, white hair poking out over dark blue pillows.
John reaches his hand out and presses down.
The lump rolls over. The lump doesn't breathe.
The lump deflates like a balloon.
The lump is blankets and no flesh.
"Mmm, good morning," Anna murmurs in his ear.
Cold lips kiss his cold cheek. John frowns.
There's nothing there--
Anna squeezes his hand, drags him out of bed. "Breakfast?"
AngelicaAngelica (My Final Prayer)Angelica10 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
Darling jaded Angelica, can you hear me call?
Can you hear me from heaven; can you hear at all?
Is the sky blue life up there treating you so kind?
Sometimes I wish to join you and leave this world behind.
Oh Angelica, you cried so much before you had to leave
Was dying really the only way to save your sanity?
Angelica you'd died of a heartbreak I'll never understand.
You were already dead inside, though I was there to hold your hand.
Oh my stained Angelica, with your tainted soul,
Have angels bathed you tenderly and filled your growing hole?
In heaven do emotional wounds show like cuts then bleed?
And is anyone up there giving you the bandages you need?
Have they wiped the dirt of heartbreak yet so far away?
Are you beautiful again my love? Can you stay that way?
Has heaven purified you so that you'll never hurt again?
Is it really a new beginning, or…is it just the end?
Angelica, do you miss me, up in the sky so free?
When it rains down on the earth, is tha
Why the Willow WeepsToday I asked a willowWhy the Willow Weeps7 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
The reason why she wept.
She spoke to me so mournfully:
'I weep because he left.'
I listened while she told her tale,
Her branches bent in woe.
She'd been the oak tree's bride-to-be;
The lovers were betrothed.
Willow was so devoted,
She stood up straight and tall,
Had eyes for him and he for her,
'Til Birch Tree came to call.
She was so slim and clothed in white,
She caught the oak tree's eye.
He left his willow lass behind
With no decent 'goodbye.'
Her true love left but she is strong,
And so she did not die,
But rather bent her head in pain,
All out of tears to cry.
~Alex Cherrysnot~ All Rights Reserved
In case of emergencyI saw the roots of prairie grassesIn case of emergency6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Like carrion beetles in their yellowing shells
Nibbling angrily, at the concrete beneath my feet,
At wood sheared to fence posts near the road.
The very earth they rejected, drawing what peace they could.
When did stained glass become the standard?
I have forged narrow mountain paths and stumbled over
Bottle caps secreted between the mica flakes and quartz.
In this city, in the sectors most pregnant with age,
Trees testify shamelessly into the sky.
Clandestine, one coils his reach toward
A flimsy cable, twisted and strung precariously
From corpse to shabby corpse, on and on.
Graceful and altogether stoic, another refuses to wince
As the merciless force of a school bus violates its skirts.
All the monstrous lizards reduced to macabre exhibits,
I fault them for dying. With cold blooded savages
Of the biological nature, the world was better off.
Save the best for last is never the real philosophy.
Find me the soul that cares for what happens to its carca
On preparing to never let goWalking slowly down the hall, arms filled with the day's mail, we spoke of morbid things.On preparing to never let go8 months ago in Free Verse More Like This
She wants to be reduced to ash and I want to know if I can keep her on my mantle.
She looks at me sideways with a curious face and forgets her footsteps.
It's a little bit morbid, she tells me, deciding it's time to continue shuffling along,
but I think the way I'm trying to picture her perfect urn is probably worse.
There's nothing that I can think of that suits her, though,
and I wonder if I even know her.
Do I scatter you somewhere? You can't visit scatter.
(I think good daughters plant guilt in the carpet pile to trip upon.)
But she doesn't trip, instead she ruminates on how appalling it'd be to divide her in fourths:
she laughs as she's divvying up her body parts for our mantles.
I tell her we'll set up a custody schedule, but only between my closest sister and me;
we're the ones that take care of her. But in reality, I'm not planning on sharing.
She tells me she wants to be in the n
HurakanThe television hisses in and out of consciousness, warningHurakan7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
of the impending flood. We make ourselves safer still.
We hear him coming from many hundred kilometres
away in the distance, a deafening, thunderous boom
as the wind thrashes like serpents against
our thin windows and dark, glass mirrors.
He enters the room and turns
a full circle three times, showing
how well he is managing
with one leg still intact.
His voice roars as
loud as a tropical
storm whilst he
chants the words:
Do Not Fly AwayDo not fly awayDo Not Fly Away5 years ago in Haiku & Eastern More Like This
this night before the moonrise
touches your soft hair,
spread out there behind your head,
a cascade of ebony.
Do not fly away
this night before the dawning,
and I get to see
the sunrise of your bright eyes
looking warm in the daylight.
Do not fly away
this night before returning
to hold me closely,
wrapping me in your warm arms
where I may find rest at last.
Do not fly away
this night at all, but stay here,
pillowed next to me,
whispering a lovers words
as the morning wakes us up.
snowbonesholding my hands over the kettlesnowbones4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the skin on my fingertips peels back,
like dated wallpaper,
like flowers blooming.
they're burning from the inside out,
nails turning to varnish, turning to steam,
bones click-clacking their way out;
spreading like wildfire.
the whistling stops, and
and my fingers are just fingers,
ink stained, bitten nails.
sunlight streams across the kitchen,
my fingers warm and
slightly damp, i trace patterns on
summer poemyou used to say it wassummer poem3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the only time of year
that actually deserved to be called a
sweat on our faces shone like
sticky cellophane, and we
ran through sprinklers if
no one was looking.
with damp undershirts and
ice-clinking glasses and
asphalt smoking heat
and dust - you said
everyone's eyes were a little bit brighter,
like we were
borrowing something [life]
from the sun.
you walked around your little apartment, smiling
in thongs you changed twice a day, when you could -
about how funny
the AC chose right now to break,
and you'd look outside and smirk at
crossing the street just to walk in the shade.
and i'd spend all day just
waiting for a shower
i'd feel dirty again half an hour after taking.
then i'd lie there at night with the
windows wide open and
your hot body draped
and i'd wish i didn't
have to share that bed with you.
you'd snuggle closer and whisper
and i'd pretend i'd fallen asleep.
The Opus Of The Everythingthe ocean floor, the twisted sea andThe Opus Of The Everything3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
all the flying jacket bees, and all
the flying birds and he, the one who
caught the glint of spring, who laid
it on the downy dew, the crispy green
of May fescue, who saw the plans of built
up lights that burn to light a thousand
pools of dripping rain and puddles lay
on any given night or day, the brick by
brick, the mortar spread, the snap of sugar
sweetly felt, the brine that made it
through the cloud, the opus of the
everything, the great and wide, the heat
of flame, the sun in cold but sunny sky,
the sound of when a child laughs,
the opus of the everything
Winter.As he talks, I imagineWinter.4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the words are tiny icicles,
falling from the awning
of a late afternoon
to pluck holes in my eyes
all over my retinas).
"All the better to smell you with, my dear,"
I'll say to the girl he's remembered
when he leads me to drink from
her trough of tears;
"All the better to hear how we harmonize."
No black lace or lillies
stargazing from the sidewalk
of her bedside, no books
enscribed in braile or the
bent knees of leaving;
just smoke and stale breadcrumbs,
guiding her frail understudy
through cold evening
The violence of healingTurbid blood begins to flitter.The violence of healing7 months ago in Free Verse More Like This
Free it from the narrow
vessels. Let it scatter
Let them flit, let them twitter,
all the chimeras in whose talons they squeak.
Reach into my mouldering chest,
run a claw
down my ribs,
the ribbons of rust from its cage.
Blow the bud
of my heartbeat to blossom,
to erupt with the power of rage.
Brush the dust off my hair to glitter.
Bluster it into a gale.
the frail cobwebs and eight-legged critters
lying cocooned in their nests.
Let them protest,
like blind fi
CirclesCirclesCircles5 years ago in Open More Like This
Watch the circles
as the water falls
drop by drop
into the pool
giving birth to circular ripples
and occasionally, if theyre lucky
ring true for awhile.
as the storm ends,
into the smooth flat water.
I would walk across that placid surface,
merge myself into that peace,
but the very act
across the very peace I crave.
Can I become one
with that stillness,
merge into the calm,
or will my very doing
disrupt the dream.
mondaymornings are importantmonday6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
to the poem. sometimes it
has to struggle toward Monday
and the house has to be cleaned.
it hardly has time to think of you.
it needs bagels for strength
and caffeine for the tangled mess
of words, strewn about like cheese
doodles locked in battle position
on the floor. the air is stale.
it will unearth suitcases full
of past. read chapters of history
written on cracked luggage tags.
it will want to stop because its
allergies are flaring. the flotsam
and jetsam of the mess is getting
in the way of the poem. it becomes
impatient and contemplates whiskey
and a cigarette mid afternoon.
it will discover more crumpled
passports from missed flights;
pages of dark-marrowed words
pointing to the cellar of the travel
agency door. it wonders if it's still
asleep. it will not like this. it will
be indignant. angry. withdrawn.
the shattered syntax must be rebuilt
one word at a time. it feels betrayed
until it raids the cellar, emptying content
by the roots and finally dumps