Tuesday, December 30, 2014

threshold

if all the media coalesce
about a single dream
with seams as smooth as sharkskin
fore to aft

if all the aspects intertwine
in helical gavottes
diurnal rhythm beating
at their core

if artist in the fire consumed
and ego disappears
as intuit immersion
catalytic commandeers

the reign of chaos
patterns finally make sense

is this art imitating life
or just life

Inspired by RC deWinter's Schizocreatophenia


Sunday, December 28, 2014

Friday, December 26, 2014

Plans Laid

in the glass who do I spy
he looks a lot like me
but that was then and this is now
I'm not the him who he

had hopes and dreams of sculpting
from the me I was back then
the medium more tedious
than snapshot does reveal

and fraught with intersections
with the them whose dreams are real

I shouldn't interfere

for dia-logue devolves to tribe
negotiation does ensue
soon where we go bears no resemblance
to the where we had in mind

do all the plans go so awry
and is that really bad

or is the plan a messenger
who save for prompt delivery
should neither vilified nor lauded be

Inspired kinda sorta by Michael Veloff's Impromptu

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Pay No Attention

Good men reduced
to catatonic reverie
while doctors spin
preposterous chicanery
and overwhelm
our sense of incredulity
with claims upon
margins of opportunity
which bleed away
our sense of self determinacy
until we wake and say no more

Inspired by RC deWinter's Dispatch from the Front

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

disparate shipmates

It may appear as if the squid
bear bitter enmity

How one can leave the other
mired in spite

Truth be told they share a bond
much deeper than the flesh

They like it!
for they both have been to sea

Inspired by comments of Chris Flegel​

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Eternal Quest

eternal quest
the knight grown tired
flagging heart
and soul stretched thin

endless battle
countless scars
friends and lovers
turned to dust

yet he lumbers
ever onward
tarnished grail
his tragic lust

Inspired by RC deWinter's Hanged man's Heart

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Auntie Poetry 1 (urbane)

*Auntie Poetry 1 (urbane)*

rhinestone studded cat's eye specs
pillbox hat with matching clutch
nicely tailored linen suit
atop sensible walking shoes

charismatic writing pen
notebook full of prompts and bits
of verse some more some less complete
on cocktail napkin scraps

rapier quick acerbic wit
eyes which often alternate
'twixt laser sharp and distant glaze
always tinged with bittersweet

Inspired by anti-poetry 2 by Michael French

Saturday, December 13, 2014

augur

hoping for some verse today
I've written quite a lot.
when I step back and take it in
it's just a pile of rot-

ten self serving stanzas
moaning  ' bout the way things are
how I've been done
left out of fun

when, truth be told
the doer's me
sitting in my brooding chair
ignoring all things should be done

and people should be seen
given hand or clap on back
a ready smile a round well done
or just a glad you're here

looking on it makes me sad
and with that thought
another turn round spiral down
the darkness ever near

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Bailey's at the Bar

Bailey's in the glass
fullness will never be reached
straw to nirvana

Straw to nirvana
plumbs depths beyond the bottom
drink your fill today

Drink your fill today
If tomorrow overflows
spilling all you have

spilling all you have
portal to a new delight
Irish cream lavage =-O 

Irish cream lavage =-O
cleanses body and soul. Time
to drown again

time to drown again
with cat-like impunity
lucky seven left

Lucky seven left
intoxicating senses
a sip every hour

A sip every hour
conversation in between
hearts start to simmer

Hearts start to simmer
fiery spirits light up eyes
drunk on power of words

drunk on power of words
sobered by the path they take
the scars in their wake

the scars in their wake
pucker up — wounded lips
waiting to be kissed

waiting to be kissed
anticipation overload
peeking while puckered

peeking while puckered -
senses reel at creamy touch
of liquid pleasure 

of liquid pleasure
enamored in the extreme
kiss walks out the door

kiss walks out the door
floating on lips made heady by
silky smooth caress

A progressive haiku collaboration by Uma Venkatraman and Frederick Andrew

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Knot

you are not my muse
but through your verse
sometimes
she speaks to me

i'd like to believe
sometimes
you can hear her
if my words are true

and though there is
a chasm of difference
between
there is a knot

of understanding

Games

when tacitly we move from play
to more insistent games
with invitations intimate
our fires we will allay
coquettish glances faux demure
and catching breath with bitten lip
arching back insistent thrust
and taste of paradise

Inspired by an Eric Albin g+ post

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Grace Under Pressure

And though she's at one hundred feet
beneath the cresting wave
down where it's cold and where it's dark
despite the light of day
she hums a little ditty
as she calmly does her chores
mesmerizing topside with her grace
under pressure.

Damn ... she makes the rig look good.

Inspired by RC deWinter's After the Banquet

Sunday, November 23, 2014

The Price of Freedom

the price of freedom? Vigilance.
Deterrence is the stick
I carry on my shoulder
and I've practiced quite a bit

but lately my arm tires
and my shoulder is quite sore
perhaps a little Vigilance
turned inward from the shore

a little self reflection
in directions too long dark
for stick was ... is a living thing
with mind in part it's own

and with it I should softly speak
lest it perceive from lack of care
though we are piece and part the same
the enemy is me

Friday, November 21, 2014

stats are at sea

heavy seas or doldrums
each have their own travails
though average comfortably between
truth is the mode is not the mean

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Bittersweet Demise (timing is everything)

when viewed end on
the start and end
just cannot be resolved

the journey be-
comes indistinct
the lie of latter days

the bittersweet
lives in the path
and timing is the thing

never take for granted
those whose shoulders
we alight

whose grace in being early
paves the way for others' life
in the face of their untimely
bittersweet demise

Inspired by The Struggle by Michael French

True Sight

In barbershop with bosom friends
upon the soapbox I alight
and carry on practiced aplomb
pontificating on what's right
and more on what's just wrong

until my eyes the mirrors fix
which on opposing walls
telescope true sight to me
a braying ass
receding to infinity.

Inspired by Fergus Martin's When a Soul Turns Black

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Nested Simile

civil veneer is stretched quite thin
in fact tight as a drum
which beaten gives a strident tone

like chalk screeched down the chalk board
in a friday post noon class
when weekend sizzles in the mind

like soda in a bottle shaken
church key poised above the cap

pastel balloon floats
gently down on

pin

Inspired by Karie Thoma's Photo Shoot

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Late Autumn Afternoon

shadows longing quickly
for the colors
of the dying leaves

Inspired by Amy Glamos' Autumn light

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Restless Explorer

life takes you not
where you desire
but where you need to go.

the destination
matters not
the journey's lessons do

and if you find
that where you are
is fully challenge free

faulty or not
your heart will know
it's not the place to be.

Inspired by RC deWinter's Solo Crossing

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Cleansing Breath

cleansing breath to wash away
the worries of the world
worries manufactured by
non-sequitur agendas
of the sitting King his Queen and Court
and aspirants thereof

in through the nose slow, long and deep
now linger at the fill
stretching alveoli to surrender all accretions
of the poisons they've insinuated in the atmosphere

out through the mouth with building force
a hurricane to fill their sails
and send the ship of state to ply
seas over the horizon

while in the heady rush of breathlessness
the scales fall from our eyes
we recognize each other and
the primacy of kindness shown
in each and every act.

Inspired by M. Zane McClellan's Ritual of Smoke

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Nightmare Symphony

somewhere between Gregorian Chant & adamant Greek Chorus
fitful dozing interrupted by discordant strains
eyelids snap open in the dark
the melody resolves into
another corporate nightmare symphony

unrealistic deadlines
questions not yet fully formed
dis-integrated data in a cacophonic mass

from which compelling storylines
arranged in three part harmony
by morning must congeal
with a crescendo that kicks ass

so yet another iteration
pornographic divination
in the boardroom may commence

and by day's end the pump is primed
for sequel nightmare symphony
fueled by toxic midnight oil
and cups of bitter, black coffee

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Sisters

Faith and Doubt are quite a pair
sisters locked in unrelenting discourse
while Chastity sits at the bar
drinking with the boys
and smoking

Inspired by RC deWinter's telling it on the mountain

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Between the Threads

a cry into the void
conjuring from emptiness
a villain fit to tilt ...

and once again
the poet spins
from nothingness
compelling yarn
with which to weave

reality

Response to Dreamless Nights by A Furious Child

Melting Pot

And yet this sword has edges two
homogeneity, though dull,
cuts effectively at me
the diversity
which from my mismatched parts
does coalesce

Inspired by Individually a "We" by Debbie Green Razey

Chalice

Oh to be the chalice
for your wine

one without the other
is at best an emptiness

a ruby stain
upon an earthen floor

together it's a promise
of thirst slaked forevermore

Inspired by Uma Venkatraman's A Place in your Memories

Ambiguous Perception

beautiful and ugly
paper thin the line between
different aspects of the same thing
coruscating in a dream
alternating with a nightmare
no night terrors apropos
as consumed with love
and just consumed
do battle with perception
of the roiling mass kalidescoping
in the heady brew I drink
to start and end my day

inspired by the poem A Decision Must Be Made by A Furious Child

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Touched

And so you have
my poet friend
reached out and touched
with consequence
that with the recognition smirk
the favor I've returned

poetic comments
on your posts
are my reaction
to the touch
your poetry
has left with me

a tactile resonance
which builds
as network burgeons
in the wake
of shared connection
and response

Windmill

Our Daily Quest for Excellence
at which those long inured
roll their eyes
and shake their heads
whilst with my buckles
I do joust

Yet again we mount the steed
oblivious of past defeats
ignoring throbbing scars which scream
of lessons still unlearnt

The windmill beckons

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Conspiratheory

And amidst apparent chaos
patterns do emerge
directed by some unseen hand
or consequence of natural law
extrapolants beyond our ken
or subtly nefarious
manipulation of the tide
and time of our humanity
toward goal yet unrevealed

like the swimmer in the rip
don't fight prevailing flow
but take a tack toward current's edge
that's closest to your goal.

inspired by E.B.O.L.A. by Le Hornet
and
Unsettling by M. Zane McClellan

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Eternal Hourglass

caught in do-loop of regret
exit criteria never met
the if then else is just a dream
of modules that have never been
coded basic and debugged
and so return with little shrug
do until heartbreak is null
the hourglass spins on

Inspired by things I should be doing (it's all a lie) by Jenny Persson

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Cosplay

self delusion is an art
in which my practice does excel
if you have strayed within it's field
and fallen for it's spell
what more from me do you deserve
than offer of a frosty mug
or hookah pull, if you prefer
and thanks for having played along
please do, sir, come again!

Inspired by an Eric Albin g+ post

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

For Sam

though Sam has in photos been seen, we
think Uma believes he's unseemly.
despite more than one bid,
what he'd show remains hid.
Sam's her purchased in Rio bikini.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Existential

all the aspects
all at once

sins and virtues
backs and fronts

top to bottom
stem to stern

inside outside
'til we yearn

for a time
when resolution

wasn't the
required solution

when it was
enough ... to be.

Inspired by A. J. Bell's Mirror Maze

Friday, October 3, 2014

Oblique Approach

walking up upon it slow
along an oblique path
shyly dropping little hints
as you make your advance
waiting 'til the very last
to put it on the line
standing by with open heart
alert for hopeful sign

inspired by I Also Want the Keys by Kristy Rulebreaker

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Ruff Life

there was a young canine named Duke
'bout eating he was resolute
location? no trouble
in or out? on the double
this Al Fresco guy's taste? It was moot

Saturday, September 20, 2014

The Angle

smaller or farther away
perspective is the key
which unlocks the enigma
of world 3 mapped to 2D

or should it be perspectives
wresting answers from views plural
when the image does confound
step back think orthogonal

and walk around the corner
take that 90 degree turn
the truth will be revealed
a new dimension you have earned

no doubt mssrs picasso
escher and of course dali
studied these perspectives
worked with them exhaustively

leaving us with images
geometric and surreal
which in 2D render the 3
artistically revealed

so ... what of this is take away
what lesson should we glean
I think self evident the answer is

a thing that is worth knowing
should be studied from all sides
any less it should remain unseen.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Come In

the invitation that you seek
by nature is reciprocal
so deep inside these fortress walls
to see is to be seen

observer and observed will merge
and change much like the light of day
will change a dark and musty room
from dungeon to museum

so come ahead and take my hand
together we will stroll
and as the boundary 'twixt us blurs
something new unfolds

a response to RC deWinter's anybody home?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

New and Improved

in the place of my return
there's no return at all
although co-ordinates align
this place I can't recall

moving on I gave the nod
though only tacitly
for place to move along as well
and differently from me

such hubris I reflect and frown
marked by disdain so clear
that I expect conformity
with memories held dear

as if the universe revolves
about a cog that's me
disquiet sets me on my ear
and turns my nascent plea

to giggle, chuckle, then guffaw
as cosmic punchline played
blossoms in my fevered brain
and fever does allay

at my expense the goddess jokes
leaving ajar the door
where once a tattered memory
a new world to explore

Monday, September 1, 2014

Cog: Dream Displaced

in the mind's eye of the youth
a dream starts to unfold
the books he reads
span many leagues
lend fire to his own
flights of imagination
grandiose that he'd make real

in time, in time, my padawan
the path you choose is long
the tools to make the tools that build
the parts and pieces of your dream
must first be honed and mastered
put your shoulder to this wheel

patient by his nature, youth
wades out into the stream
he finds the flow
and with it goes
trusts blindly that his dream
swims somewhere in the current
just around a bend or two

your work is good, my padawan
it's clear you have a knack
for grasping what we put in reach
assembling the things we teach
so finely honed and mastered
in the pattern of our dream

now the stream to river's grown
youth takes his task in hand
he stays the course
despite the cost
of lesser paths forgone
whose aim and destination
hew more nearly to his heart

so pleased, so pleased, my padawan
your trust in us you've placed
the diligence with which you trod
as through the tedium you plod
so finely honed and mastered
earns the title Senior Cog

Senior now and all but spent
he takes some time to gaze
the river's run
is all but done
adrift upon the sea
and lacking in direction
begins his solitary swim at last.

Box O' Donuts

Box o' donuts
on the table
jelly, chocolate
frosted maple

make a mock'ry
of my diet
shirt untucked may
keep it quiet

certainly it's
nice to share ...
but empty box
is all that's there!

whence the bakery dessert?
where else?
'neath yon untucked shirt!

Inspired by the poem Cupcake Canticle (of Ecstasy) by Cheryl KP

Coffee Musings

is life off the grid
more or less a daily grind?
pour another cup

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Room

there is room
to reconnoiter

there is space
to meet as friends

curiosity
does loiter

in the eyes
at either end

of a gaze
though isn't knowing

wants to take
the time to learn

to dance slowly

lest left feet leave
deep impressions.

on second thought,
twelve word poems
just might be
more user friendly!

No Expectations

in love
it is the fall
that is itself
reward

returned affection
gravy
expectation
vinegar
which sours
the gentlest
of glides

There's Never Time

there's never time for what we say we love
the scribing of the odd poetic line
the run or bike or swim without a shove
perfection of a recipe sublime

consumed with work and keeping of the things
which, truth be told, turn owners into owned
and all the bloody paperwork that sings
in bureaucratic archives filed and zoned

the things about the things which we adore
how easily the meta draws us in
to languish in a state which we abhor
a telescoping corridor of sin

but truly, does the clock run out too fast
don't know, can't say ... I've got to cut the grass

Friday, August 22, 2014

Travelin'

The cusp of freedom beckons
as you gaze on new horizons.
the anchor of familiarity
compels no more

The richness of your presence
and the present of your love
are gone forever from the ones
who's presence you abhor.

They didn't recognize the treasure
while it dwelled within their
midst
they didn't see the light which banished
darkness from their eyes and lips

My fondest hope is for
the new horizons that you see
to be within the sphere
which limits my reality

Perhaps the gray malaise
will find itself transported
to the realm
from whence
you came.

Inspired by a g+ post by Uma Venkatraman

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Swimming in the Night

Shedding awkward like a shell
the water proffers grace
as in the darkness I command
a confidence I lack on land

to dive and float with faith
that I have found an element
with which my skills and strength were meant to
merge in like a second skin

darkness rends invisible
as does aquatic skill
so many that I swim about
imbued with fear, filled with self doubt

they thrash and churn and tense
their trouble puts them in plain sight
relief naught but a touch so light
turning panic into dance

dancing has inherent risk
intent misunderstood
leads to rejection out of hand
from one more comfortable on land

afloat once more adrift
reflect on path to better end
reconnoiter as a friend
curiosity remains

recognition slowly dawns
proceed, but without haste
for swimmers on the land may drown
they thrash and churn, appear unsound

need naught but a light touch
to gain some poise, some small insight
that worlds are different that's all right
every one merits respect

chastened floating in the sea
I dream about the shore
how to approach a second chance
perhaps a very simple dance or

collaborative verse
from common prompt each work should spring
exchanged interpretations bring
a meeting of both heart and mind

Monday, August 4, 2014

Schoodic Dragons

The chuffing Dino flagellates
meander in the fog
their last meal's song reverberates
inside cavernous maw
and through intestinal tunnels
before the bowels they reach
ejected as effluvia
their stench does fairly reek

reminding us that in the gray
recesses of our minds
the dragons linger quietly
abiding eon time
until the morning fog off shore
blankets the working boats
and gives them perfect portal
to the world of sea and smoke

so do sit still on rocks ashore
when fog's upon the sea
attend the solemn calving
in a silent reverie
lest with some noisy expletive
effluvia you'll be

Tender Darkness

Tender will the darkness be
when you at last submit
full of exquisite agony
so patiently applied

each gentle stroke
and firm caress
move toward the precipice
then hesitate ....
and draw away
to languish just a bit.

while on the edge
you quiver
soon to beg for sweet release

and in the fall the darkness roars
before the blessed peace
when satisfied you crawl away
where you can lick ...
your wounds.

inspired by an Eric Albin g+ post

Cherished Darkness

The dark and I, we share the closure
and the space to breathe.

To be the unexpected guest
eliciting a chilled response
though perspiration springs
on upper lip and clammy palms
malodorous from stress.

Yes.

Being in the dark provides
a sense of fortitude and power
until that unseen, callused hand
just brushes on your cheek
turning tables ... sweetly
making predator the prey!

inspired by a g+ post by D. W. Metz

Monday, July 28, 2014

You Too

Causing grief is not my want
and never will it be.
friendship, just, is what I've sought
there's nothing more to see.
If silence is the price required,
no muse or scribe or ships or crumbs,
that cost serenely borne becomes
the shape of future things.

If wishes' wings could move the air
without running afoul
of things Titanic in the night
then there would be a way to talk
and simply say hello.
But only if the like is mutual.

Sad poems and the bittersweet
just are.
Peace.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Bitter Return

slipping into darkness through a dirty blue facade
resistance only makes the failure worse.
best to calmly  take the ride deep into the abyss
at least the  destination's no surprise

perhaps in several weeks or months they'll grant you a reprieve
and let you wander in the land of light
it is a tease, the cruelest hoax for hope eternal springs
and infinite the times  that hope is crushed

so now the realization of return has dawned again
they feed upon your sadness and your grief
while they chitter endlessly and lap up your despair
the emptiness feels strangely like relief.

Inspired by A.J. Bell's _Blue Room_

Sunday, July 20, 2014

In the Void of Fondness

Absence makes the heart grow fonder
only if the fondness was.
complex is the mathematics
of this unrequited love.

leveraging the nonexistent
no matter what the lever's length
obtained results are insubstantial
save to test our flagging strength

and resolve in our fantasies.

Inspired by the poem Distances by Uma Venkatraman

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Reaching Out

When, so many years ago,
I walked the town at night in solitude
the loneliness at once a shroud of peace
and desparate cry for human touch, release.

I always hoped that She would wander out the fog
and with head bowed like mine
in hesitance accept my hand in hers
then look me in the eye

and know that we were kindred and well met.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Strength of love

why this kindness
this largesse
when passion denied
shreds your soul?
why not the lion's roar and rage
the taking of desires aim?

'Twould be like taking sculptured smoke
or grasping roughly crystal straws
drawn long and thin and tenuous
glassblower fashioned at his bench
born of fire and of heat and yet ethereal.

Love, true love, is stronger
than the impulse to possess
and it comes from letting go.

Inspired by an Eric Albin g+ post

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Ghost of Joy

The ghost of joy is thin and sharp.
she's hot and brittle too.

and like a Siren, begs embrace
the slivers burn in you.

Inspired by an Eric Albin g+ post

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Writer's Salve

Wrap the editor in chains
throw her in a closet

Studded collar, bit, and reins
security deposit

to insure a steady run
for your imagination

hear a scratching at the door?
editorial itch?

scream at that ungodly boor
"There is no getting out, bitch!"

until the brainstorm has gone by
and all the raw, untainted words
lay writhing on the page
innocent and naked in their glory!

Write on!

Inspired by a g+ post by Karie Thoma

Whence the Captains of Industry?

Our talents put to other's uses
in exchange for sustenance
faith in leader's motivation
oft justified but sometimes not

rising tide with all ascending?
such we are led to believe.
locks which float the few, the chosen
we the engines of their greed.

And as these Captains sail away
to places distant on the map
the green flash reveals their true nature
peg leg, cross bones, and eye patch

Inspired by Paul Chapman's THE STREETBOY  & a conversation with Karie Thoma

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Telephone

It's such a game of telephone
this unrequited love
we lave affections on The One
with nothing in return.

Then she unto another
with a similar reply
The links accrete, the circle grows
ere long unbidden comes

a tap upon the shoulder
garbled words a longing gaze
it all seems so familiar
but an emptiness pervades

That emptiness comes from within
It starts this tortured game.

Inspired by an Eric Albin g+ post

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Singularly Yours

#saturdayscenes #weekendchallenge

(1) Kiss Off

Drumbeats awakened me. Drumbeats that came from inside my head and hurt like the proverbial bastard. Each downbeat cupped my eyes from the inside and threatened to hurl them through my exploding skull. Which would have been a good thing; ending the drumbeats.

I sat up quickly, hoping the change in attitude would put the kaibash  on the cranial percussion. Big mistake. A wave of nausea, strongest I had ever experienced, threatened to drown me. I clamped my jaw and bolted for the head; only I had literally gotten up on the wrong side of the bed. I bolted straight into a blank wall.

I got my bearings and navigated to the head just in the nick of time.  The ensuing technicolor prayer service at the altar of the porcelain goddess was spectacular, and reached back to last Tuesday's lunch; but, It did take the nausea with it and quieted the drumbeats to ibuprofin manageable levels.

An extended, hot shower- well it was eventually hot, once I reacquainted myself with the arrangement of the hot and cold valves - gave me the opportunity to gather my wits. I had very little to go on. The details of my immediate situation were pretty fuzzy. I mean I remembered the party celebrating the discovery of the library and the codex, sort of, but how it ended, how I got here, and how long ago it had been, were all lost in the fog.

Shower done I threw on some fresh clothes. I didn't bother shaving, handling a razor in my current condition was not a good idea. Coffee was the next order of business; and the paper.

I ground the beans, Costa Rican medium roast, set the former to brewing and downloaded the latter.

That was when I saw the collection of objects on the kitchen table. A set of keys, a watch, an empty cocktail glass, and a sealed envelope, held down by the glass, with the hand written words I'm sorry on it.

I went right for the envelope. It held a single sheet of unlined eight and half by eleven, unlined paper. Good stuff, heavier than copier paper, one of those off-white colors with a fashion conscious name like ecru or bone, like you would use for a hard-copy resume`. The writing was a clear steady cursive in black ink.

Dirk,
   You are brilliant and gorgeous, thoughtful and the kindest man I have ever known. But. You are not mine. That far away gaze you get - I know where you are - in her arms. On bottom with your true love.
   I should be able to deal, but the fact that I can't makes it worse, makes me into some kind of clinging demon. I can't be that, especially to you.
   Don't come looking. The transfer came through last week and by now I'm off station enroute Nexus.
   I will always love you. This is about me not you. Stay strong, I know you will. And by the way, the chandelier bit is getting a little stale.
Karie
 
There were three spots where the ink was washed out and had run. The cocktail glass wasn't completely dry. I was able to get enough moisture on the tip of my finger to make a fourth spot. Damn OCD.

I read the letter twice. Sat down with it and a cup of coffee, one cream only.

I was stunned; but not for the reason you might think. You see, my name is Rick, not Dirk, and to the best of my knowledge, I've been on my own for the past five years. I don't know anyone named Karie. But the chandelier? I knew exactly what she was talking about.

(2)

So. Where did this leave me? Clearly something monumental had occurred last night. Beyond the discovery celebration. Either the stress of the last few months, let's be honest, years had triggered some strange form of hysterical amnesia, or sometime in the last twenty four hours I had exchanged my world for this world. Not totally farfetched given the work we were doing.

Fundamental structure was the same. Significant details were different, alarmingly different.

Why Not

ego hubris
delusions of control
the thought that we can make a plan
and watch it all unfold
without modification
and adjustments on the way
to cleave to our myopic view
all others in the way.

and when that seed we've planted
begins to go astray
we dwell upon the failure
instead of taking joy
in the unexpected beauty
that the blossom does reveal
bearing marks of contribution
from us all.

Some call it chaos.
If we embrace each other
it's wonder.

Inspired by the poem Why Is It by Shefali arora

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Loneliness of Being


The loneliness of being

has no boundary
is immortal
likes it's weather fair or foul

has no weakness
is impartial
pierces facade mask and cowl

background to each brief encounter
universal undertone

born we live until our passing
fundamentally alone

how can we bear this dismal static
consequence of our design

dwell not upon its omnipresence
constantly reach out and shine

Inspired by the poem Lie with Me by Misslady Rainicorn

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Möbius Bootstraps

though that tunnel beckons
'neath the messianic icon
with messenger and message
intertwined and oft confused

despair trailing behind you
in a barge full of regrets
and no inkling that your burden
will be lifted sometime soon

what better motivation
that it's in your hands to choose
between here and yonder
hellmouth
the attitude you'll use

when confronted with another
in a shape as rough as yours
bludgeoned sobbing to her knees
ignore her or extend a hand and offer up a smile.

If we're all that we have got
Is there really any choice?

Inspired by Philosophical Topography by R.C. deWinter

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Saturday, June 21, 2014

An Exercise in Scene Transition

The sun dropped below the snow covered pines behind the house. Tree shadows reached across the back yard. The thermometer in the kitchen window shrank toward the teens. I saw our tracks in the snow.

The teapot whistled. I grabbed it from the stove top and poured the boiling water. Flames licked around the fresh log in the wood stove. The familiar tickng and popping heralded the coming warmth. Fingers and toes ached as the numbness wore off. Nathan and I huddled under a quilt with cups of hot chocolate. "Daddy, can we ski again tomorrow?"

"You bet, Nate. Do you want to try a new trail?"

"Yes. Skiing is my most favorite fun thing."

"It is very fun; but, I can think of things that are more fun, for me." I looked above the desk in the corner of the room. The plaque on the wall depicted a salvage diver's hardhat. Beneath it the inscription read, "To the best damn diving officer in the Nav. If you ain't Deep-Sea, you ain't shit. Thanks for your support, Vino and the boys, Long Beach Navy Dive Locker."

The sun beat directly down out of a cloudless blue sky, turning my drysuit into a personal sauna. The rumble of machinery below and the activity of the dive team on deck drowned out the cry of the gulls wheeling above the fantail. The weights on my hips and legs pinned me to the bench.

"Air to Red. Air to Green. Hat the divers." The commands of the diving supervisor, Vino, rang out, followed by the hissing of compressed air flowing into the helmet at my side. My tenders lifted the helmet and gently brought it down over my head, onto the locking ring, securing it in place. Deck noise grew muffled and distant. My world shrank to the inside of my helmet and what I could see through the faceplate.

Vino's voice, tinny and full of crackles came to me over the headphones, "Red diver this is topside, how do you hear me?"

"I hear you loud and clear. How me?"

"I hear you same. Rig breathing okay?"

"Breathing fine." Air hissed out of the helmet with every breath.

My tenders poked and prodded me me looking for leaks and loose gear. The weight of the helmet bore down on my shoulders. Sweat dripped from my nose and eyebrows. I stifled the urge to wipe them with my gloved hand.

The prodding stopped and the tenders drew away. Vino's brown face filled the faceplate as he checked me out one last time. His eyes crinkled and he smiled around his fat cigar, giving me the okay sign with the thumb and forefinger of his left hand.

"Red diver, up and over."

My tenders helped me to my feet. I shuffled to the side of the dive boat trailing the umbilical that fed air to my hat. I stepped over the side and fell the short distance to the water, crashing through the surface. Hissing exhaust became a quiet stream of bubbles. The weight and the heat washed away. I adjusted my airflow.

"Topside, this is Red diver. Surface checks complete. Leaving surface."

"Okay, Red."

I began the long, slow descent, arms outstretched, flying toward the unseen bottom. In time the water grew dark and the wreck materialized out of the gloom. The once proud warbird lay crumpled and broken on the sandy bottom.

I heard Vino's voice again, "Okay Red?"

"Okay Red."

I hit bottom and began to move toward the wreck.

"Will you take me diving someday?" Nathan had caught me eyeing the plaque.

"We'll talk about it when you're older."

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

At the Station

A lonely country station in late spring
the blooming rhododendrons are quite grand
an engine on a nearby siding chuffs
a-lazily, waiting for next command

admiring the rhododendron blooms
on empty platform she sits and awaits
the next train bound for her end of the line
the Station Master checks his pocket watch

"You're early, Ma'am," the Station Master says.
"No matter. I'll just sit awhile and rest
and contemplate the rhododendron blooms
and yonder engine. Pray, where has he been?"

"That engine's George, but most know him as Pop.
'twixt him and Bert some say they've hauled the world."
And as he spoke Bert pulled up next to George
their chuffing sounding more like lover's coo

The Station Master turned to share their tale
and naught but empty bench did fill his view
checking his watch he walked the platform's length
while Bert and George watched rhododendrons bloom

How They Cut

Sharply and deeply
          Slivers of a broken heart
Artery. Always.

Inspired by the poem Piecemeal by Michael French

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Bogeyman

(You have expressed
with skill and grace
the Bogeyman
who comes to roost
when weather here turns fair.)

First breath of spring
barely exhaled
his leathern wings are heard
beating out a cadence
just before he perches
on my shoulder

light at first
but heavier
with each passing day.
He chuffs to catch his breath
then leans against my head,
an all too familiar lover, cooing,
"winter's comin'!"

Inspired by the poem The Passing of Another Day by Fergus Martin.

http://goo.gl/NdDqA9

Friday, June 13, 2014

Tears without Tissues

There are tears here without tissues
and they're getting on the floor.

Do not worry
I will get a mop
and clean them up once more.

There are tears here without tissues
and they've gotten in the sink.

Doesn't seem to
be a problem.
Turn the tap on.
Don't you think?

There are tears here without tissues
they have fallen in the soup.

Don't be bothering
the dinner guests.
They're salty,
so it's moot.

All these tears
through all this time
have kept on getting in the way
of the happiness
we could have had
if you would only stay
focused on the things
that really matter to the us
you said you always wanted
all those yesterdays ago.

There are tears here without tissues
and they've soiled your dress work shirt.

Take it back
and iron another,
there's still time
I won't be curt.

There are tears here without tissues
they have wet my pillowcase.

Not a problem
keep it on your side
they aren't in my space.

There are tears here without tissues
they are running down my breast.

Do not worry
when you shower
they'll go down the drain.
That's best.

All these tears
through all this time.
You never once have seen
that the happiness you wanted
isn't happiness to me.
If you would only focus
on where all those tears come from
there might still be a chance
for you and me.

There are no tears remaining.
It's grown quiet and so cold.

Inspired by the poem House Hunting by S.L. Weisend

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Simple Presence

Simple presence as a gift
nothing need be said

drinking in the solitude
in quiet communion

at peace
with nature

and each other

inspired by a g+ post by Peter Noah Thomas

Friday, June 6, 2014

Bridges Burned

Bridges burned without intent
are awful to behold.

The dawning of the loss as
conflagration grows intense

To know that there are places
people well and truly lost.

Not unlike a library
that mishap's turned to ash.

No Phoenix for the onlies,
books by authors person'lized

No dallying with loved ones
caught unawares on other side.

Terror turns depression and
there's little else to do save

turn ... and trudge toward a damaged
future colored by the un-

intended immolation
trailing in your wake.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Clown Smiles

the smile of the clown ...
slivers of a broken heart
slice into my flesh

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Empty Corners

In the corners out of sight
The emptiness is stored

And when we cry and fill it up
It deftly comes aboard

Reminding us of what we lack
And what we haven't done

It whispers we're truly alone
And cared for, loved by no one.

Inspired by the poem Cry  by Poetry After Dark



Saturday, May 31, 2014

Anathema Knight

Sing to me your Siren song
though it be minor key
let it weave its tendrils
through the fabric of my heart

the broken wing the furrowed brow
the tear upon the cheek
accentuate mere beauty's
pull and put in sharp relief

exquisite agony which
summons, nay, demands
an offer - gentle word
or sweet caress in silence

draw comfort from the singing
and the sharing of the pain
there's beauty in the caring
through the darkness yet again

in my soul I am a Knight
heeding the tortured cry
though tarnished is my armor
and uneven is my gait

soon, as ever in the past
the knightly caring will
turn into clinging pestilence
warmth quickly becomes chill

the tarnish will grow deeper
armor's metal brittler still
and I will lumber on my way
anathema again

Monday, May 26, 2014

Time Delay Loss

It happened six seconds from now.

Six seconds after you opened the door
with a smile and an invitation
to explore ... to connect.

My seeing it for what it was
and is no more.

Crossing Tracks

And oh, that road is full of choices
each one starts a new byway
some are light and lead uphill
others down into the dark

some a detour 'round construction
or a friendly culdesac
where a weary traveler may
take a well deserved rest

others lead through tribulation
frostheaves potholes unpaved track
where the path is indistinct
and leaves the traveler all but lost

challenges of road and byway
seasoned travelers embrace
character is their reward
and with it self doubt is erased

the one true test upon this journey
comes when your path crosses mine
despite the miles and tribulations
I hope we are well met as friends

Inspired by Lyn Geist's poem The Road

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Just Being There

woven threads of solace
amidst angst and hurt and pain
a tapestry of multi-textured hues

no single form or color
universally correct
a palette of infinities to choose

one constant among caregivers
with notches in their belts
who heed the call to service far and wide

in answering the call
to rectify the hurt and pain
simple presence as a gift always abides

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Tears of the Muse

in time a drop of water will
dissolve the hardest stone

in time the sea's caress will smooth
the sharpest shard of glass

in time the rains will turn a moun-
tain range to rolling hills

tears of the muse will melt
a frozen heart
in no time at all.

I know.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Bookworm Red

although your cool disdain I felt
in flickered lid I saw
The flicker in the flicker
carried from your flaming locks

more than attention piques
to contemplate the fire within
the price this heart is but the ask
to hear it from your lips

but patience must win out
your coyness fans the flame
and spurs this steed to start the game.

A response to the poem Bookworm by R.C. deWinter
http://goo.gl/knbNr9

Nocturne

In the bosom of oasis
naught but you to fill my dreams

cares and worries insubstantial
limbs entwined eternal bliss

destination of this sojourn
looms close with the coming dawn

dream or dreamer comes the answer
as the latter stirs awake.

Inspired by Jeffrey A. White's untitled poem

http://goo.gl/YLl0cR

Repentance

this is a key
one of many

to a padlock
one of many

on a chain
one of many

with which we bind ourselves
in sorrow.

Use it.

Inspired by the poem Peace in Repentance by Dev Nischal

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Death of the Muse

the muse is fickle
she comes and goes
like a mother's tickle
on her baby's toes

if I were baby
and muse my mom
then orphaned I was
at a tender age

not by natural causes
nor a fated act
a crime most heinous
but devoid of passion

what killed my muse?
'twas the digital age
that opened the door
when the editor knocked

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Anchors

On our nightly stroll through town
we linger at the harbor.

Sailboats in the fresh'ning breeze
chafe at their anchor lines.

I turn. You've wandered up the street
and started window shopping.

Friday, May 2, 2014

The Words Unsaid

as potent as the words themselves
the lines that lie between

the words caress like fancy silks
those things we leave unsaid

like slivered glass or razors
leaving quiet trails of red

which we follow in that long goodbye.

Inspired by the Poem Words... by Uma Venkatraman

Monday, April 28, 2014

Dark Knight Rises

April 29th Challenge

Without warning
though by Bane the Bat was broken
Jokers by the pale moonlight
uses fear to battle evil
cloaked in darkness full of might
rage and trauma forge a hero
loses everything that's dear
parents murdered
child of privilege
Gotham city web of fear
underworld corruption
Decay

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Poets Have a Coffee and a Chat

April 28th Challenge

Over coffee we discuss a painting which we've seen:

I think it is a little girl with hands up on the counter.
                       To me it is a foundry blazing hot and belching smoke.
You both are wrong the painting is the artist in a rage.
                       The colours are emotions on the canvas as it's staged.
Abstract art expertly fashioned to achieve effect.
                       Mona Lisa in a bind awaiting Leonardo.
The painter racing from the whale to stave off being swallowed.
                       A damaged soul with friend beside to lend a helping hand.
A vengeful redhead in the wings about to get her due.
                    An underwater sunset or the abattoir in action.
The Artist painting with the flames his colors represent.
                     Logic in a circle leading from the dark to light.
An angel from the heavens sent to counteract man's spite.

                     It's letting go the ones you love to live free and to grow.

At that we all were quiet ... and in time we all agreed ... to disagree.

Ghazal From Afar

April 30th Challenge (Free at last! ... Now what are we gonna do?)

Can you see me? Transparent in plain sight. Wishing from afar.
Can you hear me? Speechless in the spot light. Wishing from afar.

Digging with impunity through toxic spoils of hate and war.
Can you forgive? At the tiller less sight. Wishing from afar.

Hoarding massive stores of wealth though neighbor's children go hungry.
Can you save me? Depth of soul is so slight. Wishing from afar.

Building massive ships of war to spread freedom and keep the peace.
Can I open arms and fists? Embrace right. Wishing from afar.

Waiting while my cake is served as masses labor for a crust.
Can I share the burden? Join the good fight. Wishing from afar.

Standing silently while bullies rule with smug entitlement.
Can you arm me? Insecure in the night. Wishing from afar.

Toiling without reason to perpetuate the fog of fear.
Do you need me? Without passion contrite. Wishing from afar.

Writing drivel without substance hoping challenge end is near.
Muse don't hear me. Composing late at night. Wishing from afar.

Falling for the prime distraction prestidigitation flair.
Can I see you? Reaching for the stage sleight. Wishing from afar.

Reaching out to offer comfort taken as a selfish threat.
Do you fear me? Seeing through an old fright. Wishing from afar.

Wanting what I claim I don't. Flirting through a broken veneer.
Will you free me? Self deception too tight. Wishing from afar.

Holding to the moral compass without heed of wanton lust.
Can I trust you? An empty lure, won't bite. Fishing from afar.

Dictating the road of progress though the science is unclear.
Can you see through me? To the path of right. Wishing from afar.

Wanting only to be cherished without pretense without lies.
Can you feel me? Numb with fear the dream will die. Wishing from afar.

Free will Frederick Andrew's illusion of the reality
Can you feel me? Terrified it's right. Wishing from afar.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Cookie at the Counter

April 27th challenge

The mem'ry has grown tattered
color faded details lost
and yet I cling, tenacious
for it's all of her remains

Sunny Sunday afternoon
bright blue sky crisply clear
Momma's cookies baked and racked
on the counter cooling

White and cotton sundress
pigtails, brown eyes big as pools
hands on counter smiling, waiting
chocolate chip smell in the air.

Never sure if I was ready
worried from the time I knew
tried to put the best face on it
Parents...how the world would change

Then she came and I held her
wrinkled peanut small and warm
In that moment my heart stolen
hers forever and a day.

Four years to the cookie counter
daddy's girl so full of love
life before drab and forgotten
she's the center of my world.

Not long after came the darkness
quickly stole her body's strength
but her spirit strong and singing
'til the final kiss goodbye.

Cookie at the counter
tattered memory remains.

Baptismal Pyre - What Shall Arise?

April 26th challenge

Critical Mass or Much Ado About Nothing?
Prophets of Doom or Doctors of Spin?
Quickening or Quicken not?

Awash in a sea of data
intoxicated
with it's heady perfume
paper thin the separations
gone the luxury of

Time.   And.   Space.

to consider and reflect
upon the implications of the
techno-geo-politico whatsis
of the day the hour minute nano
second is too long to take
This offer for a limited time
haves and havenots
global warming
social contract
yours and mine

Free will.  Or won't.
We make the call.
What will come?

All's Well That Ends Well.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Both at Once

April 25th challenge

from orbit earth seems in a state of grace
on ground that state is more like agony
an ambiguity so bittersweet
how can the two exist inside the one
i long for some cosmic epiphany
and then i drink the coffee from my cup

So smooth the glass from which is made my cup
it's curves remind me of the dancer's grace
and as it falls there comes epiphany
concurrent with a slivered agony
so many shards descended from the one
the taste of blood is hot and bittersweet

the cry of life at birth is bittersweet
and how such fullness from so small a cup
the noise of many emanates from one
the father prays that God will grant the grace
he needs to bear exquisite agony
as daughter's life blooms through epiphany

Some light some dark in each epiphany
the rare one doesn't taste of bittersweet
and bring with it some sense of agony
that adds the salt of tears into your cup
a toast which bears humility and grace
your stifled fire reserved to strike the one

what will you do when chance to strike the one
delivered like that dark epiphany
a sharpened blade wielded with strength and grace
or passed unused and swallow bittersweet
regret remaining in your loving cup
unsure of future joy or agony

was it more than transient agony
resultant from the sparing of the one
whose reckless greed begets the shattered cup
and with it once again epiphany
that all experience is bittersweet
and can, nay, should be borne with simple grace

it's ever fresh, the one epiphany
the shattered cup brimmed with the bittersweet
is both at once the agony and grace

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Magnetic Musings

We please their summer sweat and lust to whisper bloodless mist above a languid bed.

I go as wind.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

XXIII

April 23rd challenge

Oh, is it wise to mess with twenty three?
Just corelation. Ain't enough to see
arrangement of the bloody cart and horse.

Is twenty three the cause or the effect?
Or just a silly attribute along
for quite the long and strange chaotic run?

It could be that I'm pissing up a rope.
Oh, is it wise to mess with twenty three?

It could be my turn at Russian roulette.
Oh, is it wise to mess with twenty three?

It could be armageddon ... or just tea.
Oh, is it wise to mess with twenty three?

Perhaps this invocation is a ward
that keeps the evil poltergeists at bay,
a talisman of goodness and the light
designed to keep the speaker in the right.
But I digress. Ah there!

Oh, is it wise to mess with twenty three?
It certainly invokes my OCD
and niggles by the fact that it is odd.
Unbalanced like a tire that is cupped.
Annoying like a reading glass that's smudged.
Or like the frayed thread keeping Damocles alive ... for now.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Lap Dog Jeopardy

Akita / PITBULL / Terrier, the legend on the cage
the middle breed stood out in sharp relief.
The shelter gave him A+, great with kids and other pets
a contradiction beyond my belief.

We met him that day anyway, despite my grave concerns
which I gave voice to only tacitly.
When he came in he made it clear the breed they did not say
was double XL lap dog wannabe.

At sixty five or better pounds he was a little large
to situate himself upon my lap.
He gave it the all college try and before very long
two thirds of him was comfortably at home.

Face to face and eye to eye my worries disappeared
truth is there was room for only one
concern resulting from his singular pit love attack
the fear of drowning from his lapping tongue.

So he came home that very day, my brown eye, blue eye, pirate dog
a vict'ry lap around the yard he zoomed
There's one remaining answer. Alex, Pit bulls for 2k.
It's me by Duke when asked, "who rescued whom?"

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Three Touchstones

April 20th challenge

The morning ritual, in part, involves my coffee mug.
Especially on winter days it helps ward off a chill.
My hands, you see, last half of fall through early part of spring
are blocks of ice
just ask my wife
and so my morning prayer.

My pen and journal count as one, apart they're incomplete.
For observations, bits of verse, and lists of things to do
the tactile act of written note has magic properties
It pantographs
upon my brain
in triplicate, you see.

Finally my walking shoes, here pictured nearly new.
You wouldn't recognize them now, so scuffed and soles worn through.
They cost a pretty penny which I almost didn't pay
but comfy feet
cannot be beat
for getting through the day.

So now I've shared three touchstones
from my daily carousel.
Little things that counteract the spin.
If they can help you tame your rollercoaster loop de loop,
you are welcome, grab a mug and jump right in.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Villanot (form without the pesky substance)

April 19th challenge

Oh what to write when nothing comes to mind?
A mind is such an awful thing to waste.
My muse plays coy and leaves me in a bind.

It's empty. Like a watermelon rind
my brain a blank as if it's been erased.
Oh what to write when nothing comes to mind?

I search my heart for insights très sublime
and scour my blog for things to cut and paste.
My muse plays coy and leaves me in a bind.

The morning news has nothing that I find
sufficiently compelling to make haste
with what to write when nothing comes to mind.

And in the darkness where I'm all but blind
no images unchaste excite the chase.
My muse is coy and leaves me in a bind.

And why, oh muse, do you remain unkind?
My mind an oven'd turkey to be baste.
Oh! What to write when Nothing comes to mind?
My muse is coy and leaves me in a bind.

Spacesuit Etiquette (NOT)

The spaceman in his spacesuit
had a sour looking face
as the airlock cycled for his EVA.

Seems the buddy he relieved
had relieved himself as well
and the gaseous remainder had him peeved.

What's that smell?
Last night's freeze dried chili. With Nacho cheese!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Little Navy Blue Lies

April 18th challenge

Said the Captain of Inspections to the Captain of the Ship ...

                 "We're here to help you."

To the Captain of Inspections said the Captain of the Ship ...

                "We're glad to have you."

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Meta Poem

April 17th challenge

distillation correspondence choreography
encapsulated moment or fantastical journey

a silent scream a whisper a chorus or a band
the naked truth an outright lie go walking hand in hand

a call to arms a cry for help a verbal celebration
a question or an answer filled with bittersweet elation

an intricate construction Bach or Goldberg would be proud
a freely floating stream of thought ... but I digress

one or more or all or none of the above by poll
but ever and always a throbbing piece of poet's soul.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Halfway Rhyming Blues

It's day sixteen
I'm full of grief
We're just past halfway in.

The end I guess
beyond belief
as far as we have come.

In our behalf
a photograph
of winners in a line

will make us laugh
and cry enough.
ENOUGH!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Adaptive Synesthesia

April 15th challenge

What's that noise I see, come creeping 'neath the door?
It's looking mighty furtive and nothing like discrete.

It has the smell of softness and the taste of cymbal clangs!
(I wish I hadn't dropped that window pane.)

I hear it's hue of bilious green and struggle with my gorge,
a battle which I fear I've lost in technicolor streams

which make a tasty rainbow wrapping me in swaddling chains,
which feel the color purple and sound salty more than sweet.

This verse of synesthesia has gone on for quite a while.
I feel it stinks and hope your patience is enough
to let me extricate my foot from out my mouth.
That sounds a bit tasteless. I assure you, that it's snot.

Self-absorbed

I never know when I'm a pest
My welcome worn to shreds.
If when I think I see a smile
It's just a cringe instead
or, perhaps, a bit of undigested beef
but I digress.

I start to feel this nagging sense
that I am in the way,
and that my posts and comments
over complicate the day of
others whom I wish were friends.

As I review this post I write
what strikes me is the overuse of "I."
Preoccupied and selfish, clearly.

This gives me pause. I take to heart
this lesson, and for a time (I) will not
darken any door with vibes less than embracing.

Good night. Sleep tight.

Salt of Tears

April 14th challenge

The tears long dried to salt upon my face
could season endless feasts for kings and queens.
They taste of all the sins the human race
has rained upon itself since Eden's sheen

was dulled by apple feast so long ago.
And yet the tears which are no longer wet
have found a cause to cease their endless flow
related to that feast which sealed our debt.

Alone I was replete with sin and pain.
Complicit?, Nay!  A principal of rage
and war intended for ill gotten gain,
Author pierced by words upon his page.

Then you appeared and offered apple's feast
and in your gift my tears have found surcease.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Mirror of Wanting

April 13th challenge

Found untreated. Won't say where.
Suffice to say the author, treated though he was, wasn't there.
A quest begins...

In the funhouse hall of mirrors
Dead end passage to the left
Of the egress to the light
Is a special little mirror,
Canvas covered and bereft
Of visitors

Shattered mirror full of spite
Wanting is a better word
Gaze upon it at your peril
Cleaving truth to vision tight
With a touch of the absurd
Inseparable

Bindings canvas far from sterile
Dust and filth and dried ichor
Once removed the shattered glass scene
doesn't make alot of sense
'Til Shard's caress and then it tastes yours
Sudden focus

Pure reflection in the mirror
Truely awful to behold
All your lies, real and imagined
Imperfections in your soul
Visage layers with conviction
Voices begin

...Do not follow.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Consequences

April 12th challenge

ceaseless toil surcease
                 warship slips into the sea
"Look what you have done."

City Twilight Milieu

Steamy city after twilight
April shower washes by
screechy clatter people mover
on the el it lumbers high

street lights car lights traffic signals
revving engines squealing brakes
steam escaping manhole cover
hear the sizzle, nearly shakes

music from the nearby tavern
spills into the twilight scene
builds upon the street noise backbone
scintillating, tasty, lean -

ing back against the lamp post
eyes closed trench coat all askew
washed by rain and now by music
twilight city street milieu

and the el clatters by

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Stay Thirsty My Friend

April 10th challenge

Periodic car began willing debt
willing debt became fiscal ball-and-chain
fiscal ball-and-chain forecast determined credit
Determined credit appease parched society

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Barbershop Reveries

April 9th challenge

sitting in the barbershop
waiting for my turn
to get a little off the top
conformance reaffirm.

caught in silent reverie
of infinite reflection,
opposing mirrors forming
an eternal corridor.

as I traverse that corridor
a vague sense of unease
blossoms into torschlusspanik
full blown. Weakened knees

threaten to negate my progress
while the portals close
leaving me in limbo
ever farther from my goals.

like the submariner in a
stricken boat below
watertight compartment flooding
through the hatch helps comrades go

last man left he sees the hatch close
watches as the dogs are set.
in his heart grim recognition
water swirls about his chest

the barber calls me to the chair
and breaks the reverie
asking if I'd like the standard trim

still shaken from my vision
beads of sweat upon my brow
let's change it up and take it to bare skin.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Cereal Find

Gently steam, roll, and bake
our nutritional flakes
adding fruits and nuts balance the taste.
Irresistible flavor
less processed and crisp
natural cereal whole grain, delish

From the field to your bowl
from your bowl to your gut
from your gut to a different style bowl
the fiber and grains keep a regular flow
at my age that's a much vaunted wish.

Engineered from the back of the box!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Day of Wine & Chocolate

April 7th challenge

chocolate
silky intimate
comforting melting enveloping
dark milk white rosé Rioja
liberating accentuating intoxicating
crisp cool
wine

inspired by a comment from Doug Metz

Saturday, April 5, 2014

April Cusp

April 6th challenge

snow banks in retreat
driveway full of muddy trenches-
gloves empty of hands

snowmelt fills potholes
frost heaves in the road relax-
robins fill the yard

thermometer fills
noontime walk without a coat-
spring sun warms the stroll

deck empty of snow
spring time sun warms empty boards-
dog takes place of snow

April Fools

April first challenge

Eyes wide mouth agape
Recognition slowly dawns
Lips purse and eyes slit

Exquisite Agony of Defeat

April 5th Challenge

Sparring
With live ammo
Emo poet's verses
The gauntlet thrown the game begins
I blink

Friday, April 4, 2014

It's a Wonder!

April 4th Challenge

Alice left for Wonderland
Precisely late for tea.
RIDICULOUS! the Red Queen screamed,
Inciting Tweedle Dee to
Leap upon the croquet pitch

Flamingoes scattered far and wide!
Oysters paused and gazed aloft
Unmindful of the Walrus' cries
Resplendent in his vest whilst
The Carpenter smiles wryly and rubs his callused
Hands. (Cheshire!)

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Soldier's Triptych

Pride and rage and sorrow
three emotions wage a war
to fill the Father's heart.

Fife and drum and bagpipes
three musicians keeping time
as the Son makes his return.

Heaven earth and hell
three stations in the journey
that the Spirit will endure.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

This Grain of Sand

We huddle on this grain of sand
set in an endless sea
with national allegiance
as our first priority.

Our arbitrary boundaries
we patrol from month to month
just to see another nation
won't abscond with our free lunch.

There is another way to live
upon our grain of sand
in which we don't divide ourselves
in arbitrary bands.

Together we look upward
into that endless sea
and dream of epic voyages
spelled out in poetry.

If we join hands and share the dream
we're bound to rise above
this humble little grain of sand
the key is simple. Love.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

The Aggressor's Momentum

Between two foes the battle joined oft goes
where brute's force concentrates.

Unless the lesser, keen about her wits,
Stokes the furnace of the raging bull

Goading him into a bellowed charge
from which she deftly steps aside

And helps him on his way. Groundward.
Proving, once again, Less ... is More.

Inspired by Ivan Carswell's The Proper Way

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Making Fire

Chance encounter.
Spoken words.
Glances 'cross the aisle.

Conversation.
Breaking bread.
Knowing little smiles.

Fuel & tinder
All arranged
Do I strike the match?

Whale Song (Blue)


Singing cry into the void.
Longing for communion.
In reply the echoes fade away.

As the echoes fade away
Bitter tears begin to fall,
A futile ploy to fill the emptiness.

Through the teardrop lenses
shadows flicker on the verge.
Perhaps their serenade is lonely too?

Shadows may sound whisper near,
the trick of tear borne song.
An ocean's distance telescopes between.

Crying song into the void.
Longing for communion.
In reply the echoes slowly die.




Inspired by Lynn Paden's truly alone
and Alice.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Aquatic Prune

I used to be a swimmer
when I was just a lad.
Once in a while
I'd come out of the pool.

Wrinkles upon wrinkles
on my fingers and my toes
a bite to eat
and back to join the school ...
... of fish kids!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Absence

I will forever know my muse
Despite the fact she's gone.
The space she filled remains.

(empty)

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Descent

Shared intimacy that's gone sour
                                                          friendship, love, or confidante
burns a sinkhole in your heart
that fades but leaves a scar.

Too long they fill your waking hours
                                                              confidante, friendship, or love
and populate your night time dreams
incessant might have beens.

It happens o'er a stretch of time.
                                                        love, friendship, or confidante
Boredom, coolness creeps between.
The brightness turns to flint.

A calculation chasm grows.
                                                friend, or love, or confidante
you second guess your every move.
in hopes to bridge the gap.

Where once were smiles eye-rolls remain.
                                                                         confidante, or love or friend
Too forced, the conversation dies
with silence in it's wake.

Quite soon you find yourself alone.
                                                          No lover, friend, or confidence
Your thoughts turn inward, down, and dark.
The scar begins to throb.
(fade to black)

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Psychic Vampire

I am the psychic vampire, visage suave and debonair.
I make a good impression at the start.

You feel a warm connection and your smile invites me in.
Then my tendrils wrap themselves about your heart.

And contract.

Solitary Jester

Your verse touches my heart.

I write a warm response.

You gaze over my shoulder.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Response to Arctic Syllables

I hear you through the winter stillness.

Words clear yet swaddled in the falling snow.

Like you were whisp'ring them into my ear.

Despite the cold.

Inspired by untitled "Arctic Syllables" by Miri Dunn
https://plus.google.com/111983961140937248134/posts/RkwGBj4a9Yg

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The Flow

Control is an illusion
let's us think that we can plan,
lay out a path that leads from a to b.

In truth the path we follow
may have those exact endpoints,
but many more betwixt than it would seem.

More often when we set a course
the journey telescopes,
and a little rollercoastering ensues.

White knuckling to hang on
is the order of the day
and survival is the best we can construe.

So roll with all the punches
ride the breakers when you can.
Give a hand up when the opportune presents.

'Cause we're all in this together
and it's how we play that counts.
Learning kindness surely bests the perfect plan.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Faux Poe Valentine

Regard me not with an evil eye,
'Pon the lateness of this confection.

For the Poe-themed purveyor of Valentine treats
Was sold out of every selection.

So this bittersweet heart, though it isn't tell tale
Tells a tale of Poe, I mean woe,

Of a much chagrined scribe
Late by time and by tide

And, hopefully, nevermore slow.

Monday, February 17, 2014

ToDo List Dynamics

The list is naught but a vessel
That receives the G'zins
And provides the G'zouts.
'Tis the diff'rence between
in the vessel that's seen
as the change in the level no doubt.

Now it's been quite a while since my classes
in Newton's mathematical arts
But derivative one is the speed of that sum
And the second is acceleration!

(jeezum crow I hope there's extra credit for verse!) :-\ 

Inspired by Amanda Rachelle Warren's SC Snopocalypse (justified) angst.
And Julia Thompson's mathematical challenge

Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Navigator's Quandary

Heading - East of the full moon.
Night time passage, coastal run.
Clawing off a rugged lee
Red dawn's warning weather comes.

Blinking beacon on the shore
signals through the moonlit night.
Sings of harbor's warm embrace.
Enter port before the storm.

And her sister close at hand,
different color, different rate,
Screams the danger of the reef.
Grounded vessel broken keel!

One foretells a welcome rest,
hot meal, warm bed, the watch relieved.
The other portends tragedy,
a cold and watery grave.

How to tell the two apart?
The navigator's quandary.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

A Micropoem Triptych

It is what it isn't

Space. The final frontier.
The whole is defined by its emptiness.

Poetry and Spoken Word may in fact be different things ...
... As are Communion wafer and a hot fudge chocolate sundae ...
... wearing all of its toppings.

Self Inflicted

The Beauty passing on the beach
begets exquisite agony.

A pain so real it takes my breath away.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

An Important Man

I am an Important man.
Lantern jaw, custom suits, fast car and a driver.
Global corporate CEO, Chairman of the Board.
Charting economic courses, Captain of my industry.
I am an Important man.

I am an Important man.
Multi million bank accounts, mansion and a yacht.
Five star chef, sommelier, and a masseuse on staff.
Private island, Swiss chalet, castle on the Rhine.
I am an Important man.

I am an Important man.
But when my love is taken ill and doctors lack a clue,
When tests are inconclusive, diagnosis is unclear,
And she is fraught with tears and fear of what the future brings,
The power, prestige, and possessions grow irrelevant.
Her suffering is amplified. It cuts me like a blade.
And my true nature is revealed.
I am an impotent man.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Block Broke

A poet I admire once told me what to do
when inspiration's engine won't engage.
Just keep the cursor moving or the pen across the page
with whatever stuff and nonsense comes to mind.

Write about the block itself the weather or the news,
It doesn't really matter much at all.
The chicken in the crock pot with cilantro marinade
or the chocolate cake with frosting for dessert.

The dog is sleeping soundly on his bed beside the stove.
While in the furnace burn dead dinosaurs,
adding to the weight of atmospheric greenhouse gas.
It's ironic that the weather's so damn cold.

Tomorrow and tomorrow I will work an 8 to 6.
The shipyard is a place that doesn't sleep.
Destroyers for the Navy, lots of steel to 'fit and weld.
And on Friday wear a bow tie, ' cause it's cool.

I didn't mean the weather when I said "because it's cool."
I was thinking of the Doctor and his suit.
Though number four’s my favorite, with his jelly baby taste,
Eleven and his bow ties are quite smooth.

I've rambled on enough about this case of writer's block.
My consciousness won't stream another verse.
I hope that by tomorrow I'll be on to better prompts
With more meaning than this elemental curse.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

The point of no return....

"In everybody’s life there’s a point of no return. And in a very few cases, a point where you can’t go forward anymore. And when we reach that point, all we can do is quietly accept the fact. That’s how we survive."
— Haruki Murakami

The bottom of the trench is dark.
The water should be cold.
But by tectonic happenstance
and random crustal fold,
the geothermal gradient
in these parts is immense,
and harvesting that energy
is naught but common sense.

The hydrostatic pressure
and the temperature are hell. 
The phosphorescent lifeforms
look like Hades' spawn as well.
A hostile work environment
for human or machine,
but splice them into Rifter,
an amalgam, a marine

Technician that can physic'ly
sustain the kind of stress
that living on the ocean floor
near thermal vents suggests.
Now scramble up their Psyche,
make them crave adrenaline.
That's the part from which there's no way back
to whom they might have been.

Now an aquanaut custodian
of geothermal plants
providing cleaner energy
than fossil fuels. The rants
of dire climate degradation
rendered all but moot
by Rifter techs, once human,
who have been rebuilt to suit.

Headline San Diego....
....Fusion power's here at last.

A rif on the characters and technology depicted in the novel Starfish by Peter Watts.


Image by Scott Clarke from http://www.rifters.com/real/gallery/rifters.jpg depicting characters and setting from Starfish by Peter Watts. Attempts to contact the artist have been unsuccessful to date. Credible objection to the use of the image will be honored by it's removal.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

MisDirection

A network of linked comments
Each attached to different posts.

Channel surfing in the aether
Threads in chaos (too verbose?)

Puzzle pieces fit together
Though the pattern is unclear.

Hell. My head hurts from composing
Let's all go and get a beer.

_A spontaneous reaction to the 'G+' version of phone tag. Inspired by a very real exchange with +Amy Glamos. The muse oft strikes fast and hard....and leads to some very strange places!_

Friday, January 17, 2014

Poetry for the Palate



Ciabata or focaccia,
split in half and toasted light.
Liberal spread of lemon hummus,
Or the like.

Drizzle with the oil of olives
And balsamic vinaigrette.
The former is an option,
you may choose.

Top with slices of the queen,
Stuffed with pimentos nat'raly.
A snack, you will agree,
That's heaven sent!

Monday, January 13, 2014

The Muse

My muse came to me in a dream one night,
her tilted smile and eyes that sparkled bright.
she took my hand as we went for a walk,
and not a word was said.

We walked through verdant forests rich with life,
through ghettos full of poverty and strife,
on beaches where the mighty oceans raged.
My senses overflowed.

We watched young love ignite and spread it's wings,
the pain of birth with all the love it brings,
and elders wracked with grief and left alone.
My heart broke in my chest.

I turned and saw the tears stream down her face.
We lingered. A chaste but intimate embrace,
before she faded to that Cheshire smile,
and left me to my words.

I dreamt about my muse again last night.

With thanks to my muse.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Self Inflicted

The Beauty passing on the beach
begets exquisite agony.

A pain so real it takes my breath away.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Bridge

With a hundred yards to go the bridge hove into view. The red railings stood out against the snow on the deck and the green boughs of the pines on the far (physical) side of the chasm.

As Jason shortened the distance, he tried to ignore the cold and the crunch of the packed snow beneath his boots. He concentrated on checklists and protocols, engaging embedded tech and traditional bio-feedback to maintain biological parameters within the operational envelope. That was the real purpose of the foot-borne approach - to give the operative time to get his game face on and make peace with his Assembler.

Despite the training and the tech, uppermost in his mind was last night's argument with Lynn. He kept replaying it, almost shredding the op-envelope on several ocassions.

"This was not supposed to be your op! I thought we had another six months!"
She knew about the backup rotation. She knew it was Jason's week on call.

The seventy yard mark and the frosty plume of each exhale stabbed forward along his path of travel. The virtual heads-up displays in Jason's contacts indicated that the op-envelope was intact and that the entanglement dampers near the center of the bridge were cycling up.

Lynn had her own op scheduled fourteen months out. She was just starting the second round of surgical work-ups.

"Look, Lynn, I know this is a surprise, but we knew it could happen this way. Anyway, in fourteen months none of this will matter."

"Jason. This is now."
With that her gaze turned inward and down and a single tear trailed down her left cheek. Jason went to her and held her, but she did not return the embrace. She whispered in his ear, "go to hell." 
At that, a wry smile blossomed on his face.

Fifty yards and the sentry approached. "What...is the flight ratio of an unladen swallow?" He said, rolling the r for dramatic effect.

Jason just looked at him deadpan with a nearly imperceptible head shake, then looked down and that wry smile blossomed again. "African or European?"

"No way, man. This is your gig." The sentry clapped him on the back, took a few readings  confirming the integrity of the op-envelope and turned to go. "Go to hell."

Jason waved and continued his approach.

Twenty five yards out. Stray lobes of the amplification field tickled J's sensors and made the inside of his eyelids itch. Next came an exquisite case of the niggles as the amp-field properly embraced him. Jason stopped  for a few moments to let the irritation subside and become acclimatized.

Jason thought about Eric and the send off bash 3 nights ago. They had thoroughly indulged his penchant for pin-ups, stylish automobiles, and rich desserts along with ample quantities of intoxicating beverage. It was the combination of the second and the last which led Jason to this spot. The ruin of the Bugati was in the motor-pool garage.

Fortunately, Eric was the only human casualty; and the nature of his injury was more embarasing than life-threatening. He usually slept on his stomach  anyway.

That wry smile again. Jason pressed on.

The protocols were more involved now. No more ruminating on friends and frivolities. Jason was all business, establishing handshakes between the embedded tech and related aspects of the amplified singularity, testing his control of the proximal aperture, and removing every stitch of  clothing.

The existence of micro-singularities had been common knowledge for many years. That they existed on-planet was known only by subject matter experts. That they were intelligent and could broker human transport to the distal end of a wormhole located on a habitable planet was known only by the handful of people on this installation.

This particular singularity was known simply as "Troll" because he had taken up residence under this bridge eons ago. And the planet on the other end of Troll's wormhole was named Hell.

At the ten yard mark Jason removed his boots. He was in the trance of the terminal protocols. The cold of the snow under his feet barely registered as he closed the distance to the bridge. An aura accumulated about him, green and coruscating. A matching aura formed between the rails at the center of the bridge.

When the auras met, Jason passed through the aperture and was gone. His image faded rapidly. In a moment all that was left was the memory of his wry smile and the snow covered bridge with the red railings.