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Sep 2017 · 250
The Dying of Dreams
JC Sep 2017
There is a day
for most,
or at least
too many,
where all the dreaming dies.
How sad,
to sleep,
and wake,
only to sleep
again,
with nothing
in between.
I remember when
each and every day,
I thought the next,
might be better.
No more,
I'll die
where I last sit
there's nowhere
else
to go.
Too old to battle
too old
to even
make
the effort.
I wish
I'd seen it
coming.
Prepared for it,
some how,
some way.
But no,
and so,
I sit,
in an empty
room,
lie
in an empty
bed.
Goodbye's
were said,
but not
acknowledged,
as all
my dreams
walked away.
Jul 2017 · 301
The Sins of Time
JC Jul 2017
(03/05/09

How long before the day ends,
and night begins,
do we begin to see it coming,
and think about days ending,
and forget to enjoy the time we have,
to dwell as deeply inside it as we can?
Wasted hours thinking about might be’s and could be's
and what might have been's,
as "now" and "are" pass by,
gone forever.
Whole years now gone in a sad pool
of despair and wishes,
never to return or be seen again,
a sin of worthless regrets and tears,
committed against one's life,
we did it to ourselves,
in the end,
while placing all the blame somewhere else,
on someone else,
and all the time it was inside us all.
Never looking back was a creed, a religion,
or so we said,
as we lived with the dead,
and never looked up from the ground.
I wonder at the stars and suns we never saw,
or rainbows..
all of them around us,
as much ours as anyone else's,
but refused and unopened gifts for most,
because we walked in shadows of our own making.
I wonder at the lateness of the hour,
and the day,
and the year,
I wonder... can I step into my now,
and leave what used to be behind?
Is the door closed to what might be,
like it is for might have been?
I hope not,
as night falls once again,
and dreams come of a life not lived,
and the world turns anyway.
JC 2009
Jun 2017 · 405
There Was
JC Jun 2017
There was a time,
though filled
and spent
in moments,
never days
and rarely hours,
when smiles
and warmth
existed.
A look,
or touch,
or a simple word
or sound,
was all it took
for pleasure,
brief though
it was.
Not now
no more,
some effort
is required,
to replace
the smallest
of deeds,
and all
while strength
declines.
How much
do I need
that smile,
any more?
Is it worth
the energy
spent?
I say no
and the need
has left me.
The Play
has had
its run.
Good night,
good bye,
so long.
Apr 2017 · 184
Left for Dead
JC Apr 2017
The loss of the Key
that was given to me
by the people who left me for dead,
Though lies still arise,
bringing tears to my eyes,
I face it without any dread.
The doors that stay closed,
while the words are composed,
remain behind walls in my Head.
And yet there remains
a balm for my pains,
and the Beast that must always be fed.
I pour on the page,
the source of my rage,
and cannot return to my bed.
I am not so insane,
to stand out in the rain
dripping blood, turning puddles to Red.
So come with me please
and cure this disease
of the people who left me for dead.
Apr 2017 · 177
There never is...
JC Apr 2017
There never is,
nor ever was
a good time
for a bad time.
You take them
as they come.
It's a waste,
preparing,
or attempting to,
you can't see what's coming
anyway.
Enjoy the day
as it lays,
another cloud
is on
the horizon,
see it
or not.
Arise,
spit in its eye,
take it on,
without
flinching.
There's never
a good time,
for a bad time,
nor any time
to give in
not ever.
Mar 2017 · 206
To See "ALL"
JC Mar 2017
Ah, yes,
"Some Gave ALL"
I saw it,
you never have
yet claim it
as your own.
It isn't,
it's mine
and mine alone,
at least here
right now.
And it
wasn't
GIVEN,
nobody GAVE
anything.
It was taken
with force
and violence
dragged
from
screaming
children.
"All gave SOME",
especially those
who saw,
and know,
what "ALL"
means.
You don't.
Wear your patches
and badges
and flags,
while puffing out
your chests
proudly,
in ignorance
of what you say
and believe,
and THINK
you know.
How sad,
your cheers
and ignorance
and jingoist
fervor,
allow more
to give
ALL.
I know,
you don't,
I saw,
you never did,
never will,
chugging your beer
in the club
or the bar,
on a Sunday
afternoon.
Funny what
a simple word
like ALL
can be
and mean
for the few,
as opposed
to the masses,
to the ignorant
and the blind
I wish
at night
that was me.
Mar 2017 · 436
Karmatic ramble
JC Mar 2017
It's come to pass,
towards the last,
the inevitability
predicted,
long ago.
A solitary path,
traveled alone,
in the dark
and unafraid.
I came
to here
purposeful,
and yet
unintentionally
in spirit,
if not
in body
or in mind.
No one else
laid the way,
or paved it,
rough
with stone.
No, that
I did alone,
a piece
at a time,
burning
all the
should haves
and could haves
and might have been's
on the way.
But then,
in truth,
was there ever,
really,
a choice?
Ask the Lion
if he hunts
to eat,
or to ****,
and wait
eternally
for the
answer
that will
never
come.
I'm at peace
with what's lost,
and will never be,
as the time
to wonder
grows shorter
and moves
with speed and grace
to the end.
I give no time
to wishes,
or regrets,
I don't have
the moments
to spare,
not
any
more.
I'll say
the last
good night,
in my sleep
to the dark,
grateful
for the chance
to have played
the game
at all.
Feb 2017 · 218
Impossibilities
JC Feb 2017
There are places traveled,
dark places,
that stain your heart
forever.
Yet those who've never been
pass judgement
on how
you should be
afterwards
and forever.
Somethings you
just
have
to see
for yourself,
explanations fail
with
the spoken
word
no matter
the effort
made.
You can't
hear
colors
or smell them.
It's the same
with places
far away,
in the dark,
long ago.
There are
no words
adequate,
or perhaps
horrific
is better,
more accurate,
in its inadequacies.
I gave that up
long ago
in the dark
by myself
Feb 2017 · 214
Maybe Today
JC Feb 2017
Maybe today was the time,
not yesterday,
and sunset becomes the beginning.
Maybe this was the time,
not before,
or long ago,
and today became the only.
Sunrise looks on sweetly,
but knows nothing of the day before it,
and the day before it is,
the living to be done.
Looking on is wishes,
looking back is what was,
and truth becomes the morning.
Hoping was nice in it's time,
and everyone has a tomorrow dream,
but Certainty has it's place,
and Reality can't be taken,
and nothing dashes knowing,
like the dreams of a child,
waking to an empty Christmas.
So maybe today was the time,
not tomorrow,
and yesterday was already.
But maybe today was the best of it all,
maybe this was the time,
and I missed it.
Feb 2017 · 193
A Walk in the Mountains
JC Feb 2017
Some men will travel to the top of the mountain,
in an effort to talk to the sky,
and maybe touch the clouds...
a wish they've carried since children.
But I, I've looked from the flatland,
and only dreamed of the trail
that leads to the clearest views of the sun
and maybe a final look to my soul.
No shadows there to block my sight
or hide the smallest parts in darkness.
I stand by the river,
and watch it grow,
from the falling and tumbling water
rushing down the sides of the mountain...
and wonder where the beginning is,
but never taking the trail to where it has to be.
Is it fear, or just a lack of effort,
or a matter of the heart,
that keeps me where I am,
and the knowing all so close?
But in the end, here I sit, looking up once again,
my answers wrapped in clouds
the sun throwing shadows on the ground,
a small chill in the air as they block it's warmth.
I hug my knees by the river,
wishing once again....
I lived at the top of the mountain.
The shadows grow and darkness comes early,
and the mountain brings the night,
blocking the light of the sun,
tears fall,
a slow walk to home.
The mountain still remains and waits,
for those who walk it's trails...
knowing it isn't me.
JC 2009
Feb 2017 · 425
The coming of the Storm
JC Feb 2017
There is a Storm coming,
dark and violent
filled with death,
destruction,
pain
and tears.
There is a Storm coming,
fueled by heat,
anger,
pain
and fear.
There is a Storm coming
it has a face,
evil,
cold,
and frightening.
There is a Storm coming,
a deadly reckoning,
silent,
steady,
and  relentless.
There is a Storm coming,
an unyielding rampage,
savage,
ferocious,
and vengeful.
There is a Storm coming,
a howling wind,
crushing,
tearing,
and unrestrained.
A Storm is coming,
a giant wave,
rising,
falling
and murderous.
I AM the Storm,
I am here
burning,
drowning,
and retribution.
Feb 2017 · 188
A life Lived and Time Spent
JC Feb 2017
I recall the ways,
and whys of yesterdays.
The steps I took,
to here and now,
as clear as a sunlit day.
The gray in my hair,
and the lines of laughter
by my eyes,
all signs of where I've been,
how far I've come.
Whether fair days,
or rain,
nights warmed by the moon,
or cooled by the winds,
they all led to here, to now,
to who I am,
and I am
where I've been.
Soldiering,
a Father to a son,
lover and friend,
all parts of a life,
a life that's passing.
All stones in a path laid
to where I am right now.
Regrets and wishes,
things done right or wrong,
all parts of the man
and parts of a life
pieces of time,
of minutes to hours,
and hours to days,
and all coming to years,
years going by,
and years long ago.
It's late afternoon,
this day,
and the Sun is passing by.
I'll wait for the setting
it'll surely do,
smiling at the memories,
of the life I just passed through,
missing the pieces left behind,
but glad for the chance to do it.
I'll leave my mark,
on a stone in the shade of a tree,
for those who care to remember,
that once this life was me.
Feb 2017 · 209
My House
JC Feb 2017
I open doors to rooms,
walk halls with no end or destination,
through a house that God made
for me,
but left no plan nor directions,
just me to wander through its possibilities,
lost in its vast interior,
no lights but that I provide,
illuminating the immediate now,
and nothing else.
I climb stairs with no end,
enter rooms so black with fear
that I scream,
and run,
too scared to close them again,
then on to the next,
again, and again.
A house that God made?
So I was told..
but that was long ago
and now it seems like
the lie it appeared to be
when first I received the key
to a place too black to be
any part of heaven,
any part of eternity,
any part of an afterlife
promised to you and me.
A house that God made?
No, this place I wander,
this place with no end
nor final destination,
was crafted somewhere else,
by something else,
who left me here to die.
I ran from flames,
ran to here to hide,
and hide I did.
I even hid from God.
My hand grasps the way,
to another room,
I turn the **** slowly,
open a door to another room,
as dark as the last....
it leads to another passage,
always deeper into the house,
none lead outside anymore,
where maybe I'd be seen.
Yet I walk,
I search,
I will not die,
not today.
Jan 2017 · 196
The Night Visitors
JC Jan 2017
They appear in the dark,
under the soft glow of the moonlight,
teeth bared,
slipping into your dreams.
Once they lived in the outer reaches
of your perimeter,
where you slept..
and ate..
and dug yourself in.
Quietly a hand reaches for the wire,
slips inside,
closes in.
Then as now,
dawn chases them away,
and the game begins anew,
at night, in the dark,
but nobody dies this time.
Whispers drive you to the floor,
where you sweat,
and shiver,
and maybe cry a bit...
remembering the blood.
A bed takes shape,
a dresser,
pictures on the wall
as you rise to your knees,
glad to be alive,
once again,
in the dark,
under the soft glow...
of the moonlight.
JC 2009
Jan 2017 · 170
The Homecoming
JC Jan 2017
The Homecoming

The sun warms the back of her neck,
as she walks along the dusty road,
and sees the path to the river,
overgrown now,
but still clear enough in its track
to show the way.
She pushes the hair away from her face,
grayer now then before,
and she stills her heart, her breath,
                        listening to the wind.
Staring at the break in the trees
where the track once led,
she faintly hears the cries of children,
leaping into cool waters,
laughing at the shock of it
wiping away the dust and sweat
and the heat of summer.
All those boys, her brothers,
and a friend or two,
teasing.. trying to leave her behind,
but in the end a hand grasped hers,
and tag along she did….
her brothers smiling at the fun of it all,
her smiling back,
safe in the knowledge of their love.
All those days and summers,
one year blurring into the next
and they all thought it was forever.
But then the letters came,
all those boys were called and left
and she was truly alone,
this time the game for real,
but she waited…
…alone…
for their return.
But never again did she see those boys of summer,
and walk the path to the river
or feel it’s cool embrace.
She remembered now,
tossing dirt and flowers on their graves,
as one by one they came home,
and this time the hand that grasped her own,
was the lifeless grip of her Father,
all the smile gone from his face,
the light gone from his eyes.
She cried then and cries now,
as she turns and walks back to the farm,
empty now but for the memories inside.
She looks at the sign, “For Sale”,
as she drives away,
ready to fly to the far place she ran,
to forget….
.. she shivers in the sun,
cold now with the arms of the dead
embracing her.
She cries to herself, inside,
as she’s done all these years,
and thinks of the river.
                                              JC 2009
Jan 2017 · 169
Lost in America
JC Jan 2017
It was a road,
no more, no less,
leading to a wooded place
seen from the highway.
I took that road that day,
no thought given,
no hesitation,
driving straight on to it,
and left my life behind.
I was lost in America,
adrift in car,
as surely as a boat
tossed by the sea
in a storm.
The road narrowed,
no turn possible,
only straight ahead
and into ever darkening places,
a green so dense it was black,
almost a solid wall
of wood and earth and rock.
I slowed,
but continued on,
there was nowhere
else to go.
All roads end,
I thought..
at least in the world,
the world I'd come from,
and whether I was still in it.
Was I sure anymore?
No, and still,
not then,
not now,
still traveling in the dark.
I don't drive the car,
I ride it,
like a boat in a river
led by the current
to where it wants to go.
I want to go home,
I think,
but can't remember it anymore.
I'm not sure.
Where is it now,
my home,
the place where I was born?
Can I be lost,
lost in America?
I go on,
ever deeper into the woods,
looking for a light,
of the moon,
of the sun,
of another living soul.
The wheels turn,
on their own,
of their own volition,
and I,
I grip the wheel,
and watch through the glass,
and look,
and hope,
for the end.
JC 2009
Jan 2017 · 215
The Saddest of Songs
JC Jan 2017
Sometimes, more often than not,
a poem slides beside me,
walks into the room,
places a hand on my shoulder,
and whispers its way to a page.
It travels to rooms in my heart,
built by those I love,
who dwell there all alone until..
..until its time to close and lock the door,
and slowly walk the stairs,
to somewhere else to cry.
A poem slides beside me,
and writes itself,
hand over hand it pours to the page,
and blurs my vision to right here,
right now,
and leads me where it does.
A song too sad to be sung
to another,
a song to be sung alone on a page,
a page of another’s devising.
Like the lives that are passing,
the pages turn,
added to another story,
on pages written long before.
A poem sits beside me,
and tells me a story
and places its hand in mine,
and sings its story softly,
the saddest song I know.
To those who I love,
To those who've left me,
To those who care.
Jan 2017 · 318
Night Children
JC Jan 2017
On quiet nights the children come,
                                          From distant places in my past,
                                          And quietly their footsteps fall
                                          They’ve run so far and fast.

                                          I hear them as they play and laugh
                                          And peer around the trees,
                                          I turn to see them, but they’re gone,
                                          a soft and gentle breeze.                                    
      
                                          Do they run among the clouds,
                                          or here on dampened ground?
                                          I cannot tell, I cannot see,
                                          They’re nowhere to be found.

                                           I worry that they may be cold,            
                                           Does someone tuck them in?
                                           Soft blankets do they cover with,
                                           to fend off cool night winds?

                                           For now I listen in the dark,
                                           And revel in their play.
                                           And wonder where they’re going to,
                                           When night turns into day.

                                           So now I wait ‘til daylight ends,
                                           The sun to set, the moon to rise,
                                           And hope the children never see,
                                           the tears well in my eyes.

                                           Nights are when they get to play
                                           To be what they should be.
                                           To run, to dance, to jump and sing
                                           all this because of me.

                                          Some day I hope to hold their hands,
                                          and walk with them awhile.
                                          And not just hear them as they play,
                                          but watch and see them smile.

                                          And then I’ll kneel before them both,
                                          And look them in the eye,
                                          And ask them if they can forgive,
                                          it was me that made them die.
Jan 2017 · 184
How are you (really)
JC Jan 2017
You ask, "How are you?",
but rush past lest I answer,
and take of your time,
in your busy day,
as if you really care.
I want to talk,
to tell you how I am,
and ask for help,
but I'm not fast enough anymore,
and I have no other place
but here,
in the street,
with those who couldn't
care less
if they tried,
throwing questions on my life
like stones,
skipped on a pond,
as they run,
hurrying to oblivion,
plastic jobs,
plastic houses,
a cookie cutter life
soccer and a dog,
and me left behind.
"Hey, call me",
behind a smile as they run
away
of course.
I walk,
head down,
it's easier,
that way.
Jan 2017 · 276
They Only Come at Night
JC Jan 2017
They come in the night,
running down moonbeams,
and I hear them,
laughing,
shadows playing hide and seek
or tag…
maybe jumping rope…
I don’t know.
I run to the window,
I try to see,
But they’re gone again,
around the corner, behind a bush
out of sight from me.
I leave my warm bed,
and open my door to the cold, night wind
but it carries them away,
and now they cry, as do I.
Each night they come,
each night I seek them out,
each night since they hide,
from me, and why not?
I took them to this place,
the playground of the ******,
cold and dark and alone
with no loving hand to tuck them in,
or the warmth of their mother’s arms.
I was God that day, to them.
Old testament , raining fire
taking the first born child…
and the second as well..
and brought Hell to the Earth
on one sunny afternoon.
Again, I hear them
just out of sight,
running, laughing without joy,
pointing at me,
and asking “Why?”
I have no answer to that,
I only know the “Who”,
But they know that.
At the end for me,
I hope to see them again,
this time to hold them close,
and explain the sins of men,
and tuck them into bed, to sleep.
Jan 2017 · 138
As it Passes
JC Jan 2017
Sitting on the banks of the river,
a branch flows slowly by
carried by the river to a place downstream,
a place he cannot see.....
not today, at any rate, not today.
A leaf sails past, spinning and
dancing with the wind in the sun
flying to a finish far away,
in a race with memories and time.
The graying man sits on the banks of the river,
a pen in his hand, and records the age,
and the soon to be long ago’s of his life,
and all the while watching the water pass
and listening to his stories told in whispers
to a sky that never cared, and writes it anyway,
only to place the pages in the drawer,
and hide them 'til the furthest tomorrow.
The sunshine starts to slip away,
and shadows come to play in the trees
and the smallest branch looms larger,
more important in the dusk than it ever was
when the daylight shone upon it.
And still, with failing eyes and other ills,
the words flow free,
following the river along its banks,
to a place it has to end,
a part of a larger self
a line of pasts reaching out to a present and a time
and touching someone’s son......
too far away to know whose tales he reads,
from a dusty book he found in a pile for sale,
.....it only cost a quarter.
And that was the value of the stories told,
to the river as it flowed
along the banks it traveled, long ago.
Dec 2016 · 195
He's mine
JC Dec 2016
It never changes,
not that
no matter what
disaster
he falls into
again
and again.
He's mine,
with all
which that
entails.
I see him
always, always
smaller than he is
in real time
in real life.
I carry him
still
in my mind
and memories
as I walk the floor
and wish him
into sleep
and quiet rest.
I cry
softly
in MY sleep
seeing him now
as he is
a boy
not fitting
into the man
he's become,
and dealing
with his discomfort
like the child
he remains
inside.
He's mine.
He always will be.
some things
never change
cannot change
will not change
and he's mine
until I die.
Oct 2016 · 218
Sometimes Nothing Matters
JC Oct 2016
Sometimes nothing matters,
relative to an event,
other than
the event
itself.
Sometimes nothing changes,
or impacts
or effects
an event
itself.
Sometimes nothing excuses
or justifies
or explains
an event
itself.
Sometimes an event
just is
or was
the truth of
itself.
Sometimes nothing matters
but the horror
the occurrence
of an event
itself.
Sometimes nothing matters...
Oct 2016 · 162
Doors
JC Oct 2016
I felt you pass,
saw the door open
then close
as you walked
from one room
to another.
I hope it leads you
to the places and friends
I lost before.
You'll have in common
a love for me,
genuine and unadorned,
and loyalty
and a past
and paths walked
together.
Say "Hello"
to Mike
and Johnny C
and all the rest,
give them a hug
from me.
I miss you
but feel you in
the breeze,
like the others.
The door closed,
I did hear that,
as you left
and walked away.
Goodbye old friend
I'll see you again
some day.
Jul 2016 · 140
Dead Children
JC Jul 2016
Dead children,                                                                                                       if you've seen them fresh,
so to speak,
look like dolls,
porcelain
white
with all the blood
drained
from their veins.
I've seen them
done them
accident or not.
Some things
you cannot be
just sorry for.
It's not enough
in the scheme
of things.
Dead children
stay with you
sleep with you
eat with you
and remind you
every day
of their demise.
Dead children
are not
to be
denied
nor forgotten
nor excused
nor
and especially
justified.
there is none
for that
not ever.
This is the tale
you walk from
and never
ever speak of.
And sadly,
the one
that defines you.
Dead children are not
and cannot
be denied.
Good night,
they say.
Jun 2016 · 290
In my quiet rooms
JC Jun 2016
In my quiet times,
in my quiet rooms,
looking out
at shadows,
I see
I hear
a world
nobody else
can see.
The soft
Whiskey,
Honey tinged,
swirls in the glass
coats it
coats my
tongue
my throat
It makes my
quiet rooms
and quiet times
more real
in the fog
like so long
ago.
Nobody else
can see me
it appears
I'm a myth
or a story,
no more real
than a tale
told to
a child.
I hear the music
soft and distant
and the clink
of glasses
being washed
and set upon
the bar.
Still,
I am alone
in my quiet time,
in my quiet room
in a crowd
I cannot see.
Jun 2016 · 147
Well, yeah
JC Jun 2016
Well yeah,
different than you?
who'd you ****?
Yeah, well
there it is
...man.
You never
washed
blood from
your fingers
yet tell
ME
how it's
done.
Yeah
that's rich
and me
I'm the one
losing skin
from scrubbing.
Well yeah,
Hell yeah
it comes
off
hard.
I'll do it again
do it
NOW
if you
I said,
YOU
push
the
issue.
Like YOU
have a
clue
why I cry
myself
to sleep.
*******
all of you
but especially
YOU.
Well yeah,
HELL yeah
it's
the Truth.
JC Jun 2016
Thank you,
lovers lost,
and lovers,
never found.
Thanks to you
I rise up
and know
in my heart
where all of the holes are.
Thank you
at least
for that.
Thank you
for proof
the Sun will rise
the Moon will rise
and the Earth
will turn.
I'll love you for that
for always
and in all ways
and again,
thanks to you.
Thank you
for the love
of a smoke
in the dark.
Thank you
for simple
pleasures
made bigger
and sweeter
thanks to you.
Thank you
for kisses
in the sun
and perfumes
in the wind
and dreams.
Thanks to you
the sun
and the moon
will rise
at least for me.
Jun 2016 · 235
My Trial
JC Jun 2016
I faced you once,
long ago
surprised at who you were
more surprised
at who
you were NOT.
No black cloaked
faceless ghost,
pointing a bony claw at me,
but a woman,
luring me to her bed.
Her soft bed,
so very soft
and warm,
and with you in it.
A temptress,
not a thief,
as I'd always
seen you in
my mind.
Who knew
the call
would be
a whisper
not the
cackling cries
of an old crone
echoing in the dark.
But I faced you then
and refused your offers
and many times since.
I enjoyed too  much
proving others wrong,
who saw me dying young,
yet died before me.
I smile at that,
not wishing them dead,
but not sorry either,
glad to watch them go.
I smile on every awakening
and the surprise
it brings to so many
and go on
about
my days.
I won
this game
already.
I'll give you
your kiss
when ready
and I'll determine
that
the when and the
end.
Jun 2016 · 236
A Death from Long Ago
JC Jun 2016
It stays in my view,
so long after
almost a comedy
at this point
but darker
the laughs,
forced
through clenched teeth.
Sightless,
staring at the sky
the dreams ended
of faith
of love
of family
and friends
1 small projectile
aimed true,
tearing out
lungs
and air
and blood,
by me.
I lose no sleep
not now
not then
not ever.
I exulted
at the time
joyful in his miss
and my success
and my life
and my future.
Looking back,
my regrets lie only in
the wasted time and effort
the lack of positive use
of my gift
and my life
for all of these years.
Of that, yes,
I'll apologise.
Not for my aim
or his miss
or his blood
on my hands.
you'd have to be there
to understand
the joy
and the rush
and the addiction
to cheating
death itself.
Again
I offer no apologies
nor regrets
at a soul
added to the chain.
Jun 2016 · 248
In MY Sleep
JC Jun 2016
In MY sleep,
not yours,
I travel places,
black,
with their blood
and dying.
You don't know,
you can't know,
and you'll never
join me.
They're as real
as the light
in the daytime,
to me,
at least,
and that's
all
that
counts
you know.
I go there
I see it,
painted on
the inside
of my eyes.
For the rest
of my
life,
in MY sleep,
I travel.
Jun 2016 · 423
The Last Wave
JC Jun 2016
So it's gone now,
done now,
the finality of
the
last
goodbye.
Who knew?
Not me,
I never
saw
it
coming.
I expected
forever,
forgot things end
against
your
wishes.
So, a hand raised
silent regrets
the
last
wave.
I wonder if
he knew,
his
back
turned.
That's the
saddest part
of
it
all.
Feb 2016 · 195
Clocks and Things
JC Feb 2016
I can hear it clearly
now
more than yesterday or before
the winding down of the clock
and the bills coming due
for a past
of centrist decisions
of self
of failing
of the idiocy of immediate satisfaction
with no regard for the obvious.
All these years and all the battles
turned into a war within
and begs the question,
"How do you lose a war
with your own desires?"
I did,
and bleed from the cuts
made by my own hands.
I hear the winding down
of the clock
but have lost the key to redemption.
Dec 2015 · 224
Behind the Glass
JC Dec 2015
Beware that old man in the corner,
sitting quietly
scanning the room.
The wrinkles that you see
are War Maps,
made of hard bark,
not paper.
Ancient wood is the hardest,
tough to cut or smooth
or shape to YOUR desires.
He looks at his glass
but THROUGH his glass
missing nothing beyond it
while hiding behind it
prepared to move
if he has to.
Hard bark indeed,
beware that old man in the corner.
Oct 2015 · 219
Time
JC Oct 2015
I'd been with her
tried to leave but never could
though she aged and
left me wanting.
We once looked straight and direct
into each other's faces
but now an occasional glance
from the side, or behind a hand or glasses.
She trailed a long and tattered scarf behind her,
picking up dust and memories
blurring the pictures knitted on it
making them hard to see
or remember.
I'd chase her out the door
if I only had the strength
and desire.
It's easier to sit in the chair,
by the window
and wait for the door to close.
Sep 2015 · 232
The Trail
JC Sep 2015
I walked a trail
through darkened woods,
climbing ever higher.
I met a man on a bend,
eating his own feet.
I asked in horror,
"Why, my Brother, why!?"
He replied through bloodied lips,
"I'm tired of the trails I leave behind."
I wept,
but plodded on,
leaving him to his fate
and memories
and slowly ran from mine.
Sep 2015 · 202
Conversations
JC Sep 2015
A discussion in a bar,
smokey, dimly lit...
one man turns to another,
and asks, "Tell me a unique experience, would you?
The other sits quietly,
stares at the mirror,
and softly says, "I murdered 5 people once."
The silence is thick as mud,
and he adds "It was the right thing to do, or seemed so at the time.
The funny thing is... nothing else ever mattered,
as much as it should have
later on".
The room grew quieter
and drew closer in.
Nobody asked anything again
the bartender poured drinks all around.
Aug 2014 · 744
The Cupboard
JC Aug 2014
It hangs on the wall, in its place, solid, unremarkable. Outside, the seasons change, the Sun rises and sets, time passes. The cupboard is full now, and has been for many years, a place to put things and close the doors, hiding them away from casual guests and inquiries, one in a row of solid boxes mounted to the wall, doors are straight, hinges oiled, it hangs true where ceilings meet walls, and walls meet floors, and floors absorb the many steps of those within. And I, I spend my days filling the cupboard with past lives and past Life, and no one looks within but me. Its shelves are full now, but rearranged at times, the faces to the back for now, the names placed in the front for easy reaching, times and dates to the side, all within reach and sight for when I need to look and remember, safe behind the oaken doors I’ve closed. A rare day indeed, of late, do I open it, washing away the dust of years, taking notes and inventory, each item in its place, filed in memories and dreams, then closed again. A half empty glass sits on the counter below, the setting sun throwing thin beams of light through the window, the cupboard now in evening shadows, waits… and stays solidly quiet in the darkening room, content with its place and its purpose. Quietly, night falls, birds hush, stars gleam dimly in a darkened sky, and within, ceilings meet walls, walls meet floors, and floors wait for quiet steps and the cupboard still hangs true and straight, a place for a sleepless hand to open its doors and place a dream within. It waits… unremarkable… solid…it waits.
                                                                                                JC 2005
Aug 2014 · 287
The Revelation
JC Aug 2014
How was I supposed to know,
that killing would come so hard,
and last so long,
and do what it did to my soul?
Why was the part of living death,
the thing that hangs on deep
clawing it's way into our hearts,
left out of the preparations of war?
How was I to know the cost,
of pulling a trigger,
or wielding a knife,
not to the person killed,
but to me?
Nobody told me ever,
not even once,
or hinted,
at the destruction to self of war.
How was I to know?
I was young,
and a boy,
and dependent on them,
on the soldiers who taught me how.
I set my traps,
I was taught.
I moved like a cat,
I was taught.
I could live in the wild,
I was taught.
I could best them all,
no matter the game,
I was taught.
Nobody taught me to live,
afterwards,
or to forget,
afterwards,
or to feel again,
afterwards.
How was I to know?
They never told me those things.
Aug 2014 · 284
In My Dreams I see...
JC Aug 2014
In my dreams I see,
the starlight in your eyes,
leading me from the darkened rooms
I’ve placed my life in all these years,
content with the lack of sight and sound,
of warmth and tender touch.
Your smile beckons, your hand outstretched,
with promises of warmth and silken skin.
Soft kisses and softer whispers meant for me,
And me alone, light amongst the shadows.
I wake to an idea that you exist,
somewhere real and just for me.
I earned, I earned the right to have you,
long ago when all the child left me
and I made you in my sleep,
a sleep I might not wake from.
I smelled the perfume in your hair,
as it spilled across my face in the dark,
while listening to the distant thunder,
raining death and fire in the mountains beyond.
And you led me away to quiet places to heal, to rest,
I knew you then, before we met and touched,
and so many years to find you in between,
a waste of precious time and peace,
of years spent seeing shadows.
How many mornings came too soon,
and helped you drift away once more,
into the dreams that made you?
Stay this time, and lie still in the night,
keeping the bitter cold at bay.
Hold me softly in your arms and say,
“I love you, and always will”.
When you look at anything too hard, your vision becomes blurred and unreal. I wasted much of my life looking for this girl, and never found her. It's much too late now, I'm sure she belongs to someone else more fitting and deserving, without the blood on his hands.
Aug 2014 · 316
Schizophrenic Songs
JC Aug 2014
A song plays,
inside my head,
with words for me,
and me alone,
and sings of the dead.
Echoes and whispers,
a shadows voice,
singing lullabies and children’s songs,
but sung for ghosts,
of ghosts,
and reflections in the mirror.
The music plays in the place I live,
and keeps me from the used to be’s,
no longer hearing calls to return
from those that love me.
Those doors are closed
and all the songs are mine,
and mine alone.
Under the blankets
in a bed I never leave,
words are sung,
and nobody hears but me.
I drift in the space of the words,
and the music played along,
to wonder,
"Am I dead too"?
But the songs play with no answers,
to a question from another time,
an existential answer to
"I am"?
"I hear, therefore.....
what"?
Songs play,
and sing of the dead.
Aug 2014 · 529
A Snow in Summer
JC Aug 2014
A Snow in Summer.
                                
                                               Like snow that follows Spring,
                                               When flowers start to rise,
                                               It’s wrong for certain things to be,
                                               Like when a child dies.

                                               A Moon that shines on sunlit days,
                                               a cold and damning light,
                                               as wrong as youth that fades and leaves,
                                               forever from our sight.
            
                                               A warming wind in wintertime,
                                               while in a swirling storm,
                                               is not to be the way of things                               
                                               nor death in youthful form.
                                                           ­ 
                                                One left to mourn a missing friend,
                                                one left of what was three,
                                                Again it’s like a summer’s snow.
                                                It’s not supposed to be.
                                                                ­                        JC 2004
Aug 2014 · 266
The Eyes in the Mirror
JC Aug 2014
It's not me looking out from the mirror,
and hasn't been for too long to remember.
The eyes that look out from the glass,
the face they lie in,
the tales they tell,
and the lack of life within,
are lights from the grave,
a path for the dead to walk among us.
I see the monster inside,
as clear as a sunlit day,
but he hides in the mirror,
and he's hidden from family,
and he's hidden from children and friends,
but he's never hidden from you.
You left when you saw him clear,
ran from the terror,
ran from the rage.
How long before the blood
washed from your skin,
and the death smell left the room
you lived in,
or has sleeping with the Devil turned you 'round,
turned your very soul to his,
turned you.... too?
I see you still,
as you once were then,
before the fear was in your eyes,
and leaving was your salvation.
I remember love,
and tender whispers, late,
in bed,
and I remember when it turned,
when the stranger came to the room,
and stayed,
and how he made you cry.
I look in the eyes in the mirror,
no longer strange to me,
but then no longer me,
and try to name the man I see,
looking out from the reflection there.
For me, he only lives in the mirror,
it's still the man I was,
when I look from within,
but for you I'm the man in the mirror,
I know that's the man you left,
as he's all that you could see.
I don't cry for your leaving,
I cry for me.
JC 2009
Aug 2014 · 224
The Tree
JC Aug 2014
It was a walk to the largest tree,
deep into the woods that ran along the brook,
where it shadowed the rocks that surely God had made,
just for sitting under it’s limbs, out of the sun.
Was the walk always this long, he wondered?
No, probably not, when play and mystery lay at the end,
not memories of  all that’s gone.
The sound of the water singing through the stones,
filling the pool cut through the shale,
was the same, but more so,
without the screaming of children swinging from the rope,
it seemed so much higher then.
Bobby swung the furthest, always…
He was the first to go, and not return.
And Lenny, god he could run,
before he sat in a chair for the rest of his life.
And what made Jimmy, who always swam,
“like a fish” we said,
place the hose in the window, start the car,
to die in his garage, alone, with a note,
a note that just said “goodbye, I’m sorry”?
And here I am, looking at the tree, once again,
where we all truly lived for the one and only time,
before the world found us.
But the tree still stood, almost waiting,
its roots deeper than my life.
I looked where the rope used to be,
could still see the worn ring around the bark,
and fondled the rope in my hand…
thinking maybe one last swing to the pool,
before one last swing.
The breeze whispered through its limbs,
And the shadows ran along the banks of the creek
where children used to play.
                                                     JC 2009
Aug 2014 · 384
The Key
JC Aug 2014
You never know when the key will turn, when it will appear in your hand, and into the lock of a door long closed. A slight twist of the wrist, and the door now opens to a room kept in the dark, filled with shadows. You enter, reluctant, and the cobwebs part, and you leave footprints in the dust from now to then. You see the pictures once again, of long dead friends and those that killed them, and those you managed to even the score, side by side on a mantle of memories, placed there long ago. And then the door closed, and all forgotten, until the turn of the key. How it appears and why, are questions without answers, but it always fits the lock, and it always turns without effort, and what lies within is always the same as before. Sadness in a long gone face, or a name, or a place you never wanted to see again. A mirror hangs on the wall, but the face within is a younger you, with eyes too cold for the years upon it, and a smile that speaks of death delivered, too hard for a man so young, yet there it was and there it is, hidden until today, and yesterday, and other days when the lock was turned by the key. You’ll leave again, and close the door, and lock it tight… until the next time. You never know when the key will turn, only that it will, again and again, for the rest of your days.
                                                           JC 4/3/07

— The End —