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Dimly glow the fireflies
In the densely wooded grove
The creek beside the promenade
Sounds like the whispers of the cove

In its solitary peace
The carp repress confessions
In the quiet emerald water
Live sorrows and obsessions

And when the cicadas buzz
They are like a music box
Young love is their handle and springs
They are the muse the world mocks

The melody of passion
Bleeds like the sap of the trees
On lukewarm nights of dancing stars
Love enters the world as breeze

A pair of lovers awaits
To live together at last
And as the date comes closer here
The future is not colorfast

Life's hourglass so expires
And there is not one who grieves
His final rest is too costly
So now he floats with the leaves

There's no wedding to foresee
Thus the bridge became of use
Her toes hang off the bridge again
But this time she holds a noose

Oh the irony of love
It's as the cicadas sang
"Be joyful now in summer's heat,
By our love, we all will hang."

The silly girl hanged herself
And she hung there not alone
Cicadas sang her melody
As her neck skin removed from her bone

And so she hung there quite still
Until her corpse decomposed
Her tale was not quite as haunting
As the music the cicadas composed
We’d known each other forever, or all the time that counted, anyways,
Sitting side-by-side on the bus from kindergarten
Until you and your mom moved up to Fifth Street,
At the cafeteria table, on the swings at rec
(Despite the considerable risk of contracting girl cooties)
And always but always on the gym bleachers for movie day,
Which, on the day in question, was "Paddle To The Sea",
And as I sat and watched the small, hand painted wooden craft
Improbably navigate the great blue ribbon
Bisecting the land of apple pie and Chevrolet
All the way to the Gulf of Mexico and into the great, blue ocean
It was as nothing else--that gym, the other kids
The comforting clack of the ancient eight-millimeter projector,
And, for that forty-odd minutes, even you--did not, could not exist.
As the lights came up, I looked over in your direction
Noticing the remnants of tears on your cheeks.
Hey, it’s OK to cry, I said
(Girls allowed such luxuries, after all)
But you whirled around at glared at me
(Even at that early age, stunned at the depth and breadth
Of my misunderstanding, my utter stupidity)
And said in a tone which neither sought nor brooked argument
That just can’t happen. No toy boat ever makes it to the ocean,
And for any number of days afterward
You would, apropos of nothing, angrily blurt out
How stupid, stupid, stupid that movie was,
And how you hoped they would cancel movie day from now on.

We had, nature taking its course and all that
(As I used to say to you at the time,
It’s not my fault you ended up with ****)
Our dalliance in that murky interval beyond friendship,
Fumbling about your bedroom
On those afternoons in-between sport seasons
Or on the old Friday night in the back of the balcony
At the old Rialto Theatre
(In its final death throes at the time, deserted enough most nights
I could have taken you right in the front row wholly unnoticed)
Though always within limits,
As you had no designs on becoming
Some drop-out baby mama patiently home-bound,
Spending mornings sweeping the detritus of the mill
From some weathered, crumbling front stoop
While waiting for me to come home from a spot on the line
As we lived happily hand-to-mouth ever after.

It could not, of course, have lasted.
The fall came where you headed off to Cornell,
An unlikely landing spot for a mill-town girl;
We sort of stayed in touch for a couple of months,
But come the tail-end of your second semester
You simply disappeared without a trace.
The sheriff’s boys up there had assumed you’d jumped
Into one of the scenic gorges
Which were the pride and joy of the town’s Chamber of Commerce.  
(I’d laughed in spite of myself, the notion that you would end up
In some pool below a waterfall or some shallows of an inlet
Almost too cosmically comic to fathom)
Though there was a rumor that someone fitting your description
Had dove into the Seneca Canal
(But clad in a bathing suit,
Like someone enjoying a brief, early-season swim)
And for the briefest of moments I had a vision of you swimming
Up to Clinton’s Ditch to where it met with the Oswego Canal
And the big lake, going up the frosty St. Lawrence
And thence to the very Atlantic itself,
But I knew that was a fancy, indeed an outright madness
Inconceivable in the small-town cosmology
Of a young girl intimate in the true nature of toys and oceans.
There are, dear daughter, oceans between us
(At your insistence, though I say this without rancor)
A buffer from the memories of our sad antics,
Pottery reduced to shards, doors slammed in such a manner
That the very jambs ached in regret,
The hinges wept in the weight of their sadness,
Though the human heart, mapped by its own wan geography,
Is immune to such trifles as mere distance.
We have tarried in foul gardens of sophistry,
Engaged in predictable shows of dramatics,
As if our outbursts can be measured in some calculus
Seeking to ascertain our devotion
In the rending of garments, the shrieking collapse upon the floor,
For it has been revealed to me
That the spectacle of our grand lamentations,
Worn by us like the finest silver-threaded garments,
Are no more than the strutting and preening
Of some noisome, foul peacock.
No, we must accept, indeed embrace, the notion
That our love is as imperfect as our selves,
And that we must approach its altar
Not with grandiloquence and haughty pomp,
But meekly, bearing the simple gift our person
Modestly cloaked in the simple black gown of humility.
The Marquesa was one of the unlucky individuals whom were cast into the abyss by Thornton Wilder in the novel The Bridge Of San Luis Rey, which is as **** fine a novel as has ever been unjustly more-or-less forgotten.
Nine years and still
we cradle our grief
carefully close,
like groceries
in paper bags.

Eventually the milk
will make its way
into the refrigerator;
the canned goods
will find their home
on pantry shelves.

Most things find
their proper place.

Eventually the hummingbirds
will ricochet against scorched air,
their delicate beaks stabbing
like needles into the feeder filled
with red nectar on the back porch.

Eventually our child
will make her way
back to us. Perhaps.

But I’ve heard
that shooting
****** feels
like being
buried under
an avalanche
of cotton *****.

For now it’s another
week, another month,
another trip to Safeway.

We drive home and wonder
why it is always snowing.
Behind a curtain of snow,
brake lights pulse, turning
the color of cotton candy,
dissolving into ghosts.

And with each turn,
the groceries shift
in the seat behind us.
From the spot where
our daughter used to sit,
there is a rustling sound—

a murmur of words
crossed off yet another list,
a language we’ve budgeted
for but cannot afford to hear.
Similar feelings have never arisen in this body.
I am filled in my core with electric
Wishing Washing, Cascading, lightly
up through my center, up through my chest
With in me, are waves of unexplainable.
Tides of Ecstasy, moving.

Laughing, crying waves of  emotion.
The music touches me, the thought of silence

touches me

You touch me.

I see the sky and I feel the wind, and God Touches me.

and I am filled with ecstasy.

How could I ever lose sight
of a feeling so true
A light that is so bright
shining at me from you

A son in the sky
A quarter till two
An Eternal life
A Half wanned Moon

And when the Stars pulse I surge
and when the Sky speaks, I learn
and when You touch me I feel
and when I  Breathe deep

I can tell you everything thats wrong,

Who knows whats real,

*who knows whats real
Aubrey was confronted by her mom in the kitchen as she was making her lunch for school the next day. "Two sandwiches?" her mom questioned. "What's up with that, Aubrey? Since when do you eat more than one sandwich?" Actually Aubrey ate well. It was always a healthy lunch for her, perhaps a sandwich with some lettuce and tomato on it, or something cooked and leftover. She rarely indulged in sweet snacks, like her brother and sister did, never going without a couple pieces of fruit in her bag.  

Audrey was a freshman in high school, and she was a forthright girl. There was no need to hide anything, so  she replied nonchalantly, "It's not for me. It is for Wade Hodak. He doesn't have a sandwich in his lunch".

With her hands on her hips, Audrey's mom smelled something fishy. Was Wade taking advantage of her? She replied, "And why not? Since when is it up to you to look after him?"

"Mom!" Aubrey protested. "He is lucky his mom even gets any child support from his dad! Her paycheck doesn't come til the end of the week. Sometimes, he eats okay, but sometimes they just don't have the money! You know how it is with bills and stuff! It is usually just a bag of chips and whatever else he can find"

Aubrey's mom only vaguely knew of Wade Hodak. What little she knew of his mother, his mom seemed on the up-and-up. She remembered that the woman had to pull her daughter out of  dance class because she couldn't afford it, the same class her younger daughter was in.

Aubrey's mom smiled and gave her a kiss and a hug, "Peanut butter and jelly?" Well, don't lay it on too thin.", she advised.  Aubrey smiled big, a sweet smile with those braces on her teeth, and she was becoming a beautiful, young woman, both inside and out.

"That's what I was hoping you would say", Aubrey said and added, gratefully. "Thanks mom".  Peanut butter and jelly it was.
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