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Jan 2021 · 220
My Craft Ale in this Pub
Christos Rigakos Jan 2021
With water, malt, and yeast, and hops I dare
to craft an odd new ale with full due care
I've aged in hickory and old oak jugs,
and serve a round in handcraft German mugs,
to all the patrons drinking at this pub,
yet most just sniff and snortle up a snub.
Instead they order shots of foam-frothed ****,
imbibe and guzzle to their drunken bliss,
then slur a slew of sloshed-up limericks.
And to my ale they kick against the ******.
Rhyming Couplets
Christos Rigakos Dec 2020
The clay *** on the shelf that one day fell,
     And broke to shards and splinters of itself,
     Bemoaned its fate, bewailed its shards to tell
     The other pots of clay upon the shelf:
"Oh, help my rotund but so stricken frame!"
     "And meld the cracks and all the parts of me!"
     "Behold the mess I am, behold my shame!"
     "For what am I if I can't hold my tea?"
Oh, silly ***, what are these things you say?
     Who knows you better than your planner-plotter?
     Yet you confide in other pots of clay?
     Why not instead confide in your Potter?
They cannot help others if not themselves,
So seek the one beyond the pots and shelves.

(C)2020, Christos Rigakos
English/Shakespearean Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Dec 2020
Inquire not of me, nor of my life!
     All knowledge, by instruction, is withheld.
     Our blood line cut, your kin no more my wife,
     your right to know by your own hand dispelled.
Your silence had you ousted from my heart,
     when I besought your most beloved names.
     Your hush kept me at bay, and us apart,
     as I sought you, my son-ship you disclaimed.
Now if perchance a thought of me has raised,
     please quick extinguish it and mind me not.
     Why resurrect the ghost of one you've razed
     upon your kin's request, and made as naught?  
True love, when born, has immortality;
when false it lives only conditionally.

(C)2018, Christos Rigakos
English/Shakespearean Sonnet
Jul 2020 · 189
My Moon
Christos Rigakos Jul 2020
I travel nightly to and fro on windswept sandy dunes,
and watch the far side of the moon, for it won't face me here.

I hear the Mourning Dove start sighing meloncholy tunes
in morning light, which starts too soon, and always finds me here.

I ponder life so quizzically, and contemplate the rhunes,
for I must never ask the Moon, whose silence chills me here.

Behind the glowing clouds that veil the fine majestic moon,
the bride awaits beloved groom, as I stand watching here.

"I am your mate, have you forgotten, my dear silent Moon?"
"We are a single flesh, in tune.  Why have you left me here?"

"Your face aloft and turned away, to stars you wail and croon,"
"and seek your other now lost Lune, while I am waiting here!"

Her farthest edges faintly glow. I'd pay to watch her swoon,
to my heart's rhythm late in June, yet I'm imprisoned here.

My chest, that swells by what I knew of times our love did bloom,
deflates remembering its doom, and I am stranded here.

"Too high to reach, in clouds cocooned, my far beloved Moon,
return to me on Earth and soon, or find my bones still here.

(C)2020, Christos Rigakos
Jul 2020 · 118
Is a Foetus Not Human?
Christos Rigakos Jul 2020
The seed is in the fruit, indeed,
     the fruit is in the seed.
For what is it that grows from it,
     by coding that it reads?
And can it be a different fruit,
     if to this code it heeds?
It is compelled by code to swell,
     before by birth it's freed.
And as the seed becomes the fruit,
   the fruit's indeed the seed.

(C)2020, Christos Rigakos
Apr 2020 · 143
Corona's Lesson
Christos Rigakos Apr 2020
One's lofty dreams, ambitious goals, what not;
     One's self-esteem, self-worth, self-praise and such:
Delusions of a stumbling drunken sot!
     Esteemed values whose worth weighs not so much.
One's intimates, loves, friends become a crutch;
     Of comforts, safety, food, concerns and care
Held tightly, are released from one's own touch,
     When oxygen is scarce and breath is rare,
Corona's taught us very well the worth of air!

(C)2020, Christos Rigakos
Spenserian Stanza
Apr 2020 · 162
Love in the Time of Corona
Christos Rigakos Apr 2020
An unseen force has plagued the Earth at last,
     And shuttered man, and cleared his busy streets,
     Unlike those unseen forces of the past,
     For homes have now surpassed all man's retreats.
In New York City's heart, Third Avenue,
     Congested with Taxis, buses and such,
     The silence and the breeze are all so new,
     To few masked 'Yorkers, distanced not to touch.
Yet love abounds throughout our pestilence,
     Yes, there are still some swelled, afluttered hearts.
     Their masquerade is made with diligence,
     And tantric love is made six feet apart.
Those lovers not yet quarantined in homes,
Stare longingly like new masked garden gnomes.

(C)2020, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Dec 2019
All who have come into our lives and left,
     have taken us with them and we of them.
     Though these are parts of which we are bereft,
     they've left within the imprints of a gem.
So priceless are the memories of when
     They crossed our five bridges to leave their mark
     Upon our hearts, adorning time called Then,
     That one mere thought of Then inflicts a spark:
A subtle rain, or storm of lightning arc,
     Across the carpet clouds in skies of mind,
     Flash long-gone faces smiling, glint or stark--
     These gem imprints in imprints left behind.
Although we are long broken, set apart,
In memories we'll always be one heart.

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
Spenserian Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Dec 2019
her ***** turned an arid grave
     when she removed her heart
into her lover's hand to save
     before his downward cart
and now they live vicariously
within her loving memory
     her husband far removed and set apart

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Dec 2019
Whither thou goest, hither or thither?
     Goest thou thither or nay?
Thou claimest thou goest far thither most farthest,
     yet hither thou art till this day.
For all thou proclaimest, when thou oft complainest,
     thou movest not one whit today.
I dare say thou puffest thy chest and thou bluffest,
     for this is thy passionate way.

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Nov 2019
For every soul my soul does meet,
     they are a soulmate on their way.
I am the sole pressed under feet,
     replaced when fully worn away.
We are both sole-mates, they and I,
     most symbiotic, as you see.
And when they leave I carry nigh,
     the scent of memories of we.

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Sep 2019
When growing up I pushed away my father's molding hands,
     asserting I was different than he was and was my own,
     yet I allowed my friends to mold me, there I had been hewn,
     becoming them in function form and every fiber strand.
I disappointed him who spawned me from his very *****
     and saw me henceforth as a stranger living in his home.
     At last resigned to this demise he hid his hands and tone.
     I had betrayed my maker for a sack of thirty coins.
Far later I'd returned to him a prodigal old son,
     and hinted, showed and sang and danced his many favored tunes.
     Disinterested he questioned it.  No longer did he care.
These days I search my father's mind, though now it's surely gone,
     and seek those ancient treasures gone by very many moons,
     and wish he'd know that I am him though he's no longer there.

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
Italian/Petrarchan Sonnet with Iambic Heptameter and altered rhyme scheme.
Christos Rigakos Jun 2019
i dragged the blade across my skin
and bled the pain away
the curse that flowed around within
no longer had to stay

i huffed and could no longer feel
if i was still alive
and asked for beatings hard and real
to help me then revive

my face had blackened here and there
i morphed into one dead
i had no time to eat my hair
had left my waning head

in time i withered like a leaf
as autumn did arrive
and knew just by the weight of grief
my corpse was still alive

but one day as i sat in bed
and found an empty pad
i wrote the tale of my life's dread
the mourning of the sad

i cut the forms of letters there
the pen unstopped had bled
the curse into the morning air
and i would live instead

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos May 2019
I send her roses each and every day.
     She asks for reasons, they don't satisfy.
     This heart's expression is my only way
     to answer each and every question, why?
She plants each one inside a large glass vase.
     It fattens in its bulky green-red width.
     She waters it hourly just in case
     this bulk shrivel by one rose-breadth.
In truth they have no petals and no stem,
     no color and no subtle fragrant scent.
     The vase is her awareness of them.
     They are but words of love my passions sent.
For I am but a poor and broken soul,
whose love for my dear love raises me whole.

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
English / Shakespearean Sonnet
Christos Rigakos May 2019
The jolly fat woman who rode on a horse,
     galloped, galloped with a clackity-clack,
     on cobble stone streets as if under attack,
     from her great hunger pangs, of course.
It galloped and galloped until a great crack
     was felt and a screeching loud neigh was heard,
     that startled to pitch-panicked flight every bird,
     throwing the fat off its back.
She rose from the mud to wipe off and gird
     her honor back onto her jiggling *****,
     then ran to the inn where she haggled with fulsome,
     for a bowl of hot fish soup with curd.
She gained two more stone in her gluttonous course,
then haggled at stables for a much stronger horse.

(C)2018, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Jan 2015
We are to come and leave and not return,
But hand our secret scroll to those who'd be.
I'll pass the writings on which passed to me,
And shrink to blackened ash with flameless burn.

As far as those who'll be--of whom will earn,
That secret scroll containing some of me,
Quite like yet quite unlike, in no way me--
They'll mourn for I'll have gone and won't return.

To live on in a heart or memory,
Is not living or life or anything,
But trite consoling words of sympathy--

A metaphor or best a simile--
suspending truth, and grief that loss will bring.
In truth no more am I nor shall I be.

(C)2015, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Jan 2015
This evening, alone, I dim the light.
The needle crackles on the vinyl disk,
and Billy Holiday expounds.  The night
belongs to 1933.  I risk

forgetting all the present, modern days
sinking.  In leather deeply I recline,
absorbing all that special era plays,
and all I never lived are surely mine.

With every sip of bourbon on this night,
they come alive again through jazz and song,
from album cover pictures, black and white.
We dance in black ties, black tails all night long.

And when the morning sun has woken me,
I will have lived my night in history.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Nov 2014 · 973
the fount of youth
Christos Rigakos Nov 2014
i trained a bloodhound in my quest
     to find the fount of youth
upon its memory impressed
     the habits of a sleuth
round every rock and grass and tree
it spied what others could not see
     in search of one most abstract hopeful truth

the training ground was in the park
     where children roamed and played
the bloodhound, trained to bay and bark
     where innocence displayed
it sniffed the scent of every child
with purity not yet defiled
     its diligence always duly repaid

by daily treks its efforts grew
and by the same i surely knew
     the end was soon to be
round pools and lakes and finally
a river leading to the sea
     the fount of youth would soon belong to me

at last one day upon the dawn
     the time was now at hand
it came to me, my head it fawned
     its tail most quickly fanned
the hound had licked my head around
it barked and bayed and i had found
     the end was quite unlike what i had planned

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Septet Narrative
Christos Rigakos Nov 2014
Unpacking an old box I scrounged and found
a card for Mother's Day from my ex-wife,
professing love for mom that will abound
through time and space until the end of life.

Four years have passed--since first she filed divorce--
no card or letter, nor a seldom call.
A once abundant love could not be forced
to crease a smile, for it would now appall.

Why do I flinch once more and wonder how,
the love departs, which oaths swore never would?
Why they all say, "but things are different now,"
though hearts were sold as things that never could?

Amazing, how such endless loves quick end,
as flimsy tattered fabrics quickly rend.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Nov 2014 · 2.6k
I find myself...mesmerized
Christos Rigakos Nov 2014
I find myself...

by family photographs,
whose subjects all are...


the great aunt smiling,
frozen in mid-song,

the little boy squirming,
in her lap,

the tabby cat on the floor,
watching them both

all eyes looking,
frozen in mid-stare...

their actions,
frozen in mid-time...

those very vibrant,
living loves...



(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Free Verse
Christos Rigakos Nov 2014
The normal way of life is such:
          the old give way to young.
To understand does not take much,
          explained in simple tongue:
Adults that love do procreate.
Their selves they form and replicate,
          continuing the song which they have sung.

The first into the world are first
          to leave the world behind.
They dry and shrivel in their thirst,
          are ground to dust and rind.
They find their solace in their spawn,
inside whose flesh they carry on
          their signatures, in place of their old mind.

The next await their counted turn,
          with shovel at the hand;
enjoy the lives which must adjourn
          into the unseen land.
Then find a mate to spawn their own,
before their own flesh from the bone
          departs into the dryness of the sand.

Yet once upon a blood red moon,
          the normalcy defers.
The next in line depart too soon,
          in snares of life's dark lures.
The first must intern on the shelves
of crypts the flesh that holds their selves,
          and taste what to the next this life confers.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Septet Narrative
Nov 2014 · 824
Eight Years
Christos Rigakos Nov 2014
Eight years have not diminished buried pain,
nor dulled the temperature of love beheld.
We proudly wear your dark and crimson stain--
our mark of love, remembrance long held.

We miss that flesh, dismantled long ago,
that lived to fill our world so vibrantly,
which held on till by slumber had to go--
its vibrant spirit from it had to flee.

And now we hush a moment, welling tears,
remembering your life, recalling death,
to honor your own silence of eight years,
that so began with your own final breath.

The silence of your void rings in the ear,
the only sound of you remaining here.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Nov 2014
Upon this hill I plant the flag--
     Of every imp and scallywag,
rapscallion, rogue and rascal, knave--
      Whom kingdoms' laws could never save.

I gather every varlet, scamp,
      Around the bonfire of our camp,
And pass around the speaking torch,
      For storytelling tales that scorch,

To every sullied man, uncouth,
      Unwashed who smiles a scurvied tooth,
The scarlet-lettered harlot, *****,
      Who loves to scallygag her mensch,

The whoredom-loving scallyhag,
      Who trollops round the pirate's crag,
The tousle-haired and greasy scullion
      Cooking all a hot slumgullion,

And after tales of those unnerved,
      And scullion's slimy stew is served,
I toast a round of filthy ale,
      To all who live beyond the pale.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Nov 2014
In someone's mind there is a place of graves,
And farther still a darkened potter's field,
Where loved ones in memoriam are saved,
And those whose names should never be revealed.

I blow through iron bars and paths 'tween stones,
To find the carvings of my former name,
Which mark the resting place of my dear bones,
And date the finite years of my life's fame.

More anxiously I blow into the field,
Instinctively the farthest place most dark,
Where frost and ice have most securely sealed
A single mound without a numbered mark.

I reach for bones I can no more disturb,
Discarded far enough to not perturb.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Oct 2014 · 877
Christos Rigakos Oct 2014
B** egan the day with only half a face,
E xiled from normalcy with half-dead look.
L eft chewing on the right side without taste.
L eft side will not be moved except to droop.
S tress wakes the hypochondriac in me!
P er chance it was a stroke?  The Doc said, No.
A ll signs point to a common malady,
L eaving inflicted many out the know.
S urvival is assured, but some will find,
Y outh’s strengths have now been ordered left behind.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Iambic pentameter, quatrains and royal couplet.
Aug 2014 · 499
Christos Rigakos Aug 2014
he died in 1946
          his ghost somehow lives on
the echoes of his mental tricks
          have stayed though he be gone
and when the man was still alive
to make his master state to thrive
          he'd pen bad economics with his song

he'd split his time between his song
          and whispered recreation
for though his wail was mighty long
          it ran with innovation
he'd bring a promise of a toy
then ****** boys to bring him joy
          and scoffed at hints of fiery damnation

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Septet Naarative
Christos Rigakos Jun 2014
In country fields on starry Autumn nights,
I call your name, and listen to the breeze,
to catch the whispering, among those lights,
that rustles in the leaves upon the trees.

Just barely do I hear their murmurings,
and translate utterance of twinkling fires,
in hopes the skies have heard of all the things,
pertaining to the one my heart desires.

I call your name and ask but every star,
where have you gone, and when will you return?
My eyes glance to those lights both near and far,
to answer me before they fade and burn.

At times the ones we love, most sorely missed,
are those whose lips our own have never kissed.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
May 2014 · 410
your name is written
Christos Rigakos May 2014
your name is written
on a strand of your hair

if i could read your name
and utter it
conjure it
you would be

how i knew you

in every other way
someone else

for who you were
is more than your name
all that you experienced
made you who you were
and who you were
could never again
be conjured
by the hand of man
but by the hand of God alone.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Free Verse
Apr 2014 · 426
her memories
Christos Rigakos Apr 2014
our wedding album
shoved into my hands
her memories
wiped off the shelves
to start a new collection

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Apr 2014 · 349
on the mind
Christos Rigakos Apr 2014
open skies
love birds fly off
on the mind
empty tree branch
where we sat under

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Apr 2014 · 363
old mother
Christos Rigakos Apr 2014
old mother
bent over
the grave
seems closer
this year

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Apr 2014 · 748
Past Life Regression
Christos Rigakos Apr 2014
I wondered once while still a curious child
of who I was before I was, because
I listened to those people on T.V.
speak wondrously of who they were before.
They'd found a way to cause remembrance,
under hypnosis, where by regressing
back and farther past their very birth,
and nine months farther back beyond the meet
of ***** and egg, and years more farther back,
they could describe the people that they were.
I wondered who I was before I was,
until one day I read a certain news,
a scientific study done to see
the people who some people truly were.
One hundred people hypnotized did see
their lives before the lives which they now lived.
And forty-eight were Abraham Lincoln.
I closed the newspaper and took a walk,
and never more subscribed to idle talk.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Blank Verse
Apr 2014 · 569
Old Timer's
Christos Rigakos Apr 2014
She often seems confused, and pauses midway
through a task, unsure which way to go,
and drops her task to move on to another.
With hurting feet and tunnel vision, hearing
muffled, voices staticky and loud,
confusion is a sea she cannot swim.
She is an hourglass, her memory,
slow falling through the hole, and all her days
are passing through a chasm out of reach.
The old one slowly turning back to child,
needs mothering from children till she's born.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Blank Verse
Apr 2014 · 1.7k
What is a pervert?
Christos Rigakos Apr 2014
She strolled along the narrow pathway through
the park.  Her soft skirt flitting  in the breeze,
her long legs smooth and pampered, sandaled feet
took mellow steps under the Springtime sun.

She caught the eye of Fred, who from his book
rose up bespectacled and drank the scene
of one young beauty carried by the breeze,
and thanked the Lord for all His wondrous things.

She noticed that he noticed and she sneered,
disdainfully and crushed him with the lids
of scornful eyes that closed upon his face,
and cursed the womb that birthed this pervert live.

She caught the eye of Tom, whose magazine
dropped to the bench from fingers preening hair,
his lion's gaze devouring this gazelle,
and she took notice of his notice there.

She threw back hair and turned to meet his gaze
with sideways glance, a wink, and half pursed lips,
amazed a stroll from bench to bench could find
a pervert and a stud so side by side.

Both men came to the park to sit and read,
and read indeed, then both, like men, did do
what men so do, and neither differed there,
yet one was deemed a pervert, one a stud.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Blank verse
Apr 2014 · 597
Future Terran Politics
Christos Rigakos Apr 2014
The congressman from Mars whose many gaffes
Led to his drop in ratings at the poll,
And whose awful decisions marred his role,
Had found his explanation drowned in laughs.

And following his footsteps and his paths
The congressman from Venus bared his soul,
Explained why his career has borne its toll,
By drawing on his skin some stats and graphs.

Because I'm green, the Martian dared to tell
Constituents, that's why I'm hated so!
Because I'm purple, the Venusian cried

Unto an Earth whose races blended well
To shades of black, and who have learned to know
That gaffes behind a color can not hide.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Italian (Petrarchan) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Apr 2014
Oh, Love's infinity he often feigns.
The arrow's tip is buried in the heart,
Yet Cupid's weapon penetrates in part.
Though head pierce deep the tail outside remains.

As Love's infection spreads about through veins,
Its sweet eternal myth sets out its start.
Yet myths fade soon and hearts are torn apart,
And one who loved before so soon disdains.

Because the hand can touch the arrow's tail,
It pulls the length of it out from the soul,
The Mythic Love then dissipates to cold.

They all who buy the myth are doomed to fail,
Becoming merely halves who once were whole,
And fabled myths become a thing of old.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Italian (Petrarchan) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Mar 2014
Your love, with anguish, shows me passageways,
To exit doors and places of escape,
That I may flee impending sorrow's scrape,
Against my heart-skin in the coming days.

But love's advice begins my own malaise,
I'm smothered as under a weighty drape.
My heart compressed then loses its true shape,
While trampled under words of your own phrase.

I'd live serenely separate from this pair,
You often warn so bluntly yet so coy.
The thought of this is more than I could bear.

I'd rather live in service to your care,
Caressing you through duty or through joy,
Than live on loveless in such deep despair.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Italian (Petrarchan) Sonnet
Mar 2014 · 506
The Meaning of Space
Christos Rigakos Mar 2014
Oh foolish man, do recognize your place,
Has changed, and what is now's no more as then.
She's planning to estrange her passion when,
She tells you solemnly she needs some space.

Do not agree, for it is not the case,
That she will merely wait within her den,
Return to you upon the count to ten.
Do not let go, and if you have, give chase!

For in that space of time you'd be apart,
She'll seek her courage, muster what she can,
To overcome the love, do what she ought,

And unobstructed, strangle her own heart,
Untethering to meet another man,
And render you a silent afterthought!

16:29, 3/23/2014
Italian (Petrarchan) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Mar 2014
An often wish, that time were stored somewhere,
Accessible to all, yet more to me,
A day relivable in all its flair,
To hear, to feel, to taste, to smell, to see.

Full sense-infused, the recreation'd be,
As real as present moment ever would,
A place and time to any time I'd flee,
To when and where I'd flee if flee I could.

If possible the question would be, should?
Should I relive a scene that's long since past,
Whose ground is gone upon which once I stood,
Whose sky has fled and clouds have long since cast?

Our memories whose present time has left,
Are lessons learned when of them we're bereft.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Spenserean Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Mar 2014
i've sculpted marble into her image,
a statue, flawless, down to each detail,
her beauty true and that of mind in scrimmage,
her replication filled with much travail,

upon the sight of it in its completion,
i gasped when i beheld its perfect form,
and to protect this object most like Grecian,
i built a temple 'round it for the storm,

one day, as i prepared my veneration,
i found her in the temple stumbling drunk,
and sharing with another my oblation,
unsheathed his sword and deeply in her sunk,

oh, never build a temple to a mortal,
for she'll escape to heaven through that portal

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Feb 2014
We see the world through crests and troughs of light,
That points to many things, returns to show,
What's there before us so that we may know,
The world existing in our precious sight.

Yet what if what we see, and think is right,
by virtue of unveiling of its glow,
Is merely part of what the light won't show,
of that which lives forever in the night?

What could there be that human eye won't see,
Which by this lack of sight we sure deny;
And what of those we love who've passed away?

Between the crest and trough at some degree,
Are things on Earth attributed to sky,
And by a few degrees are kept at bay?

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Italian (Petrarchan) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Feb 2014
When lust at last imposes in the heart,
It sets ablaze the ground and smokes the mind,
And no compelling order to depart,
Can separate the soul from thoughts that bind.

For when lust's made its great impassioned catch,
Its hold outweighs the best escaping skills,
Its talon's grip's a solid iron latch,
And won't release until its aim's fulfilled.

The lustful man deliberately will go,
Ignoring will to do what lust must do,
Where talons only **** him to and fro,
Ignoring moral peace which he once knew.

And when the lust has finished with a scream,
The weakness seems was only but a dream.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Feb 2014
She stood atop her balcony and stared,
Beyond the masses fawning at her face.
She raised a stoic chin  frozen in place,
A porcelain visage emotions spared.

While all around pomposity adorned,
With brightly colored fabrics, silver sets,
Gold, diamonds, gems and pompous little pets,
All things of which the huddled poor were scorned.

The centuries' tradition well remains,
Ingrained such that even the poor decree,
The rulers rule, the ruled should not be seen.

Yet none the privileged logically explains,
The separation's needed wide degree,
Why God who's blessed should more so save the Queen.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Indefinable Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Feb 2014
With pompous fanfare I delight those few,
To smiles and loud ovations from afar,
Who sit upon my daydream's blessed pew,
And light night's darkened pathways as the stars,

With half-truths, bland omissions, outright lies,
I paint the murals colored by success,
To cover over failures, my disguise,
And hide their idol God has yet to bless,

For had I told the truth and never lied,
Those precious few would see and nod their heads,
Acknowledge my ejection justified,
Accept their children's love for me as dead,

For any food that fails to carry taste,
Is cast aside as utter worthless waste.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Feb 2014
Oh, what is love if not but what it seems,
The chain that binds two hearts throughout the year,
And not merely a latch to hitch one's dreams,
Unhitching when the dreams no more seem near?

And what's a lover but a partner-soul,
Enjoined to share just one earthly abode?
Where one departs, it leaves an aching hole,
To which the other sings their bitter ode.

Yet often love's a means to reach one's end,
The other finds their love is not a wheel,
But merely woven fabric quick to rend,
When profit will not gain one's business deal.

Commitment is a promise carved in stone,
That lasts until the flesh departs from bone.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Feb 2014
she scolds about the sacred little things,
if ever sacred things I fail to see,
those moments, pictures, flowers, cards and rings,
tall city monuments that face the sea,

for she reveals great stories when she sings
the meanings of the moments come to be,
do i not also see what moment brings?
why as a man are meanings lost on me?

yet when she kills the heart with mortal stings,
she calls to raze the buildings by decree,
why still my heart holds sacred and it clings
to monuments she built and now shall flee?

for meanings are those things that fall apart,
when love grows cold and from her soul departs

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Feb 2014 · 357
She speaks in figures
Christos Rigakos Feb 2014
She speaks in figures, nuances,
          in subtle hint-drop rain,
the truth's in what she never says,
          her spoken words are vain,
for nothing heard is what it seems,
she'll only hint at what she means,
          to hold a dialogue is quite insane.

So when a question grabs her mind,
          to ask it she'll refrain,
instead she'll traipse around, behind,
          from side to side in pain,
to ask ten questions unrelated,
avoiding that one unabated,
          all questions leading to that single, main.

Frustration builds at every step,
          with every question asked,
for every one such question shlepped
          around's a weighty task,
I answer all and each reply,
confounds her every subtle try,
          for none of them fulfill the one not asked.

(C)2013, Christos Rigakos
Septet Naarative
Jan 2014 · 1.5k
the humble priest
Christos Rigakos Jan 2014
the humble priest who, clothed in black and drab
old moth-holed garb and well-worn holy shoes,
saw yellow-orange men with breath infused
survive while hammered under concrete slabs,

adorned with seizure's scrapes and new dried scab,
a monk's black cap and simple wooden cross,
from Shaolin's breath could not be pushed or tossed,
or even budged when by his arm was grabbed,

then one whose throat withstood the point of spear,
did ask the priest what powers blocked his chi,
the humble priest explained and this he said,

"from chi's destructive force i had no fear,
for i did what you could not hear or see,
recite the name of One raised from the dead"

(C)2013, Christos Rigakos
Italian (Petrarchan) Sonnet
Dec 2013 · 1.2k
a strange and darkened place
Christos Rigakos Dec 2013
i walked along a strange and darkened place
the citizens of which abused themselves
a man who chewed his lip and ate his face
then laid inside a coffin's wooden shelves

aside his neighbors' corpses and their pets
and sang his song long after all his bones
were eaten clean, aligned in metric sets
beside the graveyard's glistened stones

the humid air, pneumonia in lungs
leaked out from nostrils as i ran away
slow motion through molasses climbing rungs
my fear of here and sanity left frayed

a woman over-hunched, upon my "hi",
like pill-bug touched had curled into herself
her head in **** and hissed her grumbled sigh
accused that I had killed the mighty elf

a girl who stabbed her migraine with a knife,
whose teeth were aspirins, dripped from bleeding gums
and claimed her husband was her lawful wife
was following his trail of stale breadcrumbs

town criers cried for Argentina, sobbed
"Evita was evicted from our hearts!"
then rushed upon me these un-living mobs
to eat my chest in torn and ****** parts

chihuahua babies swarmed my ankles hard
and bit with rubber teeth and razor gums
i fell and crushed them like a house of cards
they barked like children yelping in their slums

i bled to death from gaping hollow wounds
and flowed my soul into a sewer grate
under the darkened place's shining moon
an angry molten lava stream of hate.

(C)2013, Christos Rigakos
May 2013 · 732
old woman
Christos Rigakos May 2013
old woman
at the windowsill
staring out

her skin
a veiny leaf
dried in late autumn

her lips
pursed tight
crows feet count her age

her hair
powdered snow
on black tar streets

her eyes
glazed yellow
staring at grandchildren

her memory
Spring air filling
a young girl's nostrils, lungs

running, laughing,
holding his hand,
her handsome boy

a smile betrays
a glimmer of youth
and for a moment she glows

a car horn
startles her giggle
to a sour lemon scowl

(C)2013, Christos Rigakos
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