r 3d

Cold days, dark nights,
yield memories left
like headless corpses
on some ancient field;
seasons and years,
blood, sweat and tears,
the chains and links,
those things that bind;
blinding sharp beak,
black murderous bird,
winging over peaks,
leaving these worldly
lows below behind me;
my dying wish is for
restful bliss in winter's
white sheet stiffly lying.

r 6d

Somewhere just to the right
of that second star
in the sky

there's a black hole
sucking the joy
out of life

Maybe I'll wave at the moon
as I fly by sometime soon

I'm tired of life's knife
skinning and carving,
notching it's time
on my bones

I'll decide the when
and the how, the hour
of flight

somewhere just to the right
of that second star
in the sky

where morning hides
like a thief in the night
biding her time

slowly waiting for the light
to leave these tired dark eyes

But not tonight, for tomorrow
there's still much to do.

r Nov 8

Silence
is sound
that comes between
sounds

It moves
upon the waters
between the waves
and is good

Do you hear it?

r Nov 4

Left with no last goodbye
tossed by the wayside,
a finished cigarette flicked
out the car window,
sparks bursting apart
like the light of our love
all to pieces by the side
of a dark country road

The burnt flavor of her
still inside my lungs,
riding on my tongue,
in the breathless hesitant
last long goodnight kiss

Loss is what I see
when I look into the sky
tonight, no trees reaching
its leaves up for me

The burn of her words
is in the way that I say
but I loved you,
the way I wait, the way
I hold my breath to listen
for her footsteps in the kitchen.

Edited. Thanksto  S Olson for headsup to an oversight.
r Oct 29

There is a stranger
you see more and more of
every year, He is silt
in the riverbed,
and the water tables
of your mystery
rise to their final levels,
the spitting image
of your Death

He is selling a bed
that belonged to your father,
coming in low dumping
the boots of your brother
in the high pasture covered
deep in your last winter's snow

Like a flower in the night,
Death drifts over our shoulders
like a boat with no eyes for the oars,
no place for a man's cold hands

The Church has a record of your birth,
but Death keeps its own dossier

When the Moon is pulling blood
from all of its many lovers,
Death is caterwauling with catfish,
a bone in its mouth, shedding
all its skins and secret light,
I, like you, set out a dish
of milk before going to bed.

r Oct 26

In my dreams
there is a bird
and it sings
all night long
there is a fish
in a river
who's lost
it's memory
a worn work shirt
that smells strongly
of love
there is a man
and a woman
clocking out at dusk
there is someone
I can never remember
and in the Inn
of night
there's a dead man
a stranger
at the window.

r Oct 19

I kneel in a field of wheat grass
catching grasshoppers.

I scoop underhand into my jar, another
at the height of its jump, a third.

I put my jar by the stream, pull one
out and I grab it, force my barbed steel
hook through the belly still trembling.

I cast long loops of line into the drift
below rocks where current
froths and whirls.

I stand mechanically slightly ashamed, uncomfortable on that shaded bank
where trout strike hard.

I let them swim, then hold fast, reeling one, exhausting him, wrenching him
into air, his tail drumming against the sky.

Hanging  from the line
his fat belly flinches.

All his life of riding rapids, hiding
in flats embraced by waters’ fast flow,
by red rainbows in his scales.

I didn’t expect that open mouth,
that whiteness, the gills stop twitching,
the eyes caught in that open stare.

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