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JV Beaupre May 2016
I. Long ago and far away...

Under the bridge across the Kankakee River, Grampa found me. I was busted for truancy. First grade. 1946.

Coming home from college for Christmas. Oops, my family moved a few streets over and forgot to tell me. Peoria, 1961.

The Pabst Brewery lunchroom in Peoria, a little after dawn, "Who wants my sandwich? ****, this first beer tastes good." I won't tell you what he really said. 1962.

At grad school, when we moved into the basement with the octopus furnace, Dave, my roommate contributed a case of Chef Boyardee spaghettio's and I brought 3 cases of beer, PBRs.  Supper for a month. 1962.

Sharon and I were making out in the afternoon, clothes a jumble. Walter Cronkite said, " President Kennedy has been shot…” 1963.

I stood in line, in my shorts, waiting for the clap-check. The corporal shouted:  "All right, you *******, Uncle and the Republic of Viet Nam want your sorry *****. Drop 'em".  Deferred, 1964.

He electrified the room. Every woman in the room, regardless of age, wanted him, or seemed to. The atmosphere was primeval and dripping with desire. In the presence of greatness, 1968.

US science jobs  dried up. From a mountain-top, beery conversation, I got a research job in Germany. Boulder, 1968.

The first time I saw automatic weapons at an airport. Geneva, 1970.

I toasted Rembrandt with sparkling wine at the Rijksmuseum. He said nothing. 1972.

A little drunk, but sobering fast: the guard had Khrushchev teeth.
Midnight, alone, locked in a room at the border, why?
Hours later, release. East Berlin, 1973.

She said, "You know it's remarkable that we're not having an affair." No, it wasn't. George's wife.  Germany, 1973.

"May be there really are quarks, but if so, we'll never see them." Truer than I knew.  Exit to Huntsville, 1974.

Hard work, good times, difficult times. Not fully digested. 15 years in Huntsville and counting.

The golden Lord Buddha radiated peace with his smile. Shots in the distance. Bangkok. 1992.

Accomplishment at work, discord at home. Divorce. Huntsville. 1994. I got the dogs.

New beginnings, a fresh start, true love and life-partner. Huntsville. 1995.

II. In the present century....

I started painting. Old barns and such. 2004.

I quietly admired a Rembrandt portrait at the Schiphol airport. Ever inscrutable, his painting had presence, even as the bomb dogs sniffed by. Beagles. 2006.

I’ve lost two close friends that I’ve known for 50-odd years. There aren’t many more. Huntsville. 2008 and 2011.

Here's some career advice: On your desk, keep a coffee cup marked, "No Whining", that side out. Final retirement. 2015.

I occasionally kick myself for not staying with physics—I’m jealous of friends that did. I moved on, but stayed interested.  2016 and continuing.

Honest distortions emerging from the distance of time. The thin comfort of fading memories. Thoughts on poor decisions and worse outcomes. Not often, but every now and then.
Mrs. Gabrielle Giovannitti comes along Peoria Street
     every morning at nine o'clock
With kindling wood piled on top of her head, her eyes
     looking straight ahead to find the way for her old feet.
Her daughter-in-law, Mrs. Pietro Giovannitti, whose
     husband was killed in a tunnel explosion through
     the negligence of a fellow-servant,
Works ten hours a day, sometimes twelve, picking onions
     for Jasper on the Bowmanville road.
She takes a street car at half-past five in the morning,
     Mrs. Pietro Giovannitti does,
And gets back from Jasper's with cash for her day's
     work, between nine and ten o'clock at night.
Last week she got eight cents a box, Mrs. Pietro
     Giovannitti, picking onions for Jasper,
But this week Jasper dropped the pay to six cents a
     box because so many women and girls were answering
     the ads in the Daily News.
Jasper belongs to an Episcopal church in Ravenswood
     and on certain Sundays
He enjoys chanting the Nicene creed with his daughters
     on each side of him joining their voices with his.
If the preacher repeats old sermons of a Sunday, Jasper's
     mind wanders to his 700-acre farm and how he
     can make it produce more efficiently
And sometimes he speculates on whether he could word
     an ad in the Daily News so it would bring more
     women and girls out to his farm and reduce operating
Mrs. Pietro Giovannitti is far from desperate about life;
     her joy is in a child she knows will arrive to her in
     three months.
And now while these are the pictures for today there are
     other pictures of the Giovannitti people I could give
     you for to-morrow,
And how some of them go to the county agent on winter
     mornings with their baskets for beans and cornmeal
     and molasses.
I listen to fellows saying here's good stuff for a novel or
     it might be worked up into a good play.
I say there's no dramatist living can put old Mrs.
     Gabrielle Giovannitti into a play with that kindling
     wood piled on top of her head coming along Peoria
     Street nine o'clock in the morning.
Carl Sandburg  Feb 2010
I WAS born on the prairie and the milk of its wheat, the red of its clover, the eyes of its women, gave me a song and a slogan.

Here the water went down, the icebergs slid with gravel, the gaps and the valleys hissed, and the black loam came, and the yellow sandy loam.
Here between the sheds of the Rocky Mountains and the Appalachians, here now a morning star fixes a fire sign over the timber claims and cow pastures, the corn belt, the cotton belt, the cattle ranches.
Here the gray geese go five hundred miles and back with a wind under their wings honking the cry for a new home.
Here I know I will hanker after nothing so much as one more sunrise or a sky moon of fire doubled to a river moon of water.

The prairie sings to me in the forenoon and I know in the night I rest easy in the prairie arms, on the prairie heart..    .    .
        After the sunburn of the day
        handling a pitchfork at a hayrack,
        after the eggs and biscuit and coffee,
        the pearl-gray haystacks
        in the gloaming
        are cool prayers
        to the harvest hands.

In the city among the walls the overland passenger train is choked and the pistons hiss and the wheels curse.
On the prairie the overland flits on phantom wheels and the sky and the soil between them muffle the pistons and cheer the wheels..    .    .
I am here when the cities are gone.
I am here before the cities come.
I nourished the lonely men on horses.
I will keep the laughing men who ride iron.
I am dust of men.

The running water babbled to the deer, the cottontail, the gopher.
You came in wagons, making streets and schools,
Kin of the ax and rifle, kin of the plow and horse,
Singing Yankee Doodle, Old Dan Tucker, Turkey in the Straw,
You in the coonskin cap at a log house door hearing a lone wolf howl,
You at a sod house door reading the blizzards and chinooks let loose from Medicine Hat,
I am dust of your dust, as I am brother and mother
To the copper faces, the worker in flint and clay,
The singing women and their sons a thousand years ago
Marching single file the timber and the plain.

I hold the dust of these amid changing stars.
I last while old wars are fought, while peace broods mother-like,
While new wars arise and the fresh killings of young men.
I fed the boys who went to France in great dark days.
Appomattox is a beautiful word to me and so is Valley Forge and the Marne and Verdun,
I who have seen the red births and the red deaths
Of sons and daughters, I take peace or war, I say nothing and wait.

Have you seen a red sunset drip over one of my cornfields, the shore of night stars, the wave lines of dawn up a wheat valley?
Have you heard my threshing crews yelling in the chaff of a strawpile and the running wheat of the wagonboards, my cornhuskers, my harvest hands hauling crops, singing dreams of women, worlds, horizons?.    .    .
        Rivers cut a path on flat lands.
        The mountains stand up.
        The salt oceans press in
        And push on the coast lines.
        The sun, the wind, bring rain
        And I know what the rainbow writes across the east or west in a half-circle:
        A love-letter pledge to come again..    .    .
      Towns on the Soo Line,
      Towns on the Big Muddy,
      Laugh at each other for cubs
      And tease as children.

Omaha and Kansas City, Minneapolis and St. Paul, sisters in a house together, throwing slang, growing up.
Towns in the Ozarks, Dakota wheat towns, Wichita, Peoria, Buffalo, sisters throwing slang, growing up..    .    .
Out of prairie-brown grass crossed with a streamer of wigwam smoke-out of a smoke pillar, a blue promise-out of wild ducks woven in greens and purples-
Here I saw a city rise and say to the peoples round world: Listen, I am strong, I know what I want.
Out of log houses and stumps-canoes stripped from tree-sides-flatboats coaxed with an ax from the timber claims-in the years when the red and the white men met-the houses and streets rose.

A thousand red men cried and went away to new places for corn and women: a million white men came and put up skyscrapers, threw out rails and wires, feelers to the salt sea: now the smokestacks bite the skyline with stub teeth.

In an early year the call of a wild duck woven in greens and purples: now the riveter's chatter, the police patrol, the song-whistle of the steamboat.

To a man across a thousand years I offer a handshake.
I say to him: Brother, make the story short, for the stretch of a thousand years is short..    .    .
What brothers these in the dark?
What eaves of skyscrapers against a smoke moon?
These chimneys shaking on the lumber shanties
When the coal boats plow by on the river-
The hunched shoulders of the grain elevators-
The flame sprockets of the sheet steel mills
And the men in the rolling mills with their shirts off
Playing their flesh arms against the twisting wrists of steel:
        what brothers these
        in the dark
        of a thousand years?.    .    .
A headlight searches a snowstorm.
A funnel of white light shoots from over the pilot of the Pioneer Limited crossing Wisconsin.

In the morning hours, in the dawn,
The sun puts out the stars of the sky
And the headlight of the Limited train.

The fireman waves his hand to a country school teacher on a bobsled.
A boy, yellow hair, red scarf and mittens, on the bobsled, in his lunch box a pork chop sandwich and a V of gooseberry pie.

The horses fathom a snow to their knees.
Snow hats are on the rolling prairie hills.
The Mississippi bluffs wear snow hats..    .    .
Keep your hogs on changing corn and mashes of grain,
    O farmerman.
    Cram their insides till they waddle on short legs
    Under the drums of bellies, hams of fat.
    **** your hogs with a knife slit under the ear.
    Hack them with cleavers.
    Hang them with hooks in the hind legs..    .    .
A wagonload of radishes on a summer morning.
Sprinkles of dew on the crimson-purple *****.
The farmer on the seat dangles the reins on the rumps of dapple-gray horses.
The farmer's daughter with a basket of eggs dreams of a new hat to wear to the county fair..    .    .
On the left-and right-hand side of the road,
        Marching corn-
I saw it knee high weeks ago-now it is head high-tassels of red silk creep at the ends of the ears..    .    .
I am the prairie, mother of men, waiting.
They are mine, the threshing crews eating beefsteak, the farmboys driving steers to the railroad cattle pens.
They are mine, the crowds of people at a Fourth of July basket picnic, listening to a lawyer read the Declaration of Independence, watching the pinwheels and Roman candles at night, the young men and women two by two hunting the bypaths and kissing bridges.
They are mine, the horses looking over a fence in the frost of late October saying good-morning to the horses hauling wagons of rutabaga to market.
They are mine, the old zigzag rail fences, the new barb wire..    .    .
The cornhuskers wear leather on their hands.
There is no let-up to the wind.
Blue bandannas are knotted at the ruddy chins.

Falltime and winter apples take on the smolder of the five-o'clock November sunset: falltime, leaves, bonfires, stubble, the old things go, and the earth is grizzled.
The land and the people hold memories, even among the anthills and the angleworms, among the toads and woodroaches-among gravestone writings rubbed out by the rain-they keep old things that never grow old.

The frost loosens corn husks.
The Sun, the rain, the wind
        loosen corn husks.
The men and women are helpers.
They are all cornhuskers together.
I see them late in the western evening
        in a smoke-red dust..    .    .
The phantom of a yellow rooster flaunting a scarlet comb, on top of a dung pile crying hallelujah to the streaks of daylight,
The phantom of an old hunting dog nosing in the underbrush for muskrats, barking at a **** in a treetop at midnight, chewing a bone, chasing his tail round a corncrib,
The phantom of an old workhorse taking the steel point of a plow across a forty-acre field in spring, hitched to a harrow in summer, hitched to a wagon among cornshocks in fall,
These phantoms come into the talk and wonder of people on the front porch of a farmhouse late summer nights.
"The shapes that are gone are here," said an old man with a cob pipe in his teeth one night in Kansas with a hot wind on the alfalfa..    .    .
Look at six eggs
In a mockingbird's nest.

Listen to six mockingbirds
Flinging follies of O-be-joyful
Over the marshes and uplands.

Look at songs
Hidden in eggs..    .    .
When the morning sun is on the trumpet-vine blossoms, sing at the kitchen pans: Shout All Over God's Heaven.
When the rain slants on the potato hills and the sun plays a silver shaft on the last shower, sing to the bush at the backyard fence: Mighty Lak a Rose.
When the icy sleet pounds on the storm windows and the house lifts to a great breath, sing for the outside hills: The Ole Sheep Done Know the Road, the Young Lambs Must Find the Way..    .    .
Spring slips back with a girl face calling always: "Any new songs for me? Any new songs?"

O prairie girl, be lonely, singing, dreaming, waiting-your lover comes-your child comes-the years creep with toes of April rain on new-turned sod.
O prairie girl, whoever leaves you only crimson poppies to talk with, whoever puts a good-by kiss on your lips and never comes back-
There is a song deep as the falltime redhaws, long as the layer of black loam we go to, the shine of the morning star over the corn belt, the wave line of dawn up a wheat valley..    .    .
O prairie mother, I am one of your boys.
I have loved the prairie as a man with a heart shot full of pain over love.
Here I know I will hanker after nothing so much as one more sunrise or a sky moon of fire doubled to a river moon of water..    .    .
I speak of new cities and new people.
I tell you the past is a bucket of ashes.
I tell you yesterday is a wind gone down,
  a sun dropped in the west.
I tell you there is nothing in the world
  only an ocean of to-morrows,
  a sky of to-morrows.

I am a brother of the cornhuskers who say
  at sundown:
        To-morrow is a day.
THE BALLOONS hang on wires in the Marigold Gardens.
They spot their yellow and gold, they juggle their blue and red, they float their faces on the face of the sky.
Balloon face eaters sit by hundreds reading the eat cards, asking, "What shall we eat?"-and the waiters, "Have you ordered?" they are sixty ballon faces sifting white over the tuxedoes.
Poets, lawyers, ad men, mason contractors, smartalecks discussing "educated *******," here they put ***** into their balloon faces.
Here sit the heavy balloon face women lifting crimson lobsters into their crimson faces, lobsters out of Sargossa sea bottoms.
Here sits a man cross-examining a woman, "Where were you last night? What do you do with all your money? Who's buying your shoes now, anyhow?"
So they sit eating whitefish, two balloon faces swept on God's night wind.
And all the time the balloon spots on the wires, a little mile of festoons, they play their own silence play of film yellow and film gold, bubble blue and bubble red.
The wind crosses the town, the wind from the west side comes to the banks of marigolds boxed in the Marigold Gardens.
Night moths fly and fix their feet in the leaves and eat and are seen by the eaters.
The jazz outfit sweats and the drums and the saxophones reach for the ears of the eaters.
The chorus brought from Broadway works at the fun and the slouch of their shoulders, the kick of their ankles, reach for the eyes of the eaters.
These girls from Kokomo and Peoria, these hungry girls, since they are paid-for, let us look on and listen, let us get their number.
Why do I go again to the balloons on the wires, something for nothing, kin women of the half-moon, dream women?
And the half-moon swinging on the wind crossing the town-these two, the half-moon and the wind-this will be about all, this will be about all.
Eaters, go to it; your mazuma pays for it all; it's a knockout, a classy knockout-and payday always comes.
The moths in the marigolds will do for me, the half-moon, the wishing wind and the little mile of balloon spots on wires-this will be about all, this will be about all.
Holy! Holy! Holy! Holy! Holy! Holy! Holy! Holy! Holy!
     Holy! Holy! Holy! Holy! Holy! Holy!
The world is holy! The soul is holy! The skin is holy!
     The nose is holy! The tongue and **** and hand
     and ******* holy!
Everything is holy! everybody's holy! everywhere is
     holy! everyday is in eternity! Everyman's an
The ***'s as holy as the seraphim! the madman is
     holy as you my soul are holy!
The typewriter is holy the poem is holy the voice is
     holy the hearers are holy the ecstasy is holy!
Holy Peter holy Allen holy Solomon holy Lucien holy
     Kerouac holy Huncke holy Burroughs holy Cas-
     sady holy the unknown buggered and suffering
     beggars holy the hideous human angels!
Holy my mother in the insane asylum! Holy the *****
     of the grandfathers of Kansas!
Holy the groaning saxophone! Holy the bop
     apocalypse! Holy the jazzbands marijuana
     hipsters peace & junk & drums!
Holy the solitudes of skyscrapers and pavements! Holy
     the cafeterias filled with the millions! Holy the
     mysterious rivers of tears under the streets!
Holy the lone juggernaut! Holy the vast lamb of the
     middle class! Holy the crazy shepherds of rebell-
     ion! Who digs Los Angeles IS Los Angeles!
Holy New York Holy San Francisco Holy Peoria &
     Seattle Holy Paris Holy Tangiers Holy Moscow
     Holy Istanbul!
Holy time in eternity holy eternity in time holy the
     clocks in space holy the fourth dimension holy
     the fifth International holy the Angel in Moloch!
Holy the sea holy the desert holy the railroad holy the
     locomotive holy the visions holy the hallucina-
     tions holy the miracles holy the eyeball holy the
Holy forgiveness! mercy! charity! faith! Holy! Ours!
     bodies! suffering! magnanimity!
Holy the supernatural extra brilliant intelligent
     kindness of the soul!

                                   Berkeley 1955
jeffrey robin Oct 2010
***** charley
was the name of our high
school mascot
back in the early 1930's

we was a bunch of german kids

we loved  adolph ******


after the war
i became a used-car dealer

in peoria


my wife died

my kids went to college


the grand children are

"out there"

spysgrandson Sep 2013
he slammed his cup on the counter  
not to get anyone’s attention
though his cup was empty  
I couldn’t stop staring at his eyes  
of course they were bloodshot  
and of course he stank of nicotine
and of truth that he said could not be found
in the bottom of that coffee cup or bottle of gin  
though he ****** up both  like…
hell, I can’t compare it to anything  
and he would think a simile was a waste of words
he told me of a lover he once had, Elisa  
with hair so long she sat on it  
and a thirst as ravenous as his  
which led her to an alley in South Chicago
where the ***** or the H put her to sleep
for good, and how he buried her in Peoria
in a hard freeze, beside her brother
who got killed in Phu Bai, by “friendly fire”
but Bukowski laughed through his tears
when he heard that ****, “friendly fire”
and he filled his glass again,
with Bourbon I guess--I wasn’t at  Elisa’s
numb mother’s house that day
and when he lost another ****** lover
to a drunk driver, he didn’t say anything about irony  
just said, ****, it hurts to be close  
and he didn’t trust this happiness ****
because it didn’t last, but pain, hell,
you can count on that ******* and if he leaves,
you can make some up on your own…  
the waitress filled our cups to the top
so there was no space for the cream  
I sipped slowly to make room
he took a swig that had to scald his tongue
but I could not tell, for he was already on the death
of lover number three, sitting there with me  
waiting for him to stop the foul flow of truth
Graff1980 Jul 2016
It has been years
Since I slept
On a park bench
On a playground slide
In a ***** hallway
With a broken window

But I see me in him
Strange haircut
Face tats
Slightly *****
Talking to a stranger
And crying

I walk by
Afraid to interrupt
But in the store
I plan out how I will
Exiting excited
I find he is gone

I drop my car
At the mechanic’s shop
Across from Walmart
And walking away
Almost stumble upon
A nearly slumbering form
I mumble some
Pass him a ten
And let him be
It rains that night
But I don’t think
About him at all

Next day the car is fix
I head home
And see him walking
I open my car door
To give him a ride to the store
One open bottle of cider alcohol
Out of a six pack
I have to stop myself
On the verge of judging
But who am I
He accepts my ride
Putting the seat back
To fit him and his backpack
And blue tarp

I drop him at the front spot
I sit my care safely in
The parking lot
Then come back
Offer him a phone call
And sit and wait
And sit and chat
He says that no one
Has ever done that

He tells me that
People in town
Have been nice
And now he has a ride
Up to Peoria
I give him another five
And forget about him
Till now
Sunny Snow Sep 2013
48 degrees of chilly September morning air and a Camel Turkish Silver cigarette fill my lungs; ear-buds placed respectively between each lobe chiming the soundtrack from “Little Women”. As I walk down one of the busiest streets of downtown Madison, the journey seems hushed. A couple cars speed by Gorham and State, and I’m assuming it’s ‘take out $%!# and throw it away day’, noticing the garbage pick-up trucks drive along. Funny how, you'd never guess how many footsteps could crowd these enlarged sidewalks and street when the popular main course of Madison awakens. Feels like Christmas in the movies, when looking in store windows at things I’ll never get around nor remember to buy. And for once, I second guess all my thoughts of wanting to leave this town and forget all the memories it holds; for once, in a great while, I again want to call this place my hometown. Though truly, my home is roughly 3 and a 1/2 hours south of here in dear old Peoria, IL. Madison has always welcomed me and showed me things a city nearly its size, could never quite replicate; and just when I feel, I don’t belong here anymore, she pulls me back in on mornings when I couldn’t sleep all night and calls to me, saying, "let’s take a walk, and I’ll show you what you've been missing." She has a way of doing that, as you all may know. For she taught me how to dream bigger, think broader, and dare to create a new. My dear Madison, WI; frozen tundra and summer love of the north, how could I forget you?!
OnwardFlame Dec 2017
I wish that I
Could figure out the perfect little way
To start this off
But I'm not really sure.

I know that you know
That I've always been better
At expressing myself poetically
Than anywhere else.

It has and is
Incredibly painful
To see someone new next to you.

Time hop reminds me when I let it
Of the snowfall we felt
How I stood at the top of your steps
Posting our love, sharing our love
Sitting on your couch so stead fast
But with such a restless drive
I remember the way your face would look
Deep in the night
As that love started to fade
A look in your eyes like you just couldn't wait
For it to not be me
Or for me to be
What you hoped for.

I tried to be all those things
Sitting at the table with your friends
A decade older than me
Dressing and behaving like I could keep up
Trying to prove the little that I had here
I would tie myself up with bright string
Trying to display to you how I was trying.

You bought a wreath
A Christmas tree.
I imagine your new little family around it now
Salt candles, pillows, a piece of jewelry
A dog that I acted like was mine too
I know you remember
I know you feel it deeply too
And if it were me
Standing next to someone new
Sharing our love
Showing our love
Even as a new man left my bed this morning
And I don't say that to hurt you
I say that because I'm still not over you.

So I'm treating you like an addiction now
Because thats what you have become
Though I can easily peep through the willow trees
Fall backwards into pampas grass
Or twirl myself neurotically through spanish moss
And still there is this little iron rust filled interior part of me
That wants to take you back with open arms
That wants to kick everything you have now out the door
That wants to be the slightly older, more mature
Less to prove me now
For you
For your friends
For your family
In mickey mouse ears
But maybe a button down shirt instead.

Was that what you wanted
I'm not sure what you wanted
You often say you didn't love me because of my brilliance as an artist
I remember the bathtub
Where I swam and wanted you to see
How I could easily fly through the sea
I remember you watching me
As we both tried to pull and push each other
Into the vastly different chapters of our lives
I often felt stress, anger, and a longing to leave
Coming back with big doe eyes
My skin ready for you to kiss
Lying down onto my stomach like you liked
Ready to be yours at any given moment.

I did do all that
I did rest on all that
Cutting my hair shorter and shorter
Until it all ended and I couldn't stand the sight of it
Of remembering you pulling it
Of remembering how men in the past
Had gotten such say, such control over it
And even still
Try to bestow their opinions upon me
So with sharp scissors we kissed the remains of tendrils goodbye
You would later tell me that you wish
You wish that it was this version of me
The ever powerful, pixie cut, slightly more jaded me
You could  have had.

At dinner
With shots of jameson
Your friends have all unfollowed me on Instagram
And I think of your rapid tilting voice
Informing me that you have never said an unkind word
Knowing how you are brutally honest
Knowing how you sometimes overshare
Knowing how society is so quick to turn its back
On the woman deemed young

I'm smarter now
I'm more brilliant now
I know you know this
As I sat in the chair that massaged my back
Looking out into the tree covered hills
That made up Peoria, Illinois
It was there in that pink princess bed
That I mourned the end of you and me
And I sometimes wonder if I always sorta knew
Hanging on to when our next flight would be
Our next adventure
In my little black bathing suit
The one that makes me look just like Marilyn Monroe
Standing in the sunshine
You on a business call
Snapping photos of me
And slapping my *** all at once.
The picture in the silver frame
Long gone
But the ability to un-know
What was in it.
It was there in those moments that I poured my everything
Into you
Into what it was
Behind the fur covers, in the expresso drinks
In how I portrayed our love to the world.

Like I was this soon to be up and coming thing
And here you were
My knight in shining commercial tv
Ready to wrap your arm around me
Put a ring on my finger
Start anew
"I think I've been waiting for you all this time."
You told me in the beginning
At what we would call Hickory Jawn.

But its all over now
We know this
And this is where I always land
After I work through all the beautiful sensual moments
Where you would speak to me in such a filthy way
That I had nothing left to do
But to release myself onto you
To turn you on in that young little way I hope I always
Secretly do
But to let it go
To see it for what it is
"Beleaguered father"
Beleaguered father.

I love you still
I wish I didn't
I think and trot around town
Some weeks caring nothing at all
Feeling the pain of not understanding
How you could have someone stand, sit, dance
Where I once was.

Its like I said
I suppose it is easier for men
Like a whiff of smoke I disappear
From your life, as your possible wife
Knowing I gave up that title
The moment you raised your voice at me
And would later chalk it up
As though you and your friends believed
I was overreacting and should understand
Thats how humans treat one another.

I don't know Cannon
But I know that I cannot keep aching over you
I cannot unfriend you
Block you
Avoid you
All I can do is hope that time will continue to pass
Somewhat swiftly
So that I can continue to become
Not what once was yours.

Because the truth is Cannon
That is how people see me
That is how people, your friends
Your peers
See me
Because we live in a world
Where women are misled
And I hear the croon of crows
Its all in your head
Its all in your head.
Perhaps not.
Women are thought of as a second best bed
And everyday I fight to become just who I am
In a place that feels very much
Like its your land.

But I know that it is not
I take up time and space
Like in this poem right now
Writing into what sort of feels like
Somewhat endlessly
I imagine you
Receiving my words
Reading them in your bathroom
Or at a later time
When you don't have to hide
Those dark brown
Expressive eyes of yours.

I know I have written and chimed
I know I have been ugly and loving
I know exactly the ways in which you let me down
And everyday as of the moment
Because its true, this too shall pass
I know that when I sat across from you at dinner
For the first time
My hair long and blonde
My lips green
I thought this was it
I wanted to think this was it.

I don't think or believe in such extremities anymore
On the surface I think we both hoped for so much.

Sorry. Thankful. Onward.
We ink it into the body we once shared
Knowing there is no going back there
And that the day you see me finally shine on
You will understand better
Why I wrote this.

So yeah
Sorry. Thankful. Onward.
I can't pretend you don't exist
I'm sure we will see each other again
As the snow falls
And the weekends were once ours
But its all gone now.

Its always been all gone.
OnwardFlame  Jun 2017
Lost Pup
OnwardFlame Jun 2017
It's her last night
He wrote in cryptic text
Tears welling and streaming down my face
A single email
At the end of what I hope to be my day
But it never is.

I know you'll be singing to her tonight
And I guess I think
In my gut of guts
You spawned a character
You spawned a growth in me
Both painful and stressful
But a growth nonetheless.

I imagine you
You surround yourself with love
Another woman to hold you
I'm trying to remember
If I ever really saw you cry
And this could be
Would have been
The part
Where I call you on the phone
Extend my hand
But I can't forget what you did.

There is so much heart in it all
In everything I do
Even in my coldest moments.

You said you know I loved her
My eyes once lit up
When you would call me her mommy
Like that time I laid in the big pink princess bed
The one you didn't want
But I did
So we stayed there
And each night
I'd end the night around 2AM
But that was too early for you
So I'd drunkenly lay in bed alone
The lights off in Peoria, IL
And wonder
Is this it?

I remember like a fleet of foxes
The way it looked and felt
In my bohemian skirt
Silk tank top
I drew on our faces
You dubbed us the nymph god and goddesses
So proud of the pictures you took of me
Only to grow resentful
And your jagged jadedness
That I was so eager to just accept
Taking me down into a well
Of diminishing my own soul.

I know you never meant to
You would say
You wanted me to be big and strong
We took our first real photo then
My hair an array of colors
Enkidu ran around
Smiling into the sunlight
I took photos of you from behind
Walking into the pleasurable distance
Sobbing behind trees
Trying to work out my things
Red wine, pumpkin pop tarts

I really gave it my best shot Cannon.

I hope you both find peace tonight
I never wanted to not be there
Until you made me want to go
And never come back.

— The End —