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there is an owl
out there
in the darkness
kept secret
by whispering trees
in shadow
by leaf
and cloud
it seems
to have a question
for any
who will listen
but persistently
it inquires
pausing briefly
an answer
before asking
and again;
whether intended
or not
this interrogation
has infuriated
the old boy
and seemingly
every other canine
in the vicinity
My Dear Poet Jun 21
Because you’re upside down
in my mind
You may as well change the light
Or keep us blind
As we sit here in my head
all night
Sharon Talbot Apr 10
Before hearing about your death
I began a novel inspired by you
and your struggle with the truth--
The truth of who you were,
what you wanted of life and of me.
And it became a journey
into the past, into a life
that had happened before
we met, decades ago,
and after we parted for good,
I wove a new life out of remnants,
of things I knew or just supposed.
And like a good researcher,
I told of your parents' failings,
the darker side of love.
Of your grandmother and friends,
and even your cousin who
brought you to me,
Luring you out of the homogeneous crowd
and into our perfect valley--
"the land of spires and dreams".
I even spoke warmly of our artless love
and our drifting apart like ghost ships.
After our second parting,
when you left the mortal coil,
I tried not to reminisce about us,
for the story was yours, not mine,
But I fear that a mirror kept
cropping up behind me and
around corners, erasing mystery.
Narcissus caught me time and again.
Even so, I created times for you
that I had never seen or heard.
I have you swimming off La Jolla,
traipsing on mountain paths
in the wilds of British Columbia,
or arguing with your wife
in that mansion you dreamed of.
I invented a girl you would like
and two kids who loved you
in spite of everything.
Your memories of me became
less urgent, locked in a chess box,
in songs or on film, hidden away.
I analyzed your youth, your vanity,
lust, boredom, mistakes and age.
And when it came time for you
to make a decision: to stay or go
again, either west or east,
I stopped and looked over your life,
rolled out flat, like the American plain
from western crags to eastern city
and like a broken record,
the choice shuttled back and forth,
not letting me decide for you.
Glancing at a photo
of your childhood home,
I realized at last,
not that you had died too soon,
but that I really never knew you.
Julia Celine Nov 2021
I couldn't hear your voice
Above the raging silence
I figured you weren't saying much
Unbeknownst to my changing faces
That sees meaning in milliseconds
Seeking out a love that's chaseless
I'll find errors in complication
I'll find a way to erase us
I'll love you 'til you're empty
And claim I'm feeling wasteless
You'll raise an upper hand
And find us switching places
Sharon Talbot Oct 2021
Things sometimes fall apart
Among sisters and brothers,
No matter what they once were.
Childhood picnics and dreamy games,
Memories of trips with Dad,
Since Mom was tired of us.
We would climb Appalachian peaks
Or drive to look at the Mayflower.
Every summer there was a golden week
A lakeside cottage and all-day swims
In crystal water, becoming mermaids.
But time passes and bitterness accrues.
Imagined slights grow like slow tumors,
Never excised but nurtured by some.
I go to college and am freed
From the poison of ignorant rage,
From the creeping depression left
Like diesel fog on an endless floor.
Four or five years of delight pass
With only hints here or there
Of a sibling’s misery at home.
Of a once close sister, Maggie,
Who is ignored and never loved
By any man she pursues.
She blames me for it, for reasons
I have yet to fathom.
Of a brother, Francis, deluded, drugged,
Steals the family car in a rage
And drives to New York City.
Of Deirdre, the middle sister,
Whose friend who knows men who feed
On her ignorance and rebellion.
Only Susannah tries to rise above
The maelstrom of misery.
I send her to a school far away
And she sheds despair, at least.
Decades drawl, children are born to us,
While the bridge between us, obscured,
Sags and frays under weight of rancor.
Christmas dinners and birthday parties
Turn into chores, invitations kept as scores.
Petty grudges, like acid, sever the bridge
At last, all ties are abandoned.
When we are all grown and scattered,
No one speaking to anyone else,
Unaware, uncaring about the others.
Only Susannah visits me and smiles,
With no ulterior plan for insane revenge,
Or accusations for errant slights.
Her once dark hair is grizzled and wild
And her girlish skin now creased.
But her treacle eyes, “black aggies”,
I used to call them, still shine.
Only Susannah writes a letter,
Wishing us well and
Healing scars made by others,
Returning the word “family”.
To my basket of small treasures,
I carry with me
Into the twilight.
Seán Mac Falls Aug 2021
Without word
How I know you.
Without kiss —
How we are twined.
There is feint space,
Which has no dimension
That is, binding us.
You see my face —
As I look away and know
That blindness illuminates.
You pretend we are separate
And I will have none of this,
I make believe we are in a dream
And there is no end to that slumber,
No awakening.  This confuses you
And makes me weep.  Why are we
Without each other when the whole
Universe is exploding all this emptiness —
Which we feel — like newborns deeply hugged
By strangers that say we belong with only smiles,
Touches, that solidify, without words, as ancient light.
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