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somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously)her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully ,suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility:whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands
Terry Collett Jun 2015
Yiska wants to take Benny home with her after school and whisk him past her mother and up to her room but she knows her mother would watch her like a hawk especially if she had Benny in tow and would ask her all sorts of questions and where do you think you are going with him? but she can dream about it dream she has brought him home and as she passes her mother in the kitchen her mother in one of her dark moods preparing dinner she climbs the stairs slowly imagining Benny is behind her walking up the stairs probably watching her legs or her *** his eyes glued but she doesn't know so she imagines he is and when she gets to the top of the stairs she pauses on the landing and looks down the stairs and waits listening to the radio her mother has just turned on some classical stuff she pauses there pretending Benny has stopped her and has put his arms around her waist and has laid his hands on her *** and she believes she can feel it his hands his fingers moving but it's in the head in her imagination but no harm in pretending so she lingers there for a short duration looking along the landing wrapping her own arms about herself kissing her shoulder don't forget to change out of your school uniform her mother calls out from below stairs I won't she calls back hugging herself extra tight patting her own *** with a hand as she hoped he would do if he were there and they were standing where she is now and put your ***** blouse in the linen basket her mother calls up ok she calls back unhugging herself walking along the landing walking past her parent's room tempted to peek in wondering if she should just a quick glimpse she stops outside her parent's room and opens the door quietly and peers inside imagining she has Benny beside her and she's showing him inside at the big double bed the tallboy the dressing table where her mother has all her make up and perfumes and drugs for her depression and hairbrushes and the mirror facing her and she says to herself-and the imagined Benny- nice bed what you reckon? make a good bed to do it in? the room smells of perfume of all kinds and a scent of bodies and staleness she is tempted to go lay on the bed and feel it beneath her and makes out they are doing things him beside her touching her and she kisses him and he putting his hand along her thigh and make sure you fold up your school skirt and jumper I don't want it just thrown anywhere her mother calls up to her from downstairs she closes the door to her parent's room and says loudly down the stairs I will fold them up and walks to her own room taking Benny’s imagined hand in hers and enters her own room and closes the door behind her and looks around the room as if through his eyes her mother has been in here and tidied up put things away picked up stuff from the floor taken away the tea plate she'd left there the night before and the soiled linen she'd let drop by the bed she stands there and sighs a window is open to let in air-breath of fresh air her mother calls it-the curtains flap in the breeze sounds from neighbours in their gardens kids from down the street she goes to the window and closes it and looks out at the surrounding area making out Benny’s still behind her his arms around her waist his lips kissing her neck she closes the curtains and stares around the room focusing on her single bed with its pink flowery cover her mother bought her Teddy Bear  now ageing by her pillow not that big she says over her shoulder to the pretend Benny but we could still do it if we're careful she whispers to herself she sits on the bed and stares at her Teddy some nights he is Benny and she hugs him and kisses him and has him next to her as she settles down but Teddy's a lousy lover he does nothing and says nothing she sits the make believe Benny next to her on the bed imagines his hand is tapping the bed be ok Benny says using her voice she stands up and begins to take off her school jumper unbuttoning the green buttons and pulling off and dropping it on the bed then unties the green patterned tie and takes it off and tosses it over her shoulder she sighs closes her eyes you unbutton the blouse she tells the make believe Benny and her fingers unbutton the blouse one by one slowly and once it is unbuttoned she lets his fingers-hers really- take it off of her body and drop it onto the floor what do you think? she asks him shall l take off the skirt or you? her fingers unzip the zip and pulls it down and once loose the skirt falls to the floor and she kicks it across the room and stands there eyes closed pretending he is studying her in her small bra and ******* she waits for his words his comments what are you doing there? and why are the clothes scattered all over the place her mother says from the open door Yiska opens her eyes and stares at her mother standing sullen faced by her bedroom door day dreaming Yiska says about what? her mother asks picking up the school skirt from the floor and folding it neatly and gazing at her daughter stern eyed just day dreaming Yiska says watching her mother putting the clothes in a pile and picking the ***** blouse from the floor and holding the soiled linen in her hands this room was tidy why untidy it? her mother says sorry wasn't thinking Yiska says glad her mother couldn't read her thoughts or see the imagined Benny kissing her neck and whose right hand was fondling her right *** because if she could she'd have a fit.
A GIRL DAYDREAMS OF A BOY AT SCHOOL AND TAKING HIM HOME IN 1962.
Brandon Aug 2013
There's a sound of thunder rolling closer and I think to hold you tighter

We're sitting inside listening to drops of rain hitting the window pane

We're drowning in our drinks
And filling our lungs with shotguns

It's just you and I here tonight
In this cabin by the lake
We used to call a home
But is now less than a house
And less than it never was

The waters unfished and the boat is moored in the growing weeds

The trees bend in the breeze
Playing shadow games with our imagination

The stars in the sky sparkle like the beginning
But that was a million light years ago
And they're burnt out supernovas now

Lightening flashes and our eyes dart to the light hoping to find illumination

But the dark closes back in after glimpses of twilight

But the dark closes back in until we're alone in the same room

Until the cabin is a ghost

And the water is dried up

And the grass turns to death

And the trees fall to the ground

And the sky opens up

And the dark closes in
the mind is its own beautiful prisoner.
Mind looked long at the sticky moon
opening in dusk her new wings

then decently hanged himself,one afternoon.

The last thing he saw was you
naked amid unnaked things,

your flesh,a succinct wandlike animal,
a little strolling with the futile purr
of blood;your *** squeaked like a billiard-cue
chalking itself,as not to make an error,
with twists spontaneously methodical.
He suddenly tasted worms windows and roses

he laughed,and closed his eyes as a girl closes
her left hand upon a mirror.
Aaryn Jan 2018
The water grows higher
Around my neck
Tight
Like a noose
As the moon rises
And darkness closes
The stars shine brighter
Telling me that it’s okay
But i don't believe them
As the moon rises
And darkness closes
Underwater now
Too deep to reach air
Gasping
******* in the poison
Into my lungs
As the moon rises
And darkness closes
Anxieties high
While its getting darker
And my hands colder
My tears heavier
As the moon rises
And darkness closes
Looking down
From 13 stories up
Legs dangling off the edge
As the moon rises
And darkness closes
Standing now
Ready to jump
Ending it all
Watching the moon rise
And finally, darkness closed
I'm done...
when life is quite through with
and leaves say alas,
much is to do
for the swallow,that closes
a flight in the blue;

when love’s had his tears out,
perhaps shall pass
a million years
(while a bee dozes
on the poppies, the dears;

when all’s done and said,and
under the grass
lies her head
by oaks and roses
deliberated.)
Graff1980 Jul 2015
You will never know
The peace of acceptance
Once you are finished
Put to earth
Life was harsher than the dirt
Parents made you feel worthless
Cause you wanted to wear a short dress
Because you felt different
Cut off
Disowned
Disavowed
One friend after another disappears
And no one hears
The sobs
No one feels the salty tears
No one holds your hands
Or offers you a hug

You were ******
By the those who demand
You conform
Where there was no  warmth
The clock cuts you bitterly
Condemning you to be lonely
And I cry all the more
Knowing you won’t be the only one
Not the only daughter wanting to be a son
Not the only male that wants to be female
Not the only soft face harden
Or hard face softened till the sorrow overflows
Till everyone you know closes the door
And you disappear forever more
I wrote this in December.
Nat Lipstadt Aug 2018
<>
The Instigation:
Edmund  Black, commenting on “weary weighted,”

I agree with Kim; This is poetry at its best :)“

<•>

both of you shush!

there is no “better” in poetry

mine yours theirs, alive or not,

just gasps tears and blood
whimsical smiles and isles
cuts and burns of pained revelations,
hidden in fog,
that words try to delete away,
through the shrouded mists of
human tissues,
unconstrained by the
bounded shape
of the human cell,
our first, our own
self-imposed jail

tissue, too,
baby soft, or,
purple beating majestic bruised blotches
by those weaklings whose
kindness never
fully developed;  
or old man mine whose
skin cells erodes, so poems and light
weary weighted, lightly flake off
for your “betterment”
mostly tho for worse

good humans all await,
in patientce lightly hidden,
residents of dark sunspots
in the glaring existence exposer
of the unlit lighthouse whose time will come

they get it

how we get there unimportant

get there

GET THERE

get there
that is the poetic
mission critical

no path best or style preferred-
no compare just, but,
any path that
lifts and elevates,
to the commonplace


the common place

where all costarred, universal,
where common is the temple mount
of highest praise, holy smoke rising,

a place that
that discloses and closes,
is scribed/described honestly as
a connective,
which is the simplest
successive

call my poems,
blessedly common!

that an honorable,
so gladly accepted
and
so much more meaning-full
than merely best or better



for that,
I’d gladly weep,
for no praise
ever been
bettered





8/2/18 406pm
on the jitney to my isle
the instigation: Edmund black › “weary weighted, I agree with Kim .... This is poetry at its best :)“
Robert Ronnow Aug 2015
The circle closes over the dead woman's space.
Family and community heal, the scar tissue
between a young girl's *******. She had
shared conversations with my father about
the holes in their hearts. My heart, the
muscle, not the spirit, flutters when a
young girl bikes by or the heron flies.

By September flies are down, we can come
out of our canoes and risk the woods. Summer's tissue
is torn each night. Space above gives perspective
to the life one had. Jesus speaks your name?
And is Beatrix now traveling astronomy's corridors
at the speed of light, aware of herself, to the blessed heart?
Durante too is moving on, wayfaring with his virgil.

Much of the family gathered. My grandfather, Bart,
it was remembered sold his house to none other than Duke
Ellington and Lena Horne lived up the block. Andrew
played with her daughters, sons. Until every Italian
had moved east into Long Island, thinking themselves
better than blacks. I find each and all --
Hindus, Muslims -- hard-earned bone and prone to ache.

We are most happy the dead one's not us.
The chosen one, the unfortunate one, the
one whose name Jesus spoke, is gone
and is no longer one of us. She is the other,
as distant and separate from the family
as a black man or Hindu's sister. Missed less
than last night's sleep or meat and grateful

for such peace. I will be too if it won't
come too soon or too often. My observation is
54 or 84 you always seem to want more
what was accomplished or never finished isn't
enough. Greedy, overweight and blameworthy
is how I've felt about every wasted day.
Summer's tissue torn by the first frost night.

Judging by her feet, Judith will be a big
woman, great granddaughter of Bartholomew,
who sold his redlined house to Duke. See how she
stands near her mother, Jeanette, who
resembles so fiercely my grandmother, Concetta.
The circle closes over the dead woman's space.
Summer's tissue is torn, the family is lace.
www.ronnowpoetry.com
DyalaNG Apr 2014
She whispers
"I'm psychic"
He Gasps
"Whoa"
he said
"I bet I can read your mind"
she said
"You’ll never read my mind"
he said
He closes his eyes
Her face closer to his
He takes a peak
She leans
kissing his cheeks
He smiles
opening his eyes
"Good guess"
he said
She smiles
"I predict it"
she said
He smiles
"I am thinking about it"
he said.
Alek Mielnikow Aug 2018
Her titillating tattoo
tantalizes me deeply,
to the tenth degree. I see
it as I slip her silk dress
slowly down her left shoulder.
A lizard lying on a
boulder, contrasting with her
silky smooth soft snowy skin.

I kiss her shoulder, and she
shudders and sighs a deep sigh.
Goosebumps rise up her body
as a sturdy gust seizes
the moment. The forest we
make love in quakes and shakes
as she shivers and quivers
under the touch of my hands.

My left hand holds her upper
arm, while my right grips her hips.
She closes her eyes, smiling,
giggling in amusement.
I spin her slowly ‘round, and
look into her hazel eyes,
her soft ******* and thighs against
mine for warmth and gentle touch.

I kiss her lips. Strawberry.
And we slide down to the ground.
The scariness we have found
slips away in our grace. We
sinners share our shame, our lust,
and come to a conclusion,
and bust each others doors down,
sweet ****** on this cold ground.
Terry Collett Apr 2016
Sister Paul stops by the door of her office, and halts Anne as she crutches herself along the passage of the nursing home.

I need to have a word with you, Anne, Sister Paul says, eyeing the twelve year old girl as she rests on her crutches.

What have I done now? Anne says, gazing at the nun with a sour face.

Nothing that I am aware of, the nun says, unless you have done anything I need to know about.

Anne shakes her head, of course not, you know me Sister, butter wouldn't melt in my mouth, Anne says.

The nun holds her tongue, after the meeting with Anne a few weeks back she had come to understand Anne better, if that was possible, and came to view Anne more of an imagined daughter, than a mere child come to the nursing home to recover from the amputation, but a daughter she was glad she didn't have in reality.

Will it take long? Anne says impatiently, putting her head to one side like a bird awaiting an early morning worm.

No not long, the nun says, gazing at the girl with as much patience as she can. The nun opens her door for Anne to enter, and the the girl crutches her way past her into the small room, and sits on a chair by the desk. The nun closes the door, and sits opposite Anne.

The girl studies the nun casually. What's it about then? Anne says, sitting back in the chair, rubbing her leg stump, trying to ease away the pain.

Doctor Maggee needs to see you, Sister Paul says.

What for? The girl says, her fingers rubbing along the stump.

About your leg, the nun says.

What about my leg? And which leg? Anne says, leaning forward, eyeing the nun.

The amputated leg, the nun says.

How can he see my leg when it isn't there no more, Anne says.

Sister Paul sits stiffly, and locks her fingers together as if to form a finger church. The doctor needs to see how the stump is healing, the nun says.

I don't want no doctor to touch my leg stump, Anne says, they’ve done enough with it as it is.

He needs to examine your leg, the nun says, to make sure it is healing.

I'm not letting a male doctor touch my stump, Anne says moodily, eyeing the nun.

You will not be on your own, myself or one of the other sisters will be with you, Sister Paul says.

Anne pulls her skirt over her stump, and puts her hands in her lap. I want the Kid with me, Anne says.

The nun frowns. What Kid is this? The nun says.

Benny, my friend, my only friend in this dump, Anne says gazing at the nun.

I'm not sure that would be allowed, the nun says, flexing her fingers, staring at the girl.

Then I don't see no fecking doctor, Anne says, rising up from the chair, grabbing her crutches.

Sister Paul closes her eyes, pushing the word from her mind. Language, Anne, please, no words like that.

They both sit in a moment's silence.

I'll see what the doctor says, and if he is happy for Benny to be with you while he examines your leg, then so be it, the nun says.

Anne sits down on the chair again, puts the crutches beside her.

Are you sure Benny would want to see your leg stump? The nun says, unlocking her fingers, and putting her hands flat on the table, palms downwards.

He's seen my stump many times, Anne says.

When has he seen your stump? The nun asks.

He sees it most days, sometimes he touches it, Anne says, defiantly.  

The nun reddens, and sits up straight, and stares at the girl. Why would he want to see your leg stump and touch it? Sister Paul asks, trying to ease away the redness of her face.

I said he could; he likes to see it, and touch it; after all, he is my friend, Anne says, pulling a face, as the pain tightens in her stump.

Is it painful? Your stump? The nun asks, seeing the girl wince.

Yes most of the time, Anne says, and sometimes my feet itch, and when I go to scratch them they're not there.

It is called a phantom leg, the nun says, the nerves think the leg is still there and tells the hand to scratch.  

Anne sighs. Well can he? Can Benny come with me when the quack sees my leg stump?

The nun raises her eyebrows. She studies the girl, the way she sits, the way she looks, and stares. A defiant child, she muses, one who would need a good bit of discipline if she were a child at the Catholic school, but here in the nursing home, different rules apply. I will have to see what the doctor says, the nun says.

No Benny, he don't see my stump, the quack, Anne says.

Sister Paul sighs softly, looks at the crucifix on the wall to her left, at the Christ hanging there, hands nailed to the wooden cross. Our Lord bore His pain for us, the nun says, it is thought to be an honour to share in His suffering, and pain, the nun adds gently.

I'd rather not share in any pain, I have enough of my own, Anne says, eyeing the old plaster Christ on a wooden cross.

Perhaps the pain you have already, is sharing in our Lord's suffering, Sister Paul says.

I don't want to share His pain or suffering, Anne says angrily, I want my leg back, and no fecking pain.

The nun closes her eyes, pushes the word away from her mind. We will see what the doctor says about you having Benny with you, and I will explain to the doctor how you feel, the nun says.

Anne reaches out and touches the nun's hand. It is soft, and warm, thin and clean. All right, Anne says, let me know. She stands up, and grabs her crutches, and begins to go, releasing sister Paul’s hand.

All right, the nun says, watching the girl crutch away, eyeing the sturdiness of the child, the strength in each movement away.

The door opens, and closes.

The child has gone. Sister Paul sighs, and inwardly, softly cries.
A TWELVE YEAR OLD GIRL AND A NUN IN A NURSING HOME IN 1959.
stopdoopy Jul 2018
(In a vacant church Little Girl and Big Man sit on a parish
a few feet apart, in between them lies a book titled"My Feelings".)

(The curtain opens. Little Girl sits staring at Big Man. Big Man gets up and goes to the statue of himself in front of them for a closer look.)

Big Man: Will talking in person really make a difference?

Little Girl: I like to think it does.

Big Man:  (turns to look at her incredulously.) What wishful thinking, you're so naïve.

(Little Girl opens her book and starts to read aloud.)

(Big Man cuts her off with a noise every time she starts to say something until she falls silent.)

Big Man: Just as I thought, it doesn't change anything.

Little Girl: But you don't-

Big Man: (cuts her off again.) You just can't let things go, that's your problem. I told you I didn't want to do this, yet you dragged me out here. It didn't accomplish anything!

Little Girl: That's because you don't even want to listen or try to talk, you just want to yell and blame me!

Big Man: That's enough, this conversation is over. (Walks off stage right.)

(Little Girl screams in anger and throws "My Feelings" at the Big Man Statue.)

(The Curtain closes.)
I wanted to try something a little different! I've never written stage directions or a play before but I thought this would be a nice change. I didn't really convey the raw anger or passion, nor was it the scene what I originally wanted but maybe it's a step in the right direction. Trying out different styles is neat. Not happy with this piece though but... oh well.
JR Rhine Jan 2017
I broke up with God
at our favorite eatery
in our favorite booth.

We settled into familiar creases
and asked for the usual.

My eyes lazily staring at fingers
stirring the straw around the ice cubes,
God cautiously spoke up:

“Is something wrong?”

“Nothing.” (Thinking about the dormant phone
concealing behind the lock screen
the open Facebook tab
lingering over the relationship status section.)

They silently mused over the laconic reply,
til the waitress showed up with the food.

“Thank you!” God blurted with agonizing alacrity.

I received the sustenance lifelessly
and aimlessly poked at the burgers and fries.

The waitress eyed me with vague inquisition,
popping a bubble in the gum between
big teeth, refilled my water
and pirouetted hastily.

We ate in ostensible harmony,
the silence gripping like a chokehold,
the visible anxiety and subdued resolve
settling like a stifling blanket
over the child waking
from a nightmare—

Til we couldn’t breathe,
and I ripped back the covers
and looked into the eyes
of my tormentor.

“It’s not you, it’s me.”

God, taken aback by the curt statement,
dropped their burger with shaking hands,
silently begging with wetting eyes
a greater explanation.

So I elaborated:

“It’s not you, it’s me.

For your immaculate conception
was created by human hands,

your adages rendered obsolete
by human words,

your purpose and plan for us
distorted by human nature—

I cannot hate myself any longer.

I cannot pretend to know you at all.

Who my mother and father say you are
is not who my friends think you are,
nor my teachers, my pastor,
the president, Stephen Hawking,
Muhammed, the KKK, Buddha,
the Westboro Baptist Church,
Walt Whitman, Derek Zanetti,
******,
and Billy Graham.

I am told you care who I bring into bed (and when),
and what movies I watch,
and what music I listen to—

I have not heard what you say about
child soldiers, the use of mosquitos,
or the increased destruction of the earth
which you proudly proclaimed your creation,
or the poverty and disease and famine
which has ridden so many of your children—”

God interjected,
“But you’re chosen!”

I snorted,

“You say I’m chosen
to spend eternity with you—
why me?

Why’d you pick me among
thousands, millions, billions?

I’ve been told I’m ‘chosen’
since birth
by others like me—

those with fair complexion,
blue eyes,
blonde hair,
a firm overt ****** attraction towards women,
and a great big house
with immaculate white fences
delineating their Jericho.

I’ve already fabricated eternity
here among the other ‘chosen’
and there is a world of suffering
right outside the fence
and I see them
through the window of my bedroom
every day.

Am I chosen,
if I don’t vote Republican

Am I chosen
if I am Pro-Choice

Am I chosen
if I cohabitate with my girlfriend

Am I chosen
if I never have kids

Am I chosen
if I say ‘Happy Holidays’

Am I chosen
if I don’t want public prayer in schools

Am I chosen
if I don’t want a Christian nation

Am I chosen
if I don’t repost you on my wall
or retweet your adages?

I’m tired
being the ubermensch,
for it has not brought me
happiness
and I blame you.

I will not ignore
the cries of the suffering
believing it is I
who is destined to live
in bliss.

I will not buy
Joel Osteen’s autobiography(ies).

I will not tithe
you my money
for a megachurch
when another homeless shelter
closes down.

I will not tell a woman
what to do with her body,
or a man
that he is a man
if they say they are not.

I am neither Jew nor Gentile,
and I will stand with
my brothers and sisters
of Faith and Faithlessness,

Gay and Straight,
Black and White,

and apart from these extremes
free from absolutes
the ambiguous, amorphous
nature of Humankind
which I praise.

There is much pain and suffering
in this world,
potentially preventable,
but hardly can I believe
it’s part of your plan
to save
me.

I will not be saved
if we are not
all saved—

not one will burn
for my divinity.

The gates will be open to all—
and perhaps you believe that too,
but I’ve gotten you all wrong
and that cannot change,
as long as there is
mortality, and
corruption, and
power, and
lust, and
greed.”

God whined, growing bellicose,

“It is through me that you will find eternity,
I am the one true god!
I am the God of your fallen ancestors,
it is because you have fallen short
that you need me!”

I replied, growing in confidence,

“We have all fallen short,
yes,
but we are also magnificent.

We have evolved,
we have created,
we have adapted,
we have survived.

We have built empires,
and we have destroyed them.

We have cured diseases,
and we have created them.

We have done much in your name.
We’ve done good,
and we’ve done evil—

And unfortunately it’s all about
who you ask.

Your name is a burden on the oppressed
and a weapon of the oppressor.

You are abusive, God.

You tell me you are jealous.

You tell me apart from you I will suffer for an eternity.

I’m scared to die, yet want to die,
because of you.

You have made life a waiting room
that is now my purgatory. It is

Hell On Earth.

So you see,
it’s not you,
it’s me—
a mere mortal
who has tried to put a face
to eternity
and it has left me
empty.

And also,
it’s me,
for I have learned to love me,
as I have expelled your self-loathing imbibition,
and the deleterious zeal
I have proclaimed
through ceaseless
trepidation
and self-flagellation—

I have learned to love me
by realizing I am not inherently evil,
that my body is not evil,
that my mind is not evil,
and, ultimately, that
there is no good
and there is no evil.

My body is beautiful,
my mind is beautiful,
this world is beautiful,
and we are destroying it
waiting for you to claim
us.

I leave you
in hopes to see you
again one day,

and perhaps you will look
different than I have
perceived or imagined,

and in fact
I certainly hope so.”

Just then the waitress strolled back up
with a servile smile:
“Dessert?”

“No, thank you,”
I smiled politely.

And with that,
I paid the check,
and took a to-go box—

walked out into the evening rain
to my car,
put on a secular song
that meant something real to me
and drove off
into the night—

feeling for the first time
free
and alive.
Terry Collett Jul 2015
Yiska wants to take Benny home with her after school and whisk him past her mother and up to her room but she knows her mother would watch her like a hawk especially if she had Benny in tow and would ask her all sorts of questions and where do you think you are going with him? but she can dream about it dream she has brought him home and as she passes her mother in the kitchen her mother in one of her dark moods preparing dinner she climbs the stairs slowly imagining Benny is behind her walking up the stairs probably watching her legs or her *** his eyes glued but she doesn't know so she imagines he is and when she gets to the top of the stairs she pauses on the landing and looks down the stairs and waits listening to the radio her mother has just turned on some classical stuff she pauses there pretending Benny has stopped her and has put his arms around her waist and has laid his hands on her *** and she believes she can feel it his hands his fingers moving but it's in the head in her imagination but no harm in pretending so she lingers there for a short duration looking along the landing wrapping her own arms about herself kissing her shoulder don't forget to change out of your school uniform her mother calls out from below stairs I won't she calls back hugging herself extra tight patting her own *** with a hand as she hoped he would do if he were there and they were standing where she is now and put your ***** blouse in the linen basket her mother calls up ok she calls back unhugging herself walking along the landing walking past her parent's room tempted to peek in wondering if she should just a quick glimpse she stops outside her parent's room and opens the door quietly and peers inside imagining she has Benny beside her and she's showing him inside at the big double bed the tallboy the dressing table where her mother has all her make up and perfumes and drugs for her depression and hairbrushes and the mirror facing her and she says to herself-and the imagined Benny- nice bed what you reckon? make a good bed to do it in? the room smells of perfume of all kinds and a scent of bodies and staleness she is tempted to go lay on the bed and feel it beneath her and makes out they are doing things him beside her touching her and she kisses him and he putting his hand along her thigh and make sure you fold up your school skirt and jumper I don't want it just thrown anywhere her mother calls up to her from downstairs she closes the door to her parent's room and says loudly down the stairs I will fold them up and walks to her own room taking Benny’s imagined hand in hers and enters her own room and closes the door behind her and looks around the room as if through his eyes her mother has been in here and tidied up put things away picked up stuff from the floor taken away the tea plate she'd left there the night before and the soiled linen she'd let drop by the bed she stands there and sighs a window is open to let in air-breath of fresh air her mother calls it-the curtains flap in the breeze sounds from neighbours in their gardens kids from down the street she goes to the window and closes it and looks out at the surrounding area making out Benny’s still behind her his arms around her waist his lips kissing her neck she closes the curtains and stares around the room focusing on her single bed with its pink flowery cover her mother bought her Teddy Bear  now ageing by her pillow not that big she says over her shoulder to the pretend Benny but we could still do it if we're careful she whispers to herself she sits on the bed and stares at her Teddy some nights he is Benny and she hugs him and kisses him and has him next to her as she settles down but Teddy's a lousy lover he does nothing and says nothing she sits the make believe Benny next to her on the bed imagines his hand is tapping the bed be ok Benny says using her voice she stands up and begins to take off her school jumper unbuttoning the green buttons and pulling off and dropping it on the bed then unties the green patterned tie and takes it off and tosses it over her shoulder she sighs closes her eyes you unbutton the blouse she tells the make believe Benny and her fingers unbutton the blouse one by one slowly and once it is unbuttoned she lets his fingers-hers really- take it off of her body and drop it onto the floor what do you think? she asks him shall l take off the skirt or you? her fingers unzip the zip and pulls it down and once loose the skirt falls to the floor and she kicks it across the room and stands there eyes closed pretending he is studying her in her small bra and ******* she waits for his words his comments what are you doing there? and why are the clothes scattered all over the place her mother says from the open door Yiska opens her eyes and stares at her mother standing sullen faced by her bedroom door day dreaming Yiska says about what? her mother asks picking up the school skirt from the floor and folding it neatly and gazing at her daughter stern eyed just day dreaming Yiska says watching her mother putting the clothes in a pile and picking the ***** blouse from the floor and holding the soiled linen in her hands this room was tidy why untidy it? her mother says sorry wasn't thinking Yiska says glad her mother couldn't read her thoughts or see the imagined Benny kissing her neck and whose right hand was fondling her right *** because if she could she'd have a fit.
A GIRL DAYDREAMS OF A BOY AT SCHOOL AND TAKING HIM HOME IN 1962.
bucky Jun 2014
everyone keeps saying "we made it"
and it's actually a little confusing
because it's almost like they thought we couldn't
five teenagers on lockdown have never caused so much panic but I guess we're just
the deadbeat generation
(knock once for failure, twice for rebirth, three times to see your life in twenty years-
who knows, maybe you'll have a life in twenty years)
we pick locks on bad days turn back the clocks on good days
if we try hard enough maybe we'll go back to the glory days I wanna blast music from the busted up speakers
in the back of my car I wanna live like I used to
we're anthems and parades and kids crying out in the middle of the night when the hole in their stomach opens up
or closes
we're caught up in a whirlwind of scientific facts and figures and sometimes I want to scream at the top of my lungs
as if that'll help me escape the noise in my head
punk isn't about living through the fall of something it's about living through the rise of me
I am real I am here I will scream it from the ******* rooftops if I have to
I will tap my fingertips on tables even when I'm told not to
I will tattoo myself a thousand times over, an endless mantra of existence
i exist i exist i exist
this isn't a happy ending, or at least it isn't the one I was promised
but it's something
it's okay
and that's good enough because okay is ******* wonderful
lace my fingers with yours call me a queen tell me you'll never let me go because I will never let you go
we are the kids who will never stop living
even when they tell us that we are impossible we are heartbeats pounding on cracked pavement,
leather and cheap beer, lather me in love lay me down to sleep
with the promise of tomorrow
promise me that tomorrow will still be there when I wake up
you can have a house but not a home
I was a house but not a home until I met you
deadbeat degenerates make a better family than most.
credit to the wonderful kandee for the first three lines. i'm not sure how this ended up being about punk, but i'll take it.
Jordan Rowan Jan 2016
The night sounds of fallen angels
Building stairways back to home
And the radio plays softly
Like a crooner left alone
As the night falls into the velvet shades
And beats down the bedroom door
Of all the visions that come to me
It's of one I'm hoping for

The postman closes up the station
And the buses get cleaned with rain
The asylum rests and barely breathes
As the countryside goes insane
Prophets speak of peace
On the dim hue of TV screens
Of all the moments that seem real
I still wait to watch my dreams

Imposed upon the westward wall
Are the silhouettes of weeping oaks
Swaying in the wind that talks
But they only tell me jokes
Swept beneath the silver stars
Sleeping on blanket clouds
Of all the space above me
I feel as if I can't get out

Headlights and passing trains
Sound like time passing by
Gone are the hearts inside
Like the years beyond my eyes
Sounds from the suburb city
Blow like sirens in my mind
Of all the thoughts within me
Only one freezes time
Jennifer French Oct 2012
I know at night
Searching for your warmth,
You're always in arms reach,
but it feels so far.
You're an eternity away,
yet under the same sheet.
I simply roll closer,
Arms searching for skin.
Though it is dark,
Your silhouette is clear.
Briefly I hesitate,
Am I a comfort to you,
As you have become to me?
My arms close the gap.
Your skin it too warm,
My hands are too cold.
You sigh softly, content.
Our legs instinctively intertwine.
Then your hand closes around mine.
When did this become familiar?
Before I can really think,
I'm comforted by your touch.
Your breathing, so steady,
Matched by your heartbeat.
Then, without my consent,
Without my conscious present,
I begin dreaming.
Chris Apr 2015
.

The day closes
behind a screen door
branded with a bread label,
yellows and blues,
blues how appropriate
as I stand here, sore feet,
tired muscles watching the shadows
play in circles on the lawn

Two cats sleep on the porch
as if this day was like all others
with cloud formations
in unrecognizable shapes,
claiming another victory
with a blade and a sun beam,
both glistening in defiant smiles

While on wings of gossamer weavings,
beyond the crested and fallen snow,
she flies like the wind,
touching me in all areas,
engulfing me with her presence,
lifting me so that my existence
is only hers, and that is how it should

I whistle a happy tune
though this happiness, this poetry
is weighing on those who read
and even those who don't
which number many more
in counted blank margins,
straight line columns of silence

Still I reach, hoping for something
which takes a back seat to the others
who prove more talent, more resolve
in crafted words spelling that relief,
poetry that breaths in the soft reflections
desired in these eyes now weary...

the day closes...
tc Apr 2018
of one thing
i am sure
and that is
that i am
unsure of
myself
and it’s funny
how i can’t
sleep but my
chest closes its
eyes and hums
with a heartbeat
that is unsure of
itself, too.
i try to morph
into a body
i don’t feel
belongs to me
just so i can
fit somewhere
fit in somewhere
and i tell so
many stories
about the
universe, it
forever feels
like i am trying
to remain lost.
i am unsure
of myself;
connecting the
moles on my
skin as if they
will spell out
something bigger
so i can feel
like i matter,
at least for
a little while.
i sleep beside
myself, stare at
a reflection
so unfamiliar
i couldn’t even
identify it in
a crowd of
strangers, but
i am trying.
and one day
i’m sure i’ll
be sure
of myself but
until then,
i’ll morph into
someone i can
be proud of
and hope that
the universe
sends me back
to myself.
MoeGallo Dec 2014
I’m rendered powerless. Just about breathless. I watch as each layer of clothing gravitates toward the floor. Strip off the clothes that enveloped his beauty. My knees begin to fail me. Through his stare it feels as though he’s already probing every crevice of my being. Eye-fingers ravish me. He’s bare. My eyes haven’t left him. He smirks, refusing to leave me a spectator. Clammy hands penetrate the chill of the tile lined room. He strips me. I'm sure he senses me shaking.. goosebumps begin to rise. We step into shower. The tap is high, the temperature hot. The passion as well. He’s capturing me. Rapturing my frame, Grasping me. Gasping for me. He pulls me into him.. into the air. My legs incoherently wrap around him. The hot vapors aren't from the water, but our lust we heed. It’s wet. "Think ya can make it to the bedroom?" My throat closes. Barley touching, the pleasure, pressure, of his words render me unable to respond clearly. I nearly whimper out an answer. The smirk returns. This act meant for cleansing morphs into such a ***** one. I’m miserable within myself, the sheer amount of desire burns. Pushing me to the wall his body presses against me. He pushes into me. His hips. His lips. I feel him sliding in and out, violating, his tongue twisting around my own. His body as well. We’re intertwined...
Inspired by Stardust's "Showering together" c:
Hope you liked it!
Mateuš Conrad Aug 2018
.ludo savis... play nice... ludo savis... play nice:

i knew the relationship was over when i encountered her ex-boyfriend sitting in her st. petersburg flat drinking ***** with me, no, wait, it was when she started questionning me using cosmopolitan magazine quiz about perfect girlfriends on our way from st. petersburg to moscow to see metallica, while all i wanted was to listen to bob dylan and appreciate whatever rural russia had to offer... beside that? it took me quiet a time to fiddle through and find the glagolitic alphabet, the slavic alphabet before the learned greek came across "my" people, given the romans never venture that far... good luck finding an african phonetic encoding system, beside the hieroglyphs... i won't bother looking right now... not to insult, though: so much for a large phallus megalomania contra envy... Ⰶ: życie (life) is not the half of the caron ž in the form of: the acute... (ź): ździra (don't ask, seriously, the word implies worse than ***** / szmata)... źródło (source)... eh... the one-armed caron (ž)... ź... i can't explain it any further: you need to speak the lingo to keep the "nuance" alive... southern slavs treat the caron akin to ž = ż... how beautiful... given the english language has no diacritical marker application: can't exactly claim diacritical markers using only the automated hovering decapitated heads above ι & ȷ... i'm not english i'm tired of looking up h'america's *******! i don't need not fancy pants to debrief the people i'm concerned with to mind, not giving a **** about them... thanks for your jeans: subtitle made in canada... beside the whole mao shitshow of: made in china.... back in the 1990s! *******... even in terms of music h'america isn't really relevant.. it just is... and "whatever" this "is" is to be, will remain... but only as an r.e.m. ref. pointer, that requires the physical translation of the lyrics: the one i love... a simple prop: to occupy my mind.... fire! the silesian vampire... because... said so... learning about monsters is what i could only fathom, which included me... but, sorry... the glagolithic script... ⰄⰀⰏ: dam... i.e. i will give... fun fact: r.e.m. didn't sell their: it's the end of the world as we know it (and i feel fine) to microsoft for a commercial break.. glagolitic script... where are the africans? oh, right, nowhere when phonetic encoding is turning heads... **** me... even the blind are onto the affair...  i went as far back as the glagolithic script: pre cyrillic, about the same time that the latins incorporated the northern "savages" with applying the chisel to the ᚱ / R... ᚠ / F... copernican "up-side down": why do all tree (beside the pines) resemble a Y shape, a gamma? why did god compensate his existence with opiates?! refresh my memory, though, why am i drawing blanks at african phonetic encoding? **** me, the blind drew something, the deaf too... if you played the guitar, forget about reading braille... you need tender, french, fingertips.... you can't play the guitasr and read braille... mind you... encoding morse overshadows braille... but even the european blindman overcomes the fully ****-naked butter-cup sprinting *** of a black man every day of the week: i'm not here to compensate for a leprechaun's sized *****: mind you... in the hands of a porcelain ***- beauty? everything looks like a hiroshima... i just started to entertain an asian fetish... 4th knuckle mizzing... missing... the most ****** aspect of a female aesthetic? her hand... when *** & the city cited trimming ***** hair (no circumsion, really?), so no asian porcelain hands, no 4th knuckle missing?! i hate what the anglo-speaking world has become, it's this, this, this quasi-Islam.... at least i respect the Quran... but 1984, by the secular prophet of the western world? why do people still calling it: silicon vallyey... it's a ******* curtain, smart-you not seeing the replacement mechanisms of the silicon curtain: now wow... ******, where you're getting-to-go get from? any ideas?! a tehran baza?! ******. 1960s homosexuals fiddling their way past the tunis police, happy? loitering sucker-****** pansie? again... entertain me... where is the african phonetic encoding system... this is my "i.q." avenue masterpiece... i don't care about i.q. but a ******* blind man beat the african at phonetic encoding... personally?


one just simply falls, tired of the right-wing momentum regarding beauty, it's such a bothersome crtique of its generic foundation if beauty..... i hate it, this objective classicism: back to the future take no, 4; *******...

             again, where were the africans sorting
out their invetement in the slave trade...
ONLY WHITE PEOPLE
WERE BAD, CONCERNING BLACK PEOPLE...
Idi Amin... Idi Amin Idi Amin Idi Amin Idi Amin
Idi Amin... Idi Amin Idi Amin Idi Amin Idi Amin ....
******! please!
ever see an african-h'american in africa?
   ******! please!
ever see an african-h'american in africa?
i said: ******! please!
ever see an african-h'american in africa?
i'd love to see an african-h'american
in africa... mouthin-off their stature...

                   african phonetic encoding....

debussy                                       chopin




satie                                              schumannn...

­and?
              there's too much of loon'don....
                   had enough of it, ****'s....
too much ***-kissing,
too much of the h'american swindle...
carelesss buggers; these brits...
******* ****** jolly-tribe
               ****-ups....
  
i drink and relax solving a sudoku -
i'm not doing it to compete -
   just having a conversation with
my neighbor about the difference
between Alzheimer's
and dementia brought back memories
of what i negated for some time...

it's only when someone else tells
you of their elder relative's dementia
you muster the courage to
spot the same symptoms in
your relative...

         my grandfather has dementia...
my early teenage years,
every summer visiting him,
traveling to Krakow,
     going fishing,
riding our bicycles in the afternoon...
he feeding my what books
i should read...
      i still visit,
  spend about a month,
say, keep him company,
   fix up the kitchen...

  but it's such an exhausting disease...
not so much for the sufferer -
this mild form of Alzheimer -
no killer proteins eating away at
the brain cells -
   dementia?
the ontological nadir of old age...
then again, perhaps the zenith...

a closure...
   the long term memory opens,
while the short term memory
closes -
   he still can solve a crossword
puzzle like a mad genius...
but he lapses into what is
the cinema of mortality...
                 he remembers things
like the two SS-men
   posted in my home town,
running up to them
and saying -
herr bitte bon-bon!...
  the raven black of the uniform
and the glaring *******...

    i blocked the fact that it was
dementia, when my grandmother
thought it was wise to scare all
of us, uncle, mother and father
into thinking it could degenerate
into Alzheimer's...
        he still recognizes me!
Alzheimer's sufferers can't
even muster that!

   at best... dementia couples itself up
with melancholia,
  the natural melancholia
akin to the sadness expressed by
Nietzsche: only when the house
has been completed,
but never during the construction...

dementia is just an endless memory
loop...
   when man is allowed to finally
put down the hammer, the sickle...
and retire?
  he's standing on the precipices of mortality...
on a dam about to crack open,
and release a surge of the sea
of memory...
   why wouldn't he take the time
to remember?
  to remember himself?
        
the tedium comes when the same
persons implores others to listen to them...
when memories become less
of the old man's cinema and more
affairs of an oral culture -
our culture has lost the point
of oral transmission -
  hence dementia sufferers have
to evolve -
                  into not talking so much...
not as a mean spirited conviction -
why? i do the same -
   i have about 10 focal memories
that constant revive me -
               and i'm only 32...
          but i don't talk about them...
hell, i won't write them...
   it's my own, private cinema -
but my grandfather comes from
a time before the optical explosion
of television...

         i don't need to hear what he saw -
all i need is to tattoo his mannerisms
and face onto my psyche...

   but dementia, thank god,
is a listening tedium...
                     point being...
a life opens up,
   but any immediacy of life disappears...
hence his persistent ability
to solve crossword puzzles,
enjoy reading the newspaper -
but the significance of remembering
yesterday is missing...
    
he's an old man...
   he has no obligations in terms of
duty in a professional arena of
the metalwork factory...
why wouldn't he attempt to push death
aside and not linger on
the memory of his, magnum opus -
his life sigma oeuvre?

     me?
  some would call this music neo-**** skinhead
****...
   wumpscut, two songs...
   thorns & wreath of barbs,
     bunkertor sieben (reprise)...
but it relaxes me when sitting on a sudoku,
drinking Bacardi cola and lime...
      enjoying the cool August air
after just enough rain
that manages to exfoliates the flowers
with refreshed sensuality...

  sudoku no. 10101...
    after enough numbers pop up,
the tactic is to hone in on one number
in each of the 9 squares and 9 vertical
and 9 linear line...
for sudoku no. 10101 in the Friday's
edition of the times?

   it went something akin to this

[8, 5] - [3] - [1] - [9] - [7] - [2, 6] - [4]

that's the closest schematic
i'll have for you,
   with regards to how the grid is filled.

i drink and relax solving a sudoku -
i'm not doing it to compete -
   just having a conversation with
my neighbor about the difference
between Alzheimer's
and dementia brought back memories
of what i negated for some time...

it's only when someone else tells
you of their elder relative's dementia
you muster the courage to
spot the same symptoms in
your relative...

         my grandfather has dementia...
my early teenage years,
every summer visiting him,
traveling to Krakow,
     going fishing,
riding our bicycles in the afternoon...
he feeding my what books
i should read...
      i still visit,
  spend about a month,
say, keep him company,
   fix up the kitchen...

  but it's such an exhausting disease...
not so much for the sufferer -
this mild form of Alzheimer -
no killer proteins eating away at
the brain cells -
   dementia?
the ontological nadir of old age...
then again, perhaps the zenith...

a closure...
   the long term memory opens,
while the short term memory
closes -
   he still can solve a crossword
puzzle like a mad genius...
but he lapses into what is
the cinema of mortality...
                 he remembers things
like the two SS-men
   posted in my home town,
running up to them
and saying -
herr bitte bon-bon!...
  the raven black of the uniform
and the glaring *******...

    i blocked the fact that it was
dementia, when my grandmother
thought it was wise to scare all
of us, uncle, mother and father
into thinking it could degenerate
into Alzheimer's...
        he still recognizes me!
Alzheimer's sufferers can't
even muster that!

   at best... dementia couples itself up
with melancholia,
  the natural melancholia
akin to the sadness expressed by
Nietzsche: only when the house
has been completed,
but never during the construction...

dementia is just an endless memory
loop...
   when man is allowed to finally
put down the hammer, the sickle...
and retire?
  he's standing on the precipices of mortality...
on a dam about to crack open,
and release a surge of the sea
of memory...
   why wouldn't he take the time
to remember?
  to remember himself?
        
the tedium comes when the same
persons implores others to listen to them...
when memories become less
of the old man's cinema and more
affairs of an oral culture -
our culture has lost the point
of oral transmission -
  hence dementia sufferers have
to evolve -
                  into not talking so much...
not as a mean spirited conviction -
why? i do the same -
   i have about 10 focal memories
that constant revive me -
               and i'm only 32...
          but i don't talk about them...
hell, i won't write them...
   it's my own, private cinema -
but my grandfather comes from
a time before the optical explosion
of television...

         i don't need to hear what he saw -
all i need is to tattoo his mannerisms
and face onto my psyche...

   but dementia, thank god,
is a listening tedium...
                     point being...
a life opens up,
   but any immediacy of life disappears...
hence his persistent ability
to solve crossword puzzles,
enjoy reading the newspaper -
but the significance of remembering
yesterday is missing...
    
he's an old man...
   he has no obligations in terms of
duty in a professional arena of
the metalwork factory...
why wouldn't he attempt to push death
aside and not linger on
the memory of his, magnum opus -
his life sigma oeuvre?

     me?
  some would call this music neo-**** skinhead
****...
   wumpscut, two songs...
   thorns & wreath of barbs,
     bunkertor sieben (reprise)...
but it relaxes me when sitting on a sudoku,
drinking Bacardi cola and lime...
      enjoying the cool August air
after just enough rain
that manages to exfoliates the flowers
with refreshed sensuality...

  sudoku no. 10101...
    after enough numbers pop up,
the tactic is to hone in on one number
in each of the 9 squares and 9 vertical
and 9 linear line...
for sudoku no. 10101 in the Friday's
edition of the times?

   it went something akin to this

[8, 5] - [3] - [1] - [9] - [7] - [2, 6] - [4]

that's the closest schematic
i'll have for you,
   with regards to how the grid is filled.

oh sure sure, the uncircumcised man,
crucified when all the orthodox were
drunk,
                   פור day,
       drunk cruxion?!
                 lovey purin "misgivings";
what's next?

   oh sure sure, the jews would hav e crucified
me on the hill of: tel megiddo
****-heads throwing up their kippahs
into the air in some skewed form
of celebration...
       like bacchus entering
Valhalla asking: where's the mead?
    i've had too much wine...
where'y the whiskey?

   i'll keep repeating...
              talk about jews among the polonaiase?
hush hush: ****, dont want to bring
bad luck... jews in poland are very much akin
to roma gypsies: lucky charms...
but... do you see any ******* leprechauns
around? look at me: i see none...
  let's tell the joke in verse,
not the stadard: a priest a rabbi and an imam
walk into a bar...
****... is that even a joke?! muslims don't drink!
what's the imam having; cranberry juice?!

and englishman a scot and an irish walk
into a bar... the three of them walk
out on stag-duty with inflanted sheep and
speaking cymcru... terrible joke...
as all my jokes were to begin with...

         i am currently navigating,
my uncle's ex girlfriend is sleeping downstairs
on the couch,
blah blah Tuscany... blah blah prosecco...
i'm becoming suspect: she's a gemini,
isn't she? all the geminis i ever met where
extroverted self-absorbed louis XIV types...
they need to, they need to self-absorb themselves
in order to extract the sort of energy
associate with rhetoric,
   and how they constantly digress,
there's always a sub-plot to the plot... nay,
there are always sub-plots...
          great company, i mean...
when a person speaks all the time there are
no awkward moments of silence,
until the said person tells the "eager" listener...
play some music...
she's a warsaw girl, so she's a pretty learned
in the ways of the world,
i'm just an ostrowiec commoner...

    oy vey! oy vey: she'***** 40 and lamenting...
i too complain about my uncle...
she had an abortion with him...
i once talked with my uncle about music
while he surfaced at mrs. roshandler's back garabe...
we ate sri lankan fried chicken wings and
chips and listened to californication
for the very first time...

   abundance of hope in Tuscany...
"apparently"... but if you have ever watched
a woman, borderline on asylum incarceration?
i was looking at one just example...
  it's not a pretty sight...
even when she asked: how's *** and business?
i'm a monk...
          or at least i tend to...
even if she came from a stock of
failed relationships: fine fine...
            now?

i served up decent food,
a malvani and a tikka masala curry...
          naan bread,
     turmeric infused rice,
vanilla cheese cake with strawberries...
she enjoyed it,
i like to please people...
    mind you: ever see a slim chef?
i wouldn't trust a slim chef,
i never have, i never will,
you need some chubby chub chub rounding-offs...
mind you: i much prefer cooking
food than eating it,
but i would never trust a chef associated
with a c.o.d. associated with counting calories...
never have, never will...
two noteworthy proverbs:
1. too many cooks in one kitchen =
no decent meal is being made...
  one cook, one couldron, that's your best bet...
2. never trust a slim, athletic cook...
those ******* can shove their kale
       smoothies....
they can slurp up those smoothies
turning their ***** in straw ******* vortexes!
i'll cook on lard trimmings,

em....
  [9] - [2] - [6] - [3] - [8] - [1] - [4] - [5, 7]?
that's when the sudoku puzzle was filled...
all the nines... all the twos... etc. became filled
in the 9 grids...

well...
     "apart" from: my uncle's girlfriend:
i've been living in englamd
for nearly 30 yeasrs...
i've dated a french girl,
an australian, a russian....
but u've never dated an english
girl: i guess they much prefer
aged pakistani grooming gang
members....
            i guess:
**** gasoline on them,
they're all readied and geared up!

braille contra morse?
if you want to play the guitar?
forget the braille....
you need tender fingertips
to read braille...
morse? nit so much...
here's a comparison...
i see!

    a.:   ⠓⠑   ⠺⠓⠕
                       ⠎⠑⠑⠎
    ⠊⠎       ⠁⠃⠇⠑
                   ⠞⠕
                                     ­   ⠗⠑⠁⠙

b. play the guitar and learn to....
read finger tip braille, ******....

· · · ·  ·         
· − −  · · · ·  − − − 
· · ·  ·  ·  · · · :
                  · ·  · · · 
▄▄▄▄▄▄▄▄ ▄▄▄▄▄▄▄▄▄▄ · − · ·  ·  (a / b)
      −  − − − 
                   · − ·  · ▄▄▄▄▄▄▄ − · ·  (a)

(he who sees: is able to read)...

           i can attest...
             i would find myself readily reading
morse in braille,
than braille by itself...
                far more easier.

finger-tips... i'd sooner read your morse
as braille, than braille as morse..
King Panda Aug 2017
a crocus opens and
closes with the stream of
midnight moon.

the playmate of exhaustion
crosses the room
in his heavy, black boots
to close the curtains.

goodbye, light.
goodbye, pride of lions
and boy transformed
into a werewolf.

a scratch
of larceny,
the cuddle of
maple leaves rotting,
the magnet spinning
in rocket-ship orbit.

all secrets held in
feathers,
in hair compounded
into strings of
black opal,
and limbs stenciling
comets around
five feet of woman.

nothing in the talk
can suffocate—a quick
and easy birth of
ecstasy and the emotional
sidestep into the dark
of slumber,
seemingly feminine but
dreams strong as
barbed wire.

when to sleep?

a question finger-written
on my chest.
Cyril Blythe Nov 2012
Janie pushes the metal book cart back into its parking space in the Document Delivery Department of the St. Louis Public Library and hangs the last sticky note for October 30, 2012 on the wall by the head of the department’s closed door. She retightens her brown scarf under her chin, tucking the wispy hairs above her ears back into hiding. Having your hair begin to prematurely gray as a teenager has dramatic effects on a person. Her mother wore scarves around her wrists when Janie was growing up and when Janie begin to wear scarves to conceal her salt-and-pepper hair, her mother just smiled. The clock hanging on the wall above the children’s section reads 11:28pm.
Two more minutes.
She reorganized the pens and books on her desk and set the box reading NOTES onto the right corner or her desk with three blue pens and a stack of note cards. Her coworkers learned fast that Janie does not like to talk. She does not like eye contact. She loves the silence, and never ever to ask her about her hair. Her manager gave her the NOTES box after about a month of horrible miscommunication and everyday it fills with requests for books or tasks that Janie has to complete. She completes the tasks one by one, alone, in her back office in the Reference Department and hangs the completed sticky notes on the wall by her manager’s door. She works the night shift and locks the library up every night. When she’s alone she can talk out loud to herself and those are the only voices she cares to hear.
“Goodnight, books. Good night, rooms.” Janie shut the heavy wooden door to the library, placed the color-coded keys in the front right pocket of her jacket, and began her walk to the bus stop one corner away. She avoids the main road, taking her first right onto a side street that she knows would spit her out right beside the bus stop.
“Goodnight Taco Bell Sign. Goodnight Rite-Aide. Goodnight Westside Apartments. Goodnight Jack-o-Lantern smile.” She stopped in the middle of the alley and peered up at the Jack-o-Lantern grinning down at her from the third story window above. “Mother wouldn’t’ve liked your smirk, Jack. She would’ve slapped that **** right off your face.” Janie, satisfied the pumpkin was put in its rightful place, smiled as she trotted on.
“Mother carved smiles into her arms and that’s why Daddy left, it is, it is.” She kicked at a crushed Mountain Dew can as she remembered that night from years ago.

“Mommy?” Janie pushed opened the door to her mother’s bedroom and saw the moving-boxes torn open and all their contents scattered across the floor. She tiptoed through piles of scarves and silverware and corkscrews until she reached the bathroom in her mom’s room.
“Come to us like rain, oh lord, come and stay and sting a while more, oh lord…” her mother’s voice was slipping off the tiled bathroom walls. Janie pushed open the door and saw the blood for the first time pouring from her mother’s wrist. Her mother was naked and perched on the bathroom sink, singing to a red razor blade.
“Mommy?”
“GET OUT!” Her mother jumped from the counter and perched on all fours on the floor. She began to growl and speak in a voice too deep to be coming from her own throat.
“Mommy! It’s Janie!” She began to cry as her mother, still naked and bleeding, twisted and writhed onto her back and began to crawl towards the door that Janie hid behind.


“Thirty-Three percent, dear. Just a thirty-three percent chance.” She shivered trying to clear the last memory of her mother with the words that all the shrinks had echoed to her over the years. “Schizophrenia is directly related to genetics, little is known about the type of Schizophrenia mother was diagnosed with except that it is definitely passed on genetically. But, there is only a thirty-three percent chance you could have it, dear. Thirty-three percent.” The sound of the bus stop ahead reminds her it is time to be silent again.
“Disorganized Schizophrenia.” She mouthed to herself as she stepped back out onto the busy street from her alleyway. She tightened her scarf and saw the bus pull into the pickup spot. She walked forward to the bus, again immersed in her self-imposed silence.
Stepping out of the February cold, Janie removes her wool scarf as the bus doors close behind her.
“Where to baby?” The driver smiles a sticky smile. Her nametag reads, “Shannon” and has a decaying Hello-Kitty sticker in the bottom left corner.
“The Clinton Street drop.” She hands the driver her $2.50 fare and avoids the woman’s questioning eyes. The night drivers are always more talkative, curious.
“Your ticket hon.” She tears Janie a ticket stub. “Everything is pretty dead this late, I’ll have you there in ten minutes top.”
Janie begins to shuffle towards the seats, ignoring the woman.
“You mind if I crank up the music?” The bus driver asks, purple fingernails scratching in her thick blonde hair. “I need to keep my eyes open and blood flowing and music is my fire of choice you know?”
“Sure.” Janie shrugs her bag onto her shoulder and walks on before the woman can say anything else.
“Route E-2, homebound.” Shannon’s voice crackles over the loudspeaker.
She shuffles down the bus towards her usual seat; second from the back right side.  Shannon starts the bus rolling before she reaches her seat and Janie can hear her singing along to “Summertime” by Janis Joplin. The bus floor, today, is sticky because of the morning rain. Two years of riding public transportation has taught Janie that staring at the floor as she walks to her seat is better than the risk of making eye contact. The bus is usually empty this late but if there ever happens to be anyone else on, it’s better not to converse. Safer that way.
She plops into her seat filling the indention that ghosts of past passengers left. The seat is still warm and Janie squirms around until the stranger heat is forgotten. She tightens her scarf and sighs. The brown pleather seatback in front of her is peeling towards the top. Janie leans forward and idly picks at the scab-like dangles of brown as she watches the sodden city canvas roll past her out the foggy window. As she picks, the hole grows. She twists and digs her unpainted nails into the seat until her hands feel wet, warm. Looking down, they are covered in blood and mud.
“What. The. Actual. ****.” she whispers, wiping her hands on her pants leg. She cautiously picks off another piece of pleather and a trickle of deep red begins to run from the seat back, clumps of mud now falling onto her knees. A puddle of blood and mire splatter down her legs and pool around her feet as she picks at the seat. Her white tights are definitely beyond saving now, so she digs faster until her thumbnail catches on something, bends back, and cracks. She gasps and withdraws her shaking hand, watching her own blood mix with the clotting muck in the seat, half of her thumbnail completely stripped off.
Looking around, all else seems normal. The driver is now muttering along to some banter by Kanye West, completely unaware of Janie’s predicament. She closes her eyes.
This is a dream, this is a dream, wake the **** up.
She opens her eyes to see the pool of filth around her feet trickling towards the front of the bus. Panic sets in with a whisper, They’re going to think it was you, your fault, you’ll be thrown in jail.
“But I didn’t do this.” She lashes out to herself. “I didn’t hurt anyone.”
Next stop, E-2. Shannon blares on the intercom.
“It’s just a dream, get your **** together, Janie.” She laughs at herself, manic.
Prove it! Her subconscious screams.
Convinced to end this moment she has to continue; Janie plunges her hand into the pleather grave one more time. Frantic and confused she laughs as she digs, spittle of muck splashing on her bus window.
Faster, faster, faster.
Deeper, deeper, deeper.
Realer, realer, real.
Wake up, now!
Then, as the bus slows, one last chuck of mud splatters to the floor and Janie sees a pink piece of her thumbnail stabbed into the white of a bone in the bottom of the seatback pit. Her white Ked’s were becoming so red they were almost black. She pulls her knees up to her chest and begins to rock back and forth. Clenching shut her eyes she begins to hum. Janie’s sweet soprano harmonizes with the buses deep droning purr, their wet melody interweaving with the driver’s alto and Lil Wayne’s screech made her feel dizzy as the bus turned right.
She take my money when I'm in need
Yeah she's a trifling friend indeed
Oh she's a gold digger way over town
That dig's on me
The bus slows to a stop and the bass is shaking. Janie is cold. She slowly peeks out of her right eye, expecting to be instantly immersed into the same dismal scene. The seatback is whole again. Releasing her knees, her feet fall back to the floor and her shaking fingers stroke the solid pleather.

“Ma’am? We’re at the Clinton Drop.”
Janie hurriedly picks up her bag and flees down the aisle to the bus doors.
“Everything alright, dear?” The bus driver asks, smiling.
“Fine, just fine.”
“You be safe out there tonight. The night is dark and only ghouls stroll the streets this late.”  Shannon laughed as Janie’s jaw dropped. “Happy Halloween, dear. It’s midnight, today is October 31st.”
The bus doors opened and a cold wind ****** the warm bot-air surrounding Janie into the streets. She begrudgingly followed, her mind spinning as she stepped onto the pavement. The doors slammed behind her and she turned to see Shannon pull out a tube of lipstick and smear it, red, across her cracked lips. Shannon made a duck-face in the mirror and reached down to crank up the music as loud as it would go. The bus exhaled and rolled forward, leaving Janie behind as it splashed through the potholes.
She surveys the surrounding midnight gloom and the street is quiet and dark. Even the stars are hidden behind swirling clouds. She begins to hum, hands in her pocket, and shuffle towards her apartment.
“Goodnight, stars. Goodnight, street.”
As she approaches her single-bedroom apartment, digging through her coat pocket for her keys, her thumb pulsates. She grasps the keys and pulls them out as she steps up to the apartment. Sticking the cold, silver key in the lock she looks down at her thumb and in the shadows of the porch sees half of the nail completely missing. She laughs as she pushes the door open to her bare apartment, light flooding out. Without any hesitation she closes the door behind her, sheds her clothes, and slips onto the mattress in the corner of the room gripping her thumb tight. She reaches out for the glass of milk on the floor beside her bed from the morning and it’s still cold. Nursing the milk, surrounded by blankets and solitude, she reminds herself,  “Only a thirty-three percent chance. A nice, small, round number. Small.”  
She sets down the empty glass and curls into the fetal position under the heavy blankets, pointer finger tracing circles on her thumb. Only when she has heated her blanket cocoon enough to feel safe does she remove her scarf and allow her thick white hair to fall around her face.
“Goodnight, room. Goodnight, mother,”
shaqila Jul 2013
When even hell closes its door on you
The decrepit nothing that you’ve become is apparent
You devoured children and virgins when on earth
There was no preference; you mutilated them all

But now, where will you go?
The darkest place in the universe has turned you away
And your punishment, the removal of your powers
Upon reaching the end of your physical mortality

Where will you run to, when you cannot hide?
Maybe there is ****** karma in the afterlife after all
Beware monsters and creatures of the night array your path
To the left and right and all around and it’s always dark

It’s not pleasant, the price you pay for extreme sin
When death, you think the end, is only the beginning
Of eternity and damnation and whoredom to
Creatures who even hell shudders to let in...
dj Mar 2012
With those acid wash jeans
With that full sleeve of twirling black ink
With the drapes of long hair
I thought that we could leave the xplosion-club
After the confection of colognes
After the South African red wine
After the pounding music all night
Something **** about
A statue that can move
It's eyes
Something **** about
A man that thinks
Openly

We took the subway back to my apartment
You picked up a pebble and tossed it
I was quieter now
Would I let him inside? I have to at this point it seems
A charming prince
is a charming prince

I open the door.
Nothing bad happens, as I expect
I am a little paranoid I don't know why
(The club flashes back)
The door closes without its usual creek,
And we're inside.
Me and the charmer; I wonder, was he once a frog?
I have a funny feeling that I think came from the wine
Am I trashed or
Does he have horns?
Slimy toadskin, red eyes, 1000 inches of claws
Suddenly
Are upon me, Oh my God!
I tell it to leave mE ALONE,
It doesn't listen to me.

Every time I try to slip out of it's grip
I slide into a claw
Gushing this stuff from the movies,
It covered the bed and then the floor,
It probably leaked out from under the apartment door.

My cellphone rings in my pants pocket
I can't reach it because by then this grendel thing had broken me
Into two legs, a torso, two arms
And a decapitated head
While it eats my right lung, my left hand tries to desperately crawl away
He pokes it with a great fork; no escaping crums
The awful amphibian finishes and leaves forever.
He's never coming back
A winner-and-loser kind of ***, I guess.
I know that Grendel is typically a monster imagined as a hairy beast. But I wanted to name my morphing amphibian Grendel.
THE HOUSE OF DUST
A Symphony

BY
CONRAD AIKEN

To Jessie

NOTE

. . . Parts of this poem have been printed in "The North American
Review, Others, Poetry, Youth, Coterie, The Yale Review". . . . I am
indebted to Lafcadio Hearn for the episode called "The Screen Maiden"
in Part II.


     This text comes from the source available at
     Project Gutenberg, originally prepared by Judy Boss
     of Omaha, NE.
    
THE HOUSE OF DUST


PART I.


I.

The sun goes down in a cold pale flare of light.
The trees grow dark: the shadows lean to the east:
And lights wink out through the windows, one by one.
A clamor of frosty sirens mourns at the night.
Pale slate-grey clouds whirl up from the sunken sun.

And the wandering one, the inquisitive dreamer of dreams,
The eternal asker of answers, stands in the street,
And lifts his palms for the first cold ghost of rain.
The purple lights leap down the hill before him.
The gorgeous night has begun again.

'I will ask them all, I will ask them all their dreams,
I will hold my light above them and seek their faces.
I will hear them whisper, invisible in their veins . . .'
The eternal asker of answers becomes as the darkness,
Or as a wind blown over a myriad forest,
Or as the numberless voices of long-drawn rains.

We hear him and take him among us, like a wind of music,
Like the ghost of a music we have somewhere heard;
We crowd through the streets in a dazzle of pallid lamplight,
We pour in a sinister wave, ascend a stair,
With laughter and cry, and word upon murmured word;
We flow, we descend, we turn . . . and the eternal dreamer
Moves among us like light, like evening air . . .

Good-night!  Good-night!  Good-night!  We go our ways,
The rain runs over the pavement before our feet,
The cold rain falls, the rain sings.
We walk, we run, we ride.  We turn our faces
To what the eternal evening brings.

Our hands are hot and raw with the stones we have laid,
We have built a tower of stone high into the sky,
We have built a city of towers.

Our hands are light, they are singing with emptiness.
Our souls are light; they have shaken a burden of hours . . .
What did we build it for?  Was it all a dream? . . .
Ghostly above us in lamplight the towers gleam . . .
And after a while they will fall to dust and rain;
Or else we will tear them down with impatient hands;
And hew rock out of the earth, and build them again.


II.

One, from his high bright window in a tower,
Leans out, as evening falls,
And sees the advancing curtain of the shower
Splashing its silver on roofs and walls:
Sees how, swift as a shadow, it crosses the city,
And murmurs beyond far walls to the sea,
Leaving a glimmer of water in the dark canyons,
And silver falling from eave and tree.

One, from his high bright window, looking down,
Peers like a dreamer over the rain-bright town,
And thinks its towers are like a dream.
The western windows flame in the sun's last flare,
Pale roofs begin to gleam.

Looking down from a window high in a wall
He sees us all;
Lifting our pallid faces towards the rain,
Searching the sky, and going our ways again,
Standing in doorways, waiting under the trees . . .
There, in the high bright window he dreams, and sees
What we are blind to,-we who mass and crowd
From wall to wall in the darkening of a cloud.

The gulls drift slowly above the city of towers,
Over the roofs to the darkening sea they fly;
Night falls swiftly on an evening of rain.
The yellow lamps wink one by one again.
The towers reach higher and blacker against the sky.


III.

One, where the pale sea foamed at the yellow sand,
With wave upon slowly shattering wave,
Turned to the city of towers as evening fell;
And slowly walked by the darkening road toward it;
And saw how the towers darkened against the sky;
And across the distance heard the toll of a bell.

Along the darkening road he hurried alone,
With his eyes cast down,
And thought how the streets were hoarse with a tide of people,
With clamor of voices, and numberless faces . . .
And it seemed to him, of a sudden, that he would drown
Here in the quiet of evening air,
These empty and voiceless places . . .
And he hurried towards the city, to enter there.

Along the darkening road, between tall trees
That made a sinister whisper, loudly he walked.
Behind him, sea-gulls dipped over long grey seas.
Before him, numberless lovers smiled and talked.
And death was observed with sudden cries,
And birth with laughter and pain.
And the trees grew taller and blacker against the skies
And night came down again.


IV.

Up high black walls, up sombre terraces,
Clinging like luminous birds to the sides of cliffs,
The yellow lights went climbing towards the sky.
From high black walls, gleaming vaguely with rain,
Each yellow light looked down like a golden eye.

They trembled from coign to coign, and tower to tower,
Along high terraces quicker than dream they flew.
And some of them steadily glowed, and some soon vanished,
And some strange shadows threw.

And behind them all the ghosts of thoughts went moving,
Restlessly moving in each lamplit room,
From chair to mirror, from mirror to fire;
From some, the light was scarcely more than a gloom:
From some, a dazzling desire.

And there was one, beneath black eaves, who thought,
Combing with lifted arms her golden hair,
Of the lover who hurried towards her through the night;
And there was one who dreamed of a sudden death
As she blew out her light.

And there was one who turned from clamoring streets,
And walked in lamplit gardens among black trees,
And looked at the windy sky,
And thought with terror how stones and roots would freeze
And birds in the dead boughs cry . . .

And she hurried back, as snow fell, mixed with rain,
To mingle among the crowds again,
To jostle beneath blue lamps along the street;
And lost herself in the warm bright coiling dream,
With a sound of murmuring voices and shuffling feet.

And one, from his high bright window looking down
On luminous chasms that cleft the basalt town,
Hearing a sea-like murmur rise,
Desired to leave his dream, descend from the tower,
And drown in waves of shouts and laughter and cries.


V.

The snow floats down upon us, mingled with rain . . .
It eddies around pale lilac lamps, and falls
Down golden-windowed walls.
We were all born of flesh, in a flare of pain,
We do not remember the red roots whence we rose,
But we know that we rose and walked, that after a while
We shall lie down again.

The snow floats down upon us, we turn, we turn,
Through gorges filled with light we sound and flow . . .
One is struck down and hurt, we crowd about him,
We bear him away, gaze after his listless body;
But whether he lives or dies we do not know.

One of us sings in the street, and we listen to him;
The words ring over us like vague bells of sorrow.
He sings of a house he lived in long ago.
It is strange; this house of dust was the house I lived in;
The house you lived in, the house that all of us know.
And coiling slowly about him, and laughing at him,
And throwing him pennies, we bear away
A mournful echo of other times and places,
And follow a dream . . . a dream that will not stay.

Down long broad flights of lamplit stairs we flow;
Noisy, in scattered waves, crowding and shouting;
In broken slow cascades.
The gardens extend before us . . .  We spread out swiftly;
Trees are above us, and darkness.  The canyon fades . . .

And we recall, with a gleaming stab of sadness,
Vaguely and incoherently, some dream
Of a world we came from, a world of sun-blue hills . . .
A black wood whispers around us, green eyes gleam;
Someone cries in the forest, and someone kills.

We flow to the east, to the white-lined shivering sea;
We reach to the west, where the whirling sun went down;
We close our eyes to music in bright cafees.
We diverge from clamorous streets to streets that are silent.
We loaf where the wind-spilled fountain plays.

And, growing tired, we turn aside at last,
Remember our secret selves, seek out our towers,
Lay weary hands on the banisters, and climb;
Climbing, each, to his little four-square dream
Of love or lust or beauty or death or crime.


VI.

Over the darkened city, the city of towers,
The city of a thousand gates,
Over the gleaming terraced roofs, the huddled towers,
Over a somnolent whisper of loves and hates,
The slow wind flows, drearily streams and falls,
With a mournful sound down rain-dark walls.
On one side purples the lustrous dusk of the sea,
And dreams in white at the city's feet;
On one side sleep the plains, with heaped-up hills.
Oaks and beeches whisper in rings about it.
Above the trees are towers where dread bells beat.

The fisherman draws his streaming net from the sea
And sails toward the far-off city, that seems
Like one vague tower.
The dark bow plunges to foam on blue-black waves,
And shrill rain seethes like a ghostly music about him
In a quiet shower.

Rain with a shrill sings on the lapsing waves;
Rain thrills over the roofs again;
Like a shadow of shifting silver it crosses the city;
The lamps in the streets are streamed with rain;
And sparrows complain beneath deep eaves,
And among whirled leaves
The sea-gulls, blowing from tower to lower tower,
From wall to remoter wall,
Skim with the driven rain to the rising sea-sound
And close grey wings and fall . . .

. . . Hearing great rain above me, I now remember
A girl who stood by the door and shut her eyes:
Her pale cheeks glistened with rain, she stood and shivered.
Into a forest of silver she vanished slowly . . .
Voices about me rise . . .

Voices clear and silvery, voices of raindrops,-
'We struck with silver claws, we struck her down.
We are the ghosts of the singing furies . . . '
A chorus of elfin voices blowing about me
Weaves to a babel of sound.  Each cries a secret.
I run among them, reach out vain hands, and drown.

'I am the one who stood beside you and smiled,
Thinking your face so strangely young . . . '
'I am the one who loved you but did not dare.'
'I am the one you followed through crowded streets,
The one who escaped you, the one with red-gleamed hair.'

'I am the one you saw to-day, who fell
Senseless before you, hearing a certain bell:
A bell that broke great memories in my brain.'
'I am the one who passed unnoticed before you,
Invisible, in a cloud of secret pain.'

'I am the one who suddenly cried, beholding
The face of a certain man on the dazzling screen.
They wrote me that he was dead.  It was long ago.
I walked in the streets for a long while, hearing nothing,
And returned to see it again.  And it was so.'


Weave, weave, weave, you streaks of rain!
I am dissolved and woven again . . .
Thousands of faces rise and vanish before me.
Thousands of voices weave in the rain.

'I am the one who rode beside you, blinking
At a dazzle of golden lights.
Tempests of music swept me: I was thinking
Of the gorgeous promise of certain nights:
Of the woman who suddenly smiled at me this day,
Smiled in a certain delicious sidelong way,
And turned, as she reached the door,
To smile once more . . .
Her hands are whiter than snow on midnight water.
Her throat is golden and full of golden laughter,
Her eyes are strange as the stealth of the moon
On a night in June . . .
She runs among whistling leaves; I hurry after;
She dances in dreams over white-waved water;
Her body is white and fragrant and cool,
Magnolia petals that float on a white-starred pool . . .
I have dreamed of her, dreaming for many nights
Of a broken music and golden lights,
Of broken webs of silver, heavily falling
Between my hands and their white desire:
And dark-leaved boughs, edged with a golden radiance,
Dipping to screen a fire . . .
I dream that I walk with her beneath high trees,
But as I lean to kiss her face,
She is blown aloft on wind, I catch at leaves,
And run in a moonless place;
And I hear a crashing of terrible rocks flung down,
And shattering trees and cracking walls,
And a net of intense white flame roars over the town,
And someone cries; and darkness falls . . .
But now she has leaned and smiled at me,
My veins are afire with music,
Her eyes have kissed me, my body is turned to light;
I shall dream to her secret heart tonight . . . '

He rises and moves away, he says no word,
He folds his evening paper and turns away;
I rush through the dark with rows of lamplit faces;
Fire bells peal, and some of us turn to listen,
And some sit motionless in their accustomed places.

Cold rain lashes the car-roof, scurries in gusts,
Streams down the windows in waves and ripples of lustre;
The lamps in the streets are distorted and strange.
Someone takes his watch from his pocket and yawns.
One peers out in the night for the place to change.

Rain . . . rain . . . rain . . . we are buried in rain,
It will rain forever, the swift wheels hiss through water,
Pale sheets of water gleam in the windy street.
The pealing of bells is lost in a drive of rain-drops.
Remote and hurried the great bells beat.

'I am the one whom life so shrewdly betrayed,
Misfortune dogs me, it always hunted me down.
And to-day the woman I love lies dead.
I gave her roses, a ring with opals;
These hands have touched her head.

'I bound her to me in all soft ways,
I bound her to me in a net of days,
Yet now she has gone in silence and said no word.
How can we face these dazzling things, I ask you?
There is no use: we cry: and are not heard.

'They cover a body with roses . . . I shall not see it . . .
Must one return to the lifeless walls of a city
Whose soul is charred by fire? . . . '
His eyes are closed, his lips press tightly together.
Wheels hiss beneath us.  He yields us our desire.

'No, do not stare so-he is weak with grief,
He cannot face you, he turns his eyes aside;
He is confused with pain.
I suffered this.  I know.  It was long ago . . .
He closes his eyes and drowns in death again.'

The wind hurls blows at the rain-starred glistening windows,
The wind shrills down from the half-seen walls.
We flow on the mournful wind in a dream of dying;
And at last a silence falls.


VII.

Midnight; bells toll, and along the cloud-high towers
The golden lights go out . . .
The yellow windows darken, the shades are drawn,
In thousands of rooms we sleep, we await the dawn,
We lie face down, we dream,
We cry aloud with terror, half rise, or seem
To stare at the ceiling or walls . . .
Midnight . . . the last of shattering bell-notes falls.
A rush of silence whirls over the cloud-high towers,
A vortex of soundless hours.

'The bells have just struck twelve: I should be sleeping.
But I cannot delay any longer to write and tell you.
The woman is dead.
She died-you know the way.  Just as we planned.
Smiling, with open sunlit eyes.
Smiling upon the outstretched fatal hand . . .'

He folds his letter, steps softly down the stairs.
The doors are closed and silent.  A gas-jet flares.
His shadow disturbs a shadow of balustrades.
The door swings shut behind.  Night roars above him.
Into the night he fades.

Wind; wind; wind; carving the walls;
Blowing the water that gleams in the street;
Blowing the rain, the sleet.
In the dark alley, an old tree cracks and falls,
Oak-boughs moan in the haunted air;
Lamps blow down with a crash and ****** of glass . . .
Darkness whistles . . . Wild hours pass . . .

And those whom sleep eludes lie wide-eyed, hearing
Above their heads a goblin night go by;
Children are waked, and cry,
The young girl hears the roar in her sleep, and dreams
That her lover is caught in a burning tower,
She clutches the pillow, she gasps for breath, she screams . . .
And then by degrees her breath grows quiet and slow,
She dreams of an evening, long ago:
Of colored lanterns balancing under trees,
Some of them softly catching afire;
And beneath the lanterns a motionless face she sees,
Golden with lamplight, smiling, serene . . .
The leaves are a pale and glittering green,
The sound of horns blows over the trampled grass,
Shadows of dancers pass . . .
The face smiles closer to hers, she tries to lean
Backward, away, the eyes burn close and strange,
The face is beginning to change,-
It is her lover, she no longer desires to resist,
She is held and kissed.
She closes her eyes, and melts in a seethe of
Fanfare of northwest wind, a bluejay wind
announces autumn, and the equinox
rolls back blue bays to a far afternoon.
Somewhere beyond the Gorge Li Po is gone,
looking for friendship or an old love's sleeve
or writing letters to his children, lost,
and to his children's children, and to us.
What was his light? of lamp or moon or sun?
Say that it changed, for better or for worse,
sifted by leaves, sifted by snow; on mulberry silk
a slant of witch-light; on the pure text
a slant of genius; emptying mind and heart
for winecups and more winecups and more words.
What was his time? Say that it was a change,
but constant as a changing thing may be,
from chicory's moon-dark blue down the taut scale
to chicory's tenderest pink, in a pink field
such as imagination dreams of thought.
But of the heart beneath the winecup moon
the tears that fell beneath the winecup moon
for children lost, lost lovers, and lost friends,
what can we say but that it never ends?
Even for us it never ends, only begins.
Yet to spell down the poem on her page,
margining her phrases, parsing forth
the sevenfold prism of meaning, up the scale
from chicory pink to blue, is to assume
Li Po himself: as he before assumed
the poets and the sages who were his.
Like him, we too have eaten of the word:
with him are somewhere lost beyond the Gorge:
and write, in rain, a letter to lost children,
a letter long as time and brief as love.

II

And yet not love, not only love. Not caritas
or only that. Nor the pink chicory love,
deep as it may be, even to moon-dark blue,
in which the dragon of his meaning flew
for friends or children lost, or even
for the beloved horse, for Li Po's horse:
not these, in the self's circle so embraced:
too near, too dear, for pure assessment: no,
a letter crammed and creviced, crannied full,
storied and stored as the ripe honeycomb
with other faith than this. As of sole pride
and holy loneliness, the intrinsic face
worn by the always changing shape between
end and beginning, birth and death.
How moves that line of daring on the map?
Where was it yesterday, or where this morning
when thunder struck at seven, and in the bay
the meteor made its dive, and shed its wings,
and with them one more Icarus? Where struck
that lightning-stroke which in your sleep you saw
wrinkling across the eyelid? Somewhere else?
But somewhere else is always here and now.
Each moment crawls that lightning on your eyelid:
each moment you must die. It was a tree
that this time died for you: it was a rock
and with it all its local web of love:
a chimney, spilling down historic bricks:
perhaps a skyful of Ben Franklin's kites.
And with them, us. For we must hear and bear
the news from everywhere: the hourly news,
infinitesimal or vast, from everywhere.

III

Sole pride and loneliness: it is the state
the kingdom rather of all things: we hear
news of the heart in weather of the Bear,
slide down the rungs of Cassiopeia's Chair,
still on the nursery floor, the Milky Way;
and, if we question one, must question all.
What is this 'man'? How far from him is 'me'?
Who, in this conch-shell, locked the sound of sea?
We are the tree, yet sit beneath the tree,
among the leaves we are the hidden bird,
we are the singer and are what is heard.
What is this 'world'? Not Li Po's Gorge alone,
and yet, this too might be. 'The wind was high
north of the White King City, by the fields
of whistling barley under cuckoo sky,'
where, as the silkworm drew her silk, Li Po
spun out his thoughts of us. 'Endless as silk'
(he said) 'these poems for lost loves, and us,'
and, 'for the peachtree, blooming in the ditch.'
Here is the divine loneliness in which
we greet, only to doubt, a voice, a word,
the smoke of a sweetfern after frost, a face
touched, and loved, but still unknown, and then
a body, still mysterious in embrace.
Taste lost as touch is lost, only to leave
dust on the doorsill or an ink-stained sleeve:
and yet, for the inadmissible, to grieve.
Of leaf and love, at last, only to doubt:
from world within or world without, kept out.
  
IV

Caucus of robins on an alien shore
as of the **-** birds at Jewel Gate
southward bound and who knows where and never late
or lost in a roar at sea. Rovers of chaos
each one the 'Rover of Chao,' whose slight bones
shall put to shame the swords. We fly with these,
have always flown, and they
stay with us here, stand still and stay,
while, exiled in the Land of Pa, Li Po
still at the Wine Spring stoops to drink the moon.
And northward now, for fall gives way to spring,
from Sandy Hook and Kitty Hawk they wing,
and he remembers, with the pipes and flutes,
drunk with joy, bewildered by the chance
that brought a friend, and friendship, how, in vain,
he strove to speak, 'and in long sentences,' his pain.
Exiled are we. Were exiles born. The 'far away,'
language of desert, language of ocean, language of sky,
as of the unfathomable worlds that lie
between the apple and the eye,
these are the only words we learn to say.
Each morning we devour the unknown. Each day
we find, and take, and spill, or spend, or lose,
a sunflower splendor of which none knows the source.
This cornucopia of air! This very heaven
of simple day! We do not know, can never know,
the alphabet to find us entrance there.
So, in the street, we stand and stare,
to greet a friend, and shake his hand,
yet know him beyond knowledge, like ourselves;
ocean unknowable by unknowable sand.

V

The locust tree spills sequins of pale gold
in spiral nebulae, borne on the Invisible
earthward and deathward, but in change to find
the cycles to new birth, new life. Li Po
allowed his autumn thoughts like these to flow,
and, from the Gorge, sends word of Chouang's dream.
Did Chouang dream he was a butterfly?
Or did the butterfly dream Chouang? If so,
why then all things can change, and change again,
the sea to brook, the brook to sea, and we
from man to butterfly; and back to man.
This 'I,' this moving 'I,' this focal 'I,'
which changes, when it dreams the butterfly,
into the thing it dreams of; liquid eye
in which the thing takes shape, but from within
as well as from without: this liquid 'I':
how many guises, and disguises, this
nimblest of actors takes, how many names
puts on and off, the costumes worn but once,
the player queen, the lover, or the dunce,
hero or poet, father or friend,
suiting the eloquence to the moment's end;
childlike, or *******; the language of the kiss
sensual or simple; and the gestures, too,
as slight as that with which an empire falls,
or a great love's abjured; these feignings, sleights,
savants, or saints, or fly-by-nights,
the novice in her cell, or wearing tights
on the high wire above a hell of lights:
what's true in these, or false? which is the 'I'
of 'I's'? Is it the master of the cadence, who
transforms all things to a hoop of flame, where through
tigers of meaning leap? And are these true,
the language never old and never new,
such as the world wears on its wedding day,
the something borrowed with something chicory blue?
In every part we play, we play ourselves;
even the secret doubt to which we come
beneath the changing shapes of self and thing,
yes, even this, at last, if we should call
and dare to name it, we would find
the only voice that answers is our own.
We are once more defrauded by the mind.

Defrauded? No. It is the alchemy by which we grow.
It is the self becoming word, the word
becoming world. And with each part we play
we add to cosmic Sum and cosmic sum.
Who knows but one day we shall find,
hidden in the prism at the rainbow's foot,
the square root of the eccentric absolute,
and the concentric absolute to come.

VI

The thousand eyes, the Argus 'I's' of love,
of these it was, in verse, that Li Po wove
the magic cloak for his last going forth,
into the Gorge for his adventure north.
What is not seen or said? The cloak of words
loves all, says all, sends back the word
whether from Green Spring, and the yellow bird
'that sings unceasing on the banks of Kiang,'
or 'from the Green Moss Path, that winds and winds,
nine turns for every hundred steps it winds,
up the Sword Parapet on the road to Shuh.'
'Dead pinetrees hang head-foremost from the cliff.
The cataract roars downward. Boulders fall
Splitting the echoes from the mountain wall.
No voice, save when the nameless birds complain,
in stunted trees, female echoing male;
or, in the moonlight, the lost cuckoo's cry,
piercing the traveller's heart. Wayfarer from afar,
why are you here? what brings you here? why here?'

VII

Why here. Nor can we say why here. The peachtree bough
scrapes on the wall at midnight, the west wind
sculptures the wall of fog that slides
seaward, over the Gulf Stream.
                                                       The rat
comes through the wainscot, brings to his larder
the twinned acorn and chestnut burr. Our sleep
lights for a moment into dream, the eyes
turn under eyelids for a scene, a scene,
o and the music, too, of landscape lost.
And yet, not lost. For here savannahs wave
cressets of pampas, and the kingfisher
binds all that gold with blue.
                                                  Why here? why here?
Why does the dream keep only this, just this C?
Yes, as the poem or the music do?

The timelessness of time takes form in rhyme:
the lotus and the locust tree rehearse
a four-form song, the quatrain of the year:
not in the clock's chime only do we hear
the passing of the Now into the past,
the passing into future of the Now:
hut in the alteration of the bough
time becomes visible, becomes audible,
becomes the poem and the music too:
time becomes still, time becomes time, in rhyme.
Thus, in the Court of Aloes, Lady Yang
called the musicians from the Pear Tree Garden,
called for Li Po, in order that the spring,
tree-peony spring, might so be made immortal.
Li Po, brought drunk to court, took up his brush,
but washed his face among the lilies first,
then wrote the song of Lady Flying Swallow:
which Hsuang Sung, the emperor, forthwith played,
moving quick fingers on a flute of jade.
Who will forget that afternoon? Still, still,
the singer holds his phrase, the rising moon
remains unrisen. Even the fountain's falling blade
hangs in the air unbroken, and says: Wait!

VIII

Text into text, text out of text. Pretext
for scholars or for scholiasts. The living word
springs from the dying, as leaves in spring
spring from dead leaves, our birth from death.
And all is text, is holy text. Sheepfold Hill
becomes its name for us, anti yet is still
unnamed, unnamable, a book of trees
before it was a book for men or sheep,
before it was a book for words. Words, words,
for it is scarlet now, and brown, and red,
and yellow where the birches have not shed,
where, in another week, the rocks will show.
And in this marriage of text and thing how can we know
where most the meaning lies? We climb the hill
through bullbriar thicket and the wild rose, climb
past poverty-grass and the sweet-scented bay
scaring the pheasant from his wall, but can we say
that it is only these, through these, we climb,
or through the words, the cadence, and the rhyme?
Chang Hsu, calligrapher of great renown,
needed to put but his three cupfuls down
to tip his brush with lightning. On the scroll,
wreaths of cloud rolled left and right, the sky
opened upon Forever. Which is which?
The poem? Or the peachtree in the ditch?
Or is all one? Yes, all is text, the immortal text,
Sheepfold Hill the poem, the poem Sheepfold Hill,
and we, Li Po, the man who sings, sings as he climbs,
transposing rhymes to rocks and rocks to rhymes.
The man who sings. What is this man who sings?
And finds this dedicated use for breath
for phrase and periphrase of praise between
the twin indignities of birth and death?
Li Yung, the master of the epitaph,
forgetting about meaning, who himself
had added 'meaning' to the book of >things,'
lies who knows where, himself sans epitaph,
his text, too, lost, forever lost ...
                                                         And yet, no,
text lost and poet lost, these only flow
into that other text that knows no year.
The peachtree in the poem is still here.
The song is in the peachtree and the ear.

IX

The winds of doctrine blow both ways at once.
The wetted finger feels the wind each way,
presaging plums from north, and snow from south.
The dust-wind whistles from the eastern sea
to dry the nectarine and parch the mouth.
The west wind from the desert wreathes the rain
too late to fill our wells, but soon enough,
the four-day rain that bears the leaves away.
Song with the wind will change, but is still song
and pierces to the rightness in the wrong
or makes the wrong a rightness, a delight.
Where are the eager guests that yesterday
thronged at the gate? Like leaves, they could not stay,
the winds of doctrine blew their minds away,
and we shall have no loving-cup tonight.
No loving-cup: for not ourselves are here
to entertain us in that outer year,
where, so they say, we see the Greater Earth.
The winds of doctrine blow our minds away,
and we are absent till another birth.

X

Beyond the Sugar Loaf, in the far wood,
under the four-day rain, gunshot is heard
and with the falling leaf the falling bird
flutters her crimson at the huntsman's foot.
Life looks down at death, death looks up at life,
the eyes exchange the secret under rain,
rain all the way from heaven: and all three
know and are known, share and are shared, a silent
moment of union and communion.
Have we come
this way before, and at some other time?
Is it the Wind Wheel Circle we have come?
We know the eye of death, and in it too
the eye of god, that closes as in sleep,
giving its light, giving its life, away:
clouding itself as consciousness from pain,
clouding itself, and then, the shutter shut.
And will this eye of god awake again?
Or is this what he loses, loses once,
but always loses, and forever lost?
It is the always and unredeemable cost
of his invention, his fatigue. The eye
closes, and no other takes its place.
It is the end of god, each time, each time.

Yet, though the leaves must fall, the galaxies
rattle, detach, and fall, each to his own
perplexed and individual death, Lady Yang
gone with the inkberry's vermilion stalk,
the peony face behind a fan of frost,
the blue-moon eyebrow behind a fan of rain,
beyond recall by any alchemist
or incantation from the Book of Change:
unresumable, as, on Sheepfold Hill,
the fir cone of a thousand years ago:
still, in the loving, and the saying so,
as when we name the hill, and, with the name,
bestow an essence, and a meaning, too:
do we endow them with our lives?
They move
into another orbit: into a time
not theirs: and we become the bell to speak
this time: as we become new eyes
with which they see, the voice
in which they find duration, short or long,
the chthonic and hermetic song.
Beyond Sheepfold Hill,
gunshot again, the bird flies forth to meet
predestined death, to look with conscious sight
into the eye of light
the light unflinching that understands and loves.
And Sheepfold Hill accepts them, and is still.

XI

The landscape and the language are the same.
And we ourselves are language and are land,
together grew with Sheepfold Hill, rock, and hand,
and mind, all taking substance in a thought
wrought out of mystery: birdflight and air
predestined from the first to be a pair:
as, in the atom, the living rhyme
invented her divisions, which in time,
and in the terms of time, would make and break
the text, the texture, and then all remake.
This powerful mind that can by thinking take
the order of the world and all remake,
w
Kingafroninjaa Apr 2012
The moon illuminates the tears she sheds as the darkness shields her from this reality.
She opened the portal to her fantasy world and the memories she once hid, finally reappears.
His ability to make her chocolate frame quiver into the palm of his hand just by whispering those 3 words.
The way his alluring eyes would caress and soothe her soul to force her to disclose its hidden secrets.
"Do you mean it?" She quietly whispered into his ears as their essence finally merged into existence.
He was able to tear down her layers of pain, confusion, and hurt as he crossed the threshold into her mind.  
As she gazes into his ravishing eyes, she becomes paralyzed as they undress her bare petite physique.
The gateway to her hidden domain steadily closes as the warmth rays rest upon her dried tears.
Her tear stricken face clenches onto the dwindling memories of his dominance over her.
If only he kept to his word, then he would have understood her tears of affection.
She slides over
the hot upholstery
of her mother's car,
this schoolgirl of fifteen
who loves humming & swaying
with the radio.
Her entry into womanhood
will be like all the other girls'—
a cigarette and a joke,
as she strides up with the rest
to a brick factory
where she'll sew rag rugs
from textile strips of kelly green,
bright red, aqua.

When she enters,
and the millgate closes,
final as a slap,
there'll be silence.
She'll see fifteen high windows
cemented over to cut out light.
Inside, a constant, deafening noise
and warm air smelling of oil,
the shifts continuing on ...
All day she'll guide cloth along a line
of whirring needles, her arms & shoulders
rocking back & forth
with the machines—
200 porch size rugs behind her
before she can stop
to reach up, like her mother,
and pick the lint
out of her hair.
Rob Urban Jun 2012
Lost in the dim
streets of the
Marunouchi district
I describe
this wounded city in an
  unending internal
monologue as I follow
the signs to Tokyo Station and
descend into the
underground passages
  of the metro,
seeking life and anything bright
in this half-lit, humid midnight.

I find the train finally
to Shibuya, the Piccadilly
and Times Square of Japan,
and even there the lights
are dimmer and the neon
  that does remain
  is all the more garish by
contrast.
I cross the street
near a sign that says
  "Baby Dolls" in English
over a business that turns
out to be a pet
  shop, of all things.

Like
the Japanese, I sometimes feel I live
in reduced circumstances, forced to proceed with caution:
A poorly chosen
adjective, a
mangled metaphor
could so easily trigger the
tsunami that
    sweeps away the containment
             facilities that
                   protect us
                        from ourselves
                                                            and others.
  
The next night at dinner, the sweltering room
     suddenly rocks and
        conversation stops
                  as the building sways and the
candles flicker.

'Felt like a 4, maybe a 5,'
says one of my tablemates,
a friend from years ago
in the States.

'At least a five-and-a-half,'
says another, gesturing
at the still-moving shadows
on the wall. And I think
     of other sweaty, dimly lit rooms,
      bodies in slow, restrained motion,       all
          in a moment that falls
                         between
                                     tremors.

         Then the swaying stops and we return
to our dinner. The shock, or aftershock,
isn't mentioned again,
though we do return, repeatedly, to the
big one,
         and the tidal wave that
                           swept so much away.

En route to the monsoon
I go east to come west,
   clouds gathering slowly
     in the vicinity of my chest.

Next day in Shanghai, the sun's glare reflects
  off skyscrapers,
and the streets teem
with determined shoppers
and sightseers
wielding credit cards and iPhone cameras, clad
in T-shirts with English words and phrases.
I fall
          in step
             beside a young woman on
                 the outdoor escalator whose
shirt, white on black,
reads, 'I am very, very happy.' I smile
and then notice, coming
down the other side,
another woman
wearing
        exactly the same
       message, only
                        in neon pink. So many
                                  very,
                                          very
                                                 happy people!
Yet the ATMs sometimes dispense
counterfeit 100 yuan notes and
elsewhere in the realm
      police fire on
      protestors seeking
                more than consumer goods,
while officials fret
about American credit
and the security of their investments, and
     the government executes mayors for taking
                       bribes from real estate developers.
    
    A drizzle greets me in Hong Kong,
a tablecloth of fog draped over the peaks
   that turns into a rain shower.
I find my way to work after many twists and turns
through shopping malls and building lobbies and endless
turning halls of luxury retail.
               At dinner I have a century egg and think
of Chinese mothers
urging their children,
'Eat! Eat your green, gooey treat.
On the street afterwards, a
near-naked girl grabs my arm,
pulls me toward a doorway marked by a 'Live Girls’
sign. 'No kidding,’ I think as I pull myself carefully
free, and cross the street.

On the flight to Bombay, I doze
   under a sweaty airline blanket, and
       dream that I am already there and the rains
         have come in earnest as I sit with the presumably
           semi-fictional Didier of Shantaram in the real but as-yet-unseen
            Leopold's Café, drinking Kingfishers,
              and he is telling me,  confidentially,
                     exactly where to find what I’ve lost as I wake
with the screech and grip of wheels on runway.
            

     Next day on the street outside the real Leopold's,
bullet holes preserved in the walls from the last terrorist attack,
I am trailed through the Colaba district
by a mother and children,  'Please sir, buy us milk, sir, buy us some rice,
I will show you the store.'
    A man approaches, offering a drum,
                        another a large balloon (What would I do with that?)
A shoeshine guy offers
                                           to shine my sneakers, then shares
the story of his arrival and struggle in Bombay.
     And I buy
             the milk and the rice and some
                      small cakes and in a second
                          the crowd of children swells
                               into the street
               and I sense
                     the danger of the crazy traffic to the crowd
                         that I have created, and I
think, what do I do?
           I flee, get into a taxi and head
                             to the Gateway of India, feeling
                                                                                  that I have failed a test.

                                       My last night in Mumbai, the rains come, flooding
     streets and drenching pavement dwellers and washing
the humid filth from the air. When it ends
           after two hours, the air is cool and fresh
                                  and I take a stroll at midnight
          in the street outside my hotel and enter the slum
   from which each morning I have watched
the residents emerge,  perfectly coiffed. I buy
some trinkets at a tiny stand and talk briefly
      with a boy who approaches, curious about a foreigner out for a walk.

A couple of days after that, in
the foothills of the Himalayas,  monks' robes flutter
on a clothesline like scarlet prayer flags behind the
Dalai Lama's temple.
I trek to 11,000 feet along a
narrow rocky path through thick
monsoon mist,
   stopping every 10 steps
to
   catch
        my  breath,
              testing each rock before placing my weight.
Sometimes
    the surface is slick and I nearly fall,
sometimes
    the stones
        themselves shift. I learn slowly, like some
             newborn foal, or just another
                clumsy city boy,
                   that in certain terrains the
       smallest misstep
                            can end with a slide
                                             into the abyss.
                  At the peak there's a chai shop that sells drinks and cigarettes
                                of all things and I order a coffee and noodles for lunch.
While I eat,
      perched on a rock in a silence that is both ex- and
      in-ternal,
the clouds in front of me slowly part to reveal
a glacier that takes up three-quarters of the sky, craggy and white and
beautiful. I snap a few shots,
quickly,
before the cloud curtain closes
again,
obscuring the mountain.
                                                
                                     --Rob Urban: Tokyo, Shanghai, Mumbai, Delhi, Dharamshala
                                        7/13/11-7/30/11
Terry Collett Jul 2015
The Schubert should be easy, Yochana's mother says, sitting in the armchair in the corner watching her daughter play the piano. Yochana plays twelve bars then stops. Her fingers pause arched over the keyboard. What is the matter? Her mother asks. The last notes hang in the air like wounded birds. Yochana thinks of the boy Benedict in the classroom as she played the Schubert piece to him on Miss G's piano. Now the Schubert again. He had liked it. Came over as she played. The classroom empty. She thinks she can sense his breath on her shoulder still. Yochana what is the matter with you? Her mother says, leaning forward in the armchair. Nothing, Yochana says, just forgot a note, she lies. Well, start again, focus on the music, give Schubert the respect he deserves, her mother says. Yochana begins to play again. Her fingers know the notes so well she can play with her eyes closed and she does, closes her eyes, hears the music as if from afar, her fingers pressing the keys at the right pace and pressure, her wrists supple. The music filters the room. Her mother lies back in the chair, closes her eyes, hands together at the fingertips. Yochana imagines Benedict is behind her, his breath on her shoulder, his hands around her waist, holding her firm, but not squeezing, not abusively, gently. She remembers playing the Schubert piece and wishing that Benedict had placed his hands around her waist as she played, but he didn't he stood there, peering over her shoulder, watching her fingers playing. He had gone to the door way and peered out in case Miss G returned to the classroom. He had kissed her twice now. Unexpectedly, yet it had entered her inwardly, seeping inward as she slept and when she awoke she was damp. Not too heavy on those notes, her mother says, opening her eyes, studying her daughter's back, the narrowness of her. Yochana opens her eyes, her fingers hesitate, then play on, correcting the pressure, easing the stiffness her fingers have. Schubert is listening to you play, her mother says, he will expect the best from you. Yochana nods, but says nothing, her mind is on Benedict not Schubert, her body wants his breath on her neck, his hands on her. She continues the piece to the end and then stops, hands at her sides, eyes on the piano top. Again, her mother says, better this time, not too heavy in that middle section. Yochana stifles a sigh, moves her fingers, looks back at her mother, sitting there expectantly, and smiles, turns and begins from the beginning. Her fingers go off to play as children at their favourite game, while her mind thinks of Benedict, that way he has of smiling, that Elvis smile, other call it, his quiff of hair, hazel eyes. She knows nothing of Elvis or his music or his smile. The kiss on her cheek that day in the playground had shocked her. No boy had kissed her before anywhere, then he did. Then that other day they had both kissed. Damp, wet, warm. She can feel it now as she sits and plays, runs her tongue over her lower lip hoping she may capture an particle of him there, then her upper lip, the dampness, warming. Not so fast, her mother says, that passage is slower, you really must focus, Yochana, Schubert deserves it. Yochana stops and turns to look at her mother. I'm tired, she says, my mind cannot focus. She watches her mother's expression change from one of expectation to one of disappointment. I expect more from you than this attitude, her mother says, I have paid good money for you to be amongst the best, you will thank me in years to come, when you are among the top concert pianists. Yochana stares at her mother. Can I rest for a while? She asks. Her mother sighs. Very well, rest then, but I expect you to practice more, not less. I will, Yochana says, getting up from the piano stool, stretching her arms and legs. Off you go then, her mother says, rest on your bed, I'll call you later. Yochana leaves the music room and walks upstairs to her bedroom and closes the door. **** Schubert, she mutters, walking to her bed and laying down. She swore. God if her mother heard that she'd blow her top and well best not think what she'd do. She looks at the ceiling, resting her body, her arms at her sides, her legs together. She closes her eyes. Wants to pretend. Benedict's beside her. He is laying there. He is talking about Marilyn Monroe. He usually does. Amongst other matters. A beauty, he says. **** and cuddly. He liked her Schubert playing. He said so. If he were beside her now, what would she do? She doesn't know. Maybe they'd kiss. Yes, kiss, lips on lips stuff like last time. But is that it? One kiss? More ? And what is in a kiss? What happened to her when he kissed her last? Strange. Odd how she felt. Weakness over her body. Her pulse raced. Yes, it did, she recalls. Her pulse races now at the thought and memory. If she turns now and pretends he is there by her side and with her eyes closed will she imagine he will touch her? He touched her last time when they kissed, briefly, a mere hold of her hand and waist. She turns. Her arms embrace herself as if it were he embracing her. Her fingers practice Schubert along her spine. Her lips kiss the pillow. Cool, cottony, not warm and fleshy. She rests. Stillness. Embracing. Imagines him holding. Kissing. She runs her fingers along her ribs, a Schubert piece. He talks still. He speaks of jazz and Hot Lips Page or some such one. Her thin fingers touch her bra strap and pause. Embracing. She imagines it's Benedict she facing.
A GIRL THINKS OF A BOY NOT SCHUBERT AT PIANO PRACTICE IN 1962.
The tulips are too excitable, it is winter here.
Look how white everything is, how quiet, how snowed-in
I am learning peacefulness, lying by myself quietly
As the light lies on these white walls, this bed, these hands.
I am nobody; I have nothing to do with explosions.
I have given my name and my day-clothes up to the nurses
And my history to the anaesthetist and my body to surgeons.

They have propped my head between the pillow and the sheet-cuff
Like an eye between two white lids that will not shut.
Stupid pupil, it has to take everything in.
The nurses pass and pass, they are no trouble,
They pass the way gulls pass inland in their white caps,
Doing things with their hands, one just the same as another,
So it is impossible to tell how many there are.

My body is a pebble to them, they tend it as water
Tends to the pebbles it must run over, smoothing them gently.
They bring me numbness in their bright needles, they bring me sleep.
Now I have lost myself I am sick of baggage ----
My patent leather overnight case like a black pillbox,
My husband and child smiling out of the family photo;
Their smiles catch onto my skin, little smiling hooks.

I have let things slip, a thirty-year-old cargo boat
Stubbornly hanging on to my name and address.
They have swabbed me clear of my loving associations.
Scared and bare on the green plastic-pillowed trolley
I watched my teaset, my bureaus of linen, my books
Sink out of sight, and the water went over my head.
I am a nun now, I have never been so pure.

I didn't want any flowers, I only wanted
To lie with my hands turned up and be utterly empty.
How free it is, you have no idea how free ----
The peacefulness is so big it dazes you,
And it asks nothing, a name tag, a few trinkets.
It is what the dead close on, finally; I imagine them
Shutting their mouths on it, like a Communion tablet.

The tulips are too red in the first place, they hurt me.
Even through the gift paper I could hear them breathe
Lightly, through their white swaddlings, like an awful baby.
Their redness talks to my wound, it corresponds.
They are subtle: they seem to float, though they weigh me down,
Upsetting me with their sudden tongues and their colour,
A dozen red lead sinkers round my neck.

Nobody watched me before, now I am watched.
The tulips turn to me, and the window behind me
Where once a day the light slowly widens and slowly thins,
And I see myself, flat, ridiculous, a cut-paper shadow
Between the eye of the sun and the eyes of the tulips,
And I hve no face, I have wanted to efface myself.
The vivid tulips eat my oxygen.

Before they came the air was calm enough,
Coming and going, breath by breath, without any fuss.
Then the tulips filled it up like a loud noise.
Now the air snags and eddies round them the way a river
Snags and eddies round a sunken rust-red engine.
They concentrate my attention, that was happy
Playing and resting without committing itself.

The walls, also, seem to be warming themselves.
The tulips should be behind bars like dangerous animals;
They are opening like the mouth of some great African cat,
And I am aware of my heart: it opens and closes
Its bowl of red blooms out of sheer love of me.
The water I taste is warm and salt, like the sea,
And comes from a country far away as health.
Loose thoughts Mar 2015
"'
Breaths in, Breaths out,
Repeats, but fails and drowns,
Closes eyes, lays down,
A secret root, caged thoughts have found.

~A.d | 18 March 2015
Leonard Green Feb 2017
Prolog:
Foreplay opens with an aphrodisiac dubbed the mind
caressing private chambers with passion, over time
words stimulating nerve-endings for the ideal tease
like the skin dripping of honey from the nectar of bees
exploiting the fragrances of scented oils and balms
or maybe vib’ing lyrics inducing a seductive calm
compelling forces bombard the intellectual’s sanity
as the proximity of the blackhole distorts humanity

Love’s Play:
Costars entwine heated bodies for love’s embrace
as moments become endless as vectors of subspace
sporadic movements take the form of blissful spasms
while the players combine to mold a single plasm
ringing chimes fulfill the awareness with sensations
too diverse to classify for logical deliberations
yet finally, the mountaintop of cliffs can be reached
where there is no retreat and no return from its breach

Epilog:
Aftermath closes basking from the physical exertion
as two kindred spirits epitomize timeless insertion
gazing deeply into the abyss of the partner’s soul
only to find comfort and compassion ruling the role
can this be the earthly heaven that one truly beholds
written in the historic words as the heavens foretold
feelings ignite once again burning deeply within
opening yet another intriguing act, one must attend.
Dedicated to the lovers on Valentine's Day
1098

Of the Heart that goes in, and closes the Door
Shall the Playfellow Heart complain
Though the Ring is unwhole, and the Company broke
Can never be fitted again?
Gary Brocks Aug 2018
I hear the carve of oars,
I see your palms enfold the wood,
as shards of stars shred
a back and glistening wave.

I hear the carve of oars,
the shore is breached,
we reach dank granite stairs, climb
a tower in moon gritty light.

I hear the carve of oars,
you speak, your turgid cheek
blue-steel-gray, your gaze grates,
my salt raged eyes summon waves and stars.

I hear the carve of oars,
waves rattle a candle's flame,
chill the bed frame, the wet stony room ––
the door closes, it scrapes.

I hear the carve of oars,
I know your lurching gate,
the clank as both oar lock’s turn,
you slip the shore,
I hear the carve of oars

Copyright © 2002 Gary Brocks
180928F

They didn't get along
Nicole and MJ Apr 2014
Mockingbird, in the tree,
will you spread your wings for me?
Will you sing and call and fly,
through the trees and to the sky,
soaring where none dare to go,
but the mockingbird happens to know,
the secrets to freedom,
the knowledge of life,
cutting the air,
sharp as a knife.
He closes his wings,
with their felt white tips,
as I put a finger to my lips.
The secrets and knowledge of life itself,
are better sought out by yourself,
but I will find out happily,
if you raise your wings for me.
I step inside and get in line.
The first thing that catches my eye is a sign that reads: Subway issues codes for a free cookie as a thank-you for completing a survey. Ask a Sandwich Artist for details.
I think to myself, “Sandwich Artist?” You gotta be ******* kidding me.
Who is this ultra superior, ******* that is responsible for this?
Why can’t we accept our job titles for what they are?
We always need to jazz things up so we feel a little more important and less-judged,
but we become more inferior with this kinda ****.

Society is a mind ****.

There are two sandwich artists behind the counter, and one is rambling on about her birthday that is in a few days.
She is SO excited.
Standing to her left is another artist, masterfully creating a sandwich for the gentleman in front of me.
She closes her eyes and replies to her partner with great wit, “Hold a second - I’m throwing you a party right now in my head.”
She opens her eyes, and our eyes unfortunately meet.
Son-of-a *****!
This is making me really uncomfortable.
It’s taking all of my might to not give her what she is clearly hoping for - a smile.
I do.
****, I'm a *****.
The gentleman in front of me doesn’t hear a thing.
He is too busy to notice.
Look at that perfectly, tailored suit.
He must be important.
Mr. Important’s index finger is tap-dancing all over the screen of his fancy phone.
He sure likes his phone, but don’t we all these days?
Technology is the ****, and we are the ******.
But not me!
I have a flip phone.
Yup.
I bought it for $29.99 three years ago.
The salesman pulled it out from storage, and the box had dust on it.
He looked at it as if it was an ancient artifact.
It is.
And I bought it…

It hasn’t been more than a minute, and Miss Birthday Girl starts to ramble some more about her party.
The witty artist closes her eyes and replies,
“Hold a second.  I’m throwing another party for you in my head.”
You’ve gotta be ******* me…
What a redundant swine.
I turn my head to the right and look at the lively advertisement of Coke’s product, Fuze.
It’s a pretty sign for what it’s worth.
I just stare at the **** thing and act as though I haven’t heard her ******* comment.
I continue gawking at the word, Fuze.
My eyes gaze over to the accompanying graphic of a sweaty bottle of some ambiguously-flavored iced-tea.
I probably look like someone who is easily distracted by shiny, vibrant things.
Or someone who is REALLY thirsty and is going to buy me some of that Fuze.
But I am not thirsty at all…
Just angry.
However I do want a large cup to fill, so I can fill it with Fuze and toss it in her face.
With that thought, I figure it is be best for me to leave.
So I head for the door and exit.
I had parked my vehicle across the street, and as I walk towards it, her voice endlessly
repeats in my head.
I sit down in my seat, noticing a plastic bag of dried apricots tucked in the cup holder.
I open the bag, and there are only six left.
Five remain stuck to the bottom as one plops into my palm.
I put the one in my mouth; the flavor is to be expected as well as the texture.
The chewy consistency reminds me of cartilage.
This must be what it feels like to eat an ear.

A small ear, maybe even a lobe.

Nonetheless an ear.

Now for dessert! Xanax.
I unscrew the top of the little, red, metal container that I carry with me at all times -
like a devout Catholic with her rosary.
I place one tab on my tongue, the sweet tang a perfect complement to my lunch.

Maybe, just maybe, I don’t need anti-anxiety pills any more.

Maybe I just need a new phone like the rest of the world.

Na…**** that.

— The End —