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THE ADVENURES OF GEORGE BURNINGTOM




YOU SEE IN THE DARK CORNERS OF A COUNTRY TOWN NAMED DUBBO, IN NEW SOUTH WALES

LIVED A GANG OF 13 YEAR OLD BOYS, WHO WERE ADRENALINE JUNKIES, YOU SEE TAKING RISKS

WERE THE MAIN PARTS OF THEIR LIFE, ONE OF THE BOYS GEORGE BURNINGTOM, WHO LIVED IN

A REALLY RICH HOUSE, IN THE RICH CORNER OF DUBBO, HATED HIS FAMILY SO MUCH, THESE

MATES OF HIS WERE MUCH BETTER, YA SEE, THE RING LEADER OF THE GANG WHO WAS HARRY SMITH

WHO WAS IN A VERY POOR FAMILY, YOU SEE HIS FATHER WORKED AS A CLEANER AT DUBBO ZOO

AND HARRY, HAD ALL THESE GET RICH SCHEMES, WHICH INVOLVED TAKING HEAPS  OF BREATHTAKING RISKS,

ONE THING THE BOYS WILL DO IS HEAD TO THE SKATE PARK TO RIDE UP ONE WALL AND OCCASSIONALLY WOULD SKATE DOWN

THE STAIRS, SOMETIMES SCARING THE OLD PEOPLE AS THEY PASSED BY THE STAIRS, GEORGE, WHO WAS INTO

SOAKING IN A BIT OF ADRENALINE, BUT JUMPING HIS SKATEBOARD, FROM THE FOOTPATH TO THE MIDDLE ISLAND

IN THE SWAMPY WATERS, MIND YOU, GEORGE FELL IN A FEW TIMES, AS HE TRIED THIS, AND SKINNED HIS LEGS

WHICH MADE GEORGE WANNA CRY, BUT HE WAS THINKING, BOYS DON’T CRY, BOYS DON’T CRY, AND THEN THE

OTHER KIDS RAN UP TO HIM AND SAID, YOU LOOK VERY HURT, BUT YOU ARE NOT A DISGRACE TO OUR GANG, IN FACT

YOUR PRETTY COOL.

THE BOYS WENT BACK TO THE SKATE PARK, AND DID A FEW TRICKS AND JUMPED UP ON THEIR BOARD A FEW TIMES

AND GEORGE FELL, HEAD OVER TURKEY, BUT LANDED ON HIS FEET, AND THEN THE BOYS SAW A SEMI TRAILER, AND GEORGE

SAID, LET’S RACE THISB TRUCK, AND THE OTHER BOYS SAID WE COULD DIE, IT’LL BE A TAD RISKY, AND GEORGE, OUR LIVES ARE

RISKY, YOU COULD SAY WE HAVE A RISKY LIFE, AND AFTER SAYING THAT, THE BOYS FOUGHT THEIR DELLUSIONAL THOUGHTS OF DANGER

AND RACED THIS TRUCK, AND THEY WERE ENJOYING RACING THE TRUCK, THE TRUCK DRIVER LOOKED THROUGH HIS WINDSHIELD

AND SAID, THESE KIDS ARE TOO CLOSE, AND THEN SAID, I HAVE TO TAKE AN EMERGENCY STOP, TO LET THESE KIDS PAST, SO HE DID

AND FOUND OUT WHAT THE KIDS WERE DOING SAYING, YOU KIDS DON’T UNDERSTAND THE ROAD RULES, AND THEN YELLED OUT

YEAH GO, YEAH GO, LIKE THE COWARDS THAT YOU ARE, AND THE KIDS RODE BACK, AND SAW THE DRAINS AND HARRY SAID LET’S RIDE

IN THESE DRAINS, AQND THEY WERE ENJOYING PLAYING IN THESE DRAINS, AND THEN THE PASSER BY, CAME UP AND SAID, LISTEN YOU KIDS

THESE DRAINS ARE VERY DANGEROUS, GEORGE SAID, WE ARE RISK TAKERS AND ADRENALINE JUNKIES SO TO SPEAK, AND THE MAN SAID

WHY DON’T YOU BOYS  GO ON HELICOPTER RIDES LIKE THE OTHER KIDS OF DUBBO, LIKE MY SON AND THEN GEORGE SAID, YEAH YOUR SON

WHO IS THE BIGGEST GEEK OF THIS COUNTRY TOWN, WHO CAN’T STAND ADRENALINE, IF HIS LIFE DEPENDED ON IT.

THEN AFTER THE MAN LEFT, THE GANG KEPT PLAYING IN THE DRAINS AND DESPITE ALL THE ***** LOOKS  THE PASSERBYS HAVE BEEN GIVING TO THEM

THE BOYS STILL PLAYED IN THE DRAINS WITH THEIR BOARDS, AND THEN AFTER THE BOYS WERE SICK OF THE DRAINS, THEY RODE THEIR SKATEBOARDS

OVER TO THE CORNER STORE, SO THEY CAN PLAY THE PINBALL MACHINE, BUT THE BIG BULLY MARKO BRIDGETOWN WAS THERE, AND THE ONLY WAY

TO HAVE A TURN ON THE PINBALL MACHINE, THE KIDS HAD TO BUY THE BULLY SOME GRUB, LIKE FISH AND CHIPS OR SUMMIT, BUT GEORGE SAID

WE HAVE BEEN TAKING RISKS ALL DAY, HOW ABOUT WE TAKE ANOTHER RISK AND STAND UP TO THIS BULLY, BUT THE OTHER KIDS INCLUDING HARRY SAID

THIS DUDE IS GOING TO BE ANGRY WITH US, BUT GEORGE SAID NO, WE DON’T HAVE TO BUY THIS BLOKE A MEAL, AND THEN SAID, I AM NOT GETTING BULLIED

BY SOME LOSER ON THE STREET, AND THEN GEORGE TOOK A RISK, BY KARATE KICKING THE BULLY, AND MIND YOU, GEORGE REALLY PUT THE BULLY IN HIS PLACE,

MIND YOU HE GOT A BIT TATTERED, BUT THIS WAS A RISK GEORGE IS WILLING TO TAKE, YOU SEE NOBODY IS MAKING FUN OF GEORGE BURNINGTOM AND GETS AWAY WITH IT.

DESPITE ALL THE KIDS THINKING IT WAS A RISK, THEY ADMIRED GEORGE’S BRAVERY, AND RODE THEIR SKATE BOARDS DOWN THE ROAD OF DUBBO, AND AFTER A

ADRENALINE DAY OF TAKING RISKS, EACH KID WENT HOME, TO WATCH A BIT OF TELEVISION AND THEN GO TO BED, AND TOMORROW, WELL, ARE THERE MORE RISKS

TOMORROW, I DON’T KNOW, TODAY WAS A RISKY PART OF THEIR LIFE.
SWB Jun 2012
Time drains its pockets staring at flies
wasting itself is the least of its fears
lost in the tangle of tired foreign sighs.

Not savvy enough for these ricochet replies;
conversation too tight for its loose blushing ears,
Time drains its pockets staring at flies.

Both ears 'given up, its left with two eyes
relieved at the sight of occasional CHEERS!
Lost in the tangle of tired foreign sighs.

This turn of events caught all three hands by surprise-
hasn't had this much trouble in all of its years-
Time drains its own pockets staring at flies.

While the winged black patrons sip on pools twice their size
the clock dwells on stale tabs, lost phones, and spilt beer
lost in the tangle of tired foreign sighs.

The minutes and seconds ******* help if they tried,
and each stroke makes things worse: the hours just jeer.
Time drains its own pockets staring at flies
lost in the tangle of tired foreign sighs.
A villanelle
call it the greenhouse effect or whatever
but it just doesn't rain like it used to.
I particularly remember the rains of the
depression era.
there wasn't any money but there was
plenty of rain.
it wouldn't rain for just a night or
a day,
it would RAIN for 7 days and 7
nights
and in Los Angeles the storm drains
weren't built to carry off taht much
water
and the rain came down THICK and
MEAN and
STEADY
and you HEARD it banging against
the roofs and into the ground
waterfalls of it came down
from roofs
and there was HAIL
big ROCKS OF ICE
bombing
exploding smashing into things
and the rain
just wouldn't
STOP
and all the roofs leaked-
dishpans,
cooking pots
were placed all about;
they dripped loudly
and had to be emptied
again and
again.
the rain came up over the street curbings,
across the lawns, climbed up the steps and
entered the houses.
there were mops and bathroom towels,
and the rain often came up through the
toilets:bubbling, brown, crazy,whirling,
and all the old cars stood in the streets,
cars that had problems starting on a
sunny day,
and the jobless men stood
looking out the windows
at the old machines dying
like living things out there.
the jobless men,
failures in a failing time
were imprisoned in their houses with their
wives and children
and their
pets.
the pets refused to go out
and left their waste in
strange places.
the jobless men went mad
confined with
their once beautiful wives.
there were terrible arguments
as notices of foreclosure
fell into the mailbox.
rain and hail, cans of beans,
bread without butter;fried
eggs, boiled eggs, poached
eggs; peanut butter
sandwiches, and an invisible
chicken in every ***.
my father, never a good man
at best, beat my mother
when it rained
as I threw myself
between them,
the legs, the knees, the
screams
until they
seperated.
"I'll **** you," I screamed
at him. "You hit her again
and I'll **** you!"
"Get that son-of-a-*******
kid out of here!"
"no, Henry, you stay with
your mother!"
all the households were under
seige but I believe that ours
held more terror than the
average.
and at night
as we attempted to sleep
the rains still came down
and it was in bed
in the dark
watching the moon against
the scarred window
so bravely
holding out
most of the rain,
I thought of Noah and the
Ark
and I thought, it has come
again.
we all thought
that.
and then, at once, it would
stop.
and it always seemed to
stop
around 5 or 6 a.m.,
peaceful then,
but not an exact silence
because things continued to
drip
  drip
    drip
  

and there was no smog then
and by 8 a.m.
there was a
blazing yellow sunlight,
Van Gogh yellow-
crazy, blinding!
and then
the roof drains
relieved of the rush of
water
began to expand in the warmth:
PANG!PANG!PANG!
and everybody got up and looked outside
and there were all the lawns
still soaked
greener than green will ever
be
and there were birds
on the lawn
CHIRPING like mad,
they hadn't eaten decently
for 7 days and 7 nights
and they were weary of
berries
and
they waited as the worms
rose to the top,
half drowned worms.
the birds plucked them
up
and gobbled them
down;there were
blackbirds and sparrows.
the blackbirds tried to
drive the sparrows off
but the sparrows,
maddened with hunger,
smaller and quicker,
got their
due.
the men stood on their porches
smoking cigarettes,
now knowing
they'd have to go out
there
to look for that job
that probably wasn't
there, to start that car
that probably wouldn't
start.
and the once beautiful
wives
stood in their bathrooms
combing their hair,
applying makeup,
trying to put their world back
together again,
trying to forget that
awful sadness that
gripped them,
wondering what they could
fix for
breakfast.
and on the radio
we were told that
school was now
open.
and
soon
there I was
on the way to school,
massive puddles in the
street,
the sun like a new
world,
my parents back in that
house,
I arrived at my classroom
on time.
Mrs. Sorenson greeted us
with, "we won't have our
usual recess, the grounds
are too wet."
"AW!" most of the boys
went.
"but we are going to do
something special at
recess," she went on,
"and it will be
fun!"
well, we all wondered
what that would
be
and the two hour wait
seemed a long time
as Mrs.Sorenson
went about
teaching her
lessons.
I looked at the little
girls, they looked so
pretty and clean and
alert,
they sat still and
straight
and their hair was
beautiful
in the California
sunshine.
the the recess bells rang
and we all waited for the
fun.
then Mrs. Sorenson told us:
"now, what we are going to
do is we are going to tell
each other what we did
during the rainstorm!
we'll begin in the front row
and go right around!
now, Michael, you're first!. . ."
well, we all began to tell
our stories, Michael began
and it went on and on,
and soon we realized that
we were all lying, not
exactly lying but mostly
lying and some of the boys
began to snicker and some
of the girls began to give
them ***** looks and
Mrs.Sorenson said,
"all right! I demand a
modicum of silence
here!
I am interested in what
you did
during the rainstorm
even if you
aren't!"
so we had to tell our
stories and they were
stories.
one girl said that
when the rainbow first
came
she saw God's face
at the end of it.
only she didn't say which end.
one boy said he stuck
his fishing pole
out the window
and caught a little
fish
and fed it to his
cat.
almost everybody told
a lie.
the truth was just
too awful and
embarassing to tell.
then the bell rang
and recess was
over.
"thank you," said Mrs.
Sorenson, "that was very
nice.
and tomorrow the grounds
will be dry
and we will put them
to use
again."
most of the boys
cheered
and the little girls
sat very straight and
still,
looking so pretty and
clean and
alert,
their hair beautiful in a sunshine that
the world might never see
again.
and
There are those down the bookies and them in the butchers and they're all a bit hooky, a right bunch of wrong 'uns,
young guns.
The police don't have a clue, but you know what?
they're all tooled up too, and what for?
for a war on the streets
blood down the drains,
making widows of wives who'll spent the rest of their lives looking through the curtains on lonely window panes watching blood down the drains.

Reminds me of what's behind me,
back in the days when crazy paving was the craze and the grass was covered in cartoon concrete,
I'd take a seat by the bow front and look out on the car, a Singer Chamois which was green, seen it parked in front of the house on crazy paving where there used to be grass through which no water was able to pass into the water table and so having to go somewhere it went down the drains, a waste of an element because we had no brains.

Hooky's not new it's what some people are and what some people do, we try and we die or we thirst for and win, but I always did think that to waste was a sin and now it is blood down the drains because we've all been trained, it's an army out there and they've got to go somewhere and the drains are open to all.
Kimberley Jan 2018
4"2 with the voice of an angel
he couldn't be more than ten
the only thing he ever stole was the hearts of those around him

a week later,
his body drains of blood
a mother's cry echoes around the town
her innocent baby
why'd they **** her innocent baby?
he was only nine.

a mother's cry echoes around the world
her baby is gone
blood drains from his body
one shot to the head
several to the torso
why'd they **** her baby?
he was only coming from school.

a shaken up officer stands to the left
Caucasian and worried
a grieving community to the right
African-American and terrified

straight A's and a bright future at seventeen
a future no-one could foresee
both labeled thugs
at 9 and 17

why?
because of the skin they keep.
He was the ocean; handsome, but yet, Impulsively damaged. He had a sandy heart to correspond his sandy eyes, the moon dismantled that omitted pride he carried at a dead weight; shoveling and reshaping it, so people would see a sandcastle statue assembled in strength. But his washed-up soul and unannounced insecurities were aware of its genuine purpose,
this beach alongside his pupils;
quicksand, he'll sink so slowly in.  Waves in his hair like ripples on his cheeks, skipping stones land at his defeat, he left notes in bottles for you, sank multiple ships for you, because he hasn't the heart to say he's desiccating with the arrival of the stars.. Retracting scars are not too far from gasps for air,  foaming words of crisis by writing in the sand, signaling a light as the last one in him died. You wouldn't understand, the calm before the storm, as valve after valve puncture him. So intoxicating as it drains him, and from within, he's drying out. Sunburns stain him, a smile restrains him,
in an inescapable drought--
All feedback is welcome
So this was posted here a couple weeks ago and, when I went to revise it, it was drafted and came out as new, I guess? :)
first step

when he looks at a woman he searches for qualities that attract him because he wants to desire her yet this tendency creates an imbalance or disadvantage he is rendered weak to a woman’s beauty or whatever traits he idealizes self-realizing this propensity he looks away from women years of disappointment neglect change him he becomes afraid of women gynophobic

2

when she looks at a man she searches for qualities she is critical of because she wants to be impervious to his power she is suspicious of all men their upper body strength penchant to be in control misperception of women as property misogyny emotional immaturity neediness to be mommyed selfishness insensitivity or over-sensitivity depending she wants to be treated with equal respect a loving nurturing relationship she is suspicious of all people their alternate realities passive aggressive behavior co-dependence craziness

3

he sees her then looks away she suspiciously notices nothing happens they go back to their separate homes alone always home alone grown calm in resignation yet disbelieving of this destiny saddened by this fate both worry about future she looks at her face naked body in mirror her stomach churns feels sad sickening remembers time when she was more carefree he puts one foot in front of other then walks tries to remember who taught him to walk how many times did he fall who taught him to laugh where did his sense of humor go

4

he sees her thinks she is lovely resists the urge to turn away he smiles says hello she notices nervously smiles her shaky voice articulates louder than a whisper hi

Tucson 2-step

they are standing in line at a café on 4th avenue he is directly behind her she is lanky wearing white background faded colors patterned summer dress thin straps over bare shoulders long brown hair few gray strands small unfinished tattoo on left calf leather slip-ons 1 inch heals he is at a complete loss for words thinks to make remark about the weather decides not to overhead fan stirs hot humid July air barista girl asks what she would like her eyes scan blackboard menu behind counter she hesitates remarks help him i need an extra moment to decide he steps up to counter money in hand orders small to go Arnold Palmer half black current lays $3 on counter mentions change goes in tip jar thank you barista girl moves fast he lifts cup from counter glances at woman still deciding then at barista girl says have a wonderful day turns walks out door dawns on him woman grows hair under her arms his 2nd most compelling female physique adornment fetish oh god he thinks to himself should i wait for her to make up her mind then approach try to craft conversation at least find out her name no i’m too weak in this moment she is so lovely let her go

2

she orders double Americana in small cup to go room for soy milk thinks to herself he did greet her perhaps their paths will cross on street why did he run off so fast she glances toward front of café notices window seat changes her mind instructs barista ******* 2nd thought make it for here digs through purse realizes she left wallet in truck explains to barista girl she needs to run out to her vehicle to retrieve wallet forgotten under front seat the air on the street is heavy dense she smells her own perspiration looks north then south does not see him walks to truck feels exhausted appetiteless almost nauseous wishes she did not order a drink thinks to get behind wheel drive home go to sleep

Tucson 3-step tango

she feels disappointment by her recent writings as if she is reaching a more sophisticated audience and setting a higher standard for her work yet she is not living up to her ambitions her recent writings smell of her past writings too emotional the damaged woman wounded child she wants to write more introspectively with detached humor that only comes from keener intelligence she slams her laptop shut decides to go to Club Congress for a ****** mary or margarita but Club Congress is haunted with small town cretins losers wannabes she considers Maynard’s decides Maynard’s is too safe suburban yuppyish finally gives in to thought of glass of pinot noir at Plush next comes what to wear jeans in mid-July desert heat is unacceptable perhaps loose fitting thin cotton white summer dress thin leather belt ankle high indian moccasins hair in ponytail no pigtail braids no ponytail no makeup maybe little ylang ylang oil no she thinks about her recent writings

2

i am one breath away from crying in every moment one breath away from flying m.i.a. in every moment one breath away from destroying everything there is beauty in ugliness beauty in decrepitude disease beauty in harm hurt suffering beauty in greed injustice betrayal beauty in corruption contamination pollution beauty in hate cruelty ignorance beauty in death we spend our whole lives searching for a good death we spend our whole lives searching for eternal love this modern world is too much for me over my head the horrors of this place are beyond words unspeakable voice inside maybe mom yells quit your whining or dad hollers stop complaining i am trying to smile through tears one breath away from giving in one breath away from becoming stranger to myself winter spring winter spring there is beauty in nothingness we spend our whole lives searching for ourselves learning who we are not finding grasping secrets from dark paths light trails winter spring winter spring i am one breath away

3

she sits alone at bar at Plush glass of pinot noir glass of ice water in front of her 2 bearded older men eye her from other end of bar she ignores them glances at her wristwatch tries to look like she is waiting for someone music from speakers antiquated rock standard it is early friday hours from dusk moderate middle aged crowd mingle wait for local jazz trio to begin she thinks about her recent writings wonders is it too late for love considers lesbian affair from 5 different perspectives 5 woman’s voices each describing same lesbian affair in 5 opposing accounts hmmm she sips dark red wine from glass chases it with ice water she considers a story about a gang of female bikers who ride south to Mexico

4

the Americans came through here last night crossing border illegally climbing over our fences digging tunnels beneath our barrier walls littering along their trail they travel in packs of every skin color carry guns knives explosives wear leather boots some are shirtless tattoos dyed hair mischievously smiling conceitedly stealing when in question murdering they rob our homes slaughter our chickens ransack gardens loot our harvest you can still smell the stink of their fast food breaths

5

she swallows the last dark red wine from glass chases it with ice water local jazz trio begins to play as bar fills with more people she decides to walk home one foot in front of other wonders who taught her how to walk how many times did she fall she laughs to herself

Tucson square dance

TPD 10-18 unconfirmed data report

7 post-University of Arizona female graduates go to Cactus Moon for several drinks and dancing then drive to Bashful Bandit for more drinks and dancing 2 women get into scuffle victim Brittany Garner female 23 years of age race #5 (Native American, Eskimo, Middle -Eastern, Other) 5’ 2” long black hair cut-off blue jean shorts clingy light blue top falls hits head on side of bar dies of fatal blow to skull forensics report crushed occipital lobe assailant Stacy Won female 31 years of age race #4 (Asian) 5’6” black jeans black leather jacket red helmet Honda motorcycle still at large

witness accounts

Jess Delaney female 33 years of age race #2 (White) 6’ tight black pencil skirt white sleeveless undershirt no bra 3” heels blond ponytail “that squirting little **** deserves everything she got she lied told Stacy i’m a ***** i never cheated on Brittany i don’t understand we were all having a good time getting buzzed and dancing we should never have left Cactus Moon **** Kerrie thought some biker dude might be hanging around the Bandit hell maybe the Bandit was a biker bar once but now it’s just a college sink hole full of drunken frat boys when Monique flashed a little *** they went crazy cheering and buying us shots it just got out of hand never should have happened the way it happened Stacy didn’t mean to **** Brittany it’s ****** up i want to go home please let me go home”

Sabrina Starn female 29 years of age race #2 (White) 5’8” trendy corporate gray suit black pumps red shoulder length hair “i have to be at work at 8 AM Stacy was drunk out of control she gets crazy when she drinks Brittany was trash talking pushing all Stacy’s buttons then Stacy accused Brittany of sleeping with Monique and all hell broke loose i didn’t see what happened i was in the powder room it’s a terrible tragedy unfortunate accident can i please be released i need to sleep this is madness”

Kerrie Angeles female 27 years of age race #1 (Hispanic) 5’ 6” black pants white shirt black hair cut stylishly short silver crucifix around neck red fingernails “when we got to the Bashful Bandit i was ***** soaking between my legs thinking about a cowgirl at Cactus Moon ready to **** anyone i saw fantasized pulling a train with those frat boys Monique had been kind of quiet at Cactus Moon but when we got to the Bashful Bandit she lit up dancing wild unbuttoning her top jacket Sabrina went to the ladies room to snort coke with biker dude Kerrie wanted but he wasn’t into her then Brittany started saying crazy stuff accusing Stacy of stealing Monique from Jess Jessie goes through women heartlessly she doesn’t give a **** about Monique Jessie knows if she wants Monique back she can simply fiddle a finger my guess is Stacy is half way to Argentina she never meant to **** Brittany i’m going to miss her real bad she was a good kid”

Ann Skyler female 28 years of age race  #2 (White) 4’ 11’’ green white red Mexican peasant skirt black t-shirt black high-tops hair in messy bun “i’m confused i saw them dancing laughing grinding up against each other Rage Against the Machine came on then Nine Inch Nails the room felt quaking dizzy claustrophobic then they were pushing each other shoving yelling frat boys cheering the next thing i knew Brittany was supine on the floor blood pouring out maybe she just slipped hit her head i don’t know what to think i feel real sad confused sick to my stomach scared”

Monique Smithson female 24 years of age race # 3 (Black) 5’ 9” blue jeans jean jacket cowboy boots nose ring braided pigtails “Stacy had it in for Brittany from the start i saw it in her eyes at Cactus Moon she made several clever toxic remarks they snapped at each other i never thought it would escalate to ****** poor sweet Brittany was always so susceptible i was looking down adjusting my jeans over my boots when it happened i heard felt a big thump glanced up Brittany was lying there lifeless blood spilling everywhere Stacy ran out fast i heard her bike engine take off in a hurry”

Rodeo Drive Tucson

matt’s hats tom’s tools & tobacco lou’s liquors fred’s beds frank’s planks bill’s drills jane’s drains & panes chuck’s check cashing cheryl’s barrels hank’s tanks tina’s trucks & tractors walt’s asphalt sean’s pawn rick’s rifles mom’s guns terry’s tires charlie’s harleys rhonda’s hondas jim’s rims art’s parts gus’s gasoline mike’s bikes frank’s feed gwen’s pens ann’s cans nancy’s nursery joes‘s clothes jess’s dresses bert’s skirts steve’s sleeves paul’s shawls michelle’s shells & bells al’s pails & snails sam’s hams & jams patty’s pancakes phil’s chili don’s donuts betty’s spaghetti bob’s burgers alycia’s quiches jean’s beans jerry’s berries anna’s bananas andy’s candies cathy’s taffies tony’s ponies roy’s toys kim’s whims marty’s parties jill’s pills rick’s tricks alice’s palace debbie’s disposal dave’s graves

Quinta Waltz de Tucson

she is definitely displeased profoundly disappointed in her latest literary efforts she dreams aches to create deeper discourse higher insight more thoughtful philosophical inquiries about life’s challenges beauty a better world overpowering love inspiration instead she writes paperback television trash stupid inadequate answers to solemn questions she wonders if she is too scratched dented to find love her ******* are definitely changing she is deeply disturbed not ready for menopause too young for menopause she wants to remain a fertile woman with smooth skin wet ******

2

her neighbor Leslie awoke to horrible morning Leslie’s 6 chickens were assaulted overnight precious Mabel dragged off feathers everywhere trail down the street other hens cowering slumped together with wilted necks 3 of them with puncture wounds Leslie carried them one by one inside washed their wounds hugged them cried who did this terrible act a neglected abusive neighborhood cat or some desert predator why didn’t Leslie wake to sounds of savage marauding now this creature knows hen’s whereabouts when will it return for more massacre what modifications need to be enforced to ensure their coup before nightfall

3

she wants to remain a hen keep producing eggs does not want is not ready to enter the next **** stage of this **** existence it was fun being pretty for men inspiring them to say do whacky things she wants to remain a hen she is definitely displeased profoundly disappointed in her latest literary attempts “Tucson square dance” (self-referential) ****** bit about Americans came through here last night in “Tucson 3-step” ****** "Rodeo Drive" tepid perhaps the pinot noir lowered her standards everything is becoming nothing she cannot sleep tosses turns thrashes sheets in humid heat of her lonesome bed is she is too scratched dented to find love she worries for Leslie

4

tomorrow is another day they say the rain will come last year’s monsoon never came the baking sun smothered her garden died one by one sleepless she will miss tomorrow’s pilates class the infrequent delightful chatty breakfast afterwards she dreams aches of deeper discourse higher insight with detached humor that only comes from keener intelligence more thoughtful philosophical inquiries about life’s challenges beauty a better world overpowering love inspiration she crossed the line tonight her ******* are definitely changing

Tucson 666

he decides to shave eighth to quarter inch length salt and pepper beard a.k.a. unshaven look he has worn for years and grow full mustache the whiskers on his upper lip are darker with sparse gray at first no one notices after weeks the mustache gradually fills evoking many contrasting remarks several women loath it several men admire it girl at grocery store suggests he grow Fu Manchu so she can tug on it shopgirl says he looks like Charlie Chaplin downstairs neighbor from Turkey explains most Turkish men traditionally wear mustaches he read mustaches masculinize and empower men especially men in authoritative positions he thinks back to the 1960’s when many hippie males grew mustaches then in the 70’s gay men fashioned mustaches then in the 80’s cops adopted mustaches he wonders why a swatch of hair beneath nose is so provoking examines his visage in mirror discerns the mustache confers a Pepé le Pew quality or European accent to his appearance he remembers when he was young hippie with many amorous episodes how his mustache preserved the scent of a woman but there are no women in his life for many years do post-menopausal women possess scent? he feels indecisive whether to retain it or be rid of it

2

she observes her figure in mirror thinks to herself maybe her ******* are not changing perhaps it’s all in her head she inspects the little lines forming near her eyelids studies her features for signs of aging hardly any silver strands in long brown hair she examines neck ******* arms elbows fingers tummy hips pelvic region thighs knees shins calves ankles feet detects subtle changes thinks to herself my ******* are possibly slightly changing turned 40 in March married briefly in late teens no children a 15 year old dog beginning to suffer veterinarian promises to warn her when the time comes she wonders why it is so difficult finding fitting mate men sleep with her several times then move on maybe she is not such a great lover perhaps she would be better if one of them stuck around perhaps she is a lesbian the whole ide
Nat Lipstadt Oct 2013
October 2013

for Maria and Logan...

you need two hands, one foot.
count my years.
each finger, worth a decade.
each toe, well, a century...

birthdays.

point of inflection,
point of opportunity,
presents itself,
to rewrite history.

a second coat of paint,
gift-wrapped in weak excuses.
how I lied, how I ain't,
grimm-fated fairy tales
somebody created.

invisible suits of gold-cloth
worn to my party of
past rewrit and
future foretold.

one single thought,
memory,
seizes my heart,
as I fall to my knees.
cracks my temperate ease,
renders open the
woof and weave
of recycled deceptions,
causing all to be revealed
and ask,

what if the poetry ceases?

you know prostrate?
you taste grief?

have you not but
one pain,
one act,
one deed,
one memorization,
act of cowardice,
act of desertion,
mistake maden, taken,
for which
forgiveness
can never
be given,
be taken,
attained?

do, does, did.

let me then
win the birthday lottery,
let floods of relief from
daily chores, not drown me,
chauffeurs to drive,
masseurs to massage,
cooks to cook,
les delicious treats,
keep theologians, logicians
on retainer, if need
explanations.

none know, can provide,
still and yet, a
priestly sacred chord,
grants relief,
absolution,
song of hallelujah
the ache of
perpetuity worry,
that ancient pain,
grows fresher daily,
the loss of one,
of my body,
my primal knot
unreasonable,
everything should be
permitted to be untied,
on my birthday, no?

this day, these days
breathe through words,
molecules of vowels,
stem cells of consonants,
the fabric, the tissues of life,
veins are a dictionary
of corpuscles,
red blood cells are
nouns of nutrients.

this day, these days,
the infection of my soul
is tempered, kept at bay,
tamped down from the
full flowering
of white blood cells
of rhyme, verse.

what if the poetry ceases?

Though the bones creak,
the body they carry. resurrect
for morning, afternoon
and evening prayers.

thrice daily poetry I recite,
roses red, violets blue,
my marrow transfused.

though my prayers refused,
the poetry act immolates
the fringes of my disease,
for which the common cure
is not currently invented....

what if the poetry ceases?

but be assured, told
scientists hard at work,
on the
forgive n' forget drug.

meantime,
take a bubble bath in
rosemary and mint
trap some words,
tap some words into
your cell phone bone,
the poetry heat that
provides aspirin relief.

through this poem,
on one day annual,
I am relieved, relived
the muse is feted, sated,

gone for few moments
concerns, worries of
exposure today,
agnostic's foxhole of hell
is dis-remembered,
the gloss returns,
the faux dispatched,

ain't birthdays grand?

what if the poetry ceases?

what rhymes with
Sorrow?
mmmmm,
could it be
Morrow?

bath drains, rosemary and mint
odors dismissed, the  Argentine disparu,
the Spanish Medievalists,
the Neo-Raphaelites,
all gone,
didn't they have birthdays too?

didn't know
the Renaissance come
and go,
and nobody
tole ya?

please recall t'is the day
after my sweet city recorded my
naissance in the
Hospital of the Flowers
on Fifth Avenue.

the 'crats put the datum
in the bureau with the
night creams and
the statistics
as follows:

on this day + a few,
six or twenty decades ago +
a few centuries,
a question was born,
and an ache that is
sometimes relieved,
by a poem song.

though do not celebrate,
t'is a day to calibrate,
review, edit, tinker,
rewrite, often a stinker.

always one thought recycles:

what if the poetry ceases?

(how will I breathe?)
Notes: my birthday was a few weeks ago. One of a number poems I've written about birthdays.  This one was modified, but only slightly for Maria and Logan.
Cecil Miller Oct 2015
She's got a face for radio,
She wears it best from head to toe.
She's a special kind of homely girl;
Her gift is being in a state of pity, so...

She is eager to shed her burdons,
But never tells the true
Meaning of actions
That always leave her due.

Love would never fix her woes,
She's a woman of motive
Crying on the shoulders of the higher-rated.
Tears are the flames of the voltive,

It's not mine to say.
It's mine to stay away.
She's not mine to slay.
But, I know her, anyway.

She's a vampire, the emotional kind,
One bite, then three times three is nine,
Thrice to thine, and thrice to mine,
And thrice again to make up nine,
Like a Harpee, she goes to them,
And drains from them vitality,
She's a shrewd one, and she's a shrew,
She doesn't even want to *****,
She's a player, till the game is won,
And the sorceress says the charm is done.

No one can ever show her kindness
Without her expecting more.
If you have a dollar of quarters,
She'd not take less than four.

I have seen the hearts of hopeful
Shredded at her feet.
And then the ugliness that thrives her
Gathers the replete.

She's sated til her next desire.
She never rest for long.
There will always be some lonely sap,
That she Will sap upon.

It's not mine to say.
It's mine to stay away.
She's not mine to slay.
But, I know her way.

She's a vampire, the emotional kind,
One bite, then three times three is nine,
Thrice to thine, and thrice to mine,
And thrice again to make up nine,
Like a Harpee, she goes to them,
And drains from them vitality,
She's a shrewd one, and she's a shrew,
She doesn't even want to *****,
She's a player, till the game is won,
And the sorceress says the charm is done.

The only thing she has is blame
To mead out to another sucker's name,
As soon as she has all she can get,
She leaves them, she leaves like all the rest,

Don't they think her heart is good!
They treat her like they think they should.
They don't know that to ease her pain
Is too surrender their gain, and go insane.

She never will come differently
Some things do not change.
Her talons grip them where they live,
Time and time, again.

It's not mine to say.
It's mine to stay away.
She's not mine to slay.
But, I know her way.

She's a vampire, the emotional kind,
One bite, then three times three is nine,
Thrice to thine, and thrice to mine,
And thrice again to make up nine,
Like a Harpee, she goes to them,
And drains from them vitality,
She's a shrewd one, and she's a shrew,
She doesn't even want to *****,
She's a player, till the game is won,
And the sorceress says the charm is done.

She will make them steal
From the future of their children.
She is a guiltless wonder.
She really never lets them in.

All for nothing is the way she lives.
She is gone with the fairer treat.
Every lonely victom she leaves
The bitter without the sweet.

It's not mine to say.
It's mine to stay away.
She's not mine to slay.
But, I know her way.

She's a vampire, the emotional kind,
One bite, then three, times three is nine,
Thrice to thine, and thrice to mine,
And thrice again to make up nine,
Like a Harpee, she goes to them,
And drains from them vitality,
She's a shrewd one, and she's a shrew,
She doesn't even want to *****,
She's a player, till the game is won,
And the sorceress says the charm is done.
I have always thought "a face for radio" was an enjoyable turn of phrase. I knew I would one day use it im a title. I do enjoy the company of a stand-up kind of woman. This piece is not about most woman, but the occasional shady woman with a hustle I have come across from time to time. I am not a player hater as long as it does not affect my life(As a gay man, I've got plenty of game.) but, I am no respector of the dishonest.
Benji James Sep 2018
Could it be
I've never seen
Beauty in me
Took time to reflect
On all that I am
I haven't shared everything I can
On this soul-searching road
The winds and turns
Each corner holds secrets
Each road taken holds challenges untold
Which road you choose is how life unfolds
Some are rougher, Sometimes it's smooth sailing
All the time I've invested in this world
I've come to realise
Each moment is just a piece strung together
In this story called life
I have no wisdom in my words
All I know is I've survived
Yeah, still alive.

Some would say I feel too much
Some would say, I'm too ******* myself
Mistakes I owned them
Haters I outgrow them
There's a whole lot in me
Only a few people see
A light that shines slightly through the cracks
I'm not all bad
And all this strength gathered
Has taken me to heights
Others couldn't imagine
Like a lighter, a little spark
Can ignite a torch
Revealing truths in dark corners
It's all these things
That makes me a lyrical philosopher
Through these lines I conquer

A man made up of scars
Each marks a tale
Each a reminder of lessons learned
I've been through the ringer
Still standing, And I'll still fight
Until my last breath drains all my might
No matter what the world throws my way
I'll always say...          
"Challenge accepted."
Never gave up
I still dream
I still fight my way
Through each day
No matter the odds stacked against me
I'm a raise my head accept the challenges met

Some would say I feel too much
Some would say, I'm too ******* myself
Mistakes I owned them
Haters I outgrow them
There's a whole lot in me
Only a few people see
A light that shines slightly through the cracks
I'm not all bad
And all this strength gathered
Has taken me to heights
Others couldn't imagine
Like a lighter, a little spark
Can ignite a torch
Revealing truths in dark corners
It's all these things
That makes me a lyrical philosopher
Through these lines I conquer

Nothing is going to hold me down
I'm going to dance like a warrior
All these bad habits couldn't be sorrier
All these battles I've won
Some left me scarred
But through this my skin became hard
Got a thick skin, Never cut through it
Got a good heart, shines through in my art
Belief only takes you so far
Have faith, it'll take you beyond the stars
They say wisdom can't be found in bars
In unlikely places, you can find yourself
And accept it is all you are
All that you've become
Water washes over me
Setting me free
All this dirt cleansed from me
You haven't even seen the best from me

Some would say I feel too much
Some would say, I'm too ******* myself
Mistakes I owned them
Haters I outgrow them
There's a whole lot in me
Only a few people see
A light that shines slightly through the cracks
I'm not all bad
And all this strength gathered
Has taken me to heights
Others couldn't imagine
Like a lighter, a little spark
Can ignite a torch
Revealing truths in dark corners
It's all these things
That makes me a lyrical philosopher
Through these lines I conquer.

Don't make me a role model
That I can never fulfil
All I wanna be is an Inspiration
Show people if they stick to it
They can make it
They won't fail if they fight tooth and nail
Revealing truths through poetic paragraphs
Silver linings rising, capture lightning in a bottle
Hard to contain, just striking in ways they don't expect
In life, you'll realise your blessed
If you take a deep look around
And all that surrounds us
Just shows that you can achieve
Be anything you want to be
And all I choose is to just be me
Open up your heart to see.

Some would say I feel too much
Some would say, I'm too ******* myself
Mistakes I owned them
Haters I outgrow them
There's a whole lot in me
Only a few people see
A light that shines slightly through the cracks
I'm not all bad
And all this strength gathered
Has taken me to heights
Others couldn't imagine
Like a lighter, a little spark
Can ignite a torch
Revealing truths in dark corners
It's all these things
That makes me a lyrical philosopher
Through these lines I conquer

©2018 Written By Benji James
RW Dennen Aug 2014
Walking walkers
that soon vanish
around corners
  Crazy
          cracks
                    catch
      ­               crumbs crumbling in crevices.
And some man-made drilled drains
drum drum drops dripping droplets
                                               down
                                               drowning
                                                drowning­
                                                drains for rats
Roaches run rampant
randomly.
Running rats reach
reeking rotten
radishes
as walking walkers
crush roaches
running rampant
randomly for crazy cracks
that catch crumbs crumbling in
                                                    crevices.
­
And running rats
                      reach
                      down
     ­                  drains that
                                   drip
                                    droplets...
Thank thank thank thanks
Millions of babies watching the skies
Bellies swollen, with big round eyes
On Jessore Road--long bamboo huts
Noplace to **** but sand channel ruts

Millions of fathers in rain
Millions of mothers in pain
Millions of brothers in woe
Millions of sisters nowhere to go

One Million aunts are dying for bread
One Million uncles lamenting the dead
Grandfather millions homeless and sad
Grandmother millions silently mad

Millions of daughters walk in the mud
Millions of children wash in the flood
A Million girls ***** & groan
Millions of families hopeless alone

Millions of souls nineteenseventyone
homeless on Jessore road under grey sun
A million are dead, the million who can
Walk toward Calcutta from East Pakistan

Taxi September along Jessore Road
Oxcart skeletons drag charcoal load
past watery fields thru rain flood ruts
Dung cakes on treetrunks, plastic-roof huts

Wet processions   Families walk
Stunted boys    big heads don't talk
Look bony skulls   & silent round eyes
Starving black angels in human disguise

Mother squats weeping & points to her sons
Standing thin legged    like elderly nuns
small bodied    hands to their mouths in prayer
Five months small food    since they settled there

on one floor mat   with small empty ***
Father lifts up his hands at their lot
Tears come to their mother's eye
Pain makes mother Maya cry

Two children together    in palmroof shade
Stare at me   no word is said
Rice ration, lentils   one time a week
Milk powder for warweary infants meek

No vegetable money or work for the man
Rice lasts four days    eat while they can
Then children starve    three days in a row
and ***** their next food   unless they eat slow.

On Jessore road    Mother wept at my knees
Bengali tongue    cried mister Please
Identity card    torn up on the floor
Husband still waits    at the camp office door

Baby at play I was washing the flood
Now they won't give us any more food
The pieces are here in my celluloid purse
Innocent baby play    our death curse

Two policemen surrounded     by thousands of boys
Crowded waiting    their daily bread joys
Carry big whistles    & long bamboo sticks
to whack them in line    They play hungry tricks

Breaking the line   and jumping in front
Into the circle    sneaks one skinny runt
Two brothers dance forward    on the mud stage
Teh gaurds blow their whistles    & chase them in rage

Why are these infants    massed in this place
Laughing in play    & pushing for space
Why do they wait here so cheerful   & dread
Why this is the House where they give children bread

The man in the bread door   Cries & comes out
Thousands of boys and girls    Take up his shout
Is it joy? is it prayer?    "No more bread today"
Thousands of Children  at once scream "Hooray!"

Run home to tents    where elders await
Messenger children   with bread from the state
No bread more today! & and no place to squat
Painful baby, sick **** he has got.

Malnutrition skulls thousands for months
Dysentery drains    bowels all at once
Nurse shows disease card    Enterostrep
Suspension is wanting    or else chlorostrep

Refugee camps    in hospital shacks
Newborn lay naked    on mother's thin laps
Monkeysized week old    Rheumatic babe eye
Gastoenteritis Blood Poison    thousands must die

September Jessore    Road rickshaw
50,000 souls   in one camp I saw
Rows of bamboo    huts in the flood
Open drains, & wet families waiting for food

Border trucks flooded, food cant get past,
American Angel machine   please come fast!
Where is Ambassador Bunker today?
Are his Helios machinegunning children at play?

Where are the helicopters of U.S. AID?
Smuggling dope in Bangkok's green shade.
Where is America's Air Force of Light?
Bombing North Laos all day and all night?

Where are the President's Armies of Gold?
Billionaire Navies    merciful Bold?
Bringing us medicine    food and relief?
Napalming North Viet Nam    and causing more grief?

Where are our tears?  Who weeps for the pain?
Where can these families go in the rain?
Jessore Road's children close their big eyes
Where will we sleep when Our Father dies?

Whom shall we pray to for rice and for care?
Who can bring bread to this **** flood foul'd lair?
Millions of children alone in the rain!
Millions of children weeping in pain!

Ring O ye tongues of the world for their woe
Ring out ye voices for Love we don't know
Ring out ye bells of electrical pain
Ring in the conscious of America brain

How many children are we who are lost
Whose are these daughters we see turn to ghost?
What are our souls that we have lost care?
Ring out ye musics and weep if you dare--

Cries in the mud by the thatch'd house sand drain
Sleeps in huge pipes in the wet ****-field rain
waits by the pump well, Woe to the world!
whose children still starve    in their mother's arms curled.

Is this what I did to myself in the past?
What shall I do Sunil Poet I asked?
Move on and leave them without any coins?
What should I care for the love of my *****?

What should we care for our cities and cars?
What shall we buy with our Food Stamps on Mars?
How many millions sit down in New York
& sup this night's table on bone & roast pork?

How many millions of beer cans are tossed
in Oceans of Mother? How much does She cost?
Cigar gasolines and   asphalt car dreams
Stinking the world and dimming star beams--

Finish the war in your breast    with a sigh
Come tast the tears    in your own Human eye
Pity us millions of phantoms you see
Starved in Samsara   on planet TV

How many millions of children die more
before our Good Mothers perceive the Great Lord?
How many good fathers pay tax to rebuild
Armed forces that boast    the children they've killed?

How many souls walk through Maya in pain
How many babes    in illusory pain?
How many families   hollow eyed  lost?
How many grandmothers    turning to ghost?

How many loves who never get bread?
How many Aunts with holes in their head?
How many sisters skulls on the ground?
How many grandfathers   make no more sound?

How many fathers in woe
How many sons   nowhere to go?
How many daughters    nothing to eat?
How many uncles   with swollen sick feet?

Millions of babies in pain
Millions of mothers in rain
Millions of brothers in woe
Millions of children    nowhere to go

                                        New York, November 14-16, 1971
Maria Rose May 2012
Perseverance on my tongue,
a silken thought in silver ink
I scrawl strange patterns on the sun
and watch for daybreak to dismiss
the blackboard starlight drips and runs.

Now listless with my aching legs
I’m counting candles, chasing smoke
that filters yellow, drains the dregs
of coffee, cold and drowned of hope.

By tingling error I swallow words,
boredom pervades the bitter night
with a whistle, tuneless, that seems absurd
I empty out my troubled mind
to exhale sadness; curled, entwined -
quite futile, like staring when blind.
old
The night is only a sort of carbon paper,
Blueblack, with the much-poked periods of stars
Letting in the light, peephole after peephole --
A bonewhite light, like death, behind all things.
Under the eyes of the stars and the moon's rictus
He suffers his desert pillow, sleeplessness
Stretching its fine, irritating sand in all directions.

Over and over the old, granular movie
Exposes embarrassments--the mizzling days
Of childhood and adolescence, sticky with dreams,
Parental faces on tall stalks, alternately stern and tearful,
A garden of buggy rose that made him cry.
His forehead is bumpy as a sack of rocks.
Memories jostle each other for face-room like obsolete film stars.

He is immune to pills: red, purple, blue --
How they lit the tedium of the protracted evening!
Those sugary planets whose influence won for him
A life baptized in no-life for a while,
And the sweet, drugged waking of a forgetful baby.
Now the pills are worn-out and silly, like classical gods.
Their poppy-sleepy colors do him no good.

His head is a little interior of grey mirrors.
Each gesture flees immediately down an alley
Of diminishing perspectives, and its significance
Drains like water out the hole at the far end.
He lives without privacy in a lidless room,
The bald slots of his eyes stiffened wide-open
On the incessant heat-lightning flicker of situations.

Nightlong, in the granite yard, invisible cats
Have been howling like women, or damaged instruments.
Already he can feel daylight, his white disease,
Creeping up with her hatful of trivial repetitions.
The city is a map of cheerful twitters now,
And everywhere people, eyes mica-silver and blank,
Are riding to work in rows, as if recently brainwashed.
S’io credesse che mia risposta fosse
        A persona che mai tornasse al mondo
        Questa fiamma staria senza più scosse.
        Ma perciocchè giammai di questo fondo
        Non tornò vivo alcun, s’i'odo il vero,
        Senza tema d’infamia ti rispondo.

Let us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky
Like a patient etherised upon a table;
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent
To lead you to an overwhelming question…
Oh, do not ask, ‘What is it?’
Let us go and make our visit.

In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.

The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes,
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening,
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys,
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,
And seeing that it was a soft October night,
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.

And indeed there will be time
For the yellow smoke that slides along the street,
Rubbing its back upon the window panes;
There will be time, there will be time
To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;
There will be time to ****** and create,
And time for all the works and days of hands
That lift and drop a question on your plate;
Time for you and time for me,
And time yet for a hundred indecisions,
And for a hundred visions and revisions,
Before the taking of a toast and tea.

In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.

And indeed there will be time
To wonder, ‘Do I dare?’ and, ‘Do I dare?’
Time to turn back and descend the stair,
With a bald spot in the middle of my hair—
(They will say: ‘How his hair is growing thin!’)
My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin,
My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin—
(They will say: ‘But how his arms and legs are thin!’)
Do I dare
Disturb the universe?
In a minute there is time
For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.

For I have known them all already, known them all—
Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,
I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;
I know the voices dying with a dying fall
Beneath the music from a farther room.
  So how should I presume?

And I have known the eyes already, known them all—
The eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase,
And when I am formulated, sprawling on a pin,
When I am pinned and wriggling on the wall,
Then how should I begin
To spit out all the ****-ends of my days and ways?
  And how should I presume?

And I have known the arms already, known them all—
Arms that are braceleted and white and bare
(But in the lamplight, downed with light brown hair!)
Is it perfume from a dress
That makes me so digress?
Arms that lie along a table, or wrap about a shawl.
  And should I then presume?
  And how should I begin?

     . . . . .

Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets
And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes
Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows? …

I should have been a pair of ragged claws
Scuttling across the floors of silent seas.

     . . . . .

And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully!
Smoothed by long fingers,
Asleep … tired … or it malingers,
Stretched on on the floor, here beside you and me.
Should I, after tea and cakes and ices,
Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?
But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed,
Though I have seen my head (grown slightly bald) brought in
     upon a platter,
I am no prophet—and here’s no great matter;
I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,
And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker,
And in short, I was afraid.

And would it have been worth it, after all,
After the cups, the marmalade, the tea,
Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me,
Would it have been worth while,
To have bitten off the matter with a smile,
To have squeezed the universe into a ball
To roll it toward some overwhelming question,
To say: ‘I am Lazarus, come from the dead,
Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all’—
If one, settling a pillow by her head,
  Should say: ‘That is not what I meant at all;
  That is not it, at all.’

And would it have been worth it, after all,
Would it have been worth while,
After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets,
After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail
     along the floor—
And this, and so much more?—
It is impossible to say just what I mean!
But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a screen:
Would it have been worth while
If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl,
And turning toward the window, should say:
  ‘That is not it at all,
  That is not what I meant, at all.’

     . . . . .

No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be;
Am an attendant lord, one that will do
To swell a progress, start a scene or two,
Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,
Deferential, glad to be of use,
Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;
At times, indeed, almost ridiculous—
Almost, at times, the Fool.

I grow old … I grow old …
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.

Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach?
I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach.
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.

I do not think that they will sing to me.

I have seen them riding seaward on the waves
Combing the white hair of the waves blown back
When the wind blows the water white and black.

We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown
Till human voices wake us, and we drown.
Terry O'Leary Oct 2013
The Bishops bathe in Babylon
while Princes, prancing on the lawn,
watch Queen deflowered, pale and wan.
            The King dares not defend her.

The Horsemen, holding broken reins
the Morning of the Hurricanes,
sigh “it’s no use, it’s all in vain,
            the Saints will soon surrender”.

They wonder why they ever came,
they have No One whom they can blame,
they have no face, they have no name,
            and even less, a gender.


The empty-handed Vagabonds
smoke stale cigars, stroke faded Blondes
while waiting at the walls beyond,
            but kneel as Chaos enters.

They’re gazing through the window panes
in hopes that distant Hurricanes
will twist and break their iron chains
            defying life’s tormentors.

The Fantom of the Opera frowns
as feeble minded Cleric-clowns
mouth hollow hurdy-gurdy sounds
           when blessing doomed dissenters.


The Pirate wields a wooden leg,
with pupils dull and visage vague,
and if by chance he spreads the plague,
            it really doesn’t matter.

His Princess, pale, no longer feigns,
foresees instead (down ancient lanes)
the coming of the Hurricanes -
            the Stones stir, staring at her.

And Jackals scrape the river bed
as Savants soothe the underfed
and Crows, collecting scattered bread,
            adorn, with crumbs, the platter.


The Jokers Wild and One Eyed Janes
weep, winding up in rundown trains
mid whispers of the Hurricanes,
            and Priests refuse to christen.

They’re fleeing from the Leprechauns,
the cuckoo birds, the dying swans;
while pitching pennies into ponds
            their eyes opaquely glisten.

The spectral Clocks with spindled spokes
remind the Mimes to tell the  Folks
the time of day and other jokes,
            yet No One looks to listen.


The Hunchbacks with contorted canes
galumph before the Hurricanes,
in melted sleet, in frozen rains,
            in bruised and battered sandals.

Their Groans engulf the land of gulls,
the land of stones, the land of nulls,
and lurk between the blackened lulls,
            for Nighttime brooks no candles.

Their prayers to Dogs and Nuns and Dukes,
(and other long forgotten Spooks)
are more than random crazed rebukes,
            though taunting to the Vandals.


The Beggars ’neath the balustrades,
and broken Children, Chambermaids,
are running wild from wraiths, afraid
            of dreams where death redoubles.

They fritter time with tattered threads
(from ragged clothes they’ve left in shreds),
crocheting hoods to hide their heads
            and faces, full of rubble.

But many things will not remain
the Morning of the Hurricanes,
when goblets filled with cool champagne
           evaporate in bubbles.


The White-Robed Maid adorns the trash
with charnel urns awash in ash,
then fumbles with an untied sash
            while pacing in the Palace.

Her hopes congeal in coffee spoons
with memories adrift in dunes;
yet, still she smiles with teeth like prunes
            and lips of painted callus.

And long before the midnight drains,
the Saviour wakes, the Loser gains,
the waters of the Hurricanes
            will fill her empty chalice.


The storm (behind the clarinets,
the silver flutes, the castanets,
the foghorns belching in quartets,
            the bagpipes, puffed and swollen)

is keeping time to tambourines
while Tom Thumb and the Four-Inch Queen,
pick up the shards and smithereens
            of moments lost or stolen.

They’re trekking through the Dim Domains
(where fountains weep, the mountain wanes),
yet can’t escape the Hurricanes
            with trundling eyes patrollin’.


The Crowds (arrayed in jewels) in jails,
stoop, peering through a fence of nails
while light behind their eyeballs pales
            with plastic flame that sputters.

They huddle there because they must
(with eyelids hung like peeling rust,
their tears, palled pellets in the dust),
            behind the bolted shutters.

They’ll reawake without their pains
the Morning of the Hurricanes,
without their sores, without their stains,
their agonies will fill the drains
            and overflow the gutters.
Maggie Emmett May 2016
Gendering Woman *******

Beautiful, anatomical part //  Ugly, anatomical part
Natural, pleasurable             //   Burdensome, loathsome
Female Symbolic                //    Femme Symbolic
MALIGNANT                             HEALTHY

fearful, tearful, wretched     //  joyful, hopeful, euphoric,
bereft, wept, grieving          //  embryonic, rapt, relieving
leaving, loss                         //  believing, gain
m a y b e - d e a t h                                            r e - b i r t h
                                                   BI-LATERAL
                                             MASTECTOMIES
Operating Theatre

SURGEON                                         ANAESTHETIST
cleaning/ cutting/ knife/ scalpel   //   doping/ unconscious/ airway
blood / tissue                                 //   hypotension
loss/ damage                                 //   shock
drains                                             //   sinus rhythm
stitches                                           //   pain deadening
tight binding                                 //   reversal drugs
                                    
POST-OPERATIVE
a l i v e                                                a w a k e

draining, bound & stitched               draining, bound & stitched
                                            DRAINED
    ­                                   ~ UNBOUND
                                       -- UNSTITCHED –

Empty chest                                                    Flat Chest
FREEDOM from Disease                               FREEDOM from Dis-ease


© M.L.Emmett
This was written to explore the different responses to bi-lateral mastectomies, one woman with Cancer; the other trans gendering. It was inspired by reading The Argonauts by Maggie Nelson, whose partner, Harry, was pleased to be rid of these cumbersome appendages & by my friend, Angela who had breast carcinoma and felt very differently towards the loss of *******.
Cathyy Jan 2015
If you're the moon with your phases
Then I'm a star gazer, mesmerised by the view..
And if your 'ring of Saturn' falls out I'd go up there myself and find one more suited for you

And how does it feel to have a face that so many call home?..
Cause for three sleepless nights, this 'homeless girl' gave up everything just to write you a poem..

Oh I've been struggling,

I've been staring at the page for ages,
Trying to find the most honest way to say this..
See every time you touch my heart I feel it breaking
So I will never let you know..
But you are so beautiful, I can't take it

And no I won't stop believing
That everyone comes into your life for some kind of reason..
But I'm not using you to write, I'm using you as a source for breathing
though every time I see you I fall to pieces..
..But every piece is in awe with you
So would you collect them and adore me too?

Oh I just can't describe this..
If there was a metaphor you know I'd write it..
You make me lost for words but I won't stop trying,
In hope of finding new parts of you,
Oh you are so beautiful, I don't like it

Cause it ties knots in my stomach.
And then my heart beat drains out the city but I can't stop it..
Is this a horrible poem cause I'm just being honest..
And though adrenaline is supposed to keep me going,
Oh you are so beautiful I can't focus

So don't get too close for comfort
Cause I love you so much my heart hurts,
And it's a pain my heart could take
If you just stay and take the pain away

And your little smile could go to the end of the world,
And I'd whisper your name if it was the end of the world,
..And I have writers block so I don't know what rhymes with 'end of the world',
But don't let me go even when you're someone else's girl
Cause you'll still always be this loser's world :')

.. And if I'm a stargazer mesmerised by the view,
Then I hope every constellation will add up to you.
I had three days of writers block so I really don't think this is a good piece but it's still a poem isn't it.
The Unknown Aug 2014
My family gives me what I need
My homework drains my cup
My friends remain like silent seeds
My smartphone wakes me up
K G May 2017
The basin drains her polluted blood as wine envelopes morose
Every minute is a memory, onset of her blanketed comatose
Vying in a fog of icons and myths, words always fail them
From every misread evil that is disposed of improperly
From every neighbor or friend eternally mute again
From every gilded pattern that leaves a cuff for the eyes
From every fetching barroom, where all such nadir lies
KG
Gods1son Nov 2018
A lot has been said about environ-mental pollution
Okay, can we drop the environ for a second
How about the mental pollution in this generation

The internet loads us with data but not necessarily useful information
I wonder, do we have a sieve in our brains
that filters the data as it drains
Or we absorb them all, to clutter up our minds
Gigabytes of junks downloaded into our mental and emotional system

I was on the internet to seek information
But my mental system received Ads injection
Causing a buy this, buy that stimulation
You are not okay if you don't have this or have that
You don't look good, if you're not shaped like this or like that

What we ingest from the internet is 40% information and 60% malware
Don't quote me
Just an opinion that I want to share
This pollution is **** real and it scares!
nani Mar 2014
Obsession is a gun.
It points right to your head, willing to shoot.
It either glues your heart together or shatters it through.
You feel ecstatic, yet you feel blue.
It's an addiction, you were brought to.
Nobody gets it, you feel alone.

Your mind is scratched with a name that repeats itself endlessly,
It hurts to your core, it's also your ecstasy
No you can't grasp it, they're fake, they're souvenirs.
And by souvenirs, I mean they're *******,
You like it for a while, then put it on a shelf and in the end, dispose it.
It drains your time, you think it's real,
then in a month, you're done, it's sealed.
It starts confusion, you swear it's love,
you think it's happiness,
well, you are wrong.
Been there, done that.
Love trusts, lust twists
Love rains, lust drains
Love reaches, lust catches
Love couples, lust combines

Love retains, lust detains
Love relies, lust relays
Love cares, lust caresses
Love binds, lust blinds

Love floats, lust flees
Love belongs, lust longs
Love ascends, lust descends
Love fames, lust defames

Love creates, lust recreates
Love commands, lust demands
Love chooses, lust chases
Love boosts,  lust boasts

Love at heart
Lust in mind
Love in lust is good
Lust in love is better
  
Love likes privacy
Lust looks for piracy
Love opens lust
Lust closes love

Love is slow, lust is fast
Love is steady and stable
Lust is mobile and fragile
Love is reliable, lust is liable
Love is long, lust is short
  
Love is homogeneous
Lust is heterogeneous
Love is defensive
Lust is offensive
  
Love is precious
Lust is pernicious
Love is supportive
Lust is supplementary
  
Love is refined
Lust is defined
Love betters life
Lust batters it.
  
Love has character
Lust has conduct
Love wins over
Lust weans out
  
Love combines
Lust divides
Love is cool
Lust is crazy
Love is peaceful
Lust is pleasant
  
Love is wholesome
Lust is piecemeal
Lust comes first
Love becomes best

Love is progressive
Lust is aggressive
Lust laminates
Love illuminates

Love is slow n steady
Lust is hasty n nasty
Love is dense, lust is tense
Lust is conditioned,
Love is air-conditioned
  
Lust is lovely to begin with
Love is lustrous to end up
Love heals, lust wounds
Love owns, lust disowns
  
Love is onus, lust is onerous
Love is basic, lust is allowance
Love conforms, lust confuses
Love binds, lust blinds

Be aware of love
Beware of lust
That comes like
wolf in sheep’s clothing

Let the fair blend
of love and lust
rule  the roost
Tanay Sengupta Aug 2018
Pain drains you every day,
You try to fight.
The wounds of yesterday;
Still hurt at night.
You feel lost in darkness
Grief consumes you
And so does madness.
No light to look up to,
You sink in despair
You tell yourself time and again;
"Life is not fair."
"Life is not fair."

Well then, let us make it fair.
Take my hand
Take the light that I share.
Call me your friend.

I understand how you feel
Wounds never truly heal.
Don't suffer in silence and hide your tears;
Don't submit yourself to your fears.

Yes, life is not fair.
But, don't give up and take this light I share.
As much as I can, I will help you until the end.
After all, I am your friend.











Tanay Sengupta, Copyright © 2018.
All Rights Reserved
This is an old one; no rewrites, no edits, just posted it exactly the way I wrote it about 4 years back. I hope you like it. Happy reading!
MadeleineBarnham Jun 2018
I love how the lights
Make it visible to see the rain
I love how the pavement shines
And
Shadowed umbrellas are revealed
I love how the wheels on a car brush up the rain from the road
making it sound like water slides from water parks
All the damp leaves create
An abstract masterpiece
Lamp posts look more mystic
Creating silhouettes from a distance
Drains awaken and are
thirsty
Third Eye Candy Jun 2013
MY LONG TREK ON WRONG LEGS, BEG DYNAMITE FROM HUSH DUDS
DAMP CANNONS BILLOW IN THE EAST WIND, LIKE FLACCID DRAGONS
GAGGING ON IRON APPLES
I SURGE IMPOTENT IN MY WRATH, SUNBATHING BY AFTERGLOW
HEROICALLY CONTAINED.    
DISMANTLED...

I CRAFT THE WITHERING OF MY FURY
WITH A STEADY HAND; AND A JADED HEART
STARK BLIGHT, DRAINS  MY CUP OF  THUNDER, WHERE MY LIGHTNING CLOTS
WHERE SOLID DARK
HARKENS

MY YELLOW SUN HARDENS; LIKE AN UNSTRUCK COIN
BLANK IN MY POCKET

SHARDS OF DULL ACHE... UNSHARPEN

MY RED SEA
DEPARTS

MY KELP BEDS
DISMAYED.
skylitup Jun 2012
This is the colour of my anger:
A white hot searing fever
Tearing through my veins like amphetamine;
A surreal dream that keeps replaying in my brain
Over and over again...
Life is pain enough
Without other people
Making it tough. Guess I ran out of luck:
Top of the class and surrounded by  dumb *****
Whose only qualification is knowing how to trigger
The ticking bomb I've strapped on
In my anger.

This is the colour
This is the colour
This is the ******* colour

This is the colour of my anger:
This weird red mist with its fingers
Coiled around my brain,
Blurring my vision as I allow it
To make my decisions
For me. Again, it hands me the gun, then runs,
Leaving me to get the
Damage done. Well, aint this fun?
Three, two, one, and it’s time to take cover
I won’t get any sleep
Until I’ve shown you the colour
Of my anger.

This is the colour
This is the colour
This is the ******* colour

This is the colour of my anger:
A smouldering orange lava
That laughs at the wrath of the sun,
And I feel like the risen Son
As it pours out of me, heavenly,
Reducing everything in its path to the
Sum of zero
But this is just a fraction of what it’s capable of.
Hot and full of hell is my fury. ****'s getting gory.
It's time to remove the canker.
No more bluffing, I’m all in -
Let the games begin
With my anger.

This is the colour
This is the colour
This is the ******* colour

This is the colour of my anger:
The cloudless blue of my eyes
As I admire my workmanship,
Reflecting upon the new *******
That I have just ripped for you.
My smile spreads from ear to ear, like a slit throat,
Beatific in my ecstasy as this anger drains out of me.
The adrenaline that pumped so furiously
Now dumps its load in me, bringing me to my knees.
Enough, I say, as I see how small you stand there;
Let's call it a day, now be on your way,
Just remember the colour of my anger.

Don’t ever
****
With me
Again
a dedication...
The light pollution
from the lives of little people
in the big city
reflects off the lowriding clouds,
the same way my knees reflect
in the little puddles
from the big rains.

It hurts my eyes to look up
without sunglasses,
hurts my lips to think of tasting
the subway oil that
drip
drip
drips

I speculate at the transformers,
part automatic, part people
in their pre-ripped jeans,
learning to get their Ns
to drive themselves away,
yarn trailing from their sweaters
like parade float streamers.

Citizens run so fast
to catch the early train home,
freefalling down the stairs  
breathing in the exhales
of the other racer’s exhaust.
Marking their triumphs
with participation ribbons.

The pacific pants at toes,
a puppy that only occasionally misbehaves.
Impatient for attention,
waves wagging back and forth,
up the imitation river,
past the downtown.
Kicking the sea wall with it's gravity boots.


The geese are on hiatus
until they can take back the city.
Making the drains overflow,
creating their own habitat,
they’ll strut their haughty markings,
distinguished from orcas,
away from any saline nonsense.

Were we to retrain the population
to turn blind eyes,
we’d be much more efficient,
stop wasting time contending
to society’s obsession
with documenting itself.
But then, what would we do all day?

Creating light pollution
must give immediate gratification.
Once all the lights are turned off,
the influence won’t continue,
creating a lack of permanence,
making our need to be remembered
seem trivial indeed.
CK Baker Aug 2017
Manning up in Texas
Geldof overdose
needles at the bed stand
starlet comatose

California dreaming
killer meets demise
hurling in a taxi
puke fee on the rise

Fighting in the Gaza
Jordan's holy war
rebels on a mission
Jihad underscore

The North Korean riddle
pales in grand design
crisis on the border
planes fall from the sky

Cooking on a deadline
tempting tapenades
herbs are in the spotlight
wines that give a nod

Google maps the body
DOW at record highs
Uber comes to market
corn is on the rise

Apple on its earnings
Caterpillar dead
European sanctions
banks have **** the bed

Clippers threaten boycott
Longhorns follow purge
Lynch is out of training camp
James is on the verge

Leinart taking *** shots
coughing up a lung
lions take a licking
fans are throwing dung

Another day in Vegas
Primm from A-Z
rolling out an ankle
a flying SUV

Quiet tempting spaces
made better by design
multi color pea coat
silence fuels the mind

Stabbing in the subway
goat caught in a well
apes are selling tickets
(but leave behind a smell)

Puberty on trial
a man without a head
teachers feel alone
lets take them to the shed!

Jonah's tomb destroyed
wreckage in Mumbai
Sugar Daddy sites
Freedom 85

The immigrant debate
Russia's mounting toll
unions on a mission
heads are gonna roll

Beaches for the nudists
hotels on the cheap
the best generic brands
a list you have to keep!

Planning your estate
questions from the camp
a mansion up for sale
where once they filmed The Champ

Midwives threaten action
aboriginal act
truckers want concessions
that train has left the track

Sharks are found in Fundy
a prized but perilous catch
food we love to hate the most
an irrefutable batch

A family on the brink
I want my kids to fail!
politicians drains all hope
a ban on Israel

Follow out each headline
let the columns be your guide
all these things did happen
the day that Newhouse died
gray rain May 2016
I'm loosing blood
to this machine
it's ripping me apart
soon I'll be empty
It drains me dry
and I've lost my mind
It drains me dry
'til there's nothing inside
Not the best
but it's 7am
Keith Wilson Jul 2018
Keith has done his rain dance
No more fun in the sun
Too much time in Egypt
until the war was done

Rain rain rain aplenty
all the drains are running empty
Like Santa's Rudolph always prancing
I will keep on rain dancing
Rebecca Karlsson Feb 2015
You were precious
like a gold ring.
And I was careless.
Taking you off and taking you on.
Until the day you slid
into the sink-thing,
and down into the black-mouthed drain-thing.
I should have tried then
to recover you quickly.
****** my fingers into that dark throat
and forced it to choke you up again.  
But I wasn't made for drains.  
I'm still not.
YH Sep 2018
I realize I am too compassionate;
I feel everything at a 100% rate,
and I loathe it so much.
Why do they come on so strong all the time;
it mentally drains me.

I am destined to die early;
I can't see myself living past my mid-thirties.
I learn how to accept death as it is,
and I am slowly learning how to let go.

I want to cry, I want to scream;
I want to voice out this indecipherable torment inside of me.
But no one will understand,
and no one will know;
this mask of mine can't be taken off.

It is what I desire,
yet I want to scream the truth out to the world;
my alternating flow of thoughts,
my constant battle;
it goes down with me to the grave.

This happiness is an illusion;
There's a second mind that takes over,
and blocks away all of the hopelessness.
It brings forth a temporary elation,
a nonchalance,
a pretentious ease.

Is this better?
Does it make me better?
Or does this delude me to the point
where I become more destructive
and cause more harm than cure?

Why does my mind run so much?
Why does this version of me exist?

Because I am born empathetic.
Because I am human.
Because I hold a great understanding of myself,
and a greater awareness of how I am.

But not behind in the how it came to be.

No one holds the answer, and I am forever left with questioning all these endless why's and how's.

Everything else is left unanswered

perhaps until the day I die.

— Y.H.

the end of the tunnel,
gentle fervor.
my mind drifts sometimes
as though it's sinking deep into the abyss of water
sometimes i'm afraid it sinks so far
that it never comes back up to the surface again
that i would never see the light another time

but maybe there never was a light
and i've been sinking all this while
further, and further
and the sight of light was only once in a dream

(c) Y.H.
Tamara Walker Jul 2018
Teeth and tongue
Tongue and cheek
Wars start people died, and they talk,
Who’s cheating on whom within a myth of a happy ending
Cheek and cheek
Bombs, explosions and people talk,
About the weather and the puppy fluff struck in sewer drains
Our fantasies coming to a steal away the reality of misunderstood celebrities
We play life across a board game
Cross Go pick up Nothing, nothing fun things of un things
Against the knowing we celebrate everything
This is apart of a much larger poem titled Plenty Words. Enjoy!
Jacqe Booth Feb 2010
Life moving fast
Like storm cell rain
Washing, running
Torrent and quickly
Through the drains.
Some daze,
In this cold and constant place
I wish I were a folded paper boat
Tipping, curving crests, afloat
And chasing the stream
Downwind.
Away and washing clean
A waxed vessel
Escaped
Pouring through
Concrete flooring.
I would steer for the sea
On waves awash with
Urban weeds
Detritus sweeping across
The deck
Of my paper boat built
For one.
I would run
With the water
A creased and soggy me
All folded and falling apart
At the seams.
kaylene- mary Apr 2015
Winter hit
The window panes turned cold
Bricks around the drains began to mold
Frost stuck to sidewalks
And the tip of your nose
Protected by gloves and cotton clothes
I watched your skin fade to grey
Like the trees outside my house
But not as beautiful
The church bells rang every Sunday
And the old man down the block sat in dismay

The veins in your neck turned blue every time it rained
I loved it till the veins in your arms did it too
I could see your heart pulsing through
But those were only the sirens for the tornadoes in your chest

Winter never felt as cold as it did that year
When you started praying to a needle and broken skin
And it tore you apart limb from limb
harlon rivers Jun 2018
.
Red sky at morning ...  sailors take warning !!!
First dawn's light steals away over the towering Cascade Head.
A heavy autumn dew dripped from the Whaler's bow rails
as sun rays  flashed like beacons from rain-forest  headlands on high;
where Pacific Northwest rivers September equinox dawning ebb
pushed us mercifully unto the chilling stiff autumn sea breeze.
Dappled sun reigning through the pinkish purple morning sky,
patchy fog adorning the awakening inshore headlands atop the bay,
shining from the pearly gate’s mission bells higher ground ,
beckoning another fisherman lost and found at sea come home...

Heaven’s lighthouse alerts the celestial sky
of the impending eminent soul journey,
highlighting the distant horizon’s breaking swells
capped of white meringue  sea foam.
Sea gulls escort precious cargo's final voyage,
gliding gracefully in the shadows of the firmament,
our lungs filled , revitalized with the salty air's poignant elixir
Pelican vanguard's white light reflection guiding our vessel seaward ,
alone in a perfect storm...

Northwest gales standing up the ebbing tide’s uprising crescents,
waves pounding in rhythmic flow;
calling all angels!   ― my ruminating mantra and plead
The Clatsop Spit’s dangerous song resounds the stark reminder,
life's raucous changing seasons, prevailing winds beckon
with the allure of siren’s call,
that now is nearly here ...

The countenance of flowing salty tears liberating release ,  
vast ocean's raw sheets of saltwater spray would not hide .
He just sat and stared at the seaward horizon
while the telltale tears flowed,  perhaps an unspoken dream
of a merciful final surrender with eyes wide open,
love steering our vessel west where sun shines to set ;
now far beyond the visible ache,  for mine own eyes blur
trepidation teardrops rained as sheets of frothing sea.

The wordless conversation known,  the compass full circle drawn  
like the sacred salmon's cycle ends to nourish back ancient sage
unto its own mandala ―  forever beginning life,  eternally drawn
through river estuaries ― stirred by ebbing infinite tidal pull ...

There is an oppressive weight found within paternal understanding,
and yet,  as certain as the dawn promises the inevitable setting sun ;
all things must pass as sure as all things begin ,
someone you love most,  longest in short life ,
has come forth to break bread at sea as the torch is passed ,
sharing life for the last time comes too soon ― with little warning ...

There was an emotional unidentifiable hollow pang brooding ,
as if letting go gradually,  yet potentially instantly,
that drains every last drop of a breaking heart ache ;
waning strength swallows down hard ― stifled sighs ― lumps in throats, words better left unsaid ― only cleansing tears flow, knowing when they start to purge,  they might not want to stop again.

This moment's final autumn’s changing season’s waning ebb
That final riptide will forevermore change all other rivers’ flow
where oceans set mother earth's rivers free until the end of time ...

My father ― a man's man who seemed to find a peaceful Zen ;
an unfinished life was reborn that day to see it through
as my hands grasped the wheel , compass held steady.
The son to carry on the weight of love and compassionate understanding ;
love born in the blood inspired the fortitude to carry on.
As a life flashed before my eyes on that final raging Pacific sea,
instincts mused by ancient Tyees’ souls stirred drawning sun's
radiant rays of perception ;  accepting this life on earth
would never be the same but would just simply be ,
knowing this light's shine will never glow quite the same again ,
yet radiate a more deeply vivid luminosity...

We melded into that first day of Autumn,
falling silent , and yet our heads held high
There was nothing left to be done but pray with eyes wide open

“spirits of all oceans of mother earth …
show the sacred salmon's tragic heroism, the way back home to peaceful waters”

Few words were spoken as everything was silently said.

"To everything there is a season and a time to every purpose,
under Heaven"

The Outrage cleaved the surging Pacific's heave, knuckles white,
the wheel held sway,  climbing mountainous long ocean swells
breaching the south jetty's giant boulder walls ;
there rolls the mighty Columbia jaws,
where all Rivers suffuse with vast oceans, eternally free ...


.... Harlon Rivers    .... September 22nd . 2013
Post Script:
With fondest loving memories of my father's life and times shared~
So much of this day's memory is deeply repressed and each year I try to free a little bit more but each year passed has been privately circle filed, yet I try again to be set free..   Purging emotions so intense that they are nearly blacked out... I did not realize the basis of depth until later private moments... It was in fact the day of the Autumn Equinox a few years ago,  a final birthday celebration of sorts combined with bringing the Boston Whaler Outrage, home.   Dad passed 1 week later after this trip from Pancreatic cancer ...we spend the final 72 hours alone together at Hospice after his birthday..."Crossing Over"

Not unlike myself, there was an inherent restlessness to my father. We found a peace, unlike any other ― one with nature. He used to like to say he felt at home on the ocean. He went out as many as 30-40 miles alone on the rare occasion the Tuna came that close to the NW Oregon ― SW Washington coast...That may not seem like much in land miles, but you cannot see land from that distance and the Columbia River's confluence with the Pacific Ocean is known as one of the most dangerous bar crossings in the world. I thought Dad's life would have a very different ending...this one never crossed my mind, letting go is far more difficult than hanging on ― rivers


June 18th, 2017   Fragments of the Sea
https://hellopoetry.com/poem/1954243/fragments-of-the-sea/

June 12th, 2012:  Memories of My Father's Traces...
A tribute to my father ...  
https://hellopoetry.com/poem/1995383/traces-of-youa-fathers-tribute/

Thank you for reading ― have a great summer :)

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