Tag Archives: muse

A part of you

Emerging in the sleeping dew
with softened morning light,
are you among the sable fringe
casting forth your bright?

Walking on the air of day
with wisps of gleaming kismet,
are you sprite or angel summoned
without claim to coquette?

I comfort your implied embrace,
the smile you offer as you roam,
the auric presence you have shared
lives inside this poem.

 

contained

she brought me words in ceramic
all polished and glistening,
language sauced and disheveled
and piled in this vessel.

she sent me themes in a crate
stacked edge upon edge,
corner and treatise
with motives alleged.

she carried her thoughts in a barrel
swirled and unmixable,
leaving me pondering
the whole thing was fictional.

when all that I managed was off-beat or bland
and all that I want, her true heart in hand.

May to December: A Letter Poem

Dear Celia,

The weather has turned again, with its gray entrenchments.

Every day seems slightly more bitter than the next, with little room for sunlight and warm touches. I keep the shutters closed most days just to keep out the appearance of cold. The warm hearth remains at the center of the house, and I do my best to remain within sight of it.

I can’t believe it has been almost a decade since I last saw you. Time passes so fluidly now that I don’t even realize the change from May to December – except for the pause that is Autumn. That is the time of moving through color, going from green to gray. The gray seems to last longer. It is no wonder we decorate our homes with pine and cedar this time of year. It helps maintain the illusion that time has stopped during moments of growth that seem perpetual. Autumn gives us a different clock. One with an altering view each day – a changing red, a subtle orange or yellow.

I grew tomatoes again over the summer, and contrary to last year’s harvest, this one was quite poor. The temperatures seem cool enough, though rain was lacking during the middle of the year. I did my best to keep the plants watered, and they remained green and grew quite large, but just did not yield much fruit. All of the flowers in the garden seemed to do well, though, providing a beautiful flourish of roses, irises, jonquils, daisies, and tulips at different times.

It is funny (peculiar) that I should remember you most at this time of year. I suppose that it is because the transition part of life provides the most vibrant backdrop. I must now close this letter, and I wish you the best for the coming year. It is likely I’ll revisit these memories again in the future. The demands of life require a sanctuary. I find it comforting, like the hearth, and I do my best to remain within sight of it.

All the best,
John

Cups

I seek a magnum for my words
to hold and season, spoon and stir
a cup to ferment, provocate
to frenzy – undeterred.

Then sometimes I just need a plot
to plant and tend, to give a shot
No rubs and snags, organic-like
a garden – not a lot.

Yet, in this morning comes a zone
where dreams are sparse and I’m alone.
My words seem languished – decomposed
to less than I condone.

I place them in a tumbler, red
with pangs and fancy, joy and dread
then agitate to swirl and sway
these aches- the ones unread.

I seek a chalice clear, a sprite
to hold my poetry in sight
to mesmerize and -yes- atone
for tarnished silver blight.

A Hand to Bukowski

I was dreaming about smoky rooms
and back stairwells, when
the ghost of Charles Bukowski
woke me up at 2:15 AM
and said,
“Help me write this poem.”

I rolled over and reached out in disbelief,
and I swear, I could have touched him,
but he turned
and left the room.

I swung my legs out of bed
and followed him to the kitchen.table.
He was drinking a cup of coffee
and mumbling to himself, doodling
on a napkin.

“I never wrote a poem about polar bears.”

Why does it have to be polar bears? I asked.

He wrote down that sentence.

What do you know about polar bears? I asked.

“Nothing,” he said and continued
to scribble and recite,

“Damned polar bears in zoos
have it good.
Their keepers throw them fish.
Bears eat.
Bears sleep.
Bears screw.
Nobody throws Chinaski a fish,
And they gawk at me all day.”

I left him at my kitchen table
with his head in his hands,
smoking a cigarette,
and mumbling to himself.

I faded off to sleep,
and dreamed of polar bears.

Bukowski is a lousy muse.