Original Poetry: A Gathering of Four

This man (curled into
      himself) sits outside
the turnstiles of Washington Street Station
      right at the maw of the vast
subterranean Pedway
      moaning with errant winds.
His cardboard sign faces his lap.
      Dirt and thirst are kneaded
into the fibers of fleece.

***

Picasso’s old, blue
      guitarist is blocks away,
propped up
      by a cheap guitar.
His face – cadaverous,
      fallen forward;
sunken eyes –
      drawn shut as dry husks.
No warmth radiates
      from cyan skin draped
over gentle bones.
      No music escapes
this blind guitar.

***

As if trying to bow
her long-forgotten
cello, my grandmother
          full of grace
breaks the prayer circle,
starts to wail
in dissonance with
           blessed
winds at the window pane
           among women
Rosary beads dangle
           blessed
as two aunts
regather her hands
           of thy womb
These tendoned talons
           Mother, pray for us
pull and flex
with the banshee cries
           at the hour of our death.
She writhes;
her eyes dart. Her tongue
flicks
from her cavernous mouth.

***

Grandfather’s hands flutter;
      one gently, one not.
He speaks softly, too
      softly and too rapidly.
He rocks to propulse
      from the chair, to beat
those who would push him
      back into its cradle.
They’ll ask, what
      do you want? One
more time. Just say
      that again. Just one
more time.

 
 
 
[This poem was published by The Eunoia Review in mid-April 2015.]
 
 
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Original Poetry: Night Blossoms

. . . 4-something in the still, birdless morning;

Through glass doors across the room,
a dark outline of a bicycle,
the thin bars of the balcony,
I can see the deep fuchsias
of rhododendron dimly lit by building light
and the more generic urban light pollution.

I imagine that it is the moon’s doing.

Come daybreak, the blossoms
will be a bit less exotic—a bit
less lovely. They are not rhododendron.
For those, too, I left in the little park
clinging to Brynmill village.
 
 
 
 
 
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Original Poetry: “And So”

Tie up your well-wishes with ribbons and bows
though a notary signature might ensure
your promises more to my liking. Who knows
less than me your truest intentions? An obscure
vision of security does less than a warmer
greeting of inaudible reference. It’s your silent
serenity massaging my anxiety, but I’ll endure
the turbulence a while longer without dissent.

Blame it on my emotionally masochistic bent,
but do, indeed, see me at my most pathetic
state. For soon’s the hour when I’ll repent
my weakness. I’ll grow cold and apathetic—
tired of waiting and hanging onto hollow
words. I’ll dance the lead without a follow.
 
 
 
 
 
[This old sonnet of mine stands as my own response to a previous sonnet I’d written, “And If”. Check out other original poems here.]

Original Poetry: “And If”

And for this moment I’ll choose to only believe
all of your whispered promises and the firm embrace
of my shoulders dispelling the fears that the nights conceive.
And if tomorrow I’ve no choice but to face
the day’s reality of being solitary, I’ll displace
the anxiety with thoughts of your lingering scent impressed
upon my cuffs and collar. And just in case
your words are true and I’ve second-guessed
your honest intentions, put my mind at rest
with nothing more than what you’ve already done.
Put my own convictions to the test
to see if for yourself, I’m the one.
And if I doubt everything you do and say,
leave me—quietly—to make my own way.
 
 
 
 
 
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Original Poetry: Urban Dwellers

Two fat brown rats
      harvest Wicker Park’s morsels:
community garden tomatoes,
      waste from pampered corgis,
an abandoned burrito.
      Their comings and goings
in the star-hiding glow
      of night reveal the despoilment
and entrance to a nest
      writhing with musky bodies.
It’s lined with sidewalk sale notices,
      wrappers, a commuter’s shredded
Starbucks venti cup.

           ***

Musty pigeons settle
      with concrete dust
beneath the elevated tracks—
      loitering. The birds
disperse like a newspaper
      caught in the wind.

           ***

The morning rush hour train
      is ripe with jostling commuters
intent on their i-Pods or feigning
      interest on ads
circumscribing the ceiling.
      The downtown stations scatter
and gather the people. Debris
      is pushed to the periphery.
 
 
 
 
 
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Original Poetry: Still Life with Fruit and Squash

Haunched on today’s half-solved crossword,
      a calico Maine Coon focuses
on a distressed basket – rushes sprung

like gray hairs casting astered shadows
      despite a lamp with low-slung shade.
Glare pierces the waxy vermilion

of apples, contrasts the matte-glow
      of knobby heritage squash
and a half-bulb of garlic –

three cloves unpapered.

 
 
 
 
 
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Original Poetry: Eulogy to Ezra Pound

I don’t know who perpetuated the lie
of the poet elite with his high-destined life
because in the end all things must die.

Ideas grow stale with time proving why
one person’s words are never enough.
I don’t know who perpetuated the lie.

Losing spirit, woman and man try
as one. Age will comfort the widowed wife,
because in the end all things must die.

Roman and Nazi Reichs wither and dry—
each society is just an autumn leaf.
I don’t know who perpetuated the lie—

Ptolemy? Not all revolves around our sky.
The Earth’s stay is universally brief,
because in the end all things must die.

And you, with your head and self-worth held high,
flaunt arrogance in your every belief.
I don’t know who perpetuated the lie—
not God? For even He must die.

 
 
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