Sandpaper

With use, love becomes polished
like the indigo ocean
merging with milky horizons
whose perpetual harmony
swells and sinks
like grains of wood dust
in wet grass.
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Nymphea

I spent summer like a lily in water:
in tranquil pursuit of passing gusts of life,
lemon ice cream cones, skies
blanching, then darkening,
blushing and blossoming
meditatively like lazy fingers
sleepwalking on electric skin.

Sometimes, the sound of pebbles
skipped across the shiny surface;
Sometimes, the distant rumble
of a storm that never came –

Such small upsets
when the world
is in sun-soaked reverie,
but overly prone to forget
that all summers must end.

Nightbloom

Look at how wild I grow!
Look how splendid my bloom!
Watch me, the one amongst many,
ruffle my petals, see me direct growth
towards teasing  lights,
towards the place I believe
to be warm.

Ah, how this sun loves, and that sun adores me!
How vibrant the morning perceives me,
but how wilted the night
when I, moonlit,
grow paler, thin-skinned, translucent,
and dream of meandering brooks
while cold-burning stars warn: 
“What is a river
without a bed to confine it,
how does a stream
know where to flow
without the embrace
of the land?”

There is no garden without fence:
only transitory glory,
only ivory nightbloom
defencelessly shimmering
against the black
of an indifferent sky.

Love Poem No.

The first my thought, the other my desire:
Two sprightly nymphs that follow you around,
Their whole intent to keep your heart afire
So that this love can thrive on solid ground.
You leave too early at the light of day
With night’s remembrance still on supple skin
Though time apart can never lead astray
That which is one, such parting is a sin.
Until you can return to waiting arms
And reap those longing kisses, bitter sweet
From rosy lips that promise other charms
Time will limp by on heavy, dragging feet.
This much is certain, this we know is true:
You’re home with me and I belong to you.

Distractions

Maybe I like the dark
because all my mirrors
are fractured:

Look at me, this is my house
my car
my blouse
this my art, my back,
my lungs, my breasts

this is my heart

this is my chest heaving
as I spell words,
these are my eyes
seeking failed illuminati

in the desert sands
setting like suns
over flowers,
forever asleep.

The Life Cycle of a Bee

First, only the gold:
only fluid, damp warmth,
only calm filling the personal prism.

Time here is oceanic, embryonic,
it passes slow, slow, slow
like honey, like liquid hematite.

It is Nature’s Law 
that the peaceful humdrum must end.
Wings must be spread, the sweet nectar
imbibed, gobbled, consumed.
She is bred and fed, imbued with purpose,
exiled to the tall pine tree woods.
Melody-born, she touches the precious,
watches it falter to dust.

Once crowned, she settles.
A home like a factory,
efficient but cold,
an empty hive filled with life.
She still dreams: abstract
moon-cratered dreams
heavy with longing
for something that never was.

Ah, to plunge only once
into the opening trumpet
of obscenely perfumed
hyacinth blossoms, to emerge
thick, yellow-dusted, pollen-laden
not crimson like mourning violins
playing the tune of Fate.

Now, freedom is distant.
Now, only a daughter,
yet adream in the sugary yolk,
to be nurtured and ushered
so the wheel can turn
once again,

once again.

Empty Cities

Unreal city,
meandering arid rivers,
pearl divers in conventional quicksand,
precessions of light, one after another
faltering, dominoes on the outstretched hands
of bronze candelabras.

The writers are gone, the thinkers are gone,
the philosophers, dancers, and painters are gone.
Dumb and lost in the night we seek neon signs
as pockmarked stars inhabit the tent of heaven
like wet coal or sweltering cigarette burns –

Modern city, there is no meaning, no substance,
only empty houses erected along
vacuous, skeleton-fingered boulevards.
The Numina’s gone, her nebulous shoe
still stuck in modernity’s muddy asphalt.
She snuck out the window, climbed
down the frankincense trellis
so now the redemptive cathedral is empty,
her kaleidoscope glimmers extinct,
her spacious womb no longer filled to the brim
with praying, multifoliate murmurs
but only the blue, voiceless silence
of sleeping madonnas.