Archives for posts with tag: free verse

One year ends and another begins. The calendar
                flips a digit, and the unrelenting
        passage of time
marches on, oblivious
                        to us or anyone else.

I stand on your back porch,
a dying cigarette hanging languidly
                        between my fingers,
the smoke drifting lazy and silent
        through the still night air.
I stand there and I think
                of the year recently deceased,
of the highs and lows,
        of the mistakes and the wasted
                                opportunities,
                of the boons and the near-regrets;
and then
                                I think of you and your footsteps
come closer and closer from your kitchen,
        like the rhythmic beat
        of a waking dream.

You come outside and water your garden wordlessly.
I watch you and fight back a confusing rush of tears that come
                unbidden and try to fall free, as if imitating
the water surging from the hose in your hand,
        placating
the parched soil and the plants so desperately in want.
I fight them all back lest you look my way and the dam
                breaks.

I can’t verbalise all that I want to.
                        Not yet.
When you come close, I wrap
        my arms around you
                        as many times as I can,
and tell you you’re wonderful and kiss your forehead but
        even that feels grossly
                        inadequate.
So I just hold you
                for a while longer
then we go inside and to bed,
where a single standing fan tries to ward off
        the uncomfortable heat and humidity,
where we can’t fall asleep without
                holding each other in some way, so close
that your hands on my chest
        are my hands,
that my breath on your neck
        is your breath;*

and I try not to think too much
        about the terrifying sense
                                of happiness
coursing through me,
about the unexpected calm I feel
                when I’m near you, about
the fact that you really do
                                exist.

*lines 45-48 are a sort of appropriation of those found in Neruda’s Sonnet XVII. Lines 45 and 46 are very similar (almost identical); lines 47 and 48 are different, but only in subject matter. I’m not claiming them as original, but I simply had to use them. They’re so damn apt!

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Sometimes, at night,

when the wind finds time to rest

and the warm air of a spring day forgets to leave,

I walk outside

and down to the beach

and sit

and listen to the music that wafts

over everything beneath the candle-lit sky.

 

Waves lapping softly at the shore,

rushing and receding, rhythmic, hypnotic,

tidal melody lulling me

into a state of pacified rapture.

 

The moon sings to me, pouring honeyed ballads

into my ragged ears, the dark water

that stretches out before me,

vast and unyielding, is her violin. I feel the notes

floating, graceful and knowing, into the parts of me

that need it most.

 

Rising and falling, I let go and give in

to the lunaescence of the night,

let it blanket me in celestial beauty

until the time comes

to walk back home

and write a poem about it,

                                about you

                                         and your

                                                   song

Air thick

with sweat and ethanol

and scents strong enough

to kill at fifteen feet, wound

at thirty. Limbs full

of amber-filled glassware

that apologise out of feigned respect

and part the sea back

to their transient homes.

 

Darting and

moving to the beat of

everyone and the incessant noise;

a faux libation to a god

they’ve never heard of:

alcohol and electro,

wine and music, if you listen

closely enough, you can hear that Dionysian heart

breaking.

 

Heraclean wannabes

putting on shows of primitive strength

and foolishness, peacocks

dancing, their tails spread out

like painful nightmares draped

in awkward silences, seeking a validation

they can’t seem to recognise.

 

Girls with skin on fire, glowing vainly

and garbed to suit,

water-boarding those peacocks

with pheromones, playground teasers

using genetically given gifts

to fool those fools for the sake

of my voyeuristic amusement.

 

It’s all enough

to make Schopenhauer

vomit, but

he was probably wrong

anyway.

Her lunaescence will floor you, maybe,

as it floors me,

constantly.

The metaphysical pull: I fall

into her orbit

and remain, completing

circuit after circuit,

 

gaining no ground yet maintaining proximity.

I’m kept at a distance, irrevocably so,

(for her gravity forbids

that desirous closeness),

I can only dream, day and night,

of lips and eyes—amongst

other things—fantasise

about a fateful day

that may never

arrive.

 

The night is good fertile ground

for a sower of verses’, said Borges, once;

and so I yield

to a perpetual night,

bathing in the glow

of her ethereality, scribbling

like a madman;

 

for she is a moon, my moon,

watchful yet oblivious,

eternal yet mortal,

aloof yet present;

she is

lunaescent.

I order a burger and Coke.

I could stay in the bar

and wait for the order to come up

and take it outside myself,

but I ask her to.

 

She’s running food.

I want to see her alone

just for a few seconds;

that’s all it’d be, that’s all I’d need.

 

With my bag and pint, I walk outside.

I sit, roll a cigarette, swig some Coke.

From my bag comes Fante.

Nicotine diffuses in my lungs.

That familiar cranial rush calms my nerves.

 

In my peripheral I see her walk

into the dusk, carrying my dinner

and someone else’s.

I take a drag and don’t look up. She puts the plate

in front of me. Fante folds in my lap.

 

I look up, smile, and mouth something

appreciative;

she looks at me

and speaks words so soft

they barely leave

her parted lips, borne away

on twilit winds. Her eyes

tell me more than those words

ever could.

 

For only a second

we’re locked in time, staring

into each other completely, searching

for what’s wanted.

 

It’s happened before but

not like this. This is different.

It’s a moment of rarity

where a myriad of possibilities abound

along that line of sight, where the future

creeps back in time

and taints the boundaries of the present

with promises of something else, something

more.

 

The moment passes

and she walks back into the bar,

one plate and few words lighter.

The fading light no longer lights up

her ethereal features yet I see them,

see her,

still,

in the halls

of my memory, draped

in sepia, near perfect, where

the passing of time

can only make her

more beautiful.

 

 

Mistakes are the cuts nobody sees,

deep or shallow, they bleed,

draining you, taking your mind away

from the present, keeping you

from breathing the air available;

they’re like a veil, covering you eyes,

a filtered view, a lens discoloured;

the world seems less because

your problems are more.

 

But mistakes could just be

uninformed decisions, good intentions

led astray by unknowing; choices made

under circumstances enthralling, unavoidable;

so why lament? why beat yourself up

for choosing a path knowing

all that you could have known?

 

Hindsight and retrospect can be foul

harbingers of regret, illusions

so pointless and destructive; or

they can evince a wisdom previously hidden,

the choice lies in the self, in wait, if

you have eyes to see it.

Life will go on, everything will be fine,

experience is invaluable, the sun

will rise when the night ends, learn

from the cuts of mistakes.

 

Such wounds cannot heal without

the advent of self-reflection.

 

The fall seemed interminable,

that timeless descent, days and nights disguised,

I plummeted

through familiar air

waiting

for a familiar impact; the ground

welcoming me into its arms

like an old friend. Only, this time,

there was no ground but

a body of water

and into its depths I plunged.

 

The calm,

the tranquillity,

the silence,

embraced me. Under the surface,

free from fear and angst, I wait and watch

all that transpires above,

collecting myself and my thoughts,

changing my perspective and mind-set

through the refracted light,

waiting

for the right moment

to break the surface

and enter the fray, once more, changed,

as I should have changed after

all the other times

I had fallen.

 

She wakes from slumber

and he’s already waiting

for breakfast.

She makes it, he eats it

and leaves. She doesn’t

know where he goes or Read the rest of this entry »

Day and night never end or change.

A continuum of consciousness; sleeping awake,

awake when sleeping; a twilit citizen

in a kingdom

of perpetual half-light,

a nebulous reality.

 

Unknowns—dreamed up

phantoms fabricating

dread delusions—circle above,

vulturous, waiting to land

and tear off strips

of solar resolve,

 

whilst I wait, fettered,

for the Dawn

to finally come.

 

 

midnight machinations pulled her into

my sphere

where Life spelt hope with thoughts, maybe dreams,

grandiose yet filling, abounding, swarming;

she filled the cup of want on levels too many,

words of ideas spewed forth, a biblical deluge

gurgling from a well-spring dry before that midnight

 

intertwined in physical communion

explosions to dwarf Pompeii

soul’s alleviated beyond the veil

bodies new, fertile

discovering without direction

the night watched, the night knew

celestial gratification.

 

after the fall: the well seems dry

bone dry, Gobi, Simpson, Arizona, barren

yet rain falls, drops of life, fuel;

alone, isolated, content

that muse, she has left, riding smoke shadows on the breeze;

she is gone and I am here

and I kept it,

that thing she helped me find.

 

 

I sit across from her

and tell

her it’s been

too long;

she looks beautiful

like she always has

and I tell her, you’re

looking pretty like

always.

 

she smiles and says,

two skinny lattés

please,

to a man

not

me.

 

I roll and light

a cigarette.

 

I’ve missed you:

the sun doesn’t shine,

flowers will not

bloom,

the well is dry,

words elude me!

yet I feel it now,

don’t

you?

 

she says, thank

you, to that same

man

and she sips her coffee

and checks her phone

 

seeing you now has opened

doors that were

merely ajar, I say.

I am yours! everything! all of

it! I

LOVE YOU!

 

her coffee is gone,

mine is cold, and

her eyes do not

lie

and we sit there like

that

until the sun does

finally

set,

and it does finally set.

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