Poetry from Days of Yore (’96): aka Revisiting Old Friends

I was digging through some of my old files on my computer and came across these poems that I’d written around the time that I graduated from highschools.

Caveat Emptor: Teenage pretense of the finest variety.

Forest for the TreesSentinels

Sentinels for some camp:
Omniscient Atlases,
Unwavering in their duties.
They seemed to hold massive weapons that,
If one observed them,
Would think them able
To wipe out the existence of an entire town with those weapons.
Their rugged clothes and harsh features
Made them look like mercenaries.
But upon closer inspection,
One realized that they were only trees.

MistMist in the Trees

yawning emptiness,
filling an atmosphere;
the sieved trees
marching resolutely to a standstill,
causing a cathedral vacuum.
Fallen breaths
clattering the void;
the dulled matter
sloshing through a barrier,
disrupting a pattern:
fix the hole
that lets the war through
the smitten haze.

quietly now,
lest the silence
hear us…

A momentSpace

Stars through darkness bursting forth;
Planets turning, turning ‘round;
Comets whizzing across
In an endless darkness all around.
Where does it all end?
Here, it’s forever bound.

No Man Is An Island Entire To Himself

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERAOff of a far and lonely Northern shore,
An island sits,Jutting out of the waves by the high tide,
Squatting on the sand at low.
Arctic storms rail against its sides,
And hurricane winds rake their claws against its face.
The island is a rocky point,
Bereft of any earthen flesh
Save for a small oasis of green
At its very peak,
Where sits a small pine
That reaches out for the mainland,
With its branches, in supplication.

This island looks to be alone,
Ravaged by water, wind, and dust,
Scoured grey and grim,
Slowly aging, thirsting for the main.
Yet, if you peer at its feet,
At the low tide,
Small pools of life look up to their leader,
That keeps them sheltered from the cruel elements.
Anemones, barnacles, crabs, limpets, and starfish,
All gather in vibrant colours,
Purples, reds, oranges, greens, and blues,
At the granite’s gray-scale base.

And as your eyes rise to the top of the monolith,
You will espy, at the foot of that small and strangled pine,
A small nest,
Where a tiny wren has made her home,
Sheltered from the gales,
Hidden from the raging rains and bitter cold,
Kept safe by the roots of the protective arbour.

She was buffeted about by a winter storm, one year,
Flung far from her home in warmer climes.
Tired, wing-sore, wind-worn,
She alit the shoulders of that stern island,
And found the pine,
Its branches reaching for the mainland.
The wren reached her wings out to the island,
And the two connected,
In need of each other,
Whilst the storm rallied about them.

The island at first doubted
Whether the wren would stay, and
Be tempted back to her proper place,
Abandoning the rock to its lonely thoughts.
The wren simply nestled deeper into the roots and rock,
Determined not to give up her safe abode:
For a snug and dry home,
Solid and supported,
Comforted and cared,
Once found,
Is worth to keep.

And so if you go to that wild and far-flung corner,
Of the Northern coast,
And find that lonely isle,
You will espy that loyal wren,
And know that each has the other.

Me Boyo

Juno an' tha' Paycock“Well, me Boyo,”
I says to me lad,
“What are yer thoughts,
An’ what makes ya’ glad?

“When ya’ wake in the morn,
And the perspect’, tis hard,
What’s at hand,
to ease tha’ guard?

“When yer hands are tied,
by things higher than ya’,What’s the ticket
Ta pry it outta Tha’.”

My lad, he says ta me,
“Trust in time,
Tha’s the ticket,
Otherways, a sticky wicket.

“Live by rules,
Set out by sinners,
Life’s na’ made
Fer beginners.

“An’ find someone,
Ta’ hold yer core –
Keep it safe,
not worry anymore.”

My lad, he do be wise,
An’ provide me wi’ sage advise.
But I’ll be the judge of ‘im,
Before I listen,
Ta’ tha’ saucy vixen.

Sea Turtles and Surfers

In anticipation of things to come
I spent the day on Waikiki beach,
The far side where I’d been
With Steve and Billy and the gang,
Back in January.
I buried my identity in the sand,
And massaged Maui into my skin.
I rotisseried myself,
With occasional bastings of sea water,
When I went to look at tropical fish
Through thick lenses and mouthfuls of waves.

After a thorough well done roast,
I am injecting happy hour into my veins, Sitting in the shade of a beach side bar,
Watching sea turtles and surfers,
Waiting for you to arrive.

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Animal Thoughts Part 2

A limpet sat and contemplated its positionLimpet Limbo at Low Tide
Aside a rock,
Its resolve in attrition.

For many a year
It had attached here.
Perfectly comfortable
The sea a quasi-distant burble.
Occasionally lashed by an incontinent storm,
Or picked at by little fingers on a pre-school morn.

Happy, content, and fat
Thus
It
Sat.

Yet a niggling feeling started to develop,
Whenever the waves would it envelop.
The limpet began to dream of distant shores,
And started to wish its rock had oars.
Even a distant atoll appeared exotic
When, with a red tide, the limpet went miotic.

And, yet, though its thoughts drifted with the currents,
It no more could leave the rock
Than be the English heir apparent.
For when it tried to twitch a muscle,
The only reaction was, to such an action,
Not even a shell-shuddered rustle.

For, as every schoolchild knows,
A limpet, once attached, never any movement shows.

___________________

See the eagle flying high?
Such a magnificent addition to the sky.
As though God himself,
Thought what the hell,
Let’s make this swell,
And let the bird ride high and free.
Now, son, take a careful aim,
So the sun isn’t in your eyes a-framed,
And let’s bag another.

_______________

Over a garbage bin,
Three bears sat down to din’,
Goldilocks came out,
Heaving swill with a shout,
And the bears found the feast a rapture.

Imploding

I sit on the corner of my bed,
A thousand images racing through my head.Imploding
Knees tucked up against my chest,
Arms clasped around my legs.
The air vibrating against my skin,
Clothing me in waves from the wake of the Leviathan.

I sit on the bed as though I were about to row
To distant, far flung shores,
Wending through exotic spaces,
Striving to reach foreign places.
The air vibrates against my skin,
Clothing me in waves from the wake of the Leviathan.

The room is lit with evening’s glow.
My eyes accustomed to such sombre tones.
The hum of the water, in the air, hangs motionless;
The people call out to each other, voiceless.
The air vibrated against my skin,
Clothing me in waves from the wake of the Leviathan.

As that air does me compress,
Embalmed by the touch of a mother’s caress,
My heart and mind dovetail
And meet halfway beneath a sail.And in that twilight of heart’s delight,
My skin makes the air vibrate into the night.

Upon Reading Rimbaud

I was reading Rimbaud’s poetry –
a recent inspiration brought on by a chance purchase at the Seniors’ Flea Market.
I was hunting for shoes but found poetry instead.
I dreamt of gentlemen savages and
drew comfort from his definition of love,
encompassing suffering and madness.
I digest his words,
every night an amuse bouche
to tantalize my mind.

DigitalisTonight, I was gifted with a flower,
pressed between the French and the English translations,
soft pink petals, and trumpet shape,
suggestive of a foxglove blossom;
it fell to my breast,
when I turned the page.
Translucent, fragile, free,
unencumbered by pulp,and floating in the air with motes of dust
in a waltz of certainty.

The Pull of the Abyss

A door is open,
And the abyss yawns before it.
One step, and I will fall right in:

image

Head first, eyes wide open,
One hand outstretched to the other side,
Where you lean against another doorway,
Cigarette dangling,
Cynically examining the drifting ash,
Snowflakes on the updraft from the Lethe below.

I am determined to find the fisherman’s ferry,
And, unlike Orpheus, I will not look back.

Animal Thoughts Part 1

Two birds sat together.South eastern oregon
One turned to the other:
What makes the world turn?
The mad hatter,
The other replied.

Why hats,
Bird one asked?
If the hat fits the rat,
You see,
And the rat is best at skivvying.

What about the lead?
With any luck,
Bird two said,
It’ll get ‘em dead.

_________________

The sea otter is a curiosity,South oregon driftwood
Who, to eat his dinner, sits atop the rolling sea;
And uses a rock
to slam his clam,
Atop his furred tummy.

_________________

Why, pray sir, do you raise your arms at me?South oregon beach
Because you appear to be running carefree,
And my carapace is rather fragile
When contending with a Labrador’s smile,
And your paw about to step on me.