Within a grey forbidding sky, despite the icy, piercing rain driven by the lashing wind,
A penny, sir, please give a cent or more if you can spare it,
You’re wrong, he said, but am I? And why does he think I am?
There was a time for dreaming and the hope of order.
There is too much in a dream to live with.
Draw me a sound, little one, from your well.
Lightning Strikes and nothing changes except what lightning strikes.
The wind rattled dry leaves in warning
The toad in the stone waited, waited all alone . . . still
Laughter has become small and brittle like tiny, shiny pebbles
What I have lost I can never hope to gain again.
Something earlier than frost and colder than frost’s chill
If we could hark backward, old friend, to the starting place of youth –
He who hears the cry of clams within the mud hears too well.
Can I live in the shadow of your absence?
The death is cast, that common fate that all must reach
I know I have no right to you for you are yours
Carnations for your table, Roses for your bed,
Those things I did not do for you that you asked me to
There is no hunting ground in heaven, not for you.
Fishes, lovely fishes, hardly ever seen,
Laughter is liquid, joy, the ends and middle of waterfall.
Had I the wisdom to be wise I would close my eyes
My well-being is sharpened like a pencil
There is a seashell missing.
She said I need too much.
How do you hurry a splinter out?
Togetherness is more than it’s supposed to be, or less.
I do not doubt you; I am doubting me. Waiting is heavy lifting.
I have learned at least the WORDS:
No card for this, no occasion.
Love, a pet of poetry, now limps within vocabulary
I made of your omissions a crime against my truth and tried you in my heart.
A loneliness persists, stubborn and deep , like a Dragon to be lanced,
It’s sad to see mountains come to their knees
I need to get away from indecision. I need beach on mountaintop
In my very own sense, I am outside society, against consensus.
Delicate Wingfoot, you flit to and fro, but never go.
You could be Rima the birdgirl except for your fear of height.
There is a spot in my eye, a particle of interest, a speck of attention.
I do not wonder that you’re so firm, a chair’s chair.
If I but had this day to me I would sing a flock of cygnets free
I was thinking about her, how, if she were older (not I, younger),
Motes in a forest candled by sunlight, suspended and still, ambered in honey.
Where are you now that I need you?
A shiver in this tropic. A splinter in this flesh.
I am eccentric deliberately on purpose.
Poor mother monkey at the rich mother zoo
Cocoons should have zippers and escape claws
When I think of love death must come to mind, for all love dies.
It is not this night or day. It is nights and days,
Given room enough and time, monkeys enough and typewriters,
I am the TRUTH, the LIGHT, HOPE.
The unknown surrounds in a limitless sea of time:
Villages do not last, are built upon villages that did not last.
Bare earth is scarce. Whatever isn’t paved is woven through with roots
I have my choice at last: either forest or the sea.
Somehow surviving the outer vacuum I arrive bravely in this new world.
The color drain last night bled the flavor from my dreams,
My resting tree pressed like flower flat upon my window glass
The dust in the hallway grows, a crop of time
Small flowers often hide in the shade of larger ones seeking safety more than sun.
Tricycle left at the corner of the block can be ridden anywhere
Brick by brick by brick the wall goes up strong as stubbornness,
Apple tree grows apple, apple holds an egg,
The frog, though hungry, waits passively, invisible as he can be,
Isness is a fine place to be.
Flowers flourish in field and greenhouse,
The outer inner city sleeps, then dozes post-alarm,
Prickly thicket ambush, serpentine complexity,
Most things go ‘round, pushed or pulled, or left alone.
You hang a heavy sign around my neck
Though I make deposits daily there are no funds in my account
Winter blows no more. Spring tiptoes in like plovers
The egg was laid inside the fern, a fecund nest, unseen, forgotten
Murmurs rise from silence unnoticed by the ear.
Sand runs slowly – all sand has run before-
Touch me- damnit – touch me!
We wove on separate looms all day the fabric spread upon our nights
Sad, drowning in this music. Sadder still, drowning joy in it ,
Lust rapes me into the park away from privacy
Ralph lives in the park,
I am the sun, you moon, if you’d like to play that game.
The bat’s a menace to hair, rats suck on babies, all spiders are Black Widows.
You stop payment on good check, (When money’s short there is no joint account.)
July in a dusty convertible, topless on a windless night,
I hear a different drummer, arrhythmic, near.
You measure distance with your ruler eye in whole numbers only;
I am happy to report, my captain, that we are traveling in no direction at all,
No, my children, you can’t grow. You must stay kittens and eat fish,
An ash in my eye vis a vis a sun. She is his, a man I like whose name I do not know.
Time struck separate lightnings. Two strangers struck apart were lit unmet,
Here is where I stop and wait for reality while I catch my breath.
Bees are not kin to hummingbirds, or anything but other bees,
Wind flutters cobwebs upon my vacant grave.
The moon is full tonight; I watched it filling up,
Hum fast and silent, draw out the music long enough
On the virgin turnpike snow no traffic, no tire prints, the only footprints, mine.
I am dying, can you save me?
No amount of rights can weigh as much as shadow of a wrong, if a finger’s near the scale.
Sleep is easy. It was sleep or Mexico.
Idiot savant of odds, for you full sanity is risky.
Can there be an end to endlessness, a boundary around space,
Light as feathers singeing in the hell of what might happen
However serious I am I must match that with appearance
The leprechauns of order are marauded by gremlins of disrepair.
An evening of delicate gestures fractured by a sudden change of music,
Time, time, time- time. It is all a question of time, it being all.
The snail secretes her own tightwire upon a razor blade
Light digests the night as birds grind softer things
Why did she cry? Why didn’t she softly let go and drop into sleep
I wear a small self-sticking sign upon my costume,
Left hand seeks refuge within the frame.
I built this car from wrecks and scraps and junkers.
The end of this earth (best forget the others.) may be near.
And on the eighth day . . . there was Music and Dancing in the heavens,
I’ll defy your god, relieve you, earn his carbon copy rage, believe you.
No wonder we’re bewildered. We know too much about too many things
Just keeping my head above water, trying to, not really swimming or simply afloat
If the time spent seeing it exceeds the time spent making it,
The season is over. It was bright and fast in the sun.
A shame to waste this night on sleep. There are more than promises to keep.
Dick gets a lot of raises; he gives them to himself.
God is Chemistry and Physics, not Theology: flour and eggs and spices,
lounging on the sofa preparing to participate in the Winter Olympics vicariously;
Gentle negative space in motion. So thoughtful, generous,
Always the man said, you know it, do it!
It’s you and me, god, upon the screen- you, me projected,
Dirty Harry you’re my man. Keep me safe as best you can.
Who is the other bookend, the author, the poet being one,
It’s said that knowledge grows with each funeral of an elder.
God, are you coming or going, which is to say, are you moving toward me or away?
The old man says something even in his sleep and I still listen, but only in my sleep.
Willie Jones Eats Poppy Seeds and wiles the hours away.
Stunted Ones, sailing on the swings, digging in the sand for sand,
You don’t rush toward the end of play, with script in hand, your lines in mind.
Since stones hurt, as in let the sinless cast the first . . .
The Darker Father, Actuality, dismisses his improbable son with a flick of the hand
I long to think not at all and let my eyes go graze like cows upon the golden days.
You can’t sleep long enough my story teller to dream them whole again
Black music Greek Wurlitzer squid deaths in fetid air dry suicides
It’s not lust as much as longing, but it‘s lust as well.
My checkbook is on the Bank of Time.
The spaciousness The spaciousness of it The Spaciousness! Scary
In the beginning there was nothing. Nothing was all there was. In the end there was nothing.
If you neuter Desires, you abort Preferences, cancel Choices, destroy Distinctions
Suppose you were an elephant and won the lottery . . .
I rise, weightless, above pain and blend with echoes.
I saw a dress today in a store window on a street I had not walked without you.
We need artists to see what we need to see, to feel what we need to feel,
Kiss me, I’m a frog. You want a prince? Kiss me.
I think I am mid-bridge, but the swirling of the water makes me wonder when I stop to rest:
All Konstants contain Variables because Konstants are so All.
Grief is slashes, stabs from many knives, sharp and dull, all deadly.
My heart became imprisoned while visiting my past
So poorly you have used the rest of me to little profit but my loss
Your life is subsidized; your future is in hock.
My end is sinking from my weight of grief occasioned by your jumping ship.
I never thought I’d even half enjoy this, but kick and curse and scream instead.
It is natural to think the cob is swift, too quick to see because we never see it.
Ask not what is a cob, it is a plagiarist, a squatter,
Two toads converged within a wood and passed the time of day, lingering in the hope of prey.
I’ve come, said wind, without a word,
Irrevocably into raw omelet, Humpty went dumpty,
Dust, powder penumbra, softest erosion, suspensions wafting barely above gravity,
Briefly home from another unwon war, barely survived,
The world of silence has no edges, no angles, no corners, no antipodes, no form or shape.
A spectrum of emotions segues seamlessly between the poles of black and white,
Where go the shards of broken sleep? Underfoot beneath attention’s tiptoe
living in a cage full of butterflies. pictures of a wedding. building a snowman.
I, the poet, know that future because it is now past.
Dreams drive me from my bed. Before I’m done with sleep, sleep is done with me:
Do we dream, or are we dreamt? Mind is iceberg in sea of thought
I watch you across the pond. It’s premature to speak. You do not see me; I’m not in your book.
The shadows fall back allowing a glimpse through the now-clear partition
Those who’ve lived before gratefully acknowledge that what was swollen, ominous
Years ago some of us got on my toboggan.
At literary distance writer conjures deadly menace, let’s say, a cobra,
Shiva comes to mind, protective of companions
I remember my birth, and now, having died, I remember my death.
Between two lovers is a constant, undetected, of tolerated distance regardless of their passion.
Beautiful lady, ancient of pose, dining on money, hiding in clothes.
I am lost without loving. Lost. I cannot love child, man or mankind. I cannot even love dog,
Being away from you, the loneliness: there are air-conditioned rooms,
There is, of course, the possibility of dying. I know what I can do, yet have not done it.
I moved a book that pushed a book that nudged a book, that loosed a book that toppled from the shelf
When was the last time I wondered what wonder was?
I gamble, win or lose. Is risk worth loss against the hope of gain?
Beginning was the hardest part, building immunity to the disease.
Time moves on, yet stays in place. It doesn’t change and we don’t change it,
Hunkered on the exiled smoker’s stoop, streetlight’s enough for me to read by.
Electric before electricity, anticipant participant, will his thumb fit in the socket?
Slow waves breaking on the sea from shore. Shore shells, fragments of the ancient
I never thought I’d reach twenty one, but here I am.
Snow’s a blanket of relief. I don’t have to go out.
In and out of moods, surf and surfing. Flat and stranded I rise again,
Surrounded by If-lives I surrender to reluctant posse,
Dare I break through the fourth wall to emerge again
Sick with grief at missing you, suddenly completely realizing that parting was the truth,
Hark, all you lovely witches sirens on the rocks of matrimony, cast ashore as flotsam,
I can’t breathe. There isn’t enough time. I may have used my air up waiting, smoking, worrying.
Dreams arose upon sleep’s beach as surely as a moon begotten tide
The buzzards feast upon Prometheus,
They told me. I didn’t listen, so confident was I walking the precipice edges.
I let a poem get away. It came to me this morning from my heart and head.
Sitting, looking out watching birds fluster at my feeder
We have no instruments sensitive enough to weigh or measure nothing.
She’s all in the here of now. Would you live in her past?
Don’t expect me to be heroic come time to be your movie star.
This is loneliness. pinching empty hours into flat minutes, stealing spice from food,
It is far to mountaintop, farther for the lost.
Gulls and clouds black and white upon the distance, blue, the visible of heaven the within of day lit sky.
It’s likely in each pairing, each in turn is lover while the other is the loved.
Einstein almost had it right, but not quite for those of us down here.
If marriages are made in heaven where can couples go from there?