Archive for the ‘Poetry’ Category

Facade

Its neighborhoods gentrified,
architecturally first class,
crisscrossed with power lines,
parks groomed of litter,
and ponds tamed to a ripple,
how well appointed it
appears under faint starlight;
even the infiltrating wild-
life blends harmoniously into
this cultural mash-up.
But troubled by nightmares,
awoken after midnight,
it questions if that was a car
backfiring or a gunshot.
A lingering dream still haunts,
of every street flooded
beyond the resuscitation of
insurance’s magic wand.
After decades of indulgence,
sleepless and bloated,
confronting its own mortality,
this metropolis lies awake,
wondering if it is all a facade.

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September Explained

Where a month ago
we sat wearing sunglasses
a streetlight snaps on

With school in session,
curfew’s nine o’clock siren
seems superfluous

Dawn’s loud orchestra
reduced to the dull drone of
these cricketing strings

Now that light is not
an alarm, a clock must serve
as today’s first nudge

Not in Fall’s lineup,
temperate days are merely
a season’s reruns

Survivor

Backyard birch,
brittle and steadily peeling,
with every harsh
blow it sloughs debris.

The weathering
of decades has twisted
its chalky spine
beyond straightening.

Having outlasted
droughts and winters’
bitter winds,
submissively, it stoops.

The arthritic ache
of gravity’s persistent
wrenching has
gnarled its fragile limbs.

Never majestic,
and certainly not burly,
how lost it seems
among towering pines.

And yet, the chosen
throne for royalty, come
dawn’s arrival,
it hosts a cardinal’s song.

Manual Of Summer

The Manual of Summer is
almost complete.
For the past month we have
awoken at dawn
to hear the birds engaged
in dictation.
An uncensored romance,
graphic with
countless trysts, frantic
activities occur
on every drafted page.
Passions flame,
clamorous lovers compete.
Languid days,
perfumed and alluring are
accompanied by
the seductive melody of
stem and leaf.
Even an April bitter wind
is portrayed as
a breeze that whispers
come hither.
Authoring this manuscript,
birds foretell
the intimacy of a season
that ripens,
pregnant with possibility.

Making Camp

These waves,
choppy as an imported
kung fu movie.
Almost airborne, we cling,
bumping from one
rising swell into the next.
Seated up front,
facing the turbulence,
the wind spray
soothes my sunburnt
neck and arms.
Crowding the banks on
the near side,
now mottled, trees rise
to block the sky.
In this fading twilight,
we bear witness
to a metamorphosis
as blurry pines
and aspens combine.
Not quite lost,
almost certain we’ve
yet to pass it,
every eye, alert, strains
to recognize
a familiar landscape.
Looking back,
as dusk’s gloom races
to engulf us,
the inky plume from
our engine has
already been erased.
But then ahead,
a welcoming beacon
informs us there
is no longer a need to
fear the dark.

That campfire awaits
today’s catch.

Lakeshore Path

A raw Sunday.
Honed needle-sharp,
a probing wind
penetrates every layer.
Face first,
we refuse to present
our backsides
and confess defeat.
Prickly, soon to
soften into a carpet,
needles rain
from towering pines.
Plump red oaks
cast their reflections
like anchors
upon the open water.
Unruffled,
mallards glide past.
Ushered south
as the days shorten,
with a splash,
visiting coots settle
awkwardly into
a patch of sunlight.
Transient as
that leaf adorning
your unruly
hair before it again
soars in flight.

Heat Lightning

Stepping from sidewalk
to grass, bare feet perceive
no difference.
August’s dry forecast is
a liturgy that seems
to have been set on repeat.
Tonight, I dreamt
I cast a net in an attempt
to harvest the mist.
Awakened with my thirst
unquenched, if I’d
listened carefully perhaps
I could have heard
diligent spiders spinning,
been reassured by
a guardian angel’s whisper.
But the silence
of lighting etching across
the horizon is
the only sound I recognize.
Its embroidery is
the wind’s faint recitation
of a prayer that
tomorrow will not answer.
Folding again
into sleep, thunderous
dreams continue
to haunt me until dawn’s
relentless blue skies.