Posts Tagged ‘poem’

Occupation

Friends with
busy lives advise:
Be wise,
socialize.

Solitary,
chair-bound, I’m
content to
condense.

A poem
chiseled to its
essence––
life, magnified.

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Maple Tree

Autumn has
undressed Summer’s privacy.
Our belle
of the ball stands exposed.
Last week,
voluminous in the swirl of
a gown.
Today, crumpled rags are
all that
remain, gathered at its feet.
Once stripped
of Sunday’s regalia, what
is left
lacks the allure of a curve.
With that
bustle of leaves discarded,
no longer
is it a Rubenesque figure.
Minus its
shade, a curtain must now
be drawn.

Cocooned

A wind-fueled blast of
arctic air has kept us cocooned
all weekend long.

Weak as it is, the sun’s
feeble warmth is compensated with
a deceptive brightness.

Reading the morning paper,
I lounge over a cup of tea and listen
to you putter in the kitchen.

More deaths in the news;
some named, warranting a headline,
others are simply statistics.

In the fragile protection
of brick and timber, how tenuous
our very survival seems.

Still, soothed by the gust
of furnace heat, full from breakfast,
I feel too alive to worry.

And glancing your way,
there in that splash of sunlight,
how immortal you look.

Bristling with electricity,
in need of your company, I rise
to help dry the dishes.

A spark crackles, strong
enough to ignite Spring itself,
when I lean in for a kiss.

Exercise Equipment

Some hold accumulating clutter.
Others crowd valuable basement or corner space.
Most, unseen by the averted eye,
pine away to rust from neglectful indifference.
A few will be donated to charity.
Even more, dragged surreptitiously to the curb.
Every January, the ones that
remain appear on a list of New Year’s resolutions.
A number will be put to the test
for a month or two, until guiltily forgotten again.
Impossible to relocate without
the aid of another strong back, the majority will
shabbily acquire a dust coating.
Imposing, although corroded into obsolescence,
patience is their greatest strength.
They are sure to exercise the ire of whoever is
entrusted to cart away the estate.

Bowling Alley

Under bright fluorescents, a darkening winter
afternoon is forgotten. Cigarettes
are lit. Lies told about the girls we have only
kissed in our dreams. The clack
and clang of pinball machines emboldening
the swagger of teenage rebellion.

The regulars have taken their usual seats
around the bar. Each sits alone,
barricaded from the others by empty stools.
More absent than present, idle
chit chat takes the place of eye contact
between calibrated sips of beer.

An aging peroxide blonde anchors one end.
The town’s first Vietnam vet holds
down the other. Although just three years
older than us, he might as well be
a thousand. The lethargic bartender eyes
Jeopardy on a black and white TV.

Behind the cash register, the owner’s wife
keeps sharp lookout for tonight’s
bottom line. Tracking the number of games
bowled by a family on lane one,
she fumbles the count of today’s receipts
and has to start all over again.

Meanwhile, a silent jukebox bothers no one.

A woozy rookie, I force myself to inhale.
The harsh tobacco crackles as it
disintegrates into ash. Using a pool table
for support, I finger the three
remaining quarters of my allowance and
sagely nod, desperate to belong.

Night Clothes

What do the night clothes
that we choose to wear have to say
about their occupants?
Obviously, for us, there is no longer
the need to impress,
in them, our dreams still hold true.
Cloth shabby from wear,
they are wrinkled and loose fitting,
mimicking furrowed brows
and those bags beneath our eyes.
We’re at the age where
coziness has supplanted fashion.
Softer versions of us,
not so much disguise as costume,
their stretched seams,
like the aches of joint and bone,
have stood the test
of time despite weakening thread.
The proof of intimacy,
they represent that we’re at home
and comfortable together.

Woes Of The Old

How undisciplined they once seemed,
with their sore feet,
back pain, and bodily malfunctions,
always telling us,
“you just wait,” as they catalogued
the woes of the old.

Vainglorious, in the vigor of youth,
we smugly believed
with barely the ache of a complaint,
what we commanded
a corporal servant would carry out,
ruled by willpower.

But now, suddenly facing revolt,
we are humbled kings
learning to our rue that an army
marches on its stomach,
impervious to the proclamations
from a dictating head.