Snapshot: On Finding An Abandoned Stall in the Desert (Revised)

There was a final time: the stall set out,
With jewelry and fabrics in a line —
The next day, and thereafter then, no more;
No more, and soon, no one with memory
To paint in images or words the scene
That once was daily, year on year on year.

The mundane, the quotidian: our lives,
Not big events, but habits of our days,
They soon lie empty on a sandy waste —
The firebird heads into the unknown,
High o’er the mountains, just past where we see,
To leave behind our stalls for someone else

Aware

Half-frozen mud, cold bracing air
A wind that makes my neck aware
That leaves torn from the tree will die
These poor gray strays who tumble by

And like the ghostly light I seek
The morn recedes behind the line
Only of chance to risk a peek
At drifting lives
Like yours

And mine


 

(“Aware” – 11-19-2014)

Prize, Price, and Prying Eyes

Who were those people anymore to tell her what to do?
She rang the changes as she felt inclined —
What was this bit of foolishness that they said was ‘the true’?
She would not by their rules be so defined —

She set out to reclaim her self;
To live with feeling, and to feel her way.
She needed no permission slip
And took on love as a bioassay —

For she would claim the prize, and be the prize.
The price was jealous talk, and prying eyes,
But all that social nonsense was just so:
It would not shape where she would play, or go.

I wandered into her when I was young,
A part of her experimental phase.
She gave me keys, then took each slowly back,
A few short nights that felt like holidays,

Then I was pushed aside
As she went on for more
A boat with only one
Left stranded on the shore

She went away
I heard the news
Of someone else
She deigned to choose –

But I would not speak ill of her:
There were no lies, no conscious work to hurt.
So I was a philosopher,
I’d my own life to live, to reassert —

Relationships are merely games for those who choose to play them:
And yes, there will be costs, but many merely, simply pay them.
It might feel less than human, but, I did feel human there for just awhile.
For some, amid the storms, find out that they, indeed, become a rheophile —

What moral is there now to this, you say?
Just this: we don’t control the sun or seasons,
And much that happens to us isn’t in us,
For other humans have their sundry reasons
To live and love as they see fit, and when —
And we can only live life now,
Not then

Fading, Fading

The days are fading, fading into smoke;
I try, but I can’t hold them in my hands.
The fire’s gone, there’s nothing left to stoke,
Just empty parking lots, and barren lands —

The days are turning, burning into mist;
With just a shimmer there, or glimmer here —
The mill of time, that turns our loves to grist,
And fads, like life, that up and

Disappear

In Youth

You asked me once, when we were young,
If love was made to last.
I said I had no way to know:
“The future’s not the past.”
    And on a bridge, beside a pond,
    We sat there, full in youth,
    And wanted nothing comforting
    But truth.

It wasn’t many years before
You found yourself a place,
And built a home and family,
And filled it up with grace.
    For youthful as were all your ways,
    You lived true to your feelings,
    And marked your life with love in all
    Your dealings —

But I went on to just go off.
My heart and mind betrayed me.
I traveled through the manic lands,
For no one could dissuade me.
    Though youngish in experience,
    I felt old in my pain,
    And strove for nothing; all of it
    Seemed vain.

But in those last cold days of youth,
I still remembered us,
And saw you’d made another choice,
Got on a different bus.
    And so I traveled back in time,
    And stood beside this pond,
    To try to look around, and see
    Beyond —

For “young” is everything at once,
And little in return;
There’s cold and empty nights for those
Who always blaze, and burn.
    But honesty’s its own reward.
    In truth, you’d chosen wisely,
    And how my life had gone could not
    Surprise me…

You asked me once, when we were young,
If love was made to last.
A thing you answered for yourself:
“Depends on how it’s cast.
    For love’s a sturdy building
    If we’re careful in its making,
    A thing that starts and ends with
    Undertaking.”

Today Is Everything

My love, today is everything:
And you are all I want, or know:
The Spring has brought its promised kiss,
And borne away both ice and snow.

O love, our greatest gift is now,
The purest Heaven can bestow:
For we can feel each moment come,
Or live to watch each moment

Go