For You I Can Be

WHEN THE DAY presses down like a barbell on a rack, 
Like an iron on a shirt, like sharp noise upon the ears, 
Come to me, and I will soothe your nerves, 
I'll be a place to rest, and you can feel the pressure 
Slowly start to lift 

Maybe nothing takes the pain away, and nothing ever could, 
But you at least don't need the tension of the bracing for the pain, 
You can give up or just give in with me, it's safe here by my side, 
And you can take from me this simple, easy gift 

Let the sun rain down like Saturday, the winter hide its face; 
Let the world go back into its angry corner -- 
Come to me, and I will be for you the quiet that you need, 
One small place to turn the chaos into order

Stealing Now

A winter morning on the gulf. 
The beaches, lately full, are bare; 
He walks along here, worrying, 
Weighed down with coat, and cold, and care, 

And choices made that steal his sleep. 
But stealing now into his mind: 
A love that steals his breath away 
Out there somewhere he cannot find

in the violet

coming blue the nightfall, 
agency, and ill-repute -- 
orange, the horizon, 
life itself, a hard commute -- 

finding in the violet, 
narcissism worms its way 
toward a yellow yielding -- 
heaven promised, hell to pay -- 

they, the young in gray time, 
"privilege" -- linguistic hex -- 
but, the blackening shadows 
see her looking for 

what's next

within the glade

they kissed inside the copse, 
and loved within the glade. 
these words fell out of use; 
their love's no longer made, 

for it, too, fell into disuse. 
but such are life's cruel dealings: 
we will lose definitions, 
the same way we 

lose feelings

a moment’s reflection

her mom used to wash her hair in the bathtub, 
and they would laugh over shapes in the bubbles, 
back in her little girl days, 
before she herself became more serious, and 
her mom, more sad. 

she misses that time when the laughter she heard  
wasn't at the expense of others, 
and while there's no going back, 
she wishes she had taken more of that past 

with her

a better use of time

there in the past we were, but here, 
there's sameness, and there's tiredness; 
you watch romantic movies, and 
it isn't all that hard to guess 

that you wish you were somewhere else. 
it's not to wave our life away: 
just to be back inside the new 
when good-surprises led the day,  

and we were young. that thing we lose 
when careless years stack up on years, 
and we have less from which to choose 
in laughs, and far too much in tears. 

i wish that i could give you now 
the things you miss -- i miss them too -- 
but every day is like a gauge 
that falls, until the fuel is through. 

perhaps, a better use of time, 
is then to say what love can say: 
i'm here, i'll sit and watch with you, 
and we, at least, can share each sacred 


100 lines

first, he wrote 100 lines of his undying, regal love; 
he kept it in a notebook wrapped in shadow -- 
he spoke to her in passing autumn, under dimming skies 
that flickered like his hopes, and her indifference. 

then, he crossed 100 lines, in mud beneath barbed wire; 
the friends he made and tried to save were all -- 
but in that bloody haze, he dreamed of softness, still, and coffee, 
and being purer, better, there with her. 

but she knew nothing of those lines, the written, or the wounded: 
she'd covered up her own scars very well -- 
100 lines of red neglect, a mind turned out of season, 
and never dreaming anyone 

could love her

The Wreck

The dreams we treasure deepest 
We do not speak aloud; 
And sometimes, we don't even know 
We have them -- 

Until we see ourselves enact 
Some sort of non-auditioned script, 
And feel some inmost self 
Makes our decisions. 

And older people say, you're young.
You'll understand, when you get old.
But when we're old, we 
Leave it to the silence -- 

For hearts go where they will, and we 
Are dragged along behind them, 
To wake up to the wreck that's 
All around us