Life Oxide

Autumn Leaf and Rusted Gate

Autumn Leaf and Rusted Gate (Photo credit: mezzoblue)

The iron gate’s dormant hinges, fat
with the rust and moss of years
spent in content and oblivious fog,
screamed in alarm if the prisoner
so much as leaned against its bars,
to see what was beyond the mist.
And he, fat with the oxide of a life
barely lived, a desire coagulate,
sighed in resignation as he searched
his heart for a memory, a shadow
of open space where he once might fly.
On the darkside there he found it, a pen,
corroded but full of ink, oxblood-red
and warm, with which he wrote himself
a feather each day by the iron gate,
sheafing himself a pair of wings to soar
anywhere, even with his feet numb
to the fact they never left the ground.

Inspired by my friend Laurie Kolp requesting a Rust poem. I know rust.


When the lights came on and I awoke, I noticed the walls
had risen again, trees and years of hiding now diminishing
any hint of my old sky’s grandeur–its tangerine dawn and
glowing ember sundown–from my sight. Or merely from my vision?
Have the trees really grown so tall over these years,
or have I dimished in size or soul? Maybe so.
I can’t recall if it was I who wished to be shut off
from the flora, the fauna, the coarse or silent vox populi
that vexed my shallow self. I was the architect
and builder of these barriers between me and them,
you and me, but these blocks of words upon which I built
my own prison have lost the strength to hold me anymore.
The words, the blocks, have become mere tokens in a game,
a test of strength none of us have the strength to play anymore.
No longer can I buttress this keep in which I keep my feelings;
hell, I couldn’t even turn locks tagged
Exit and Shut Down.


Clan Nobody


Window Rain

Window Rain (Photo credit: Martin Cathrae)

Miss Emily and I are related,
we pair being Nobodies from the
looking out the window branch
of the Nobody clan.
We sit our watch and record
the muffled and twisted
passing-by that runs bleary
across the rain-spattered glass.

Tunnels we dig from scarred
and calloused hearts onto
this bog of white.
Our dreams and hopes
we make flesh like Jesus.
He, scourged with quills
and bleeding ink, raises our
unsaveable souls, turning Frogs
to June-baptised princes.

Are you — nobody — too?

Written — too-quickly — for Miss Kellie’s Free Write Friday prompt of escape, the great getaway.

And shared with the Open Link Night crowd at dVerse Poets.

We March


dregs (Photo credit: Caobhin)

Desultory dregs of last week’s
half-hearted snowbanks, now turned
overturned bowls of cinder and road salt,
dot the roadside field, while black top
in tablet form lines the shoulder
like black blossoms signifying
the threat of another season.
Robins alight on the dry grass,
picking at salt-pickled something,
blithely chirping like ladies at tea,
while in the maples and oaks,
woodpeckers, cardinals and finches
announce their primacy over all.

This is the end of my March,
a month named for a war-god,
a verb meaning to tread
with measured beat,
a noun about distance covered.
It was once a boundary; maybe still is.
We’ve somehow survived all its iterations,
just as the red bud tree and chickadee,
with similar design and intent.
We just do. We battle, hearts thumping,
managing the forward momentum
whether we want to or not.
We March and don’t know why.


Crooked picture?

Crooked picture? (Photo credit: L. Marie)

Through the doorway, across the room,
look out the window, focussing behind
these glasses, I see so much of existence
bound within frames, a life waged
within four corners or, at best,
an odd oval of confinement. Of course,
that could just be Monday talking,
that second small frame from the left
in this third long cluster down
from where it says March,
hanging here on the green wall.

Maybe we all exist within some grand
cosmic gallery, each in our own painting,
our own Rembrandt, Gauguin, Von Gogh,
Caravaggio, Dali, or Bosch. We provide
some kind of aesthetic entertainment
for ethereal patrons of the art of being.
I’m not sure I wish to just be, though.
So today I’m rocking back and forth
on my wall to become unplumb, off-center,
just to piss off those posh Olympian suits.
If you grab hold, we can slip these hooks altogether.

Small Worlds

The Antennae Galaxies are undergoing a collisi...

The Antennae Galaxies are undergoing a collision that will result in their eventual merger. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So small are the worlds in which I exist.
Sometimes I even live in them.
Bedroom, front seat, cubicle, arm-chair,
kitchen, even my Nature comes bounded
by walls and fences.

Luckily, inside me, vast galaxies turn,
spinning silky reality from whimsy and
make-believe, fabricated of chewed-up,
cobbled-together bits of
my stunted actuality.

I know, the physics of this make no sense,
but I only got as far as chemistry in high school
and a bit of alchemy when I started
this  nature of work and these works
of what’s become My nature.

Bump and Twined

8. Console Me

Console Me (Photo credit: That One Chick Mary)

Sometimes space,
that area surrounding your body,
seems to shift and crowd
your bumpy head,
your skinned shins, and
those hands best kept to yourself.

And, because we collide with these
nomadic bits of fractious flotsam
and nocturnal predatory furniture,
these boundaries of palpability,
you can end up hurting your
outer self.

That’s the difference between
outside space and inside space.
When we hurt inside already,
we barricade things around our minds and
virtual hearts, surrounding ourselves
with dragon-teeth redoubts of solitary dark.

Often, I think the best cure for cracking
that shrouded and buried space within
is to enclose it in something soft without,
maybe like the arms of someone
whose heart and mind are open, too…
Or, with the right entwining, will be.