a new start. a new
"i'm not happy here" she says
and the roller coaster
below earth
she flees to the shower crying
a mere hug and she is covered in his
two pharmacologically adjusted
that once shared something
the outsiders call

artwork: http://arianadii.com/images/art/alchemical/ouroboros2-400.jpg


body dharma


laying adrift between wake and sleep
for a moment he shared the space
with the first bodhisattva of true
gazing from the cocoon of dreams
through windows to trees branches
hands grasping through the autumn chill


black dog


black dog barking
beneath the alley window
master that left you
scavenging for scraps,
on a sunday no less.
close the weathered window,
paint flaking like skin
into the sill - and still
the black dog barked.
pull the covers tight,
chilled for a summer night,
as she barked. and barked.
bleary eyed morning,
nearly kicked you
stumbling out the door,
late for the grind again.
all through the day
thought i heard you,
mind playing tricks,
all in my head they say,
black dog barking.



the only difference
between desolation
and solitude
is perspective




Poetry is like a hurricane of emotion. The 'event' comes on with a storm, black clouds and lightning. Water whipped against you so hard it feels like stones. In the eye the poem comes out. Tranquility. Clarity. Then it rips back through you again for good measure. You pick yourself up, hopefully, and stand up to survey the wake. From that moment life starts again.


scuro bello

whispers louder than screams
not all what it seems
in the corner dark she sat,
across the cacophony of lace
and hair dye.
she beckons with her silence,
inspires with her presence.
bring me my wine and a pen
before she's gone.
sheepish he faces the corner visage,
the verdant walls behind a canvas,
the oak veneer presenting her glass,
crimson sipped with elegance.
his breath went still
as his eyes met hers.
at once her gaze was inside him,
a mask to everyone else
she saw the face beneath
and wanted not to shudder.
breaking the gaze he turns to his courage,
he turns back and the corner is vacant.
a whisper beside him nearly startled,
"what are you hiding from?"


night terror

what is it about the fresh night air
that wakes my mind
not alert to nature or god
but unlocks a door to hell itself
the dreams unending
circumlocutious spirals
down in degradation
I cannot escape
wanted to save too many
but not concerned enough
for the one who should matter most
acquaintances oddly assembled
each one a minute of hope
then gone in the dark.
you made it home from the animals
and didn't care I hadn't
but only for what I lost along the way.
trapped again by my pursuers
after evil retributions to their brothers
is this heaven?
this is going to blow your mind. come inside.
i'm scared to go but the choice isn't mine
then screams upstairs and again I ran.
lost in urban darkness
who was the tall man?
was it him or the voice that spoke
those echoed words
"I wanted you to care".
when one of the strangers you ran with
was shot in the street.
half paused but continued to run
I wanted you to care
A friend found with his son,
held up in a darkened house
armed and ready.
they shot of his toes
but you cauterized them how?
and why still would you not call 911.
was the police not our ally another symbol.
finally the forebearance to wake myself
to shake the dream from my eyes
and open to the real
dark of night around me.
crickets and cicadas
missing from the urban terror that trapped
id's stolen - nowhere safe.
I wanted you to care.
the night young I want to sleep.
may this one please bear peace.



a day nearest to perfection
to many i'd rather not remember
coffee followed by some errands
daughter tagging along to post and bank
back home again for "manly" chores
lawn cut shirtless, the sun warm
with a breeze to kiss me
she drew masterpieces while
i patched a hole in the wall
from an over-anxious doorknob
little chef and daddy chef
made a marinade for tomorrows steak
a shower for me, a bubble bath for her
a large pot of mac and cheese to fill her up
then outside for a backyard fire
as all day she begged for a campout
birch wood burning downing beers
a montage from the music gods
as she caught her first lightning bug
and chased dozens more into the dark
when I carried her to bed
she smelled of baby bath and burnt wood
all to end with some peaceful time
a glass of wine while reading a hero's bio
tonight i will sleep content



i’m tired
of looking upon love with resentment
for what I have failed to be
i’m tired
of online social narcissism
yet like the grossly engaging car crash
i continue to watch with deathly envy
i’m tired
of hactivists who pick on PBS
and stand behind traitors while gold mothers mourn
i’m tired
of lashing out at my innocent children
for not yet learning to be as disgruntled
i’m tired
of being the unwanted house guest
but paying all the rent
i’m tired
of hating,
of wanting,
of being alone in a room full of souls
i’m tired
i should sleep
but even dreams are but remorse for the dawn
cursed to bring more of the same


east wind


lone rumble and the rain begins
to be outdoors and drink it in
pelting leaves and cars and fields long dry
all drenched beneath the river sky

wash a thousand sins from my mind
then headed west to leave behind
her demons and the reasons why
what could, that should, but would not try

the rain is but a pattering
tap tap neglected gutter tins
want thunderous booms and skies alight
the wind of eurus pushing flight

gazing back he dreads to see
the muse behind the scattered sea
can not bear, wanting all but to scream
three words to seal a summers dream

courage not he whispers still
in hopes that she might follow
swiftly move and seize the night
the east wind brings tomorrow



pulled back from dreams of woodland wonder
the split face becomes nasty with sunlight
each street light and telephone ring
more grotesquely deformed, his snarl louder

pondering the misogyny sutra he casts it out
entitlement makes peace a prisoner
the wanting bhikkhu seeking blessing
on the other side of sisyfus' mountain

crossed since constellations named
wants back to the earth and eternal muse




true love is admitting that your own existence is flawed without the presence of another




something about driving
in a cool night windows down
headlights streetlights washing
purging freedom each mile marked
night air rushing open windows
and sounds drown out
the last heavy thoughts
i hope i never get there


red mill


come to the red mill
and sit beside
smell the wind
through the leaves
as the water prattles
and steel wheel creeks
come to the red mill
when you say goodbye
leaving west inquest
of spirit passed
come to the red mill
when you say goodnight
and over high red walls
the long sun rises
and ghosts give chase
in taboo gardens
come to the red mill
when you remember



watching you lay there tubes down your throat tubes in your arms your legs machines breathing infusing you grimaced in pain
i felt their sterile hands inside you, cracking through you like you were a crab manipulating your insides in red mortality
think about where we've been where we are
what was and wasn't appreciated til later generations and will my son see the same
the kings men put your heart together again but like a movie trailer knew we would be here again
patriarchal shift being there for the one who birthed, your wife doting over you, talking to you through the laudanum haze displays rare affection showing there how much and deep she loves
i don't expect so fair a fortune


ti jean

ti jean ti jean
where have you been
where did you go when
you were hiding inside me,
beside me, beside myself
basement excavations
ink wretched pages
dirty looks for crafted books
ti jean where have you been
legends in boxes and
wise asian foxes
heroes, bikus, sutras oh my
restless ghost driving within
ti jean where have you been

altar ego


i've become a stranger
to everyone I know.
a few know much
but none* knows all.
different sides or
different faces
presented as imagined.
could you really grasp it all
and still trust me
or worse yet love me
rag doll with
the black silk face
and frayed denim

words & spaces

processing the words repeated
the meaning of the spaces between
emotions stoked like a hungry fire
shadows make ghosts
dancing in the trees
no one there but withered leaves
waterfalls from autumn breeze




back to the bonfire burning
back now beneath the moon
the moon we share by distant night
twin bottles smoothly swallowed

come share the fire beside me
tell me your dreams and woes
til fire wanes and embers blaze
and the sun climbs slow in the east

come paint the skies with me
if not in flesh then dreams
come write the stars of night
beneath the moon i'll wait


dos cafés

sultry saxophones pianos grand
last sip of the evenings wine
two coffees large and sweet
fingers dance on ivory and brass
joy before the busy wakes
distance means nothing
and everything

to share a porch
on mountains overlooking
to hike their paths by day
at night the stars to sleep beneath
a cottage framed with hammocked trees
beauty is what beauty sees


church bells

tolling church bells carry
on grey winter skies of solid clouds
pacing parking lots to ponder
the wedding that wasn't
the wedding that shouldn't have been
and the marriage that was
not common law or common sense
but has been from the beginning
the sandy altar the waves bearing witness
if any seagull objects squawk now
or forever be silent




open your tired eyes
to the beating sky
put aside the suffering banshees
back to the wine
to the good times
wailing in the night
summoning terrible infants
and french tongues
til the sun up comes
over dirty alleys
grow not old as bars and
bards do not wait
take your wine
drink it in
muses holy medicine
now quick
before you stammer -


she leaves

she leaves
he stays behind, sitting
tries to summon
the stillness
focused on the infinite
.6 of a tear
dirty hands smudge
irritating it more


bonum nocte

i miss you most
whenever we're together
we've come so far
to get so far apart
missing the last chance
to sleep beside each other
and to think the kindest night
was the night we called it over



shivering on cold sheets
the winter wind
or the ache within
the space beside him empty

she warns him of the fire
consuming as it rips through the brush
he'd welcome that death with a kiss
if for but one moment the cold would abate

emptiness overwhelms
no tears left to run
how can this be what was meant to be


frail fingers bark barren
reach heavenward
day and night they grasp
what they will never hold
the sky is but a dream
and still they reach
day after day after night


night shift

dogs barking at the neighbor's neighbor
children bicker behind rice paper walls
the doorbell rings, the toilet seat bangs
the air in the room is loud

she tries to quiet them.
it doesn't work.
the steady spinning electricity
of the DVD player on standby
the space heater that powers a locomotive

the little one coughs. tension. listening
until he hears her voice again
footsteps on the floors above
she's ok. go back to - can't - sleep



huddled in the dingy basement
flask drained to its last; sticky, bitter,
burning like scorched licorice
last cigarette before payday
only a morning away but wonders
if and how to survive the night

tries to sleep but cannot escape
his own voice in his head
not many, just one, it teases it taunts
he squeezes his skull as if somehow
If he squeezes hard enough
silence will come
the voice continues.

mocking. judging. condemning.
tears fall, a wail escapes
ashamed of his own weakness
he made the bed in which he cannot lie
it's all lies.
chasing shadows in the fog

despair overwhelms. institution beckons
we are what we are and so must be
thoughts of the childhood escape plan
the rusty blade. the crimson tears.
please god just make the voices stop.

gods voice stopped. the taunts continue.
silver screen, unwritten dreams.
what is to be will be.
how many before he can take no more.
wanting not to live but to be alive
where did the dreams lay down to die



take my eyes, make me blind
no longer jealous of the passers by
holding hands they walk together
share a bond that lasts forever
go ahead and cast your spell
take me out of my own hell
a prisoner of my own desire
soul scorched black in lonely fire
can't make me yours, can't make me whole
no respite for the wanting soul
letters written never sent
after all it wasn't meant
silence is not understanding
still I think back to the branding
lips to neck, take the life you give
don't want forgiveness for my sins
still you leave me here to lie
drain the blood please let me die
light the candle, cast the spell
escort me from this lyric hell
happiness not mine to wish
only silence from the bliss
no more lovers songs to play
a dirge will end the poets day


song without music

I only wanted to be wanted
But when I was I pushed you away
Them away. All away.
Left myself alone to wander
Left myself alone to wonder
Why it hurts

Inside the darkness grows
Confessions to the muse
And tears begin to flow
The fool who played the lovers game
You should have stayed alone and sane
Love is not for the likes of you
Ask the muse she'll tell you too
You cannot be without suffering
It's who you're born to be

Your bottle isn't deep enough
The waves have barely gotten rough
Kiss the children say goodbye
Go wander in your moonlit sky
Now laughing mad at your own tears
Wishing back those early years
And all you threw away

Left yourself alone to wander
Left yourself alone to wonder
Why you hurt the ones you love

i have a picture

in my mind I have a photograph
it's black and white,
taken in the fall
you gaze softly on the distance
either to Camelot or just the geese beyond
your hair is blowing back over your shoulder
and have just taken notice of the camera behind you
i don't know where the black and white comes from
innocent snapshot of a moment that never was


scotch started in anger but
serendipity brought me to solace
a collection of poems,
20 years behind me.
puerile and naive but the sights
and even smells all came back.
names long forgotten remembered
dreams and traumas relived
beaches buried
typewritten pages
the bottle at the bottom
dimensions of self forgotten
i miss poetry

writing it
living it
breathing it
being it

untitled (#3)

two minutes past the witch's hour
he wonders will she come.
he does not summon.
he invites.
the muse creeps in behind him
from neuron raging skylines,
against the bar she spies him
and in the dream he is alive.
ghostly in her elegance
a puppet in her presence,
she lives where dreams meet the dawn.
a quaking in his chest
his heart a frantic menace,
she that brings him the words yet he cannot speak
should not speak, would not speak
but writes.
his fire bright on through the nite
she leaves his pen quaking,
with her calm she saves him.

empty dreams

if I could control my dreams
you would be beside me
not always, but forever
as never to forget the rush
of seeing you when I hadn't
being near to you when I couldn't
smelling the chance of love so close
and then to wake
cruelness of the dawn
chasing god to the horizon



he reaches, gasps,
then sucked beneath
the cold blue, blackness
a grasp, a stolen breath
then sucked below
fluids saturate the lungs
a last
arm reaching like the lady du lac
rope coarse against his palm