Inheritance

One day I will have a son.

He will inherit all my tomes of poetry.

Every book of Billy Collins,

Charles Bukowski,

the complete collection of Emily Dickinson,

and Sylvia Plath,

along with three copies

of ‘Leaves of Grass’

which I will read to him at night.

I will make sure our walls

are adorned with paintings

and the reverberation of music.

I will show him how to play

guitar and piano

and old records.

He however,

will be a football star

major in business

use my books as coasters

and be nothing like me.

And I,

will never be more proud of anyone,

for anything.

ever.

The Noticing

Do not let the sunsets pass quietly

those hues will not stay

the reds and yellows and purples

will melt into recession

dripping in tranquil nightfall.

Do not let the couples and lovers

chat in unnoticed companionship

the souls and masses and families

continue to prove to us

loving sprouts in those needed cracks.

Do not let the planes fly by

without thinking of its passengers

the lost and travelers and coming home

drink deeply from a sea

glistening in perception and imagination.

Within the innate dissatisfaction

blossoms these endless wonders,

bathe in them,

know them,

hold onto them,

until the noticing

crystalizes into radiant impenetrability

while we gloriously

endure.

How the Daylilies Grew

On an unremarkable day

a fourth grader swung his feet

forward and back

like a pendulum

(If pendulums could wear light-up Sketchers)

The world around him:

a game of Uno playing skip cards,

a Tamagotchi slowly starving in the pocket,

a field day running too slow for ribbons,

Yet to that fourth grader

that swing set stood like a castle

and he ruled as king

or maybe a jester, either way …

The friend on the other swing

laughed with him

giggling together

and planting little seeds

which, over a decade later

would grow into truly beautiful

precious

daylilies.

The Wise Lighthouse

The other day she slid her feet

into cool soft sand and listened,

to a lighthouse whisper its wisdoms

into the crashing ebb of waves

showing through stalwart radiance:

How to weave a quiet serenity

in the moments of solitude

and vast wild openness,

How to be the only structure

in an endless sea of blue

and find substance there,

How to truly inhabit one’s self

in such a voracious authenticity

and beacon that light out to others,

So she wrote that light house

a thank you in the sand then watched

as high tide carried that gratitude

to the wise lighthouse.

Child’s Make Believe

On my balcony I watched a child

play with an imaginary friend,

and while texting my own friends

I laughed and laughed at him.

Then the kid starting slow dancing

with his little invisible partner,

‘how cute’ I thought to myself

while texting some girl.

The boy then started talking, talking to it

this intangible person of his mind

but I had seen enough

and had all my laughs.

So I stood up

went inside

started my shift

of talking, talking

into a computer screen.

After work

I sat in my car scrolling

scrolling until my phone

grew a face on the back

that scowled and hissed

and laughed at me.

So with tears in my eyes

I threw the phone

in the glove compartment,

then I drew a nicer

friendlier face

on the wind shield,

it was the second realest thing

I’d seen all day –

right behind that boy’s imaginary friend.

Just Them

Among fields and skies and parkways

I trace my dreams into dirt

onto walls

across my forehead.

I swallow pens

and chew paper

screaming at sunsets

petting lonely fires.

I squeeze my work until

it hardens to coal

seething for spark

lusting for ember.

Yet the clouds are heavy

with rain and thunder

so this wick is made wet

to hide from the flames.

But how fortunate,

among all this chaos

and turbulence

and fury

I was baptized:

by 100 famous poets,

moving my hair

kissing my forehead

by 100,000 nameless writers

straightening my tie

dusting off my shoulders.

Only for them.

JUST for them.

I will go on with this.

Jigsaw

First,

I scan with my eyes

I notice patterns

see the shapes and sizes

that this piece could fit into.

Second,

I gently glide my fingers

across a forming landscape

feeling for opportunities

that would benefit

from this piece’s presence.

Third,

with firm resolution

I attempt to insert this piece

maybe it fits

contributing to a more complete picture,

maybe it doesn’t fit

and more force

only bends the piece…

So once again,

I scan with my eyes

I notice patterns …

Luna

Eternal Venus silver

you sweet magnanimous creature

let me chase and let me love

this luring gem,

dear Luna.

Majestic foxen angel

just pose in space forever

not too close not too real

my guiding light,

oh Luna.

So pray for me

this muse tonight

who won’t stay or know

her grace in time:

my word,

my dear,

my Luna.

Sunset Darlings

you’ll shine

you’ll see

you will kiss the crisp morning

then lullaby the sun down.

One day

real soon

every footstep will ring out

with the sound of belonging.

I know it

I see it

like a solar eclipse mystifies

your glory will here align!

and I will be there friend

to cheer you on

while holding you up

to setting sun.

So shine –

you sunset darling,

shine for everyone!

and other lies

what’s on your TV,

what your friends tell you,

Spam (the mail and meat variety),

how you felt yesterday,

Mark Zuckerberg’s “human” features

my words,

your words,

Shakespeare’s words,

the words on your phone,

Oh! and birds (probably)

Those dreams you fantasize about,

the way your lover feels about you,

your perception –

of other’s perceptions of you

There are a lot of things

that aren’t real

its all salt water

mud in a syrup bottle.

get it out of you.

Do what you have to

stick a finger down your throat

retch if you have to

Get. It. Out.