Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Goön Folk

Their pilgrimage began before the light,
Before the squabbles of the little birds
Pilgrims forswore. And they were going where?
To where the road concluded. Since this was
Their latter days, that just might mean the sea,
The culmination, surely, of strange strands,
Pounding a plainsong once, twice, dot, dot, dot.
They’d rather it would end against a wall
Invisible to those of little faith,
Studded with jasper, joined without a joint,
And crowned with fire or with Dagon’s roc
In chains, something spectacular, without
Curios at the exit, something none
Knew substantives sufficient for. They brought
A change of shirt, a charger for the phone,
And water double-filtered to remove
Impurities. They sang car tunes without
The words, not all the words. They thought they’d left
The word behind, the first rest stop enclosed
By plastic fence. The map said, You Aren’t There.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Dead on Arrival

The number of the dead in Pasadena
Exceeds the grasp of man. Who would believe
You couldn't fit another body in
Another hole, the green so green, a sponge
Extended to its fullest? And the dead
Continued to arrive. From Ypsilanti,
Louisa, Chillicothe, and Gig Harbor,
The dead, the poor, the affluent, the dead
Came rolling in like breakers, but the shore
Declined their cold attentions. Thank you, no,
The living said, and didn't say much more,
The declinations, courteous, ignored.
So many, light, and losing heft, their last
Ride a return. Where was that ticket home?

Friday, August 22, 2014

The Girl in the Red Honda

Knights fell a lot. And there they lay,
Lumps on the grass or in the mud,
Their armor like a suit of clay,
Rescuing maidens, giving blood.
The dragons chuckled, and the maidens
Planted cherries in their gardens.

Cherries ripe, but very wrong
For knights encased. Whenas they ride,
They sing, but every note of song
Is lost to echoes deep inside.
The ladies listen, if they can
Desist from planting pits for man.

We leave our dragons in their caves.
We watch the maidens drive away.
The knight are cool, but agile thieves
Thrive in the distance. Dawns the day,
And knights are bold and old and gone,
Cherries ripe in the subtle dawn.

Monday, August 18, 2014

The Late Romances

Have you no toys about your person
Fit to pass the end of life,
Making the darkness tolerable--
Little colored lights and chimes
And woofs and Squeaks A Toot. The zing
Companionable? Maybe a tale,
So often told it coughs at times
And smoothes all blankets. Cup-o-soup
And grown-up nursery rhymes, which start
With Ickle Bob and Happy Sven.
These are the late romances, last
After the marriage comedies,
The tragedies of pith and pride,
Chronicled kings and ginger maids.
Bears turn to brothers, sweep the skulls
Into the pit, the old oak breathes,
Remembering when he was schooled
In naughty songbirds. Stuffed plush toys
With little lights inside their tums,
Though powered up by batteries,
Send harbor signals through the night.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Casual Labor

Later they claimed they hadn't known the truth.
It might have been a train, a didgeridoo,
A kid bleating across a bottleneck,
And not a woman trying to break free.
Gods are capricious. When he let her go,
He hollered Boo! and farmers in their fields
Puckered up tight and drew their flocks in close.
The woman cried herself into a daze,
Humming and shaking, giving prescient birth
In 24 hours to a superstar
Who grew to his full self in a couple weeks,
Released the hounds, throttled a blatant beast,
Then took to the road, a casual laborer,
Beating up bachelors, just for fun, at night.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Light Concludes in Lightning Bugs

When the sky was a vault, the stars were stuck
To the underside. We wished for luck
On falling decals. First the sun
And then the moon blinked off for fun,
Relit for entertainment. God
Was merciful, but very odd.

Grounded, alfalfa didn't care;
And cherries ripened in an air
Closer to home, where pigs agree
That slop is their theology.
The decals slipped and fell at night,
Yet there was no decrease of light.
Piercing terrestrial disguise,
We brought them home as fireflies.

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Loaves & Fishes

Abacus to zygote: this is just what
The god has ordered. Feed the multitude
On infinite combinations from a rude
Inception. C begins with Cookie, not
A tiddly crowd, made crummy with the bread
Recently risen. Read what we have read,

And you can bake your own. A dictionary
Portends all saints every witness each,
Erects more ladders than a man can carry,
And will not learn. We accidentally teach.
Mud is in our middle, and right before,
Mattress, the word that you were looking for.

I have one in my pocket, glad and good
Together. What I've spelled, I've understood.