Monthly Archives: April 2015

Jacket

I had a jacket once, a fine thing, warm

And soft. I never wore it. Instead, I

Tanned myself, became tough as hide. But I

Kept the thing, thinking someone might want it.

 

I asked my friend; she had no use for it.

I gave it to a lover, and she loved

It a while, but she moved somewhere warm. No

One will want this tattered worn thing, I thought.

 

So when someone at last asked for it, I

Clutched it to my leathery skin and said,

I can’t, I mustn’t, what if I need it?”

But I didn’t. I wouldn’t. So I gave

 

It to someone shivering in the cold.

She was warm, grateful, wore it better still.

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New Year’s Eve 2009

When the universe does not punish

Me for my transgressions,

I only learn a single lesson:

 

I am invincible


Patrilineage

Simon, the lines of his fingers and

Face black with rich soil,

Was a gardener of men

 

Under the bright sun

In long rows

He planted them

Three little mandrakes

All screaming as they were

Plucked from their mother

 

Thomas, hands strong

and calloused,

was a carpenter

 

Hewer and joiner

He fashioned a son in his own image

By hammer and nail

By sweat and blood

He called it good and

He begged his creation

Be better still

 

I with my hands like lambskin,

Uncalloused and undirtied,

Am nothing

 

I sit alone in the dark

Playing with sigils and spirits

Calling them

Dismissing them

Building nothing


Little Things

In the absence of one who is like God

What will stave off madness another week?

 

(A drink with friends, a hand on the shoulder

A hug before parting, a kiss on the cheek)


Red Dress, Red Nails

You draw the eye like spreading blood

Like a burning home

Like skin flushed with anger

 

You promise violence

Pulled hair

Clawed backs


Four Ignoble Truths

I

You will make mistakes

Grand and insignificant

It is unavoidable

 

II

Tears will come

Pain manifests

We are made for weeping

 

III

This world is a place of leaving

If our ghosts and regrets did not linger

Nothing would

 

IV

Nothing is holier than

Alleviating suffering

It is an endless task


Lost and Found

Of all the things I have lost

What I miss most are

My dignity

And my pocket knife

 

Like a lizard regrowing

Its tail, my sense of self-worth

Will return in time

But my grandfather gave me that knife


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