Shut

Words flying from the page
each letter released from cage
in a fury of rage, into glorious freedom
from my heart where they fester in suppression

A regression of being
clammed, unable to be seen
no matter the crowbar and the stubborn lock
refusing to open
to any inkling of free thought

It is here, I fear, the incarceration of joy
a miserable boy without hope or ploy
resisting words and picking weapons
when pens and words are the appropriate expression

My White Shoes

Bright and white, in broad day, in dark night
my shoes shine sparkle
divine in their own right

But I take a closer look
to see a scuff and a stain
on my bright white shoes
dragged through mud and rain

Dirty and soiled
toiling through side walk
still gleaming and steaming fresh
caked like layers of white chalk

How could they be? My clean shoes so dirty
lean in for a secret
of which you are so worthy

I once heard all that glitters is not gold
all that glows is not reality…
they glimmer greatness to closed eyes
disclose lies to frail vitality

Our Feathers

What is a life, rife with regret?
Colored into darkness to feel as though we are mere shadows to forget.
Fighting to keep a head above water only to surface with steel cast spite.
Affected by losses, rejections and bosses to make ends meet and more, despite what the cost is to our personal life.

Lose the plot and shake off the old feathers.
Place them into your hat for lessons among treasures.

Build a suit with wings; capes that will help us escape into the forgotten world we come from.
And find others that stand as you do, among the pearls we run from.

I have engaged my eyes onto jewels and they shine like my teachers.
They are not objects but moving, living, breathing creatures.
The main features in our show and you may think they come and go.
They are still here but you would never know.
The distance formed between us grows until we are invisible, broken apart like syllables.
Standing tall in our shortest form, working in this world until we are dead and gone.

But I shall be wrong to say so, and regrets have no space at our table. So I will make up fables and tell you tall tales, blowing wind in your sails myself if all else fails.

Ordeals

The world may not compact your innumerable experiences into a package deal.
Your soul may not be sold in order to reveal the true nature of your ordeals.
The seal stamped by the state
A dream trampled by the fate of men who hang on too long in a sickened, wrongful debate over futures cast out instead of lead to create.
Dare to build on your humbling, decide to progress instead of continued stumbling down the wrong path.
We, the artists, must stay as sharp as our tools, as brushes, instruments and pens that gruel into the dusty pool of life’s bloody duels against us in wrath.

I jump into the light at the end of the tunnel, finally funneled into the channels of life in this lonely jungle.
The essence of our suffering ushers light onto the works of dark days, transforming our meager work into sharp displays of art in magnificent ways.
It is not the ordeals that make us so for there is no key that opens the world of our darkened glow.
So we embark on this journey that carries our vessels of choice through the world’s turbulent flow.
And continue to grow despite everything that life may have to throw in our face for the sake of this show.

Shell

What is it, to disappear
off a grid, off the map, off the surface
only to observe life an informed spy, a knowledgeable shadow
unwittingly wishing to go back where I came from
to a place that does not exist as it once had?

A ghost trapped in a shell
unknown where I dwell
knowing all too well`
that once I shall release from this encasing
it will be into the same world I was escaping

The Call

A one way conversation trickling into surrounding ears
the emotions in her sighs, a sparse use of words
a love magnificent observed
served for her significant other
on the other end of lines

He makes her pine
she wants, she whines
she smiles all the while
her style his gift
separated by touch
distanced by miles

She doesn’t wish to hang up
don’t let her go, he hopes to say so
but the calls of life so loud
if only allowed another minute
a sound, a syllable
to their short call that endures infinite

Immersed

The flowing art that sparks a chain reaction
an attraction of the senses
retraction of inhibitions
deep in its portrayal
lavish in offerings

Let me step into your realm
take control of my understanding
undo the tangled veins of society
place perspective into my hands
and let me get lost in your inner workings

Human Family

Walking lightly upon our worldly mass, it is to thread the needle of life’s eyes to view finer points that so often we let pass.
Fathers, sons, mothers, daughters made to order, a deal passed down to shine upon our infinite existence.
We are a reflecting code of ourselves, a mirror in the eyes of all that is well in this world opening up our shells.
Our countless generations, given six degrees of separation, are a reincarnation of nations through people of similar notions and creations.
Living and breathing versions of families fighting through calamity and parity share in our experience, in different homes, through different bones that carry the same weight of young and old; a mesh of flesh harboring the universe’s soul.

Arrangements

Flowers came to my house every other Monday around 1 o’clock. The first time they arrived, I thought they were for my husband who was suffering from terminal cancer. They were addressed to both of us but bore no name upon their arrival. They were simply placed on the rubber mat outside our apartment door.  I considered it the work of a well-wisher who perhaps forgot to identify themselves on the blank greeting card that accompanied the flower arrangement. I enjoyed the sight of lilies. Steve, lying in his bed, smiled
“Hey, I’m not gone yet. They wrote me off already” he laughed to himself and turned over. I could see the pain in his face.
I placed them in a glass jar on the table until they withered away few days later.

Steve passed shortly thereafter. I suffered terrible grief, inconsolable in my loss. My mother stayed with me a few days and more flowers arrived along with condolences from all who knew us. Steve was a warm soul, gentle in his ways but not a romantic. He urged me to move on after his passing and leave him behind. He told me I would have plenty of life to live and plenty to offer the world, as I had offered him in the years of our kinship. It was hard to watch twenty years of marriage disappear before my eyes.

I noticed the lilies and considered them actions of a friend who knew what I was suffering. I narrowed my choices down to who might have knowledge of my love for lilies. Truthfully, I did not care who they were from, I enjoyed their arrival, their smell, the feeling of joy that they brought with them. I would place them on the dinner table until they lost their form and would await the next batch.

This pattern continued for months. One day, the flowers stopped arriving. I was distraught and decided my luck with the lilies had run out. I tried to brush off my attachment to the flowers, thinking it ridiculous to not only anticipate but expect more from such an anonymous arrangement. They reminded me of Steve and his words that he was not gone yet. Perhaps if they had arrived after his passing, I would not have associated the lilies with his life; with what was then our life together.

The following week I received a letter in the mail from a flower shop I had never heard of.  It was addressed to Steve. I cracked open the letterhead to read “Dear Steve, If you would like to renew your biweekly order…

 

Patterns

We persevere into depths, until we may no longer hold our breath
laugh in the face of adversity, until the tears that follow fill our hollow bones thick with torment
we motivate ourselves to rise until daily habit is our prize
we dedicate and strive until the pride in our stride is no longer cast aside with goodbyes

Life is a measure of patience
an understanding of creations
a stubborn stance
to the unpleasant glances aimed at existence of chance

How dare we try our luck? Impossible we succeed
but succumb to greed, to prize, to need
to feed ourselves as a matter of wealth
medicating ourselves to flatter our health

Our luckiest day was our birth
but is all that follows worthy of this earth?
The dirt and grime we cast off to shine
the trials and tribulations to be stopped by time

Of human worth with equality to stand out
from our beginnings we are planned out
I hold out until the end
for we are made to shake, to bend, to break, my friend