Are You A Library Book? Because I Want To Check You Out, Take You Home, Tear Your Jacket, Spill A Drink On You And Bring You Back Late

Written in collaboration with the creative genius Ward Clever. It’s such a challenge to keep up!

 

If I were a book and you opened me

You’d think someone had bound me wrong

While each chapter hangs coherent

The plot has lost its place

The crisis crests too early

Or perhaps, five chapters late

Some of the pages were left blank

Continuity errors make the story hard to follow

The quotes atop each chapter

Have nothing to do with the contents

My genre is unidentifiable

Every page is already dog-eared

My titles are misnomered

Despite audacious authoring

Writes and re-writes equally wrong

Editor in chief likely corrupt

My thesis antithetical

The metaphors eat themselves

The foreword was penned by an unknown

The preface tells you nothing

There are multiple endings

So you don’t know what I might do

Symbolism abounds

But no one knows what it means

Though I am the book

I cannot read it well

It must be written

In languages extinct

Translators misunderstood

My ambiguous complexity

You may study me fastidiously

Someone may have taken a word out

Or changed a word here and there

Notes in the margins

Put there by those who read me before

Their words are not my story

Past readers and reviewers

Skewed interpretation

I order and re-order

The pages and the chapters

Dusting off the jacket

In hopes of comprehension

My font is fantastic

My diction, delightful

The flyleaf is fecundity in white space

My binding seems weathered

Though I feel brand new

My story is ancient

I present all the trappings

Of literary masterpiece

Rich character development

Tragicomedic wendings

Astute observations

Scribed between the lines

In the screenplay adaptation

All the names and places

Will be changed

To protect the innocent

I also come in braille

So you can feel me

I want to be read with reverence

Tickle your fancy and funny bone

In least expected passages

As you dive deeply

Into my pages, rapt

With attention undivided

I want your bookmark left in me

As much as I want to leave a mark on you

My pages weathered and reread

Bringing you laughter and life

And as you finish my last page

We start a new chapter

Invisible, I Watch You

I am lint on the carpet

beneath notice

trod upon, of necessity

from this vantage point

I study you

(I can, because you don’t see me)

the dark haunting your eyes

shadowing your orbs

of warmest brown

 

I am the dust motes

swirling around you

invisible in sun’s absent rays

sighing past your soul

this close, I read you

(I can, since you won’t feel me)

the layered stories

sorrow etched upon

your beloved face

 

I am rainbow of future rain

hanging evanescent

over your shoulders

armor stiff in self protection

right here, I watch you

(I can, as I’m not real)

the well-clutched anger

sketched in new hardness

along your jaw, clenched

 

I was the balm that soothed you

until I was the pebble in your shoe

before I became the hurricane

that swept you away

 

Now you are the stone wall

holding back oceans

as if you can contain them

relegating us both

to the depths

 

(photo:unknown)

 

River, Stoned

pebbles fall

from life’s passersby

in words or a look

fractal interactions

 

drop into the stream

of her life

 

at times, there is

geysering

swamping of the

banks

 

others, a gentle

plop

quivering in minimal

ripples

 

in every instance

her stream

shifts

if imperceptibly

 

Reminiscence, Posthaste

(with languid jocularity)

“hey babe, I was just thinking about how we met.

Wasn’t that the craziest thing?”

he grins with lackadaisical possessiveness

“I am so lucky to have you”

with the soughing of pining pines

she smiles, indulging

“yes dear. It’s a story

no one will ever believe.

There I was a wounded puppy

cuddly as hundred stroke

brushed plush.

Except of course for

those porcupine quills.

I just couldn’t quit

perforating the cellular membranes

of all who tried to love me”

he chuckles, self-congratulatory

“I just knew it in my dimples

I remembered my Wonderland days

swung my flamingo

rolled you hedgehog style

and ricocheted the sticky wickets.

tamed those quills right down.

I remember it just like it was yesterday.”

“That was yesterday”

Storming In

I was that storm

that swept through last night

upended your world

unearthing all that was

in my gusting

I ruffled your hair

while riffling unabashedly

the tendrils of your soul

I whirled away

seedlinged doubt

dispersed dusted bunnies

of languishing ennui

I blasted past defenses

left you breathless

quiescent and wasted

in a balmy kind of calm

I poured upon your pores

running rivulets

between your lies

and universal truths

in my deluge

I quenched your thirst

while dousing in perpetuity

all your raging fires

I swirled away

careworn etchings

washed out ill-used notions

of staid propriety

I swamped status quo

left you gasping

engulfed and drifting

in the waves of my wake

 

Mirroring

windows watch

from under water

they refract murky offing

obscured under tranquility

in flat-paned blankness

future hide and seeks

dark-eyed hollows

haunt retrospectively

among the polished smoothings

swim shards of apocalyptic

non-apologetic apoplectic

dissembled anarchy

Costumes

in this life

that doesn’t fit her

she slips in and out

of costume

the intellectual

professional

advocating, teaching

smartly skirting

the absence of her profession

toeing a brightly painted

barricade

the suburban

divorcee

in need of extra cash

burning moonlit

candle at both ends

concealing needs

beneath

lauded patience

and efficiency

the exiled

brood mother

conjuring

aspartame-free

nestings

repeatedly booting

cowbirds’ parasitic

resentment eggs

the “call me at any time

I’ll be there to listen,

stage an intervention,

bake or hold your hand,

give you painful truths

to which you won’t listen”

friend

defriended

defrauded when she

calls collecting

attempting to

befriend herself

the partner

flawed and hurtful

hurting

unmoored

awash in

earsplitting

silent recrimination

treading water

on industrial carpet

the woman

defamed and defiled

vilified and reviled

shedding sackcloth

and incendiary ashes

standing naked

before herself

in harsh or

compassionate

scrutiny

Falling Leaves

pages

memory book

leaves

drop unbidden

wisps

remembered bliss

caress

parched skin

mock

in counterfeit

comfort

nettles

buried trauma

pierce

protective coating

tattoo

interred torment

integumentally

pleasurable or

poisonous

recollections

haunt

(Photo: mine)

 

Honey I’m Home

“How was your day today?”

absent minded perfunctory inquiry

 

“Pretty good-

Kinda interesting actually.

I was kidnapped by naked

wolf-nymphs and forced

to guzzle moonbeamshine

and write poetry all day.

The tricky part was understanding

their critiques. They only howled

in nymphomaniac”

 

“That’s nice dear

I’m glad you had a good day.”

 

Squirrels chitter-glided

corner to corner across

the ceiling

all through dinner

Cuts of Silence

Your silence is serrated.

Blunt, it saws

jagged at my soul’s bones.

It tears through

clumsily knitted over

compound fractures.

Past is severed from

its moorings

while future

is mercilessly maimed.

The muteness

brutally hacks,

dismembering hope.

 

I am taking correspondence courses

to become a poet-surgeon.

I’m afraid

I’m bleeding out.