my dragon’s heart

there are too many tongues in my ears
everything mixing with the wrong fluids
an unclear complexion trapped beneath blemished hopes
we are stewing in emotional minefields
melting pots boiling over
the bodies stirring these battlefields are toxic flirts
where is the harmony earth leverages to sustain humanity
many gather, hoping sharpened tools don’t escalate
we perpetually run this gauntlet
crawling beneath wires and above clouds
the young need warmth
while we burn cold
I tread a plastic hamster wheel inside a discarded shipping box
but I am not a rat, at least not yet
not ready to leap like a lemming
or slumber like a bear
if I were a fire-breathing dragon
I’d ride those shimmering scales away to fantastic skies
but I don’t imagine escaping
I don’t imagine loving any less
my children are life-bound to this earth
a planet I introduced them to
my children are not shackles
they are my dragon’s heart
can you forgive me
if I forgive their children
though they despise you
will they forgive my flesh and blood
eye close

anywhere but down

how can I express myself honestly and still ring the hunchback’s bell
step into the sun with no collective gasp
hide truths in cobwebbed corners while yanking those thick hemp ropes
the ugliness in one’s heart is never to be plucked precisely off
an engorged wood tick on Samson’s skull, hidden deep in his glorious mane
efforts are like force feeding dying cattle, they will produce no more meat
no milk from the teats of their mothers, they lost footing long ago to rot
forget the suffering herds, they passed when the silos were abandoned
and there should be no cheap corn in their stomachs anyway
foreshadowing on the farm, just look at that rooster ’cause it ain’t pointin’ anywhere but down
this is in not a barometer of my particular emotional position
merely words floating in my head that I had to get out

skeleton stallion

skeleton stallion

 

soured opera

hey, can I talk with you
I’m running out of things to say
you must hear and listen closely
the flesh of my fingers and that of my heart have joined forces
I can no longer reach without stretching my courage so thin it snaps
my chest is sinking roots into the foundation
scripted musings taunt the white half-moons of my freshly polished nails
delirious encounters, once teeming champagne froth into the night wild
have turned out unvarnished piles of road bound snow
I need to suffocate these regrets
slow the ooze from my brain as it drowns my fading voice
please look into my eyes and see
this isn’t about us anymore
where moist lips once blindly crawled to eat delirious and chew desire
only wordless truths haunt moments of silence upon empty prop beds
I am losing conviction
I am losing dulcet wings to flying devils
the peripheral midnight blue curtains, gold sashes sweating to unbuckle
will be the last to darken the stage of my life
see there, my sweet notes slipping from your oiled parchment pages
the midnight fairy has vexed our maestro’s musical flirtations
bowing to the final call
my heavy heart pulls me below the dirty pool of my tears
suffocate these lucid impulses
tear shadow from skin so I can no longer find the moon
I deserve no last libretto
nothing but an end to this soured opera

swirl skating

swirl skating

haven’t tackled a “romantic” piece in awhile-wanted to give it a try-thank you

 

knowledge

look there, there is a mountain with its rock sliced away to make room for the road snaking beside it
the path we are cruising across while passing by these mineral laser cuts
college winter break over and back in pursuit of a degree
to obtain a knowledgeable living beyond this education to pay for more roads to go more places and slice more rock
to learn how the mountain with its amended face, was not shaped overnight
to dissect human interest in the history behind this path and others like it
to comprehend the sheer number of minds invested to form things to this very point at this very moment
to appreciate the melding of learned people
some thanking the mountains
some thanking the machines
some thanking both
ultimately, for you to decide, through your knowledge
which sacrifices were worth this trip

Spirit Muralthis was a large wall mural I painted in my son’s room, long since painted over
horse characters from the 2002 animated film Spirit, Stallion of the Cimarron from DreamWorks Studio
“…a spectacular tale about discovering the true hero inside you…”

it’s me, isn’t it

you have changed
so different from what I remember
but it’s me, isn’t it
the one who has changed
I’m a practicing fear-less now
so damn tired of being afraid
don’t want to hurt
don’t want to worry
but there is no way of wearing fierce
without pushing ahead forcefully
and you
I’m trying not to leave behind
our toes were in the sandbox together
the wind, she’s blowing all our castles away
there is natural sparkle in your eyes
while my own eyes fight to shine
I was there so long ago
but you can only see me through the blinding brights of eighteen
oh daughter, eighteen really sucks

Caroline Hands Crossed

Caroline Hands Crossed

I need crap, but eyes can’t see it

I needed to see the stars this morning desperate to dream with my eyes open. The moon too, as I was being quite demanding. But neither moon or stars presented themselves to me. The sky was trampled beneath a mosh pit of cloud crap. I stood there disappointed and aggravated over these sky-high brighteners failing to lift me in my time of neediness. I grew pissed in fact, at the audacity of mother earth to disappoint one of her own good-natured tenants. I’m the guy trying to keep happy up, up, up, and I’m looking up, up, up at a shitty sky. Fuck, I don’t deserve this. I’m so wonderful and should have stars whenever I need them.

While sulking for a well-deserved miracle, my brilliant Dachshund speaks to me in the dark morning cold. No not really. Someone was talking though. She was saying how I don’t appreciate the stars enough to see them. The stars and moon are ever-present. They haven’t been vanquished, my vision has. My ability to see beauty on the floor when its trampled beneath a mosh pit of crap. I should close my eyes and see whatever it is I need to lift my spirits. No one, hell not even a brilliant Dachshund, can do this for me. Good as I force my heart to be, I am not that good. There are selfish thoughts brewing and I blow them out like candles on a cake I covet.

I stand in awkward silence, having just been berated by an old-school friend. I allow her voice clarity and give into the honesty of this truth. I don’t appreciate all that is. There is a gorgeousness about this place, past the mosh pit of crap. No one can take the stars or moon from my eyes. Or yours. I adore nasty Dachshund breath, even though I loathe it. Mojo is warm and sweet. We are all blessed with the brilliant night sky, regardless of what transpires daily below it. There is up and we need to focus our vision there.

Now I am happy. It is time to take my son to school. He is a driver-in-training so he’s behind the wheel. We are cruising by a student who’s walking to school. A football falls from his backpack but goes unnoticed by him. In my pleasant beautiful calm, I roll down the passenger window and call out to the boy. While doing this my anxious arm swings out, pointing to the football behind him. Here, my eyeglasses go flying out the window. My son pulls the car over at the first opportunity. I leap out and sprint to find my glasses flattened. Damn

And I thought my vision was cured after my morning epiphany. Sometimes what can you do, but suck it up, cry or chuckle.

features

features

I wrote this at 6 am but decided to post in the pm. I didn’t listen or watch live inauguration coverage. I read President Trump’s speech just awhile ago online. Next to last paragraph of his speech had an uncanny ring. Hmm, I wonder what it all means…😉

“And whether a child is born in the urban sprawl of Detroit or the windswept plains of Nebraska, they look up at the same night sky, they fill their heart with the same dreams and they are infused with the breath of life by the same Almighty Creator.”

Goodnight, Gracie…

leave it to a cartoon pig

trying to get at something
I can’t quite reach from the ground
there is no sleeping in slumber
no resting for the restless
hurriedly living to stamp personal honors on crowded individuality
some methodically hiding to avoid the same
embracing or effacing, the certain weightlessness of our heavy conclusion
this finite fact of our infinite fiction
depending on where the cord has been cut
a lifeline, a noose, a kite string
we enter
we exit

“…that’s all folks”
(leave it to a cartoon pig to shame us into reality)

Peppermint Pigs

Peppermint Pigs

 

the greatest show on earth

yesterday, I had the good fortune to be reminded of something so sweet
it permitted me almost complete peace with the world
and entire happiness with planet people
as I watched with anxious mom eyes, young men and a few women too–
my son among this intense leaping group
willingly get tossed about sprawling mats and body slammed through practiced experience
I escaped a few moments for coffee

there in a deep fluorescent hallway
away from the hearty stewing odors of an enclosed winter gym
a little blonde tyke, resplendent in cherubic pink cheeks and wild child whimsy
his laughter and stubby legged runs–
the penguin-like waddles of a boy not yet near man territory
tearing up and down the checkered oatmeal tile, he flew on socked wings
I, trying to stifle a grin
(honestly, more for the creases now carving into my retreating lip flesh)
simply could not stop smiling, beaming in fact at this whirling dervish
and then he, who lost a fierce hallway sprint to a taller little girl, in their run for the shoeless roses
proclaimed to any and all observers (a line I wish I could take credit for)
“she made her socks run faster than mine”

in this morning’s paper
an article printed on the closing (after 146 years) of, “The Greatest Show on Earth”
this media headline is incorrect, perhaps even yellow in its presentation
yesterday I watched The Greatest Show on Earth in a small high school hallway
and here–the most entertaining truth
the little socked boy’s name was
Gabriel
elephant eye:trunkand for the record, I am joyous for the animals, large and small who should never dwell beneath any big top other than sky

 

 

 

 

words are for stories

I am sorry for not following your footprints
you know how we want to blaze our own trails
I’m more like the one who hides in the wild brambles along someone else’s path
stopping to pick the gathering moss from my toes
hoping my feet will stain a lovely shade of flowerless green
so I won’t need to buy socks
(too often my happy spirit falls out my sock holes)
damn, I don’t darn well
I am sorry for not visiting your fine table at tea time
sipping is a lost art and I become dumbstruck at the sight of delicate porcelain tuele
I can cower behind a steaming Starbuck’s Venti
latte, latte, latte
blow the foam
watch me smile all day pretending I’m a writer
enumerating every reason why my work isn’t on one shelf
not one, that’s why I dunk three lattes
and seek out your footprints while no one is watching
still, there is my spirit guide
she drinks naught
eats less than sips
her curved feet are bare and beautiful
her wings are tucked around her disheveled robes
she is proud of her life
passion burns hot in her breast
the embodiment of joy in simple musing
she pulls me away from the wild things that grow on another’s path
she kisses my cheek, returns my black socks patched with green threads
then she tosses me back onto the road where I started out
allowing me no words for excuses
“words,” she whispers in her gorgeous velvet-throwback voice
are for stories
spirit-guide-weditsspirit guide sketched this past weekend while at a boisterous high school wrestling tournament

private island

on the small island where you try laying claim
breathing transports the flesh to and from the coast
you journey without compass of starlight
high spirited purpose often billowing canvas
effortlessly forward across wilding seas
spinning as she does
paths disappear in your wake
water eventually erodes the edges 
no sanctuary exists for you in these pounding crests
settling upon an abandoned shell
placing it to your wrinkled lobe
you close your eyes, inhaling the ocean

 once more seeking out the peace of those crashing island waves
first ocean