The Opportunity

 There is an oblivion 
Just next door
Recently relocated.
 
Here one visits
If one is willing,
A returning
From the future
 
That’s been with you
Before you were born.
A pumpernickel dawn
Of abandoned hospitals.
 
But some fool
Cut off the wings.
And misplaced
The spelling bee.
 
So, you hold up
The rainy bicycle
With the perfume
Of your arms, and
 
Into this pinch of creation,
And pinched by creation,
 
Till your knuckles have as
Many stars as a galaxy.
 
Laughter is a tree truck
Without a ride home.

Shapes of Self

 I know how the clouds fall into place.
 
And it matters now most of all because it is over.
 
Put all your tears back into the pockets of your brain, put back
The shadows and fevers, put away the stubborn impossible
Flowers, the trembling,
The not yet beaten-
 
The sudden is spent
Without preparation,
 
Like a crescent of light that holds the moon
in place.
 
And it matters now most of all.
 
We haul the ingenuity of our lives,
In shapes of self that cannot keep pace.
 
The pain is such that we will have to wobble home
Uncanny with bliss.
 
And we are better for it.
 
This sorrow is ample
And bright as it is blue,
 
This sorrow is simple,
Hardly here and hardly true.
 
And it matters now most of all.
 
Against this city smothered in machines
That pretends it’s not a ghost.

Frost on a Barbed Wire Fence

 The sad of it
 Is lonesome sky
 The heart on a hill
 Frost on a barbed wire fence
  
 Where to begin to repair
 The midlife heart
 In what room to begin to laugh
  
 And when to say 
 This has passed
 And it will be one with us
  
 What hole is deep enough
 To make permanent the moonlight
  
 And if the stars 
 Come looking for alms 
 I will remind them
 I have only the sense
 Of infinity
 For purse strings  

Neighborhood Pool

 God jumps in first with a belly flop.
 But everything God does is beautiful, and this starts all of creation.
  
 Just don’t tell this to the Abyss.
 Not that you can. Be certain of this. You can’t. 
  
 Next the swimmers, tattoos of birds on their bodies, in search of fish,
 Along the roads in the air of October the first frost between their teeth,
  
 As the sky unfurls into handfuls of dusk. 
  
 At night, the moon is the butterfly on the city stoop,
 Crayon crossed out by crayon.
  
 The wind is the blueprint, said the parachute.
 And the Earth is our wind. The sunlight is both even and odd. 
  
 I purchase sheet music, and some boxes,    
 Because my head is cluttered
  
 With the snow 
 Falling into the street lamps,
  
 With unsighted poems and handfuls of dusk.
  
 What else can I do?
  
 In this city, and this poem like a periscope. And
 When beauty hurts, when it is ugly, ferociously so, and it will be, 
  
 Try a belly flop in the neighborhood pool. 
 Mouthing your every adieu to the Abyss.  

A November Manifesto

I have lost my piano hand. The banter on Saturn rings in my ears
    (that’s a terrible joke). A few of the handkerchiefs smell like 
    operas. During the night, the ghosts arrive to try on my socks, 
    and to read whatever book I am reading backwards to me. 

I have found a violin hand. Tonight I will camp out “under the stars”
    with Quixote and Pooh Bear. 

The vagrant blue in the November fields. I have that. At least I have
    that. The lost arms of flowers, though nothing weeps. And the only
    color is the electrical structures and the graffiti wire. 

There is dire in blue, directly in this wandering. I will work out the
    equations at a later date. 

At this rate, by the end of the year, the moon will have enough to buy 
    a helicopter. And have that ankle looked at. 

Silence likes to doodle, intentional as clouds.

In a sweater, the handlebars are autumn, even as it rains. 

While riding a bike.

Part of it is the dust from stars. Some of it rolls in the ground, 
    like a season. 

Take a bow, ripple with the sea. Each leaf before it catches hold 
    of the earth

Says hello. 

Niagara River

Solitude forgot its wallet

Not bothering with conversation, solitude sees if its diaries float


Each letter of solitude was offered a role in a comic book movie

Solitude of a few shirts, and feet covered in the leather of old shoes

Solitude of waste basket prose… the emptiness of a flame


The noise sweeps the heart

November astronauts are solitude


The universe is a tee shirt looking for a ride home, solitude of a 
    bicycle 

And lonesome like a cartoon coyote

But what of the falling leaves?

It’s impossible to count them all. All the leaves. But what if 
    counting had an out of body experience? Took LSD, and 
    began licking its Zen palms?  

In conclusion
Almost night now 
The hurry of pillows and the dot that is the moon

The gulls are
Mugs restaurant-white
Dropped along the shores of one of the Great Lakes
Across the river from Canada


Garage Sale

A well-kept bike, a stack of poems in disarray.
What if these poems really did mean something?
How terrifying!

~

The books on the fridge, I’ll get to them soon. After a walk and a few more months of procrastinating. I’ll write poems too. Small ones, by an open window. The moon like a dog licking a plate.

~

Mirrors reflect, yes, but they
Don’t know left from right.

~

A tee
Shirt
Upended
By love.

The unsettled
For a nest.

The universe
Makes for funny haircuts.

~

To sit quiet and remember
The shadows of the heart,

A sea above the stars,

Till you are nothing more
Than a memory yourself,

Till you are at sea
And above the stars.

~

Metaphors undone.

Purposely forgot. An amnesia of flowers.

A calligraphy
Of absence.

The pigeons downtown
Are the last of the angels

In rock colored coats.

~

These unknowns!

With blue songs in their feet,
As or husked brains squeal like throbbing beheaded nuts,

And the blue ears of the moon
Tremble with the arson of love.