If I’m a mechanic, I’m a novice despite my years, my experience has only been short diagnostic drives, all ears to the issues volunteered and hidden fears. Some have scoffed at my meager shop, disinclined. Not all cars are happy with my prognosis, and sigh saying their better off out there away from my rags and wrenches, shuttering as if seared; Other cars just didn’t fit my gear. I keep telling myself that it’s for the best, that I’ll bide my time and wait out this test; Till then, I’ll keep telling myself it’s fine to wait for one that I can call mine. “Car mine, I promise I’ll be good and gentle, and true till the end of time. I am not perfect true, but I will humbly listen to you with care, or-line the pages of my book with thoughts of you, in car rhyme.”
Broken Rhyme’s Epitaph
Here lies a lost poet's heart which died for want of rhyme. Though he fought its pull, the lines don’t show it. Rhyme's addictions he swore off, Except for this last time. If your heart is filled with an older spirit and bleeds lyrical laments, with words of ancient archaic origin set to a romantic bent. If your humor laughs with Donne in his flea-bitten puns, and your heart wrecks with the Deutschland, if you retch at Rossetti's fruit, and hear Herbert’s lute, Run! Fly for your life! Or say goodbye to silly rhyme, just as I, and in time die !
Note: View in Desktop Mode for the full affect.
The Fallen Fruit
An apple fell on the footpath.
It tumbled, bounced, and bruised
As it rolled on down the pass.
The fallen fruit came to rest in slimy mud,
Colored with hues of black and oxblood.
Oozing sludge clung to the abused skin,
worms and rot feasted, devouring it from within.
The dying fruit released a painful odor,
Like a breath mint in the mouth of an ogre.
Then came a bright-eyed boy
who knelt in the filth with reverence.
He picked up the worthless fruit and spat on it.
He rubbed it on his stainless shirt to clean and shine it.
He worked gradually till his face could be seen in its mirrored finish.
Looking up from the pit with bleeding hands clutching his find,
The boy shouted at the sky: “I found it! The job is finished!”
“I found the fruit that was lost!”
He arose then and ran on up the path searching for the farmer,
all the way he wept a joyous relief, crying:
“Father! Father look, I found it!”
“I found the lost apple dad!”
“I did it like you asked.”
Running up to a kindly old man he said:
“Can I keep it father, please can I have it?”
The farmer beamed at his son with pride,
and eyed the blood-red apple, a glint in his eyes.
He scooped them up with a laugh and replied:
“Because you obeyed me and did as I asked,
You may have all the apples you choose,
Even the one that fell on the path.”
If I could paint the sky…
If I could paint the sky,
If I made it rain so plants would grow,
If I commanded seasons “Change,”
If the winds obeyed my voice?
Nothing in those ifs of mine
could match the beauty of this.
Nothing I imagine can be mine
without infringing on this.
For he is and was and will be.
He spoke mater into being,
He started the ticking of time,
and said “let there be light.”
He spoke magic words in song,
Words of praise for all we see,
Words of right made wrong,
Words of hope to all who seek.
Words painted the sky tonight!
Words of love an unyielding might,
Words of time dying to-night,
His is the song of rising light!
Have you ever discovered someone who wouldn’t fit neatly in a box?
Maybe they filled them all the way and just couldn’t be contained;
They would spill over every container, bouncing off the walls.
She would always surprise me as if to tell me “Just you wait and see!”
I imagined her like molten metal still hot and malleable,
still rebelling against that old time mold.
One garment, or shoe, or anything new, bubbles over.
A new song or sunset lights up her canvas like it’s the end of 1999.
Explosions of thoughts poor out like a palette mix of primary colors.
“Welcome!” she says, “Come in, no need to fear me.”
Is it curiosity that fascinates and gawks at this aberration?
Is it wise to watch chemistry without protective lenses?
She is not a gas, liquid, or solid,
No single element or isotope defines her atomic mass;
Her shape is more than cubic, more than realism.
This is not a high school science lab.
She is more than base or acid, more like both combined.
She is a chemical reaction, and a magnetic attraction.
She would laugh at that scientific description,
Those eyes would say, “You’re crazy and still not even close.”
Maybe I just haven’t figured out her style of art, but I’m just guessing.
This is not art history class.
There is no single era, artist, or genre I can reference.
Then again, some of the greatest masters took their time to lovingly refine.
Perhaps she is a great masterpiece in progress,
An oil on easel, or pigment in water, a mess of tile shards.
There’s a maker’s touch, a chemical explosion, paint dripping off the walls.
Confessions from an Aberration
She sat alone accompanied by bound friends reading from one,
and waited upon by a cup filled with caffeine’s intoxication.
Her eyes found mine in a flick, and spoke a barred-up welcome,
Then came the sideways huff as if to dismiss an aberration.
I was not real, my flesh turned transparent in that glance,
Two crossbow bolts aimed at all who brave an advance;
Like a wounded animal, or an abused pet bristles mistrust.
To be fair my absent mind may have warranted disgust.
I might have misplaced her name in a poor substitute.
I might have mistaken her identity in passing salute.
I might have been oblivious to some personal foul.
My existence might have been more than grace could allow.
My pitiable state inoculated me against Medusa’s gaze,
for only men are frozen by her eye’s disinterested weight.
A drizzling cloud preceded me, shrouding me in apathy,
an armor suit, a dressing for my sense’s mortal casualty.
For years I walked by unphased, like a wraith of gloom, faceless.
I would pass that table many times without appraising her virtue.
My oblivious breastplate on, and with a visor smile, I felt impervious
to the danger, then the clouds began lifting, the son broke through.
I could feel again!
Even now that I know her name, I never discovered the nature of her wound
That table sits empty ever since her new friends entered service,
Though she hasn’t lost the faithful books who occasionally surface,
And as far as I could tell, her skies were turning to.
She could see then!
Magic Shag Carpets and Stale Chocolate Music
When I close my eyes, I can picture grandma’s living room.
It was a room of shag carpets, trinkets, and clocks,
A sagging sofa accented with a llama skin throw and guarded by a gramophone.
That sanctuary of stability, anchoring memories, changeless by so many years.
Grandpa’s new chair and a flat panel TV at odds with that theme.
He’s gone now, that booming voice still echoes in the air, punctuated by his crazy hair.
Grandma would sit in his chair for years after, riding the recliner down memory winds.
Flying through turbulent patches, times rapids, on to some slow sweet summer days adrift.
I know this by that flat smirk and a twinkle in her look.
A regular visit paid to that place, Friday night’s after dinner traditional TV channel.
Like chocolate cake for her reflection, fondly held in memory, religiously consumed.
The rest of us held our noses, stale to our ears, but stayed to watch her happy thoughts.
I didn’t join in on that magic carpet ride Friday, but those moments remain with me.
The sound of folky gospel, vocals braded in choir, boisterous bands, and singers.
The sound of tap dance shoes hailing like so many high school drummers.
Grandma’s favorite music cake, a sweet melody to her memory, the Gaither Band.
If I could go back to when I first met her,
I wouldn’t stamp and stammer sifting through my thoughts,
I wouldn’t discuss the weather like my mind couldn’t fathom something other,
I wouldn’t stare that way with nothing else to say while my heart and blood fought.
Were I to meet her now, I’m sure it would go much better,
My smile wouldn’t quiver but would be sincere and a little smoother,
My mind wouldn’t stall, it would enter gear without a chatter,
My modesty wouldn’t fail me in my ecstasy either.
Then prepared with proper warning, all my faculties would fail me not,
For I would slip the chains of fear never to be caught,
For I would speak with elegance and wise forethought,
For my heart would be prepared and ready for this moon-shot.
What I wouldn’t give haunts me now, with a desire to return and do it over!
Oh to get a second chance to set that first impression slot!
On that moment my mind took flight and left me blubbering there,
On that day my eyes first found you in that precious spot.
Then you might have really looked at me beyond the frozen stare,
Beyond the quadriplegic frightened animal so scared,
Beyond the mindless dribble, and small talk impaired,
Beyond all that, I’m here, me the man, dumbstruck though I be.
That World I left behind.
A world of mango trees,
where parrots fly and scream.
Markets filled with ripe bananas,
or baskets of guavas,
with a mix of art and all forms of necessity.
A world of child hood friends,
Andrew, Joel, Junior, Ben.
A life bubble in the midst of the jungle,
where all are aunts or uncles.
This world my mind has made,
sets even the sky ablaze,
with wee-hour lakefront hymns,
and evening walks under amber haze.
Those tear filled days dissolve and fade,
the longer my mind tastes this favorite treat.
Bitter trials ooze away like that mud from my bare feet.
like chocolate memories,
like raging flood waters eroding banks,
above which a cement bench sits to watch and ponder,
the affects of time on life’s mind
for me, it’s a world left behind.
A Prince’s Prayer to Give Truth a Shoe
We met in that enchanting way in palace corridors spying the other. Our eyes locked as our worlds faded and thoughts of others dimmed to sputters. Awestruck, we danced a careful ballet hesitant, neither sure the steps of summer, and resigned hope of finding worthy words to say; we just smiled, listening to time's beating drummer. Her name, for shame I could not fathom or remember, and as I dared to finally speak , I felt her shutter, the spell broke like some truth betrayed to flee in autumn’s bounty sleigh. I still have that magic shoe but there may be other feet more true. I trust Him with feet who’s laces I shan’t undo to find me one, in time it may be you!
Sirens Sound Silent Sound
Sirens sound silent sound;
Who shall sound alarm?
Sleepy shores of sound,
Silence wails a horrid harm,
Ghastly- roars gruesome gore
In bloody pleasure farms.
Scuppered by burning arms.
White foam churns body parts,
Green currents carry far,
Same force fought a shore.
Silent Saline brings the dark;
Inn-cent hunted, death’s jaws
A gauntlet past, disembark.
Those who land to draw breath
May curse the sun in remark.
Scales, all begin this life
Dishonest from the start.
La Amistad, masted brigs
Two bar choices, pillars hark
lightless invaded realms
White worms start living spark;
Guilt conceived evil, ends
Silent pound, flesh owed altar.
More than Friends or Friends no More
Consider friendships frozen in position, impossible the asking,
Between the cliffs of finally knowing, and the pit of cowardice.
For one, a friend more than friends, she more than passing,
In the other friends are friends but nothing more, no other wish.
Even were the man, man enough to know the no, and smile still,
Would she, in grace, patiently endure the friendship less the More?
Graves of former friends marked by wounds, bleeding, left with Less,
Yet, bedsores form scarred hearts too, timid, comatose to the More.
Hearts are more than silly shapes, more than life’s wellspring;
Symbols of our souls, they aquafers, pulsing man’s emotions.
Friendly hearts can break, in pity mourn, or scorned will hatred sing,
Broken hearts hurt more than one, as breaker in self-loathing runs.
Take the heart, jumpstarted on hope’s haunting, wanting More;
Time passes, forming, forging friends, friends draw closer more.
What kind of friend sinks low, what heart beats but spark no more?
Hearts must beg conscience, protector crack the door, beg for More.
Manly giant or hired power climb, assurance in whom their image borne.
Midgets lost in future past, fearfully fly from toils so tall, slip in sinking sand.
Good friends haul the ropes, in encouragement calling on wisdom’s iron,
Foolish friends, the signs ignore, like blind men leading through swampy land.
Some virtuous friends, lope on with Less, oblivious to looming More,
To them, friends in fun and games but nothing else, expecting Less;
Encountering More, choose end in fearful Less, few explore More.
Ceaseless Less the strong endure and in brotherly love linger still.
Would that your cliff, were friendlier, that your command be my wish.
See beneath this mask shielding my soul, sparks form at your passing,
Eyes fixed, watching signs for wanting More, tung silenced in cowardice,
My wish for More, Less if your wish desire it, please assist up cliff to asking.
Only one answer can True Love speak, as you wish in both Less or More.
Less quenches soul sparks, More may end in Less, still Less is More
When asked for, I gladly bow and utter True Love’s motto. More
still love that died of Less offering More to everyone who ask’th for.
Ode to Chocolate
What is the point of chocolate?
In madness do we question what for,
Or study it and say: why does this exist?
No, we surrender to savory bliss;
Oh, we delight in its earthy flavor!
Once consumed and in our bellies lay,
caffeine, sugars, creams brighten day,
Then we smile, and on lingering taste soar.
From sun, water, and soil comes cocoa,
And again, with much toil, sweet canes,
Add milky cream, then behold: chocolate!
No one can refuse it but the loco,
Who do not belong among the sane.
Chocolate, glorious, none can balk at it!
One palate flight, leaves addict wanting more.
Yet, with reason and sound mind on display,
Delusive sense can, an audit, outweigh.
Likewise, sublime verse engulfs the lore,
And meaning of the lyrics with beauty’s kiss.
Heed soliloquy imparted by McGinnis;
Regard poetic pictures and adore,
Passions so heavenly, so chocolate!
Life of a Sock
When life turns
tumultuous twisting and churning,
Which way should I go, which way is up? …Squirl!
What does the sock experience when washed?
Does it like the squeezing, rubbing, and spinning?
The end will come
when the dirt is gone,
But to be of use is to collect stains and stench.
Every worn cloth is subjected to this carnage,
If not now, then after goodwill recycles.
I pray that my weave
withstands the friction,
Holes or frays render harsh judgement from the maker.
Nor will filthy rags escape this fate,
They are tossed out and languish in the rubbish heap.
No cloth can wring
the filth from its fibers,
It must accept the help of the holy washer.
No fee, no soap just a simple please,
The washer washes as soon as you believe.
The weaver is a willing worker,
Talents are given to all cleaned by the washer.
With dexterous fingers the voids are filled,
The threads of life knitted a new.
To know the weaver
lends a new perspective,
A strength and desire to fulfill the calling.
What rag should fear the washer,
What is there to hide from the weaver.
Once washed of filth
and woven anew,
A raiment of fine clothing we are.
One day my cloth will be eternally clean,
Oh, the joy of knowing this turmoil must end.
For now, I feel unworthy to be a sock,
Or to touch the feet of the maker.
Even so, when the drawer is opened,
I scream “Pick Me!”