Chemistry in Capsules, Virginia


I would have met you at the water if I
were then without a daughter; I would have
held your hand–the bones to your words.
I would have decided on the hour–on
instinctual impulse–when the lower
haze of swaying moods sends me down.
I would have called you I bet,
and the moon would’ve been full and
I would’ve ran barefoot in my nightgown
to meet you at the water’s edge.
We would’ve known, I think, not to speak
about blue darkness and moon shafts shifting
across pale dandelions between our toes.
We would’ve sunk so deeply together,
smoothing the stones.

But chemistry comes in capsules now, Virginia,
and it allows you to linger at the surface, just
a breath away from air.
If you were here now would you tell me
my words are not pebbles,
to risk giving them meaning and shape
– to find no shame in their emptiness?
I’m alone, until I think of you–
my shared reflection in the water, you
with so much more grace, but I can
only build you up as a writer
and a fighter
and I  drop a stone to wrinkle you away,
and I see my face, blurry and rippled,
brilliant in the moon.


 

 

 

featured image Michael Kenna, Pinterest

Some Love Poems

DECEPTION

You bought my illusion at first, didn’t you

as if Lady Day had kissed my skin and I sang–

how I sang to you–my idea

of love a passing summer’s day.

You wouldn’t go away–so serious

of the illusion you bought

or so I thought–No, I’d tell you

when you slept

No, I’m too much for you

and time slips

and it turns to

No, I’m not enough for you

while I thought you were dreaming;

but you knew, didn’t you? the inner

cycles in my matter,

you knew before I did

that I loved you

only you were too shy to say so, too shy Read More

Leave, first poem in awhile

Come share and read your poetry Open Link Night over at dVerse!

 

There’s a square patch of sun on the wall

another cigarette stubbed out

I can’t play Adele anymore

and Ali Farka won’t distract

it’s quiet in these rooms

 

smoke curls around the plant

from the candles I’ve just blown out

I don’t recall it all being so still

I don’t remember how you worded it–how

you’d found someone else

but all that you said, how it all fell outa your mouth,

and I take to and bite the wind

in this winter that eclipsed from that spring

I stare out into the sun

the window sweating

and the voices, the words, the songs, the rhythm of

everything about you

has stilled

and I press play to another acoustic guitar

strumming, plucking gently down the line

hoping again that this is a sign

that this is how it feels

when you start to recover

“And I Said to My Soul, Be Loud” Christian Wiman

Christian Wiman, from Every Riven Thing

And I Said to My Soul, Be Loud

Madden me back to an afternoon
I carry in me
not like a wound
but like a will against a wound

Give me again enough man
to be the child
choosing my own annihilations

To make of this severed limb
a wand to conjure
a weapon to shatter
dark matter of the dirt daubers’ nests
galaxies of glass

Whacking glints
bash-dancing on the cellar’s fire
I am the sound the sun would make
if the sun could make a sound

and the gasp of not
stabbed from the compost’s lumpen living death
is me

O my life my war in a jar
I shake you and shake you
and may the best ant win

For I am come a whirlwind of wasted things
and I will ride this tantrum back to God

until my fixed self, my flourescent self
my grief-nibbling, unbewildered, wall-to-wall self
withers in me like a salted slug

Alone

I hate how you’re always

in my way

bent over in the hallway

as I carry all the laundry

I hate how you’re always

in my way

legs splayed across the bed

sound asleep as I twist

I hate how you’re always

in my way

like when I dance

you get too close

I hate how you’re always

in my way

leaning for a kiss

when I’m trying to write

I hate how you’re always

right

I hate that you’re gone

I hate that I never leaned in,

I hate how I never make room

Did I Show You, Love, the Moon Last Night?

Photo from Etsy

I haven’t stopped writing
for four days
then
a moment,
in its glass jar, holds a voice
that calls me–mommy? mommy?
and my breath is held–
did I forget
to show her the moon last night?
To show her the silence of the snow outside?
–so slow and pretty–
or the maps that the stars make?
did I answer her–Yes, my love,
I’ll live a long time–
I watch through glass–
her tiny silhouette among her quiet dolls;
I want to tell her
how time, like water, can slip through your fingers,
how sometimes we forget to look,
how days can pass like a sleep.
I take her to my desk
and teach her how to write
a poem, and she writes
one for me–I love my mommy–
and for a moment I’m pricked
with a fact–
one day, she might stop asking for me.