epilogue: red summer

And maybe

if I’m inspired

I’ll write some lines

about a red sun rising

from the smoke of ancient forest history.

 

And maybe

you’ll read it,

somewhere, somehow

and wherever you are these days

you’ll be touched by the sight of a burning setting sun,

 

And maybe,

if you’re ready, 

you’ll break the eternal

silence resting heavy on our ears

to say I love you in the heat of night.

red summer

In the twilight of tomorrow

moonlight struggles through

the last breath of a thousand smoky

trees rising ablaze in summer heat.

 

Yesterday’s sunset told

the ages old story of

the forest; devastating and

delicate, a rise and fall of giants.

 

Tonight the sun will set,

red and burning the sky,

painting it orange through

the swirling hazy history of us.

Bees

There’s something romantic about bees.

Mostly how they sting.

How they pierce the skin with this tiny, venomous

Black needle and know as they fly away,

Their stinger ripping out of them,

That they will surely die.

They know that it’s their last resort,

They just don’t care.

To protect their hive,

Their Queen,

These peasant bees would give their life.

And for a Queen who doesn’t care

To recognize their existence in the first.

There’s romance there.

One sided as it may be.

To die for someone who wouldn’t know the difference.

Now we’re not bees, and if we were

Just know that I would do the same

For you.

Split Pea Soup

Brother and I were hunting fairies and

Catching colds in the winter air

From staying out too late trying to snatch

 

Shooting stars with our tongues and

Making wishes on falling flakes of snow.

Dreaming of days when Mom’s voice,

 

Breathing miasma into our fairyland of snow,

Wouldn’t beckon us inside to sit at the table and

Listen to Dad and Mom discuss the details

 

Of some tenant down the street who ate

A bullet, and how no one saw it coming.

But Dad said that all eggs crack eventually.

 

All the while they sat pondering the

Screwdriver across the hall

Who made his kids work on saturdays,

 

And maybe we should have them over for dinner.

Tequila Twilight

 

Sunlight succumbs too

swiftly to the moon,

leaves you to drown in

twinkling tequila twilight

until the sun appears again,

a temptress to your longing,

and once more

fades too quickly

into night and leaves you

dreaming in the dark

of brighter day

to pump to life

the lifelessness inside you,

when you drowned in moonshine,

stars suffocated the sun and

stranded you in whitish light.

Still, even in the depths of night,

the memory of sunset,

turning blue

to pink

to orange,

 

warms you in the

black tequila twilight.

Me, in colors

– Crafted from captions found in a CCC worker’s picture album. A lost story of a lost love.

They woke me up for this one-

Bright Eyes, the self-made man,

Gig the Barber, the Oregon lady killer-

 

to take a picture of me, in colors,

and replace the ones of you

in my black paged picture book;

 

I haven’t taken it out yet,

you smilin at me from under

the tree, hearts beside our names.

 

They were playin ping pong

on that Sunday in front of my-

or rather our – tent

 

in the 105 degree in the shade

day with no shade,

just before breakfast.

 

Oh those hungry wolves,

tryin to cool off-

No, trying to get inside the icebox,

 

to ward off the heat

before a day of building roads,

before they snap a picture of me, in colors.

 

🏶

I took your picture out,

Rosie,

from the placeholder

in my album.

I can’t erase the caption,

your name in white ink

next to two hearts

stuck through an arrow.

I wish I could,

Rose,

but ink is so god-damned

permanent, like it’s

remindin me how

we’re like pencil.

I don’t know if that makes sense but,

girl,

I wish I’d used a pencil

‘cause I can’t erase

you from my life.

I keep seein him:

boots but no saddle

Smoky the boycow,

the country lady killer.

He sure killed us, anyways.

🏶

He came back around today,

Smoky the camp cowboy.

“Nice road, eh?”

 

His dog in tow,

kickin up to dust the road

we worked so hard to smooth,

 

the boys and me.

Blondie, our mascot,

ran up to kick him out,

 

chased his dog and him

out of our tent-yard,

our road all dust and mud

 

behind his heels. But it snowed

the next day, anyways.

And what a snow storm it was.

 

 

🏶

He still comes around our camp,

Rose,

Smoky and his dog,

but I hear he’s leavin you,

goin out to town.

Rosie,

I just thought you

ought to know.

These hungry wolves-

On the hunt for pretty faces,

not for love.

Don’t bother writing back,

girl,

we’re changin camp

soon anyways, somewhere

in the boonies.

Besides, I changed the picture,

the one where

yours was before.

It’s of me and Blondie now,

in colors,

in the park we built

beside the trees.

Lava Blue

So chaos again subsides to peace;

 

so again can sullen eyes

be brightened.

 

As all great waves

these times will turn,

smooth to softly swelling froth.

 

Surrender to its presence,

gaze into the stormy eye,

drown in thoughts and choke

on salt within your lungs,

 

let it toss you in the foam and mist,

shroud you in a restless stillness,

smothering your breath

as tension heightens

with the wave.

 

Feel the ocean’s spray

upon your cheeks. See

the licking waves crest ever higher,

ebb to meet the wind and rain.

 

Fall into the water,

surround yourself in lava blue,

succumb to it and listen

 

as the ocean flares it’s stifled tongue,

splenetic, sharp, and surly,

 

and embrace the vengeance of the sea.

Children of War

Image by André Kertész, 1915 “The Fairy Tale”
For those still suffering from war and disaster, and in memory of those who have served and are serving.

Look, these quiet men:

lungs caked by the dirt

between their bare toes

and the broken walls they lean on,

their only solace resting

open between the three of them,

yellowed from oil on tiny fingers

turning to the next adventure

as they huddle against the cold

flowing through their patchy knees,

to read in silence the fairy tale

described upon the crusty pages.

 

Look at these men- quiet,

only boys really,

as they crowd around this book

which holds what they can

recall of their boyhood,

which tells them what

it’s like to be a child

in a world without war;

showing them the dreams

of children not haunted by nightmares.

a bipolar ode

the weather sucks today

the sun rose sultry grey

 

it’s supposed to be sunny tomorrow

and i love the orange sun rays

 

and i hate the rain’s tears

on frosted window glass

 

smiling shy though the clouds,

shining bright blue sky between its teeth

 

trapping me in a black stone prison,

its suffocating grey walls

 

freeing me from misconceptions

made beneath a milky moon,

 

pining for the way the nothing feels,

the emptiness of winter mornings

 

letting me breath again with satisfaction

in the yellow pollen joy of spring.

 

but today’s somber sun,

tomorrow’s amber sunrise

and shrouded sky offer comfort,

and bright skies will remind me

that nothing really matters,

it’s ok that nothing’s ever perfect,

the clouds will always linger,

but there will always be another golden morning.

Pinup Girl

Make

Me flat,

Hang me up

With pins and on

Stringy wire strings

So you can look at me,

And wonder where the time went,

And wonder where that sweet girl went.

But then, pictures are perfect

Instances of moments

Zoomed to focus on

One memory,

Forever,

However

Fake.