Bygones

Suddenly
there was a shrill sound
cutting through the autumn air
as triumphant as it was discordant
summoning in me an unease
I had not often felt
in the comfort of my father’s home

I rushed to the doorway
and flung the storm wide
to the fire and horror
to the siren sounding louder
to the smoke a mile away

They were flashing over head
a half-dozen at a time
less a swarm than a saber
slicing and buzzing
and bringing bright lights

and I stood like a statue
on the front lawn
of my father’s home
as the roof fell to the foundation
as the bright lights overcame me
as sulfur filled the air

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Giving Ground

I.

The air was cement
in the afternoon sun

I counted the stains
on the upholstery
on the backs of chairs
until The Law walked in

I was brighter then
I am warmer now


II.

At Eleven O’Clock
the pain set in

I clutched your thigh
through gritted teeth

I’d heard what you said
I never heard you say a word


III.

The Law was restless
pistol hand on grip

I tried to keep my eyes down
as her visage shook my soul

The air in my throat
grew thicker still


IV.

There were just us three,
two tables and a pistol between

You stood to leave with elegance
as I floundered, chair to floor

I spat your name as the door swung


V.

The Law saw my despair
and her pistol hand was mercy;

She shot me twice

and waited

for the light in my eyes to go out

Distant Points in Space

Perhaps I am no bigger than a pin-head and
no brighter than a firefly fluttering
in an infinite blackness dotted by
yellow lights, some that flicker and some
that seem to have burned forever and ever

Perhaps those lights are just like me
in the vast wide blackness that I flutter in;
perhaps they flutter about, too, hoping
to reach one another

Perhaps they are simply distant points
in space, flashing as a beacon so I may
know just how much of infinity I have
fluttered through

I have not fluttered through much

on josh at harvey’s

josh said “what?” to himself
dipped in disgust as we
crossed the boulevard

sometimes i use my body
to play with the universe

josh was disgruntled with
that,
as some can be,
raised in a modern
anal retentive middle
white class up-
getting

that too is the murky
gene pool i awoke in

josh would talk freer
and more openly with me
when i used my body
to play a human-being

just like at my job where
i tickle change from pockets

that night and through
alcohol he would forget
even more that i was actually
light newly freed from the
sun talking his language
and reminscing on
being human

and i like having friends
because,
it multiplies the
positivity

The Light has Returned (Sestina)

Beyond the pinpoint of midnight there is a light.
And within that dollop of a spark there is heat,
The flames jockeying for position on a red wick.
From a hand protrudes a slender white candle
That connects to the silhouetted body of a man
There, some unknown messenger of long lost hope.

Like Noah’s dove, he has returned holding hope.
Grasping securely onto the remains of a guiding light
Wax slides onto his fingers as he raises the bright candle,
Incandescence illuminates the hands of this man
Coalescing gently over his skin, it purges liquid heat.
A wavering glow, desperate sparks cling to the wick.

A filament pyre, colors of fire race through the wick,
Cycles of autumn re-imagine the vision of hope
And will long sought deliverance be found in this man?
Has he come that we may walk in his marvelous light?
We in darkness have dreamed of knowing heat,
But until now have had no way to light our candles.

A great and reviving jubilation exudes from the candle
An ever-changing aura of flames frolic on the wick.
The winter of darkness has been overcome by heat.
And with that warmth comes an even superior hope,
As our eyes swell with promise at this newfound light
And it draws deliberately nearer in the arms of this man.

But why would he be mindful of another man?
Who are we that he would care for our extinguished candles?
Why would he come to crown us in his light?
Yet he beckons, that we would come near to his wick.
He promises to generously share this flare of hope,
And we will be renewed by the heritage of its heat.

Carrying the fire, our own bodies will emanate his heat
Selflessly given to us by this figure much more than a man.
And from his coming, we will walk forward in hope,
Abiding in the sight afforded to us by his candle
With his offering we are captivated by the golden wick
That we may forever return with him to the city of lights.

With the consuming heat that radiates from this man
We have understood that he is our only hope and as his candle
Has lit our wicks to burning, he declares, “I am the light!”

sunrise

light slowly filters in
as i hold you in my arms,
with head turned slightly
to let out the drool,
to let out long sighs
of contented sleep,
as i lay here
not asleep,
not drooling,
not content,
watching the gradual growth of light.

after the storm has passed

the light tonight is strangely yellow,
mellow,
like a jaundiced fellow,

falling down upon this ground,
around,
entirely without a sound,

and also a little bit scary,
harry,
like a singer named Barry.

Texas Thunder Storms

the day was dark
damp and dank
with rolling,
rumbling,
crashing,
shocking,
shaking,
reverberating thunder
and flashes of lightning,
so bright,
lighting the night,
jaggedly stretching
from earth to sky,
briefly burning into my eyes,
remaining burned in memory
long after the darkness returned
and consumed the light completely,
so that only the damp and dank,
the dark remained.