Archive for August 2015

Old-Style Ditty

August 31, 2015

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Old-Style Ditty

Her hair was black as any curse
and though she’d ride fast as wind,
darkness heavy as a hearse
tailed her close as man trails sin.

His heart was like a lilting song
that learns itself on others’ lips.
But when she sang, the tune turned wrong
and clung like wings unto her hips.

But these were wings that had been heart,
wings that once had flown him high,
now flesh was turned to gossamer,
and clotted earth cut off from sky.

For clay he was and clay he’d be
for the rest of all eternity,
while she with hair as black as tar
flew with the loft of his lost star.

 

 

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A little ditty written with a book of “1000 Years of Irish Poetry” used as a source for prompts.  (Not meaning to cast any aspersions on the Irish or the poetry!)  Will likely link to Real Toads Open Platform. 

The Last Supper (Four Courses)

August 29, 2015

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Warning!  (Ha!)  Four draft poems below for Corey Rowley’s (Herotomost’s) prompt on With Real Toads to write about a last supper.  Please feel free to read one or more!  Thanks!

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Last Supper

We no more will be eating
when we slip into that night.
No, then we will be feeding
those still fueled by light–

the grass that curls,
the grubs that pearl,
whatever sups on ash–
We’ll take them where they might be bound
until their past too seeds the ground

and together there we’ll lime the corn,
not waiting for what next is born;
for we’ll know not wait nor want alike,
when we are eaten by that night.

 

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The Last Supper

Before the restoration
the fresco barely lingered on the wall
like the last taste of broth
in a bowl,
its drawing as fine
as the shadow of hair stranded
along a temple,

worn by that water
that walks everywhere on air
for years and years and
years–

a wear that wore the pigment
to aura, washed it with
such seeming beatitude, that we never even thought
of how people truly sit
around tables, or of a man working with
wet plaster, egg, the glue
of a rabbit skin, his own
bread, wine–

 

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No More Roving of a Sort  (After George Gordon, Lord Byron)

So, we’ll no more go out eating
so late into the night
though the heart be still as hungry
and the street lights still as bright.

For a child at home’s asleeping–
at least we’ve put her thrice to crib–
and she’s now too big for squeezing
‘twixt the table and our ribs.

So, tho’ waiters’ feet be fleeting
as they promise service soon
we’ll no more go out eating,
beneath the bistro’d moon.
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Last Supper

He stopped eating several months
before death
as if his mouth could only manage
breath.

“But you love tomato soup–”
“Don’t tell me that egg’s
not soft enough–”
“Come on, it’s getting
cold–”

Sometimes his chin would swell
with the tight clamp of lips,
skin shiny as its own lamp,
as if, like a kid, he wouldn’t,
when he couldn’t–

for the person inside
wanted to live, certainly,
not so much for himself,
as for the one re-heating
the soup.

 

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Special thanks to all who got to the bottom of this post! The painting is by Leonardo da Vinci, a fresco of the last supper–this pic, pre-restoration; no copyright intended of photograph whose source is unknown to me.  k. 

 

 

To You, Who Likes William Carlos Williams

August 25, 2015

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To you, who likes William Carlos Williams and other Imagists–
One Way (of Undoubtedly Many)
That I Am Different From Them

I can’t write simply
about a red wheel barrow, glazed
with rain, and the plain so-much
that depends upon it.

Too much is appended to
my red wheel barrow.
Though its front tire is uninflatably flat,

it still carts
a chimera, shaped, while you protest
the extra effort required in
my lurching slog, by your endless searches
for the right tool, pot lid that
fits tight, true fix

while I’m fixated on moving
damp leaf mulch right
this minute.

And, in its undelayed but belaying veer
to its rain-glazed side,
may be found my pride
in poor but immediate equipage, my age-old
reliance on a single
serrated knife, pot metal spoon, whatever tilting top
or melt-handled spatula
comes to hand.

All this and more bellies
its red basin–the scratches already
on my new camera, your attention
to socks, and–yes, I know of it–your secret seasoning
of my cast iron–

huff-puff being the thing itself for me,
while you, who urge the purchase soon
of some new barrow, possibly blue,
sigh,
then, as if much depended upon it,
put another shoulder to
the wheels.

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Agh! Drafty sort of poem for Kerry O’Connor’s Prompt on William Carlos Williams that was part of Margaret Bednar’s Real Toads “Play it Again, Sam.”  I am linking on Real Toads Open Platform.   (Based on Williams’ poem about “The Red Wheelbarrow.

I know the pic doesn’t exactly fit, but am not in a situation to put in a better.  And I rather like the poor weeding elephant.  Thanks! k.

Swim

August 21, 2015
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Photo by Douglas Salisbury

Swim

As I swam out one evening
breaststroking a mountain pond,
the green sigh of the water
was deeper than any sound

that I had heard that whole long day
and deeper yet again
than I had heard the rain-drummed night
before that day began.

The water did not whisper,
we did not talk at all–
but it returned each every stroke
along my short and tall.

It pressed against each wrinkle,
caressed both swell and crack,
swallowed me within its float–
oh how I loved it back.

And up against the apron
space wears when being sky,
a slivered moon shone like a chance,
I thought had passed me by.

I swam out one evening
after a so long day,
and where I came to shore again
is nought that I will say.

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Here’s a very drafty poem for Susie Clevenger’s ( prompt on Real Toads based on the photography of Douglas Salisbury at Moments Captured Photography.

Stitch

August 16, 2015

 

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Stitch

Time–she had a stitch or nine,
because she ran so hard and fast;
it sewed itself along her sweep
until she slowed her pace at last;

and all of us who tie our shoes
and dash our morning faces wake,
slippered into sudden sigh,
though carapace began to shake–

By that, I mean our peanut shells
so welded by centripety,
their brittle case won’t whittle down
even under battery

(though we don’t batter much our shells
for arms are thoraxed tight within
and Time’s bright gait so blurs our view
we miss the spinning at our end.)

But as Time slowed, if for scant breaths,
the dervish dance cast by her draft
unspooled and drooped, and feet adrift,
we swayed, then lurched, as on a raft

that washed up from a sea of notion–
each own’s idea of what this ocean
of floating storm is made up of,
this life we row, this row we motion–

Next landed on a slant shore’s sands
and while Time’s hands massaged her side,
we, creatures of a patterned beat,
assayed a waltz through lapping tide–

Soon enough, Time ran again,
with seams unstitched and hands a’scissored–
in her upswings how we whirred,
and at her strokes, how quivered, quivered.

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A draft poem of sorts–meaning freshly written and little edited for my own prompt on Time on With Real Toads.   The drawing is an old one, not perfect for this poem,  but my laziness makes me a believer in recycling–

 

From a Crawlspace

August 14, 2015

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From a Crawlspace

Dear Mom (she wrote),
I worry when I don’t see you,
and when I see you,
I worry you do not
see me.

Our tragedy.

Trying to please the other,
as if the other
were the mother–

And you, winded and wound
down,
are now pleased
by nearly all–

while I’m still wound
up, beached
in some gone breach–
the caked dust at the roots
of your window, the viscous air
we swam through
room to room, the much-vacuumed
carpet, its green closer
to a uniform at war
than a blade
of grass–

Why can I not get past
the so long past?
grasp what is nearly over–
understand it’s time, in time.

dear mom (she wrote), dear mother–

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A draft poem of sorts for Izy’s Out of Standard on “Pigeon Superstition” on With Real Toads.  Note that all poems are not autobiographical! This is an odd one for the prompt.

The pic is mine, done on a paper tablecloth at a restaurant (bar!)

 

Clouded

August 12, 2015

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Clouded

The sky is grey on white on robin’s egg
this late leg
of the day,
soon to be pale
over moon–
or you could call the clouds a veil,  I suppose,
its net unrolled
in crimped folds
from a pillbox hat,

but what I’m really trying to get at
under this cloud cover
is that some day we all will filter
through grey to robin’s egg
whether as ash
or mist over humefying soil,
our bones toiling to net
a resemblance in the air
to what stars let down
when stars let down
their hair–

Only, there is nothing I can say
except, sincerely, not you
not yet,
which brings me also to the plea,
not me

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Draft poem for Real Toads Open Platform.  The pic is taken from the Metro North train line, along the Hudson River.  All rights reserved.