Wednesday, June 29, 2011

“Of Course, Our Love Has Changed” (Prompt: Change)

Of course,
our love has changed.

Carefree beginnings
beget inevitable scrapes and missteps

which beget arguments and
emotional slugfests

and children
always ruin Eden.

Recalling every pointless casualty,
every sleepless rumination
when tears were the
only language,

I watch as you sleep
next to me,

and I cannot help but feel thankful.

Of course,
our love has changed,

is it now hard won.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Sherri (June 22)

Where are you,
crazy lady?

I miss you,
because I never had a baby sister
to look up to me
and you’re the closest I got to that.

Don’t think that
just because you’re always the one
making desperate decisions,
uncertain of which way
tomorrow is pointed,
doesn’t mean
I don’t need you as well.

You’re one of the few people
who knows what’s
under this skin,
the weaknesses
of our shared DNA.

Sher,
we are more than kindred spirits,
more than familia,

I recognize
the self-deprecating humor,
the desire to please,
and that kernel of doubt
at the deepest part
of the soul

just as I recognize
my own face in the mirror,

except,
you’re prettier.

Call me.

Jeff (Some Version of the Truth)

You were so little
when Aunt Nancy brought you by
the first time,
and I loved to watch you dance
as I huffed and puffed
on the harmonica.

Years later,
when going through photo albums
someone asked of you
“Who’s the Black kid?”

At first, I didn’t see the color,
but eventually
I pieced
some version of the truth together
as I’m sure you must have.

As far as I know,
you’ve never been told
who fathered you,
and maybe your mom
doesn’t know,

and maybe your dad
never knew that
he had a son.

I doubt
knowing the truth
would help now

as you sit in the penitentiary
with your admission of guilt
and life sentence
without chance for parole

for killing your girlfriend’s mother
because you believed
the allegations of her abuse.

I’m sorry you thought
your girlfriend
was telling you the truth
too. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Welcome to the Mine (prompt: Welcome Poem)

You need to be prepared
to outwit the frustration
work past buckets of sweat
and mostly persevere.

We miners
tinker ceaselessly  
blessed infrequently with
a sliver
a sparkle.

Some days there is
so much to harvest
and sometimes it’s a glint
and that’s all you’re gonna  get.

When you don that prospector’s helmet
and dive deep into the mineshaft
where it’s dark and spooky,
remember, it’s a numbers game
and sometimes
all you’ll have to show for your work
is yesterday’s dust.

You gotta like the digging,
the challenge of breaking rock,
disrupting the Earth
and finding something new.

So, welcome,

now pick up
your pencil
and get at it.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

This Desire (Prompt: "Don't Start That Again" Poem)

These moments
of inexpressible happiness
sneak in
as though I shouldn’t hear them coming

and I feel the profound
connection to everything
and then the truth breaks through:

I am only spirit,
unencumbered
to light upon all things
knowing only
the compassion and love
of a truly enlightened being,

but then
just as soon as I become
aware
it vanishes
and I desperately try to gather
the tantalizing details
to hold forever –

and this desire
to possess
that which is not mine

signals the return
of my cursed,
flawed
humanity.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Silly and Magnificent (Prompt: Serious Poem)

By definition,
tomorrow never gets
here
and I am convinced
that God is forever 
re-creating the past
as a cosmic collective
reconstructed memory
for His own amusement.

So all that 
exists 
is in the 
here and now

and even this 
is an illusion.

So, 
when I say
I want my illusion
to be 
beautiful
compelling
sweet and juicy

equal parts
silly and 
magnificent,

I’m serious.