Between Timid and Timbuktu (After Kurt Vonnegut)

as the theater empties out,

water running to the safety

and security of the ocean

of its kind, I imagine the words

between timid and timbuktu.

the moment when these lights

rise on the stage, players

devoted to what they love,

and those storming seas

roaring to see what life

is like on shore. all pleasures

floating in the cool air,

putting the foaming waters

to rest with approaching beaches.

it is magical; full of nothing but

sand castles and cloud animals,

turning the mundane into a strange

experiment in taming nature.

but soon, the clouds turn to overcast.

and the roaring sea returns

in high tide. quickly demolishing

our castles, and rolling back to sea,

wholly unchanged and unaware.

Advertisements

New York in Short

after the night has ended, before

the sun rises I sit and think about

believing. something, anything to believe.

stories like my own, told by someone

who can tell them better than I can.

everyone else has long gone home,

likely sleeping off the memories

of bad jokes and misunderstandings

quiet quarrels, fighting words

wisely left deep in the throat.

but I am awake with the cricket,

with the moon whose crater filled

face reminds me of the boulders

in central park. I’ve never been

but I wouldn’t mind going. Earth

science taught me that they were

dropped by glaciers during the ice age,

an unwanted child, left on the steps

of a church it would help build.

there are so many unwanted ones

in new york. outcasts from one place

or another looking to build their temple

in the sand, where it may unscramble

the riddles of piety. where it may

crumble to the satisfaction of

its attendants, releasing all the

mystery of mysticism that

the orthodox would follow.

tearing the labels of the label maker

is the birthright of those who

have been reborn in exodus.

baptized in exile, who have refused

to be exercised of their demons.

because what is a demon?

is it not the forgotten child,

carrying its message long

after the glacier has melted?

is it not the outcast, left to clean

the nails from Calvary and going home

with his nails painted red;

his hands, drenched in salvation.

Fall Takeoffs

I look at the leaves

the way they fall. Creating

tornadoes is their pass time.

There’s no way to know,

when one will spring up

right beneath my feet,

so I’m always ready for it.

Ready for the winds to pic up.

Ready for micro-disasters.

Ready to be swept away

like my papers planes traveling

far away from their maker.

I never expected them

to keep flying without turning

their noses to the ground.

I never expected them to

keep there heads up and soar.

I didn’t expect it, but I am so proud

of my paper airplanes.

So many souls are on board,

for a flight without a destination.

No seat could be reserved on a plane

of loose leaf. How could a ticket

have any note when the flight is

a note without an address.

These planes, my fleet,

are unmanned, untrained,

completely unprotected.

Our only power comes when you unfold us.

Open the plane doors. Search

through all the luggage for something substantial.

When you can’t find anything, let the passengers,

tired of travel, take their first step into a new land.

Create a home for them in your land.

But don’t let them stay too long.

Take them back to the airport,

put them on another plane, ship them somewhere

they haven’t been. They’re always looking

for new places to go.

Half-Light

Between sunrise and sunset,

I don’t know what draws me closer.

The thought that now will eventually be

then or that my then, can never be now

again. You see, I’ve made too many mistakes

to let one slip again, so I’d like to turn back the clock.

I want to take a jar and fill it with my mistakes,

like fireflies, trapped for their own good. But now,

its too late for these lightning bugs. But even caged bug refuse to be

anything less than shining and bright. They were once closer,

to God and good, and forgiveness, closer than I was. So now,

I let these fireflies go, I can’t keep them here.

If I did, they would die an unholy death, haunting me.

So I’ll release them, in the time where they can clearly be seen:

a time between sunset and sunrise.

Pulley System

When I know that in the morning,

there is another day, I feel sorry

for the boy who lifts the sun. He is weak

and worked too often. His finger

are calloused and broken, set with splints

of fire, and iced by the morning dew.

I need him, the boy who lifts the sun.

Without him, the child who carries moon

does not rest. Without him, in the morning,

there is not another day. Thank you boy,

the one who carries the sun. Just because,

I refuse to look you in the eye, doesn’t mean

I don’t appreciate you;

It means I can’t bear to see you worked this hard,

but I know you need to work. My child is afraid

of the dark. You need to comfort her. She needs you.

I need you. I appreciate you. I swear I do.

I wish I could pay you more than green houses,

because this isn’t a Monopoly game.

This is real life, and you are needed elsewhere.

So speed, boy who lifts the sun, go to the next man.

Speed on like slave ships to the new world.

On your way to visit the destitute, they will look at you,

in your eyes and say, “I appreciate you.”

Call the emaciated from their dry watering holes,

that you have given to me at my cogent demand.

They will say, “Thank you for bringer light,

now what may we bring to you.”

Feast with the poor, for one last supper,

before their own crucifixion;

You are an appreciated, honored guest.

Relationship Advice from Foster Homes

She says,

“When the waves shake your body

like a stressed father does to shut up a child,

do not resist it. Let it smack your chest

with a cold hand. Does that remind you

of the times your mother did it because she loved

you? Does it feel like love yet?

First you will try to run, but you can’t run in water.

Then your feet will try to kick the water harder and quicker,

but water doesn’t back down from a fight.

It tosses you harder and farther, makes you gulp air down

but you can’t open your mouth without swallowing water,

like it’s your first time swimming in rough seas. But it’s not.

The waves have you trapped.

They know you need to breath, they feed themselves to you.

They know you must kick to stay afloat,

they tie your feet together with ropes of satin.

You cannot move, you are weak against waves.

And if you defeat one, there are more out there,

ready to make you a Titanic,

holding you up to sky then casting you down,

forever bound by leather to the seafloor.

As you breath more water than air,

I want you to say:

“Yes. This feels like love.”

Try to believe it too.”

Confessions

Confessions From the Milky Way

None of you can guess how I started.

None of you see that all these stars

are eyes peering down at me, and you,

from distant galaxies.

Andromeda looks at me with disgust.

She know every solar system inside me,

better than I do.

She is so beautiful with her hair in those long,

arms reaching out to me, but never touching.

I wonder what that would feel like.
Both a beautiful sensation of tickling,

and a complete annihilation of a part of me.

One day I will know that feeling.

And one day, if all this dust decides

to go against my plans, I will know what it’s like

to be labeled Peculiar. Or Irregular.

But I’d rather be Peculiar, than get too close

to AndromedaI love, and strip her of her stars,

and create a necklace of their stolen goods,

leaving only a black hole where she once shined.

I can feel it coming now, I’m completely

annihilating a part of me. The most beautiful one.

Confessions from a Long Distance Relationship

I hear the galaxy sing.

I sing her song at the alter

of text messages and skype calls.

It’s such a lovely tune