The Bull

Don’t speak;

Be silent, be attentive.

Be listening.

Don’t ask me how I’ve been.

I’ve been nowhere.

Nowhere has watched me read thousands of pages of fan fiction,

stewing in envy of those who can summon The Will;

Nowhere has watched me go to bed at 4AM on a Sunday and fly

through the house and out of the window in three frantic

minutes the next morning; Nowhere has seen me marvel

at Banteay Srei, a trip I never told you about, where a blazing

noon and humid air startled my skin into nostalgia’s waiting grip,

caught in a slowly crumbling red world, dragons breathing white

fire, a stone bull resting on its side on a slab in the middle of it all;

most of him is long-eroded but the eyes on that invisible head

are nevertheless watchful, bewildered still by a sky of any color,

curled tail and timid hooves wary of curious hands.

Dreaming of Old Age

She reads almost exclusively women

with the occasional exception

of those aged well beyond their ripeness (dead)

with the fervent hope of improving the poetry

of her body. Bodies, she says, are

“no more, no less than the words we take into ourselves.”

Seated back straight, knees trapped between chest and desk

(she does love her partial rhymes)

unconsciously fetal,

she pulls sustenance from all corners of the virtual globe.

Her dream of dreams is to live to an unforgivable age

to shake hands with Andromeda and spin,

spin until all her blinking worlds have been flung from the house into the chaos

of an empty street.

She wonders what the hell is taking that girl so long. (Time is always sometimes slow)

Half-remembered upon waking, the sunlight of memory warms her arms;

oh yes,

she was Methuselah in a previous life.

His beard perhaps, or the wafty hairs surrounding a bald cap

(there’s no way he wasn’t at least partially bald)

The point is, she was a follicle

thousand of follicles,

itched and scratched by the man himself and God knows who else.

She rises from the sheets confused, stumbling

to the fridge for hot chocolate and cold pizza

feeling thin as a plastic bag and older than the moon.

 

 

The Old Tree

When I was young,

the aging tree had always

been in repose, as if cradled

not pulled by gravity.

Trunk dark as dirt

found in Home Depot,

roots ugly and gnarled toes; raised

we leapt from them balanced

on childish wobbling ankles,

imagining tightropes over lava,

featherless arms held aloft, cradled too

until not. Wind wound through hair,

between branches like fingers

of an expectant hand, palm-up

and waiting for the thousand

pens lent and never seen again,

car keys, aged and wrinkled

receipts, change, come-hither

gestures, curled fingered beckons;

a supplicant hand, head

bowed, waiting for God.

When I was young,

the aging tree was replaced by a swimming pool.

Character-Building

I don’t remember who she is anymore; it’s been so long.

I see blonde hair, and not much else.

Does she have blonde hair? I can always

change it, but it’d be nice to know where

my mind had gone back then.

How good is she in social situations?

Who does she trust — what’s

her best friend’s name?

Does she have a best friend or did she forget him?

Did she leave him behind and unsure number of years ago

so that little remains of his life in her mind —

a brief memory of sitting cross-

legged on a small basketball court with ten hoops,

her reading, he and two more beside, forming a small square.

His face is vague, brown eyes and short brown hair.

Very Miami. Or very almost everywhere.

She doesn’t remember his voice.

Maybe he had a funny laugh?

Did he try to ask her out once,

or was that someone else, years later?

Does she wish she remembered his name?

Laziness

Constancy in my name

Bestowed by the 1st Muse

“Unchanging,” she crowed,

Stubborn girl, lazy girl,

Consistent in your self-eroding

habits.

I don’t really have a title for this…

Does “sunflower tunnel” count? Because that’s what I have this saved as on my computer.

He walks through life
in a tunnel of sunflowers.
Twenty-million golden razors
glitter their eyes from the depths
of that long hall. Fear
of them, their high cheekbones
sloping toward a wicked mouth —
the unseen end —
is a self-contained twister,
the winds of which dizzy the throat,
seeping like tea leaves in hot water
to chill a bulbous spine.
The tempestuous breeze
startles the never-opened books housed
in the body’s library. Their backs
never forget the sensation,
anticipate it everywhere.
Down those long empty corridors,
the air is thick as blood,
hot like a small fire gnawing at the ankles
of the tallest shelves.
Yellow forsythia dangle
from the follicles of his wild hair,
tangle and shear against
the blades of eyes set in arduous
lines, heavy with curiosity.

I haven’t posted in a while, and I felt like putting something up, so if this kinda sucks … sorry?

Frightened Gods

The god of fear is a coward.
Eyes closed, he sees nothing.
Trembling against the headboard,
my eyes dart to the corners of the room,
to the ceiling, in search of shadows,
minute twitches in the air that must be imagined
but I still twist to follow them, staring at the spot
where they vanished to see if they come back, a horrific
thought that slides across the back of my head and down
my neck like a rotten tongue — what if this time it’s real. I curl
into the shyest of gods as he huddles beside me. Wrapped in a cloak
of the star-dotted sky that pools out from his drawn legs
to brush against mine, its touch like the errant brush
of wind against a bare shoulder in the sun, a satin
curtain, he slowly vanishes, keeping me company
for only as long as he can stand it, drawn
and repelled as he is by fear.

(This is meant to be in the same universe as “Hellis’ Eye;” still feel like it needs some work, so I’ll probably come back and revise it, but for now I’m not sure what it needs.)