transitions

wa whoosh wa whoosh wa whoosh…
the heart is full of holes,
paradoxically less than when brand new
fossa forming over bleeding os
losing virginity in reverse
closing up shop
nudging parasitic heart,
whispering
“you don’t need me anymore,
little heart,
use your lungs now,”

natal heart reaches
arterial highway
survives in vein
to beat and break
crazy little
two-toned organ
lub dubbing its
percussive journey
life-ward

that first breath
is a doozy
think of it as a cliff dive,
leaping
thoughtlessly
into here
and now

hello,
and welcome
we are all as fresh
and lost
as you

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insomnia

silence outside
yet the screeching
grinding
gears of mind
protest
awake awake awake
fatigue
becomes a plague
shush shush shushing
rusty cogs
how do i oil
screaming memories
nail down squeaks and groans
when there aren’t
floorboards
or even solid ground
i should have found
by now
the resting place
instead returning
idiot-like
to industrious thought
solve it solve it
dis-solve re-solve
until nothing is
a solution

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poet, awakening

cursed consciousness
tracing origins to ooze
amphibious ancestors lugging
scales from swamp
they didn’t laugh
but perhaps they cried
just a little
at becoming
boundaried
circumscribed from
universal detritus
unlimited variation
gnawing, digesting, creeping
in alien bodies
through meaningless
time
until all at once
i
sit up in bed
grey matter zinging
why why why
worries nobody can solve
that don’t matter
in the vastness of space
or do i mean time?
as sleep flees
i think i feel
connections
long forgotten
the matter of me
yearning
meaningless body
staring into darkness
wondering
where my elementary
particles
were born
and why
there is a soundtrack
playing in my head

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Ruptured

Her water didn’t break,
It exploded
A river overflowing barriers
Uncontained by sandbags
Or military intervention
She awoke

She,
Swollen,
Oozed and dripped
As tsunami subsided
Into stream
Creek
Puddle

w
a
t
e
r

Life

Earth surged, quaked
Rended
Relinquished
Control
Rendered life
Pushing
Fuzzy head
Through cervix

Primal screaming
Mother and baby
Separate
Unite
Quiet
Eyes
Wet bodies
Rest in wonder

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apocalyptic dreaming

i am apocalyptic
dreaming
hospital green corridors
(always hospitals in nightmares)
why are women so bitchy?
not all women, sure,
but so many
eating each other
not joyfully,
but
“who put raisins in this?”
sour-faced

the humid, claustrophobic
march
left, right,
no exit because this is
a goddamn
victorian hospital
might as well be
daedalus’s labyrinth
and ariadne won’t share
her thread
with the competition

i am screaming now
not fear
rage
fucking ariadne
how lost we are
i see you
i see you
give me your hand
just this once
and we will all be free
no need to slay the minotaur
after all

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hidden

back to the secret spot
wind on face
whipping tears and mascara
into horizontal
fault lines
no use, sunglasses
inadequate to shield,
huge hipster frames,
screaming
“absurd!”
in this secret place,
she hugs herself
against the coming storm
back to tree
face to sea
watching stripes of rain on the horizon
the salty smell
seaweed and dead fish
wet dog shaking
gull crying
she knows something is about to happen
but, as always, her vision
is impaired
heart pounds
breath comes ragged and choked
sensing,
but not
grasping meaning
until only hazy memory
remains

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Part 5: Found

IMG_2019

skip ahead three decades
and you will find her,
calm and filled with wonder
her hands having become tools;
fingertips alive with a seventh sense
able to feel the barest palimpsest
engraved in dark places

the journey has been long
and she is tired,
having released many incarnations of her soul
to create this opus:

the angry girl burst
and disappeared
after she forgave herself;

the scholar dove,
swimming like breathing,
on instinct;

the lover was troublesome,
with a penchant for rescuing broken souls
thereafter enabling all manner
of bad behavior
for which she paid dearly;

becoming a mother healed her,
for in mothering her children,
she mothered herself;

within the mess of life and release,
she grew her spirit
until one midsummer day,
she awoke,

tears streamed down her cheeks,
not of sorrow,
for she was love,
in its purest form

her soul vibrated,
rippling over her dear one,
asleep beside her,
caressing her two
beautiful boys

she felt everything;
she crackled with life,
and would have roared with it
had it been morning,

she awoke
to the present

now

she is calm and filled with wonder
for life is love
and love is life
and she has found her place
in both.

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Unrequited

they hiked to a secret place,
if you can call a forest pool
known to all the kids in town
“secret,”

in the fleeting heat of summer
the still, deep pool appeared
unexpectedly
amid rapids and gnarling
forest branches
creatively dubbed
“hot rocks”
for obvious reasons
some generations before

it was a lazy summer sport,
hiking with beer
throwing down wet bodies
onto hot rocks
or each other
jumping into the frigid water,
laughter and screams through the quiet rainforest

until Jesse jumped
diabetic Jesse who was drunk
like the rest of them
and his mortal, adolescent heart
just stopped
searing this memory
ever after
of CPR and sweat
and the twins screaming
Jesse Jesse Jesse

there were no cell phones then
only miles to run hauling
ghost Jesse
to the beat-up pickup
and then the loss
of time

fast forward to
Sophie dressed in black
without crying,
reading poetry
for Jesse
her first love
not knowing how my heart broke
for her,
my own first love,
how I had always wished
to be Jesse

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lost

hours

grew

imperceptible

time
yawned and
g   a  p  e  d
swallowed lives
easy as inhaling

she was

diminished

fingers frozen into
question marks
thoughts
sssluggishhh
she felt

nothing

her face knew the act
recite,
react
nod and smile
an automaton
murmuring reassurance
singing lullabies
forever and forever
calling into the wind

“come”

she hid the

dissolution

of her soul
until whispers
penetrated…
her malaise

exhaling,

she blinked,
her image
resolving,
solidifying
once more.

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Not so simple

I drew a border
line around her
a boundary first in sand
then soil
and finally granite
boundaries blocking all
routes
back
of necessity,
I confined her
in black and white
caricature,
flat borders
lined in pen
yet
my heart aches
to create a troupe l’oeil
even if depth
is only
illusion…
she was always a lie,
my borderline
wife.

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