A quiet street

Cute American houses,
a cleaners and Italian restaurant surround
the flapping flag:
red, for the blood it has cost;
white, for the color of its culture;
blue, for its endless seas.

Want to regularly support my writing and get discounts on published work? Visit my Patreon page for more information.

Advertisements

In Plain Sight

Vases, full of budded stems
unnamed, and without scent, rest
on marble, supported by steel;
How do the flowers think
of those who wilt?

Want to regularly support my writing and get discounts on published work? Visit my Patreon page for more information.

In Twilight

Recently one evening, as I watched the sun set through the windows of a favorite coffee shop, a scene played out before me. People disappear into the sunset, some alone, some together and others with company of a completely different sort.

The sun’s silhouette on
a building;
figures
side by side.
A cover
of snow
protecting
precious pieces of life.
An instrument of
excitement,
offered up
and returned.

Want to regularly support my writing and get discounts on published work? Visit my Patreon page for more information.

Being One

The shapes, they pass before me,
Visions to my blurred sight.
They look but do not see;
Move, but with no purpose.
All colors, all shades, every disposition;
They walk right through me,
Miss my meaning,
Rejoice in my defeat.
Their favorite pastime, dominates
My thoughts.
Why do they treat me so?
Why can I not see them clearly?
Many
We are,
Meant to be
One,
But not together.
Separate, like ghosts in the wind.
The sweet, rushing air,
The sun against my face.
A voice amongst the breeze, it whispers:
Stop.
Just be still.

Want to regularly support my writing and get discounts on published work? Visit my Patreon page for more information.

Permission: given

As I sat around a table recently with three other poets discussing our struggles — in relationships, with ourselves — I wondered: who gives me permission to be myself? 

Who allows you
to be
who you are —
accept
your deficiencies,
your manic highs?
Who is there
for you
when you need,
who makes
your soul crawl
from its hiding place?

Want to regularly support my writing and get discounts on published work? Visit my Patreon page for more information.

Norman’s Song

During a trip to Philadelphia late last year, I rode the rail into town from the airport. In the course of my journey, I transferred trains at the Jefferson Station stop. As I waited, I couldn’t help but be drawn to the notes of a saxophone. Norman played beautifully for an on-the-go audience, many of whom did not stop long enough to notice, or appreciate, him. But there were those who did, too.

The men and women,
Girls and boys,
Shuffle by
Sometimes with a glance,
A brief acknowledgement
Of greatness —
A nod
To the musician.
Amazing Grace
The sweetness of their sound
Filling the halls
With waves
Of love and feeling,
Blessing the passersby,
Without pretense;
Working wonders.
Playing
The song of their heart,
Holding out
A hand,
Hoping to hear
The notes returned.

Want to regularly support my writing and get sick discounts on published work? Visit my Patreon page.

Intersections of separateness

Those places of coming and going
They connect us,
And divide
The places we avoid
From those where we reside.
We protect
Enforcing
A shining city,
An example,
Torn from the dark,
From those who would threaten;
Its purity
Derived from otherness.
Its calling card,
Its greatest shame,
That it decides
Who gets to stay.

Want to regularly support my writing and get sick discounts on published work? Visit my Patreon page.

Us

So far from where I once was
I find myself, now —
But not so far —
My gaze only focused,
My steps perfected.
I am me and me is you.
My feet, not so tender as they were,
The ground not so soft.
Though I am one with
Where I am
Heavy objects hurtle past,
Never stopping,
Never asking,
What I need.
Is peace
Me and you, and I and they
Here and now,
Never stirring or colliding,
But stopping to ask?
The light finds my hand
As I hold it open,
Moving up and down my skin.
I and me, and you and they and
We.

Want to regularly support my writing and get sick discounts on published work? Visit my Patreon page.