Moody Tree: Poem 12


Your name means mountain ebony,
a certain Bauhinia,
common to coastal California,
but I call you moody.
You own my front yard,
dominate passages and pathways,
burgeoning weight of verdure or
leafy reaches for spider’s webby catch to
neighboring anchors–rose bush branch or
car parked side mirrors.
How you please my wispy-boned mother braked still,
the dog leashed to the wheel chair,
under a relenting shade,
cooling an afternoon zephyr.
In spring or autumn, sometimes winter too,
you boom-blossom burbling orchids,
delicate pink and purple hazy bells
that sometimes ring in summer too.
That’s when your leaves burst butterfly hearts
of hunter green fringed in lemon-lime edges, a
hovering, healthy, verdant vibrancy.
But on any given week without reason,
your leaves brown at the edges,
then all the way through,
baring skeletal bramble
like bones of the cancerous,
exposed,
radiated,
burnt
for the winter–or summer complaint,
marring the yard, baring the hidden wreckage behind you.
That’s when the pods hang dry in rusts and reds, seeds
to bake or burst, sturdy uterine drip packets,
like dry, pea pod icicle tears crying,
yet unyielding to the grip.
And the next week,
they’re gone,
replaced by the brilliant buds as
poking penile plants peek through tightly tubed petals,
orchid splendor,
the softer side on a misty Monday.
Until Tuesday.
When the mood strikes.
Which outfit to wear for today?

She Walked Alone

  
Slip off my boots to a world teetering at the root, 

floundering in endless shift.

When anger is the coffee wake up, the split second fury,

there is nowhere to go from there–

escalation peaked at the start.

Chafing at my patience, she leaves the cafe wounded,

walks home to escape the noise, arrogance and

irritation incited by a felling crowd chopping pig.

Her stomach and head ache yet again.

She walks out, and I glower at my coffee.

She walks out, and I fail to trace her steps.

She walks out, and I grouse at you like a heat-seeking

missile finding the volcano erupted.

I did not find her.

Anger found me.

She walked alone.

In the Center of a Dream

   
Sitting in the center of a dream

is an endless empty space
a hollow black hole I fill 
with the quadruple rainbow of jellybeans
or the sludge of broken drain pipe leaks.
And when I awaken the day tastes sweet
or salty tears silence the coo of morning dove. 

A candy vendor and a plumber,
I circle the morning mood
and inventory the cracks 
putty the holes with tongue wincing treats,
a nectar for my tea and a fuel for empty.
And when I navigate the world in a day round,
the flavors fade lost in the buzzing of honey bee.

Returning to the hive at night
the piping all but drifted off
to the soundless sea,
the hey-day mist lingers at crenulate margins
of memory leaf strands teased out in ache.
And when I shutter sight again to sleep it out
visions flicker inside the cave to thus prefigure me.