In the gaze of the other

"My mistress' eyes are nothing…"


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It’s What You want (Poem 20 of the Poetry Marathon)


Never enough of it because the throngs crash into me

When all I want to do is get to the other side of the street.

And the rare time I sit down to watch a movie or t.v.,

There’s the dog’s head or tail blocking the screen.

So I call her over to me, and in 90 degree heat, she,

Whose heredity traces back to Alaska, lies against me.
 

Relationships, the worst for the coveted thing since

no matter how hard you try, you can’t get him off,

To let go and do something on his own, without me.

I have a friend who’s a close talker, another who pokes,

And yet another who slaps me every time she laughs.

My mother was a hugger but even she could sense.
 

What is this prized possession we never have,

Well, not enough of, but we all need and want?

What’s her name? You thought she was beauty,

And you were wrong. Not money, nor fame, either.

Yes, family, marriage, children, some of us crave that,

But others could care less. No the thing is             Ah, yes.

 

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Gemini’s Shit Storm


She says my moon’s in Gemini; I’m in for a shit storm as the planets configure. 

My gut gurgles, “true.”  

Storms a’ brewin’, 

a slanted wind tossing Bazooka bubble gum wrappers and wooden popsicle sticks across

the stoop of my youth.

**********************************************

Windward blows the dead awake; shredded zombies moan skyward cries. Stand ready.

Leeward gusts settle upon soot-trodden lace and rusted pipe, 

like predictable night crowning the inexplicable horizon.

There’s no way to tell, so breathe through the crackling wires’ electric veins.

Tear it down, board it up, and blame the weather.

***********************************************

Poised on the cliff, each steps cautiously, blind-seeking gripped edges, rocky shards of granite rubble, 

a death slide or eternal flight.

A cat agilely climbs the dresser stairs with jaws in machine gun chomp, aching past windowed perils.

She studies her predator’s patio glance back.

Coyote snouts flick-sniff, scuttling to flashed fear beneath orange trees and wicker tables.

***********************************************

Storm’s a brewin’. 

Pleistocene gassy beams once pocked the scarred heavens, now snuffed shut, 

too, the wind tilts mountains pebble by pebble. 

Lighthouse rays pierce the retinal fog, a grainy lightning chop of insight.

We’re all just kicking up some dust before we bite. 


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Tweet That

Sparrow beaks tweet ticket-ee tee tee tee

Yer mate tweets back, “Impeach the dude”

And all the kerfluffle of sham and shatter

Nattering a morning’s cuppa jo unsweetened

Enough to make you hate your neighbor or

Honk your horn at a red light to waken her, 

Lap-staring, brown-haired comatose waif.

 
But I read somewhere that choice cuts the

Day in two, yours and mine, theirs often 2

Late 2 make 2 more light seconds matter.


Close your eyes, blink twice, and it’s over

By the next exhale’s end, paused like ice

As you draw the next breath inward ho and

So it goes, so it goes and so it go, go goes.


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We Witness (for the Poetry Patroness)


Insurmountable: to palm someone’s blinding grief in your hands 

to show her–the griever– 

the terrifying, sublimity in bottomless agony. 

You can’t help her picture that pure, petrified stance on the bridge 

mid-way between his suffering and her own, textured so distinctly, 

galaxies apart in their partnered struggle,

his fraught with the tortured, focused fight against pain, and hers, 

witness, empath, limb, mother, wife, married to his suffering. 

Her body pours static breath into his mad-gnashing vortex.

 
Where does one end and the other begin? 

At the point of internal harrowing, razing cells that scream 

in hysterical, frenzied death and reproduction, 

death and reproduction, 

with no end in sight, for these crazed, cracked-out enucleate disks don’t quit, 

bear no mind but to destroy in their very giving–as if human.

 
I’ll show you the petals of the wide-blooming, morning rose, 

heady as your bejeweled wedding day,

the dewy, pale, opalescent-translucence of redolent, velvety dalliance, 

stained rust-dry at the edges–

a picture of blossoming, ordered DNA

perfectly-formed, fragile as your first-born’s, infant fingernail– 

carrying its own prescient death at the borders.

 
She’s beautiful, 

not as a symbol, not as obedient structure, 

but as herself, fragrant joy bleeding. 

I’ll cup her in my gardening hands to grow a path between us–

sorely aggrieved and floundering shadow, 

clumsily consoling your fear and mine, 

both corraling an other’s-brother’s-father’s-husband’s-son’s fluxing end. 

Could you crawl outside a minute to see?


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Two Children


 
Two children live here, now straddling the yard’s fence,

one she calls “my pet,” and the other “peeved.”

Why peeved? What injustice writhes in the willows today–

a bird-pecked worm, a spider-spun gnat, or perhaps, a rattler

gargling rat blood? Yes, you bemoan those victimized but what

of the black widow’s guillotine or the Venus’ trap door teeth, do you, 

oh peeved? Does she, my pet?

We recognize her, the way her head tilts to catch the sun’s

catered rays to the swan of her neck, the hint of heather on 

her breath, chamomile in her hair.

Dawn loves her perfect poise and light; there she’s her 

element. Why argue with nature, my pet peeved? She’s

who we are. Be sweet now, love and comfort smile us happy.
 

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Bi-pedal Panties


While the pic axe shrinks to an ice pic in my shoulder,

My eyeballs swell to beefsteak tomatoes, plumped tight

Pressuring the sockets to give way or tear up and split.

I’ve tapped as many keys as there are doors in this planet.

Day is done. Pace myself. Leave some pages for tomorrow.

Time to puff a two, loosen my belt and lose the jeans, bra

And throw on a tee-shirt. I’ll keep the panties but not these;

 
They strangle the creases to dead circulation in my thighs.

I’ve gained weight, and they’ve shrunk. They’re sentimental.

She gave them to me with a gleeful glint, when we were a

Thing. A present. I think it was my birthday or may be just

Because. She loved me then, and maybe she still does.

We’re a distant fragrance of passing perfume in a coat;

It’s winter and the cinnamon leaves crackled and died off.

 
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The Door

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An edge borders time on which thrush plagues a fallen wren,

Small fright fringed in imperceptive tremulous fever.

No one intuits the thin cry.

Where’s the door?

She coughs up her last lap.

They’ll come now. Now that it’s almost done.

Funny, you can outsource love but not death.

No more false starts.

This one’s true.

…the door?