Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Palms, My Palms

Photo, unknown artist

On a cool October morning, I lie,
Woodplank back upon the floor,

And here...

My face hides
Beneath my folded arms,
Awkward branches staving off
The epiphany of light.

Too much light, I tell myself,
As if there were such a thing.

It has taken me this long
To get from there to here,


Being a measure of My Time,
A certain pretense of something my own
Inside the anonymity of this universe.

Something… what?
I cannot tell,

Nor can I know what thirst
Anguishes my fingers
While my empty palms are held

To skim the wounded glass of a forgotten window,
To graze the peeling husk of an abandoned door,

To know,
Something was here
But no longer is.

Memory is not such a bright thing,
I whisper to myself.

Some nights it means the tease of non-existence,
Some days it means losing something… twice
Having found it… once.

Are two losses better than one, I ask myself,
When one loss was quite enough
the first time around?

But now,
The palms…

My palms (for I do not disown them)
Are yet open
Like obsessing eyes
Even now
Even… knowing the hallucinations of memory
Are re-losses,

Even now
My palms are

too much light

To calm the thirst that swells
Like the arrhythmic appearance of lust,
Like a tide surrendering to the moon,

it was not my eyes that followed
but the tingling of my fingers that led


To follow, obsessively,

to kiss the empty air in the wake of…


Oh, anguished fingers!
Oh, ailing bones!

Monday, October 10, 2011


Girl with a Pearl Earring 
by Johannes Vermeer

You happened upon me
As I went on my way,
With what stealth!
With what intensity!

And it was not your beauty
That took me
Oh, no!

It was the quiver
The rustle
The swell…


It was the Suddenness of You
That made me


And look twice
Just… you know…
Just… to be certain… of you.

Monday, October 3, 2011

What We Are

Photo, Jolene Monheim

We are destined to be together, he tells her,
And she replies, Always… all ways.

But what do you say to the beloved
Who dares you… for Love… to drown in the sea?

Drown with me, he says,
And, Yes, she says, these are waves for you and me.

To sink, and as I fall, to choke, not on water,
But on the stillness of surrender and abandon.

To lose my Self to Yours, he says.
I drown, if I must, though I have already hit bottom,

Touched the end with my fingers, she says,
Fallen with full consciousness upon settling sands.

But though we drown, the depth of this ocean
Cannot snuff out the light of the sun, they chant,

Nor the having been-ness of yesterday,
Nor the will be-ness of tomorrow,

Nor the unquiet truth…

That the sky remains sky,

The sea remains sea,

And you and I… you and I.