Rooks and herons, kings and beggar men— made weak by sloth and greed and fools in the face of temptation. A drink for my brothers now and a nod to their better days when honor meant something and slaying dragons was commonplace.
She saw all her life boil and simmer away— the sugar turned a gruesome black as it burned beyond caramelizing. The man beside her hesitated to speak, to lighten the catastrophe, unsure in her presence and useless in the kitchen, his skill set measured out in spoonfuls of coffee beans.
Twigs, maple and witch hazel mucking around in the mud and mire of dawn in the violet woods, all melting under a pale, yellow and pre-vernal sun, spill-off into snow-crusted puddles and hear the water run? Something’s coming, something’s begun.
Sullen silence festers smartly and fighting the current is a lesson in futility you’ve got to f a l l with the weary waste of it all lay your head on down feather pillows and sleep the sadder thoughts off.
All leaves and dust crumbled up and let loose to fly from my palm, criss-crossed by lines that speak in riddles after seven years of silence & broken mirrors & scars because of it— I was dragged into this world and I’ll be dragged out of it.
This whole idea of lions and lambs, soft, white wool and golden waves of grain, lends little to prove— statistics being what they are and March proving in every way a fickle and vicious bitch of a season.
Bound in vows, I cannot break— the nearness of this place and these four white walls box me in as I stand in absolute stillness of spirit convinced that one step either way will draw the worst kind of attention.
Oh, I’d like to burn it all down and oh, I’d like to see myself out and walk up and away, into the green hills and the greener valleys that await the ragged and lachrymose days that must precede a homecoming, with you and your glass of whiskey waiting on the porch steps to celebrate.
There’s an illusion of cents for dollars, pick ‘em up and throw them out. We don’t have time to make a killing— murder is a time-sensitive subject (well, I’m sure) and the laundry’s been piling up for days and I don’t care, I just don’t care if I’m missing the forest for the trees, a windfall is a catchall phrase rather, I’d rather not be here when that hurricane wreaks the place.
I wish I was a thousand miles away— a hundred thousand miles away— wrapped up in an afghan on an eastward facing porch step, sun warm on my face, breeze mild in my honey-colored hair, black coffee in my hands steaming, birds singing, grass swaying and you sitting on the step beside me, elbows on your knees, chin in your hands, your lips smirking because we ran away and got away with it.
Spit on the mirror— it’s all illusion anyway. Toss your hair and bat those eyes despite the smile lines already crinkling, like crumpled paper, at the sides of your mouth and the edge of your eyes, wear them with pride— the battle scars of kind souls and the truly optimistic.
now—no less in telling more I say in shouting down the kings of heaven fast-fallen angels now here bidden falsely dealing unclaimed wisdom do this do that and don’t run with scissors (here she smokes a cigarette, unfiltered) it’s all hello ms. pot & how are you, dear kettle?
Like I love a sunny day—until I get sunburned or crave the rain. Like I love apples, which I do. Sometimes. Until I’m sick of apples and would really like some french fries. Like I love gifts and happy surprises. Except I don’t have much room in my house for gifts—or my life for surprises.
Subtle is as subtle does— whatever that means. This train car reeks of alcohol and cedar so you must have passed this place not long ago. Or your essence, I suppose. As that’s all we are—a collection of details. Smoke on your collar and ice blue eyes that pierce me straight through. And what am I to you? A silver cross and leather boots? Red threads and ink stains? More like—a blank stare, a forgotten name.
Here lies a rose cast red on the snow forget the thorns or the poetics of petals it’s only one flower among many names, names, names like belladonna and nightshade (and those are the same)— pick your poison.
There’s love and then… there’s this. We met in the doorway and whispered our way up the stairs. A tawdry word like love can’t fully describe the depth of this connection. How deep, darling? Mariner’s Trench deep. Down into the dark below our feet. Beneath the mountain, where the oldest secrets keep. In a box, beside the words that birthed the universe and a bouquet of dried wildflowers from green & gold gardens across the sea. That’s where our names are written in fire and blood, seared to the stones for eternity.
The problem with getting what you want is sometimes just that. The whole thing comes down to one stitch in the fabric, and uneven as that seam came out the colors will bleed together. So torn, so taken, your needle breaks time and again. Is this what you wanted? Is this what you really wanted?
I’m finding my way. That’s what the old folks have to say about it. Muddling through with my fingers pressed against these silent walls, the doors whisper my progress, catty and conspiring against me, slammed shut, locked out. Windows, cruel and cold-faced, have a habit of laughing loudly until (curious) I’m beckoned. There, through the solid glass panes sit silk and satin flowers, the plucked and pruned bourgeoisie— eating and drinking and holding the keys.
Another shabby entrance for grace and a grimy handshake for the man behind the curtain— can’t be helped, m’lord (he nods), m’lady (she curtsies)— since we came posthaste and in a hurry out of the mines, and in from the fields throwing dirt like grave-diggers, tossing stones like cotton-pickers, singing songs like a yellow canary.
Cloves and cinnamon, scarlet and ivy— ice in the courtyard fire in the belfry night’s a sudden danger dawn’s a welcome respite I waited hours for you while making milkweed baskets (and eating bread with butter) but silence is a soul-snatcher and I couldn’t stay there longer my heart was never in this place it’s hum-beats weak not stronger here, I’ve left you bread crumbs on the road with echoes in your ear.
Gambled with a handful of frost all for the fear of flying and lost— no surprise there but had another month of winter to keep me company at night, his icy fingers wrapped and wrapped so snugly three times around my throat, my pulse in rapid flight, his touch as warm as the edge of a knife.