Friday, November 20, 2009

san francisco

lost again in alley scrubs
seeking a straight path
among inclining bricks

buildings odd and sharp
as needles loom over
us all braving a short walk home,
canyons of cracked asphalt
and singular puddles

alive with oil cans
and rainbows that
spread out in decaying circles
concentric and amorphous at once,

greased and glistening
from stuttering lights
hanging over a servants entrance
of a restaurant kitchen
where we seen strange men
in white aprons and t-shirts
wield their professional knives
and hoist more trays of
filthy dishes to a crowded
aluminum counter,

long cars and short cabs
drive by on the main street we walk to,
past dumpsters and cardboard condominiums
exposing an arm or leg only half concealed
during a dream of rain,

the slurred hissing
of tires on the street,
someone shaking a bell,
store fronts lit bright in righteously
fake light of heaven,

something is about to erupt
over the spires that prod the clouds
full of northern rain,

there's not a taxi anywhere
as we stand there
full of food
and shivering in the wind.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Home

I am lesser than the sum of
the parts |
you found for me
after the trains arrived
and the ships rolled in
with waves brown
with old dreams
and dead fish,

medals for my chest
and steel for my knees
that never buckled
nor knelt before
strange aromas
of cash reward.
I kept my nerve
and protected
the shelves
that held each and every pot
our futures were contained in,

spiders and houseflies
come and go
as their nature pleases them to do,
the mail comes
and rests out of reach
until knees and will power
match their reserves
to match the staircase
if only to find out
the name of the
newest debt
that was invisible
until the uniform is exchanged
for an average man's clothes,
used and slightly too large,
threads from the pant leg
dragging along the floor,

coming undone
each image that flashes bearing flag and brand name,
undone and peeling
to expose not green fields
but only brick
and generations of
calcified glue
that replaced the smiling faces
with hysterical smiles
we've worn
as we enter into the night
alone and without reward.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Three women

So these are the faces
of your summers and falls
that have gone by
like billboards
zooming by in passenger car windows,

your daughters
bought funny hats
and baggy jeans,

you walked
where trees and canyons
met with canyon walls,

three women framed
by sunsets
and early dew or frost
conditioned with respective decades
of reading, of being read to,

reading the lines
of faces that seem
the roads between
the cities you called home,

these are
spaces I've felt
in the space between
my bones,
the sense of place
and purpose
nameless and untouchable
'though I've yearned
for years
for what I thought I knew,

but it's wonderful
to be between all the chatter
and each smile
and grimace you could manage,

it's goes unsaid
and we'll leave there, as is.