Stranger and Citizen

Limber limbs suspended in time – such grace is revelation.
Acutely aware of all the wonder that surrounds us,
my mind willingly turns inward.
Everything and everyone – stranger and citizen alike – is poetry.
Versets…haikus…sonnets,
epic narratives, only known by a select few,
or possibly by thousands who worship in earnest.

Even with vats of black plashes,
I cannot record them all.
My ink will run dry
and my memory banks shall prove insufficient.
It would prove to be a risible endeavor.

And yet, I ache for the loss,
with no anodyne in sight.

 

untitled/October 2019

though it be stale and laced full of holes,
give us this day our daily bread,
for the shops are all closed and bakers
are home, sleeping quite soundly in
questionless beds

though it be moldy and lacking in taste,
give us this day our daily bread,
for the gut must be basted with something
homemade, before we are blessed with
freewheeling feasts

viii am

Knee-deep in obscurity, a man of indeterminate middle age wearing
a mustard-colored mackintosh stands poised to answer the front door.

He’s politely swiped matchbooks from almost every bar that he’s been to.
Bewildered by orchards of anxiety, he builds bridges of sticks, one chain
at a time, whirling each piece between his thumb and forefinger before
setting it in place.

In a massacre of time and good taste, the man sips on his seventh
cup of instant coffee in two hours. Brimming with unease, jittery
hands make lilting loops in the morning light,

Farewell September
Welcome October

The First Door On the Left

You enter the room where you child self dreamed.
Your dreams have changed but the room has not

The water-stained ceiling has not forgotten how your
salt-caked eyes stared wildly up at its jowls, dazed by
what the day had dealt you, oh so ready to retreat into
your ever expanding skull.

Those walls, those taciturn aunts and uncles, recall
your mirthful mouth making merry after August
birthday thrills and encounters with middle school
Rudy Valentinos.

The pre-Instagram picture window, alone now as it
was then, reflects on who you were, who you are, and
who you may yet become.

You leave the room where your child self dreamed.
The room has changed but your dreams have not.

Mount Takao

Up and up, up the mountain alone,
but not, for the prying sun always
tries to reach me though the stooping
pines.

Up and up, I drag my legs to the summit.
Ancient yet ever-young, our mighty friend
greets me with snow streaked shoulders,
delighted that I have made the pilgrimage.

Green tea ice cream, tasted and savored in
memory’s mouth, cannot be found.
Effort must be its own reward.

Down I start and down I stop.
Frost flowers, crouching within the craggy
folds of the mountain side like hermits
hoping to evade the sun’s judgment, listen
with me to an explanation which I can only
half understand.

Down and down, legs dangerously buoyant,
hopping over rocks that would trip me with indifference.
Faster fellows bounce past me, flying far out of sight.