After You

I remember when poetry came so easy.

A shaft of light tapping my shoulder.

Creases laying lines on my face after a nap.

Another age spot showing up like a ring on a tree.

 

The Muse used to be after me.

 

Poetry would help me catch my breath.

Water pooled around my imagination,

Whetting appetites and desire.

Now I have to ask to be free.

 

The Muse used to be after me.

 

It’s easier now to write about poetry

Rather than unravel words to a poem.

You know, those wending subtle slants

Infusing linear thought like soil over seed.

 

The Muse used to be after me.

 

Well, I’m asking now for you to say

“Look at how the petals play.

They hold hands around the yellow pill.

A daisy is a daisy is a daisy still.”

 

Now I say to the Muse, “After you.”

 

Barn Swallows

They’ve been back a few weeks,

bringing joy to our open field.

Tap dancers on tufts of spring breezes,

short spurts of song attending.

 

Slipping in and out of our barn,

nests are sprigged, and detailed

for another generation of acrobats;

those aeronautical exemplars of sky.

 

Cats lean against the door.

I imagine cigarettes bobbing

out of their mouths, as they discuss

the exploits of the day.

 

Their disregard for field mice,

those punks, beads for eyes,

little pipsqueaks of manic form.

So cat cliché, so old school.

 

Then a Cheshire grin settles

under their whiskers as

they look up with angel eyes

of insidious intent.

 

Feline felons in wait.

Butts are tossed, while

crouching coils their springs.

Hopes of swallowing a swallow.

 

I’ve never seen cats jump so high.

Soundings

Caught in a crevasse,

In the lows between

Two rogues.

Who directs these,

And how am I here?

 

This ocean cannot be

Fathomed as the

Heavens cannot

Be crossed.

To whom do I belong?

 

The temptation is to jump.

Man overboard, Man

Over bored.

Whether Jesus lays asleep

In the hold,

 

Or walks on the water’s

Lips, arms out,

Out of the pseudo safety

Of a lifeboat.

Is there any question now?

Statements

The straightest point between

Two lines a short distance.

 

The scenic route is

Lined with roses.

 

All roads lead to

Roaming.

 

The unimpeded stream

Is speechless.

 

A waist is a terrible

Thing to mind.

 

Many proofs are

At the end of the day.

 

Love conquers all,

But often woos.

 

If I beg for mercy,

Grace is thrown in.

 

Thankfulness is one

Root of goodness.

 

A gift received,

A gift given…that’s life.

 

The fear of the Lord

Is the beginning of wisdom.

 

God Joined Me for a Drink

The trickle of unconsciousness

filled the tin cup.

I couldn’t handle the half empty

of hope and a future.

 

I drank and drank to quench

the mystery of the largess of God.

But God had salted the water

and assaulted my soul with an eternal thirst.

 

He held out his hand

and I set the dented tin

over the scar imbedded

in His lifeline.

 

He poured into my eyes,

right through and down

to the bottom of my arid heart.

This Tin-man echo of mine.

 

“Here, take, drink of this cup

In remembrance of Me.”

The chalice, cool in my grasp,

brimmed with blood red wine.

 

A sip of God consciousness.

 

“Do this in remembrance of me.” Jesus

 

Heavy Cream

In hot water,

into the grind,

the grounds

of black semantic

overture.

 

Simple strain,

drips, rip, tip

my conscience

awake,

then steal time

 

to brim the rim.

Steam lifting,

Cream diving,

touch bottom,

to rise as a dream,

 

spreading like an

early morning kiss

of fog, dulling the

pain, easing

the tension

 

between the dark

night

and singed

light.

A sip of silence.

White Ceramic Cup

 

April Fools Eve

I don’t mind the snow.

April’s fool arrives tomorrow,

but today each flake waifs down

in its own personal space.

 

A small squadron of geese

honk by, swirling the snow

in their wake.

They kept flying northeasterly.

 

Their laying bets spring

hasn’t gone anywhere.

It’s just an Indian winter,

flaps down.

 

So, to the white freckles on the wind

I say, “Enjoy your visit.”

Then I honk at them, “Get out of the way!”

And lean into spring again.

I Love Peanut Butter

Like spiraling a spatula

round the bottom of a

peanut butter jar,

 

so am I each morning

in a futile attempt of

scraping in hopes of a

 

slather of meaning on a Monday.

Why is the wholeness

divided into seven daze?

 

Does a heart beat me, ever?

Are there breaths beneath me?

When do steps become strides?

 

I lick the spatula with gratitude,

wave it like a wand,

and pray for grace and mercy.

 

For every day is Monday, really.

Damage

These creaking bones,

Whose support go

Unappreciated

All these years.

 

These spots fleck

My skin like dandelions.

My face requited

Their affections.

 

This knob on my foot

Offends me;

By days end,

Expresses its disdain.

 

Those unseen organs

Play their stanzas.

Lungs like bagpipes.

Heart, a kettle drum.

 

Ah, for the age of grace-

The grace of age.

Life’s stage,

Curtains.

 

Damn age.

 

(It’s not that bad, really.)