year of ice and fire

Emotionally digesting holiday mayhem
stuff stuffed down
people so sad, and angry.
Angry to be so sad,
watching their lives seep down
some irrevocable hole.
It was supposed to be better.
Supposing life face drowning in
sweet, lush flowers, flopping back
to watch movies in the clouds.
Angels and wizards and clowns
smile simply, wave past.
Grown up at last,
equipped with legitimating ID
to enter the grown-up places
— where is the promise?
“When you get older you will understand.”
No reward of freedom for following the rules;
after endless stringent days in schools,
no wisdom to replace those wasted years.
Fragmented by fear and aggravation,
ambition and futility,
unable to command fluidity into
structured bones, or the wage
to repay required loans.
Conversation always turns to want,
to depression of what was meant to be.
The burden, not a gift,
weight of a world awaiting revelation.
Wasn’t it enough, the sky snow bright
one Winter night
out in a world alive in celebration?
Breathing clear crystal cold,
warmed by deep blood flow
under our skin.
February snows through conflated years.
Fear was my ally, hailing me on, hugging
with glorious laughter, carrying unsure steps through
onerous trails. And those ebullient ecstasies of survival.
Drunk on the gold that surpasseth science or light.
Touch the cold sting, letting the song sing through me.
Do you?
Feel the music?  Abandon your amygdala to dance free
awhirl in a swirl of laughing snow?
In dreams, inchoate, unremembered, do we play in those
moments of bliss to keep us balanced, to give courage in a life
less lived, less honored?
Old, glazed-over eyes seek momentary solace, look long,
longingly, into a silly mist of snow beyond windows closed
securely against the cold.   Dream world revealed,
in the interplay of eyes and mind.
February snowflakes
Flitter Flutter
Feathery powder
Melt into my mind.
Marching On
I give my wandering children
Anger to protect you from pain
Rage to ameliorate agony
Fear of what folks won’t explain
Fraught laughter to counteract tragedy
Music to move you to heal
Theater to unite what we feel
that vague sense that nothing is real …
Lost at an indistinct edge made of snow
Unsure where we’ve come from, with nowhere to go
Beggars and bullies and braggarts and whores
iron chains on our windows in rooms with no doors
Fire roams freely, unleashed by cruel wars,
feeds forever on days we will never see,
worlds we will never be
*March Hare
Another kind of rabbit hole.
Ghastly dark and bruising.
No recompense of wonder.
No luxury of child’s imagining.
No spritely tea time story.
Only caustic mud awaits below
at tumbling’s end.
Young rabbit hops
beside Edenic flowers,
sniffs puissant nectar in the air.
I am complete in this instant.
Now, I leap to a farther garden
to taste the bitter charms,
the salty repartee, tropic spice
and cold beer. Sense, sensation,
cessation of sensation —
not happiness, not bliss.
The essential can not
be sought.
No destinations wave aloft
as banners.
We act.
We affect.
We move on.
I am the rabbit.
That chic Alice had the hots
for me and we had planned
to hole up for awhile.
But then thing’s got too
surreal.  Lewis Carroll,
wacky jabber?
I began to feel used
as a plot device.
Can you blame me?
I ate some of Caterpillar’s
mushroom, grew into
a pooka and moved
in with Jimmy Stewart.
Redubbed myself Harvey.
Loved the cocktails.
Later, I haunted Donnie Darko,
puzzle poser of his final fall.
What I mean to say is
that fiction
is born, bred, propagated
out of pain, vanity, desperation
and the humor we conjure
to spite it all.
I have no legitimacy.
It is enough if
I deign to cavort at your call.
April’s Fool
A Fool I’ve been,
jogging behind visions,
cringing from derision,
seeking solace from a merry Moon
too soon gone old.
Peeping back on follies,
sticking pins in pain — jolly?
no, morose, cold …
Harridan crone.
Have my wanderings sown
no happy harvest, no cozy home?
Snuggling into punishing remorse
“You knew you should have run a better course!”
“You know you deserve to be alone.”
Is that true?  Am I the Fool careening
down the precipice,
broken, no meaning;
is this my hapless fate?
Daze of failure insists I mistake
castigation for a goal?
A Fool can be a cherished, merry soul,
lightly traipsing heroic mountain trails,
reveling in freezing rain and snow,
tasting bite of ice and flame without bitterness.
This I know.
Unwanted April
How dare proud trees show off in flower
How dare bright dawn arrive so soon
How dare warm skies go grey and shower
How dare young curs howl at the Moon
Winter gave such brave cold cover
I could conceal frigid heart
How dare come Spring when I can’t love her
How, with no will, dare I restart?
Imagine May Day
Brazen witches fly, legends say,
dark Moon nights; arise, stealthy, silent
in their joyous revelry.
Bonded to Earth’s creation;
learning at mother’s breast
to manage life’s gifts and lessons.
Historic Man may proclaim, may murder
for fealty, to swear allegiance to
their hunt’s command.
They may elevate their One True King
to kneel and obey.  They may employ
counting measure, ceremony and sacrifice,
taunting and torture or other trials
thus finding for each loyal swan a pond
to plunder, to parade in royal colour,
their place of pride.
Cruelty descends, more master than tactic;
it is the enemy of joy, of flavour,
bonding, works of love and honour.
Yet men, on real ground, work companions
to soil and rain, engineers trained to each
moment’s urgencies, philosophers of stone and mud,
reason and toil, persist.  Their sinew and bone feed
the ages, build clay and richness on which
wealth relies.
Wisdom knows the sweat of practiced movement,
flexible to unexpected obstacles, able to modulate
quiet or loud as the crowd ebbs
or grows in credulity.
Where wisdom seeps through, counters
prevailing poisons, invigorates blood to nourish
minds and hearts, look there for blessing.
Arise, lovers!  Bring forth better days,
ours to play in open revelry,
neighbors enjoying shared labors and our fruit.
Accept truth of magic; imagine life into this world.
for the May Queen
Tick Tock
Times a’creeping
Maidens weeping
beating rags along the river’s edge
shallow floods keep the land aware
destiny is seatide
Crazy lady mending her endless tears
Throat flumed, a voice to run from
Love never tarried, though many she married
She cocks an eye, arrowing flocks of fears
Cackles and coaxes sweet mourning doves
to carry her coffin to market
Buyers beware
Don’t stop
Don’t answer
Don’t stare
Don’t be seen
Hide in the green
Hide in the hole you call home
Never admit you belong
to the caste you belong to alone
Never assent to succeed to the throne
Wait for cover of darkness
Wallow in comfort of sleep
Trade what time you’re given
for a secret you can’t keep
Destiny is seatide
Pink Pancake Place
A shanty of a place
surprise upon a side city street
painted sweet pink
serving pancakes steeped in sticky syrup
fruits, nuts, chocolate chunks
create your own ambrosia.
June, a sweet, gangly girl named
June, in the bright, breezy month named
June — sharing secret bliss
taste of Sun-kissed cloud and honey.
    Riverside romance one dusky June
    Turned into a winter poem
    By firelight – light of the moon.
    We loved and parted all too soon
    Each to return, a separate home
    Riverside romance one dusky June.
    I catch a glint, a ring of spoon
    Flashing through the tale I spin
    By firelight – light of the moon.
    Sometimes at night I hear you croon
    “We never had a chance to win.”
    Riverside romance one dusky June
    By firelight – light of the moon.
July 8, 1981
We have these moments we may share, my friend
We are not here to judge or blame
We’ll join our souls in song
Our steps will blend into the pattern 
    of the game we play
It’s all a game we play.
I’ve often watched the stars and thought of you
Although I didn’t know your face or name
I’ve followed in your form in all I do
You see, we’re all the same
It’s all a simple game.
The days are long, the nights are longer still
We’ve learned to play outside of time
Just passing through each moment as we will
Falling in and out of rhyme.
Perhaps tomorrow we will meet again
And, never having met before,
We’ll have our interlude of love, and then
Depart, each through a separate door.
Moon Child/Leo
Created from the Milky Way shining into Mother Moon,
Reflections from that ancient light emerging from her womb.
A sad guitar, a raging sax, emoting through the sea
Of stories sung through ages all, what was through what will be —
Were you the Lady of that lake, were you the piper’s reed?
Were you the luscious, sacred fruit fulfilling every need?
Yes, you the child dancing in the fullness of the night
To ring the rune and cast the spell to make the darkness bright.
Of goddess born to keep us safe and sing our lullabies
Till we emerge as sparkling stars to light the dreaming skies.
Heart strings
playing in the sunshine.
out standing star sublime.
Ability to set each day in tune.
A lilting aria of blessing.
Air of precious light
singing pure and true.
Brilliant notes pour, glisten, through
the shade.
A melody, a glade of golden hue,
that’s how I think of you.
August Leaves
London Bridge is flooded, melting.
The towers are struck and fallen down.
We well might look at this tragic mess and say,
“I’m not cleaning that up!”
But maybe it’s not a mess to be cleansed,
but a game to indulge in.
Luxuriate in dazzling suds, intrigued.
Work out scenes to turn chaos into valuable memes.
Are we having fun yet?
Because if we’re not, we’re probably missing the point.
Perhaps subliminal notes are written upon rocks or stars,
secret lights along a shining trail;
or it might come as spontaneous lyrics singing. 
Myth claims a method of mindplay.
Thoughts metamorph into birdlike beings,
unfurl vestigial wings.
Whirled reverberation
from eternal time.  Messages pop like soap bubbles,
fly swiftly beyond imagined borders
to wonders of continents, oceans, possibilities
yet unexplored.
No matter how we explain, they hear
the chatter churning between their ears.
Children in character play,
simulate their own boos and cheers.
Why interfere? Change or replacing the game
may cost too dear, be inconvenient
in this midst of disarray.
Indulged in fear,
passionate ire turned outward,
triggered to blame, to ignite contagious fire.
Set back a’piece where brambles
disguise our winding road, discourage inciters
with inbred eyes.
sad, shadow memory.
Hard harsh faces
leer, jeer, beg for tears.
I dare not cry.  I never know what to answer.
Held by my arms fiercely protective.
Stale weeping, caustic, bred of poison, drips through.
August month of lion and maiden
cast fiery pure, heat dries lust
for action
yet in summery dreams redemption
shimmers, force carried forward
May gusto of august dreams
inspire trust
for harvests heavy laden
August celebration of the Dark Moon Goddess
under the light of this August Full Moon
Aquarius bears the Water, carries the way
along the electro-virtual waves
shining Moonlight, Faery Queen or fabled harlot
stirs potent night blooms, expelling myths of
what we cannot bear, cannot overcome
Feel in the electric falling starlight
Spells of renewal, of power to look back
upon our falterings, to find the seed now grown
yet changing still and ever, able,
willing, co-creating in the illuminated shadow
invoking the peace of dissolving twilight
of midnight’s hopeful resurrection
of the hinting flame that lightens before the dawn
take peace into each breath, each incantation
from the strength to align impeccably
with your deepest truth
September reflection
Golden night.
High fields of food and seed
aglow for harvest.
Aching for thrill and release,
late summer serenades
wraiths, spirits of Pan,
amorous nymphs a’hum in ripe foliage.
Crickets, nightwings,
mingled weeping and merry cries
slowly reveal
stragglers on night shores,
legends told in voices, echoes,
Tumbling images.
Old grey cur
hops on 3 legs,
tagged w/ a red bandana.
Summer flowers
prickly to the touch.
Late buzzing bees.  These old bones sag weary.
Walking past the schoolyard,
I look for you
in all your childhood
pain and glory.
Filmy vision,
weak eyes obscured by tears,
I see you now.
Wish for those littlest moments
to cling to me,
absolved of fear and obligations.
Entering into a joy of its own,
love long subdued, yet never
denied . . .
Deeply buried, muffled calls from
memory’s tomb.
Embedded in layers, perennial autumn leaves.
Empty years
temporarily deluged by tears
tumbling like coins
through torn clothing.
Hard earned but never spent;
I weep for you.
Entering into a joy of its own,
elation of interchange incomplete.
Crepuscular darkness of Autumn,
solemn, ancient, descending,
anticipates consummation.
Ah, November, time of wonder!
How now shall you cast my trust asunder?
Deftly weave your captive hypnotic spell
that I have learned to love so well.
You shatter my defenses, unbalance my soul.
And leave me feeling purely whole.
Dear November, so like love and lust
Drug maddened dove,
I’ve clasped you dearly through falls past.
Why does your magic never last?
So weary, wandering in my mind.
I tend to hide behind a blind,
entranced in fantasy, wondrous free,
while building barricade imagery.
If thought be trap, then where’s the spring
of Autumn that migrations bring?
When dreams of leaving soak the brain,
to concede, proclaim all faith insane.
Mad revel in the loss of rules.
‘Til fearing that I look the fool,
I scurry down ‘neath winter’s frost.
And count the moments that I’ve lost.
December Wine
Decant December wine
best saved for end
of the year
held in joy of anticipation
Traveling the hills on sleigh rides
of old
Reliving the thrills over
fine age and spirit
a day we hold dear
it is worth far more than gold
I see a star pale and strong
hear a wind
made of song
holy choirs singing
There is nothing wrong with desire
Wonders of will, of intensity
wild like the sweet breath
of winter
the joy of being alive
Capricorn at December’s End
Remember, remember, love is the ember.
Catch fire to your mind, to your brutal
to your losses cast upon a lotus sea.
Hold for your life, upon this memory;
into this lonely Moon of sad reflection
send those longing nights when no one
remembered you.
Can you recall, reanimate, reconnect?
Can you forestall, hold so close there can never be bisection?
Can a silent echo fill so completely, instill ever enriching,
radiate that instant, that bond?
Is the memory of a song,
the distant weep of times so long bereft
of sweet release, a mantra moving mind beyond
self-imprisonment for a crime of passion?
Quiescent  summit of hero’s mountain
soothed by view of waves, of distant heights.
Currents lift to flow, falling
to rise.
wisdom releasing
over transits of Time.
What year has this been?
Wishes obtained, sustained, begun.  Deep inspirations.
Races run, sunsets framed, scintillating proclamations.
Bold, flirtatious masks; goal enhancing tasks;
reflection of cascading plans in sheltered flames.
Relaxing fun, happy laughter, expansive games.
Holding the best to memory; the rest let fade away.
Increments of transitions, long, steep,
often discovered in critical obsessions, stored in
popular modern messages.  Hard to keep
up, in touch, aware of cards in play.
Unable to resist insistent caring.  Still weak, wary.
Yet, need to lean on panic’s crutch a bit less each day.
Taking steps, stands, giving attention.
Over months and moments projects start, fit, flow.
Unknown unknowns less like monstrous black holes.
Mystery, magic, sage co-creators in ecstatic circle.
Familiar woes, stories of want, of work without
reparation, strangely dispel.
When we all begin again
to resolve to evolve, to make a
better trade, more alive, less afraid
ready to dig in and build for blessing.
No prohibition, requirement of mission
denies desire’s essentiality to feed our greatest visions.
What bright star might foretell
future resolution, fears openly quelled,
goals of hope in sight?
Beacons, blessings of a night, cold
yet comforting.  Season of projected light,
of ice and fire.

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