Understudy

Have I become your sofa
am I useful as your footstool
As you walk past the ants in the streets
your props

Long winter nights are hot or cold for you
the rest of us
the huddled masses
we wait for our cue to go on stage

And I–merely an understudy
from the underbelly of the populace
applaud your efforts
to keep your world–kept

Posant pour vous chéri
your antagonist–on the ready
ever steady with your lines
to fuel your justifications

Sitting at the table with you
I am no more to you
than the vegetables in your soup
if you ate me would you mourn me

Daydreaming about connections
making love like a bandit
listening to Body and Soul
on the Victrola

outside of my body
I watch us as we roll

Advertisements

El largo invierna acaba

Attempting to leave behind all of it
the anger and the strife
the inability to forgive–
I bathe and put on something new
I purge my body of everything toxic

How do we live as if the winter was not?
how do I go on pretending we are not bruised–
so I go, so I sear with fire,
I cauterize the wounds
so I go, so I remember
how to let go of the list of wrongs

Without letting go of the wonder, the miracle
as Spring takes over my house,
as love fills the empty heart chambers
still sore
and I weep for what is lost–this day

I tell you, this day is for weeping
for what could’ve, should’ve, and
would have been
without the despicable, with
something more noble
than good intentions

But tomorrow, tomorrow
the weeping will be put away, and
life allowed to flourish, love allowed to nourish–
tomorrow will be today, the anger swept up
and tucked away, put in the bin for the burning
the burning of the last remains of winter

the wind is changing again

all of our spring and summer
went wild with autumn
then froze solid
each tender caress replaced
with slaps and words tossed askew
seasonally mad

each private spot I showed you
in a weak moment, is
now vulnerable to windy storms
and harsh words
like a little girl eyes up
(please be kind)

it is a matter of time, before
that girl will recall her strength
close the door forever
that allowed you in, and
let inside
the wind and weather

Say you’ll never leave me

Peanut-butter and jelly on toast
and the end to all things
Lana del Rey crooning in a way
I have come to count upon

Eggs boiling–keeping simple
the kitchen taking on a balmy,
sultry, foggy feeling
on the cusp of mid-west winter

Shall we dance? Let us
make the best of it, with our
dead leaves to be raked
our car rusting up from the bottom

My sepia view of the yard
our birthdays looming, suddenly
less of a threat–doing their best
to be more of a promise

**

Ms. Del Rey

And Sir Paul on topic

altered chords

this morning
six days before Christmas
beat poetry and jazz
run through my veins
like homemade caramel

do you judge me
for how well I groove
in the middle of my pain? From
somewhere
a cornet holds the note

I don’t dig frigid weather
but there is
something cleansing
about the other extreme
of the spectrum

how my body
had melted into July
and now when I walk outside
my organs have blended
with blood and water

and a tune that keeps me
walking on

when I was queen

snow tree under light.jpg

in and out of the car
snow in my hair
icy wind
biting my skin

these are the days
that wake me up
and remind me that
I am alive

skin tingling
an old voice in my head
above me the street lamps pop on
the snow turning to sleet
and I turn on the windshield wipers

-I felt like a Queen then-

but I turn off the voice
in my head
listening instead
to the wipers
and the snow
hitting the car

The holidays can be brutal

I.

One day after a couple argues
she, a carving novice
hacking into roast turkey
he
with a cranberry stain
in the middle of his chest

The dining room swirling before her
into a painting by Dali
hearing his voice far away
something about irony. How
he thinks it means something

As her knife falls
and clatters
she says,
‘stop talking’

II.

I am an alien
in your world

I try to add to it
giving you my best

yet

whilst my back is turned
you jam holly
into my heart

light ’em up

last winter when the hoarfrost came to visit
when we were celebrating Christmas alone for the first time
without the other birds in the nest, flown to more moderate climes
and oh how the mist rolled in as the temperatures rose and fell, rose and fell, like a cheap whore
not knowing one day to the next which coat to wear
and the monsters that used to dwell under our childrens’ beds
stayed in the light then
cheeky and brazen, breathing on the windows
icing them up until we could not see the yard
chilling the rooms until we knew there was no denying
we would be at war with the forces of darkness
the depressions and over-eating and long listed regrets
taking over the empty space under the Christmas tree
and all our hopes danced on the ceiling, knowing with just a word
they could banish the lot of ’em