Cities and suburbs, real and imaginary.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Sonnet #56

We will all die; before we do, let's eat
and act like we belong together at
the table in the restaurant, we seem to've sat
among a crowd of strangers, while the seat
was kept unsat upon for only us, so dine
on every morsel that arrives from the back
And drink all the wine 'til we've emptied the rack
We will all die; before we do, recline
into the moonlight, capture meanbeams, laughing
at the hideous faces that look down from on high
The squinting of stars, the clouds chafing
Wait for the sunrise at least once on a beach, sigh
waves, dance to their sigh, stay awake, baffling
all reason, together tonight, for we will all die.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Sonnet #55

I imagine brains are malleable things that grow

Into whatever shape we make of them, like muscles
twist and swell if exercised, and hearts clear through
or clench, depending on how we live. We wrestle
in knots where what we do is who we are
Eventually; what we feel is the way we know.

A thousand years from now, the deer will stare
into the television screens. They took our town
The sturdy doors, the walls and fences warped
Their hooves and backs into a bent up shape
They breed to barricades, training fawns, and sharp
The preening antlers rise above the frame of ape

The boundaries we build ourselves will hold
Any brain to come behind to share our mold

Sonnet #54

...and how I suffer, Lord? You say I do
not know the meaning of the term
My belly full, my bed so soft, I go
to doctors when I'm hurt.
                                         I squirm
inside my jaw, my neurons twist, my heart
beats black and feels like void, but no
I do not suffer. It is passing, merely part
Of what we mean to make our soul Your boat
And contemplate the mysteries You make
Of what we're told to want in life
And what we're told that it will take
And how these twins are liars, laughing strife
And so, I do not think I feel much pain
It's only summer storms, some mud, wet stains

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Sonnet #53

For days it rained, the dragon flower pushed
out from the vine, a swelling dress of feathers
Fire tinged the edges, red and yellow, better
watch it grow, the bloom will burst all rushed.
It only sings an evening, bursting tresses
Scenting out a perfume for the night moths
The long tongues of petal, stamen, wroth
at us for daring dragon blooms with our caresses
The fleeting beauty of the dragon, one night
It sinks and rots away and swells the egg

The mayflies come in spring and fly three nights
They spent so much of life trapped dirt and beg
To swim into the sky to chase the light
And fall a burned out husk, a shell, a peg

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Sonnet #52

How strange it must be to be a citrus tree
So far from the mountains of Korea and China
Where they say the species came to be
The trees don't hold to a mecca or medina
They don't pass stories down, face east
And remember the hills, the community,
There are no immigrant stories, no beasts
That haunt their mythologies, just seeds
That know enough to grow, they grip the ground
And wherever they land, they lack familiars
The song of the flower, the roots spreading mounds
All known companions sought, unfound, no conciliars
No single prophet risen to speak of mountains
lost trees awake in orchard rows like muted islands

Monday, August 22, 2016

Sonnet #51

The Word of God is silence, can you hear it?

It is the hum of blood, a windless day, a buzz
below the threshold of the ear, because
all the movement and the heat, how we sit
on the back porch, listen as the late summer
sun that's beating down the trees and bodies
All of it's a shivering echo of a threnody
Sung when every piece of star was smaller
Than the eyes that search out for the source;
After that word spoken, what need for prophets
There are flowers in the fields, blood laughters, 
songs in twilight among all gardens, and what of it?
Can't silence also have a volume rising hoarse
these ripples of a silent shout, strain to hear it?

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Sonnet #50

In the morning, I look myself in the mirror,

Brush the night grime from my teeth and gums,
I lean in close enough to see my eyes clearer,
without my glasses on. As close as I come,
As blind as I am, I could smell his breath
if he had any. Feel grateful for each gray hair
I came to my graying honestly, no wealth
came to me, but my health is fine, my stare
into my own eyes reminds me I am not
dead, I am not pretty, I am an echo of the mighty
whose birthright was to stand, but I am not
mighty. I am father's face, my mother's eyes
Let me see this man I am, let me call him out
Each morning accept myself enough, a daily rout 

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Sonnet #49

I only have so many f***s to give,
So hurry up and gather what you may
I'm completely out, as well, of s***s to give
There's flying f***s  backordered, but they will stay
in shipment for some time. My f***s come slow,
And in the mean time, these my final f***s
On shelves, in jars, and places you well know,
fair few are left so come and gather quickly
From these, my f***s remaining; I insist
You do not linger browsing thickly
When every moment is an opportunity lost
To gather up my f***s, as many as you can stow
Make your selections of my f***s, and f***ing go

Friday, August 19, 2016

Sonnet #48

The vine is a parasite of light
It climbs across above and over all
It places weight on victims blocking sight
Carry me brother i am sore sprawled
The tendrils thicken turn and quicken
Brother I thank you now my serpent tongues
Hold fast and tight and squeeze my stalk thickens
By your aid, we are better together, our bones
Belong as one, and all the glory that I build
Is upon this giant's shoulder, by no intent
My leaves and roots do what they will
I am so thirsty, brother, until seed is spent
Stout oak, swift hackberry, proud pecan trees
Patiently waiting for the rot of limb and leaves

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Sonnet #47

The first that lives forever will be not me

or you, or any one of homo sapien
We try things out in rodents, monkeys
There will be immortal capuchin
Ten thousand years from now the dog
Will pass down, in families, bleary-eyed
Forgetful creature, living in a fog
of smells familiar, memories all keyed
unto the dawn of time, no truth spun
Which memory is real, a bowl of food
A bowl of water, a field in which to run
Friends, all vaguely known, a boy that's good
Ten thousand years, or more, the rat
The dog, the monkeys and apes, the cat

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Sonnet #46

I never wonder where the rain will fall

When the clouds gather, there is rain
There's space between one drop; the stain
of water on the ground will splash to all.
Of course there's space between the drops
Some places struck, some not, the mist of it
Will miss some minute specks of silt
Along the wall, but when the rain stops
It's hard to tell where one drop fell upon a wall
When the rain comes, we all get wet, all
Even with the umbrellas, galoshes, no props
will keep the cloud of spattering. Even now,
I feel the humid steam upon the windows

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Sonnet #45

Because poets never sing of butchering I don't
Know the way to carve a deer safely,
Pull out its guts and organs, break the joints
I don't know how to collect the blood humanely
When the pig is slaughtered, poets don't sing
Of stuffing geese with grain and a funnel
Until the moment the liver is about to cringe
We learn of the garden in poems, of heaven and hell
The only slaughtering in Odysseus was sacrifice
How to feed blood to ghosts. The rest was war
And kingdom management, and curses and vice:
There was an orchard, though, how to plant one, for
a river runs through it, there are little hills for trees
A gentle slope, runnels for dunging and flowers for bees

Monday, August 15, 2016

Sonnet #44

The birds will eat all seeds and fruit
They will because they're hungry, there.
They eat the insects, too. Hunger suits
them, all that energy expended in a hover
We put the nets over the grapes and berries
They dive into the crevices. We hang foil
to shine at them, old CDs, for glaring
light to scare them, put up scarecrow owls...

I cannot blame them, though, their hunger
is the curse that haunts us all, and fear
will drive us all to stones. When younger
they looked to endless blue, drear
emptiness devouring, screaming needs and wants
Grown birds push back the empty sky with cantos

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Sonnet #43

Water, water, everywhere, and all of it to drink
The miracles of modern science, water
Is a wonder. Turn the spigot in the sink
Clean water comes, on command, what better
miracle is there in desert plains like this
Cities dig deep wells, send long pipes
We build dams, erect industrial processes
So that water comes, and we can snipe
about the cost, if we want to, but
we must never forget we're griping
a social miracle: it could dry up
It could turn orange and rust as piping
rusts in industrial waste, clogs up like treacle,
Work together, earn these everyday miracles.