Tuesday, June 30, 2015

On Monday...

On Monday, yesterday, I learned that a H.S. friend of mine died of cancer, late Friday/early Saturday.  He and I weren't close, but if you knew him you would know that almost didn't matter.  He was such a good guy...a fun guy...a quirky guy...personable...cool.  You didn't need to know him deeply to love and connect with him.  He was that kind of charming.  (The people who really got to know him well, how much more lucky and blessed are they over the mere high school-turned-facebook friend who counts herself pretty blessed with just that.)

His death, however, was a surprise to lots of us.  I immediately thought "Hey, I should write a poem about this because I'm a poet."   It's what I do, poetry

Mostly I tried not to cry.  I was at work, after all.  If I had anything poetic in me, I figured it wouldn't work itself out of me until much later when the grief wasn't as strong.  But maybe not.  Maybe there was nothing in there.

It was mid-afternoon and I'd lost the battle with tears a few times (my cube-mate was in another office for pretty much all of that, thank God in all of his loving graciousness), which meant tear-stained glasses and a tear-stained phone.  Why a tear-stained phone you ask?  Because I couldn't stop myself from looking up the details I'd missed over the weekend on my phone.  (I docked myself the time...I really was useless there for a while.)

My glasses I cleaned in the bathroom.  My phone I kept trying to wipe clean on my shirt.  My shirt was cotton.  This should have worked.  Nada.  I couldn't get the tear-stain -- you know, that crusted edge of salt left behind on your face when you cry? -- to come off my phone screen.  I worked it off eventually, though I couldn't tell you how now, but I kept rubbing at it and rubbing at it until I did, like some reverse Lady Macbeth.

And somewhere, mid-rub, this was born.

I wasn't entirely wrong about needing to get over the worst of the grief, though.  Usually poems kind of dump themselves in my brain, and only minor tweaks are need.  I only finished this a little while ago.

I miss you, Ed.

6/29/15 a Dear Friend poem

Tears don't clean
as easy as it seems they do
They leave behind salty scars
They stain they mar they pull at every surface they touch
Ghosts whispering out loud
secrets crowding and shouting in your heart
Until your eyes bleed red
and your heart beats in time with your head

Tears like this don't come clean
No matter what it may seem to be
they leave behind scars
Salt marks on raw hearts
are not cured with easy words
Its a sword that pierced me
This kind is a running wound
that I'd run from if I could
But tears cried can't be undone
nor shoved under some brighter happier version of who I was
before I heard the news that he was gone

Oh Father can you hear this
Father can you see this
These tears that won't come clean
though I wipe and dry and polish and hide
they keep coming
They keep creeping
They keep seeping through my fingertips and my fears
through my laughter and my lightness
A denial to my every day self
that everything is all right
I don't want them to sympathise
I don't want to cry!
I don't want blue skies and sun
I don't want the world to turn on when he's gone
I just want--

I just want to be where You are
To hide my face in Your side
away from lying blue skies
my mask of pleasant smiles
and be grieved
of a good man

Thursday, June 4, 2015

NaPoWriMo Days 23-30 Digest

So I completed NaPoWriMo at 12:30 am on May 1st, but since I hadn't yet gone to sleep I counted it as a win. Or, y'know, I totally cheated :-)  Either way, I did in fact write for most of the days of NaPoWriMo although I was, at the time, too exhausted to post.

And now it's June. Sigh.

Anywho, here they are in date order.

Day 23

Day 24

Day 25

Day 27 x2

Day 28 x2

Day 29

Day 30

Monday, June 1, 2015

NaPoWriMo Day 30/30

5/1/15, technically, but I'm still up (12:26am)

Dear Husband
I admit
That when I think about us
It's not kissing
Or laughing
Or loving
Or sharing our life with friends family or children

It's just you
And me
Alone together
Reading or
Thinking or
Holding or
Walking quiet lanes of Central Park p

When you know me
You'll know it's not because I live for silence
I love laughter
And bright conversation
And the raucous joy of living out loud in a city afraid of sleep
But it's easy to hide in noise
To make it a mask of whatever they want to see

Yet it's in the companionable silence
That I imagine I trust you most
With my thoughts
My opinions
The faces I make as I read
Sometimes out loud to you
My secret self all on display

It's an easy intimacy
I think about
When I think of us
Far enough to stretch our legs
But not so far to speak
And not be heard

NaPoWriMo Day 29/30

4/29/15 6:35pm, looking for Elijah

I keep trying to make this pretty and poetic
But the truth is
The world is madness
A frothing madness that feeds itself
On the spin and the loss of control
Wondering all the while why you don't enjoy it too

And the truth is
Part of me wishes to sit back and watch
All the illogical conclusion
Come to their logical ends
Studying the descent
Almost as much as I want to pull everyone
And everything
From the cleverly hidden abyss sweetly singing to us all

But the truth is
There are still 7000 who have not bent the knee
Which may be a joke when faced with a world at war
But it's legion to the army of 1

So I'm gonna sing

NaPoWriMo Day 28 x2/30

I think the 1st one is unfinished, thus the 2nd one happened. You'd be surprised how easily that happens, not knowing whether a poem is or isn't complete, given enough time.

I'm preparing myself for a summer without you
Winter having come and gone without a word


The third eye they all prize
Sometimes won't let you sleep

I wonder what they'd say
If they knew the price you pay
For the privilege of seeing more

NaPoWriMo Day 27 x2/30

I missed the 26th, apparently, so I made up for it on the 27th. I think it had been a busy Sunday.

I'm sending songs out into the ether
Because it's easier than reading
The disdain you try to hide from
Someone who knows you


4/27/15 9:23 pm

Dear Husband
Lately I've taken to wearing my crown
On my ring finger
I'd always assumed it was mine
But maybe that wasn't right

Tell me
Dear King
Does a royal sceptor hang from your neck?
Is a feathered quill circling the fingers of your left?

I wonder
My King
What you now think is your
Will turn out to have been mine all along

NaPoWriMo Day 25/30

4/25/15 10am, still working this thing out (before we forget who we are)

Before we forget who we are
I'm the one who walks after you
When you walk away
I'm your secret keeper
Your defender
I'm the one neglected for unproven lovers
Who gets left behind

Now it's your turn
Tell me who you are

NaPoWriMo Day 24/30

4/24/15 a mourning rumination

Things we're never going to do but have done with others
Ride in the back of a cab while the city rushes by
part of each other and lost in our own thoughts
Wander the streets whispering secrets
at the volume of a shout
Flee an oncoming wave
of water
of people
of emo--

No, we used to do that all the time
We're doing it now
dragged along in the undertow

Bar hop
looking for the perfect burger
perfect coffee tea beer
the perfect dessert
Watch the sun rise over the city streets
holding hands
too tired to speak
unselfconsciously in awe of the beauty of a drowsing city
Get drunk on the high of a concert or show
until we can't walk in straight lines
or stop laughing
or stop reminding each other how awesome it all was

Let the city sidewalks bear witness to hard truths
home truths
about me or you or us
We never had the knack
of being that honest with each other

NaPoWriMo Day 23/30

4/23/15 12:46am dear friend

I thought I was fine
With everything dying
But I should have known that I was lying to myself

I don't commit easily
Or trust with equanimity
I test everything for faults before they break under my feet

But here at the end
I wonder if I should defend
If a decade of living with me can be destroyed in a conversation