Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Biblical Valentine

If it quacks like a god
and walks like a god
it must be a god though not
a god that had been seen before
thus one in the midst of suffering
who radiates serenity
and brightens every place
is already a god
a planter of love seeds
which later in that song
return as stars
lucid as raindrops
falling on the apocalypse again
otherwise known as
the revelations

Sunday, March 1, 2015

If Only Valentine

If only spirit exists
and everything else
is some nothing we love
to give names to
and find a place for
in this world the museum
the gods have left us
their living paintings
their vocal sculptures
passed on their old
chemistry sets and
transmuted themselves
into gold and other
base metals to live
in our breathing
the light in our blood
awaiting their
eventual release
in thoughts of peace

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Spring Valentine

Old man still hungry
for the flesh –
red pomegranate buds
what is it about spring
makes you feel homesick
at home in your own skin
the world itself your first
impressionist painting –
until the gnats return
‘I’m through with love’
playing on the box – distant
sirens and orange blossoms
strewn on the sidewalk
as if you were getting married
to the world or yourself

Friday, February 27, 2015

The Day Before Valentine

The day before the attack
was a lovely sunny day
though we could hear the storm
not far away somehow we forgot
about it the sun seemed lovelier
by the hour we were lost in our work
or power or playing with the bodies
of others but the storm was growing
huger by the hour a small flock
of mourning doves nesting in the tower
took off there were signs and wonders
but the night was even lovelier than the day
the storm seemed even further away

Spring Baptism Valentine

Among plants the flower
represents the soul
that blissful place between
despair and vegetation
so thoughts are seen as green
on this side of the explanation
and each plant is just a thought
but can a thought exist alone
can it rise above itself
can it float over Europe
China and the Americas
can it get behind blue’s
calm and consolation
to where its love inspires
the sun’s compensation

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Arguing Valentine

Two old cats
rolling in the grass
one feline one human
 
licking the dew
from you
pink tongues
 
our ideas have ruined us
says the black and white one
yeah like that one
 
our ideas have saved us
says the other black and white one
yeah like this one
 
together all this time
just to get through
to you

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Refilled Valentine

Chewing its way again
around the world
the snail moon
 
the tree’s shadow
says it’s three of a lawn
where was I supposed to be
 
the last few hours of sunlight
burnish the breasts
of resting finches
 
slowly the larger birds
notice the commotion
refilled feeder
 
still waiting their turn
the tree is full of birds
the day has flown

When Valentine

When the birds are all gone
when you can still smell the orange blossoms
who will carry our songs
when the first green comes on
like the first wet dreams returning
to the scene of the crime
when the only crime is
the idea of a crime
(then there are only crimes)
when you can hear the trees
breathing their last breaths
holding on to their dead leaves
for dear life only then when
it’s too late to learn

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Novalis's Valentine

'The truly moral person is a poet’
but not every poet is a truly
moral person perhaps he speaks
of a higher poetry whose lines
are human work and actual
words that rhyme with reality
whatever that’s imagined to be
implying true morality is artful
free and open to the mystery
of the unknown unknowability
that may yet speak to us
from some remote location
deep within the text
where truth and time are one
in words’ annihilation

Monday, February 23, 2015

Feline Valentine

The mockingbird glares
down at the dozing cat
spring enters cautiously
 
our ancient migrant life
sleeping under the star-roof
too bright to sleep
 
the cat knows I’m
no match for her
it starts to rain
 
she takes advantage
of the rain to lick
the sunlight clean
 
in animals we see
what we could have been
if we quit being everything else

Haiku Sonnet Valentine

Too few breaks
in the clouds to be
completely happy
 
tailwinds going
headwinds coming back
stay home today
 
if you look
or even if you don’t look
there’s a haiku in everything
 
at seventy I see
everything lives for
just one day
 
if the sparrows return
to the hole above my door
there’s still hope for me

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Credo Valentine

My God is a chuckling God
a weeping God a passionate
God who goes about his business
which is certainly not only us
earth-creatures buried deep
in his tympanum like an ache
 
often lately I catch him coming
and going from the pomegranate tree
where he’s chewed out a hole
in the trunk for a nest or cave
 
even if we were to become every man
woman child plant and animal
on this planet and to succeed
it would still not be enough
then would the real work begin
 
that’s how harsh he is –
I did it now it’s your turn
but because I did it
you can see how it’s done

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Happiness Valentine

Where would we be
without our anxiety
who else reminds me
of my vulnerability
my insufficiency
happiness is a drug
best taken infrequently
unhappy happiness
hanging on just a few words
or a few breaths
so huge the world
cannot hold it long
but it comes and goes
like summer

Friday, February 20, 2015

Warming Valentine

Give the seals
a home they
can rely on
 
they are social
security
running out
 
once a habitat
of cash
melting like sea ice
 
let’s make sure
that happens
that horizon
 
hell-bent

Designer Terror Valentine

Luxury watches
us but time
serves anyone
 
secondary or tertiary
lives of glamorous
poverty unseen
 
style is us
you can see it
in the way we kill
 
if the carpet isn’t red
before we come
it is when we go

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Morning Diction Valentine

It’s no coincidence hair cut day
is yard trimming day
I and my garden are one
indivisible overgrown mess
but this morning I tried to imagine
our relationship after my
consignment to the compost heap
would it go on with the same arguments
between chrysanthemums and hollyhocks
or settle down with an occasional tomato
a friend has weeds
growing in his liver
that will overthrow his plot
I bring him a sprig
of orange blossoms
to inhale as he goes out

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

On the Fourth Day Valentine

Your brilliant red tulips
already you sense some sadness
flowers can be very emotional
opened as usual into cups
but could go no further
slowly they turned blue
losing none of their jauntiness
or uprightness you notice
as they entered my painting
where they knew death
would never completely find them
the only problem being
holding their redness against
that blue bruising almost
overtaking them

Ashen Valentine

Real life is coming out from hiding from yourself
but how much can be revealed of anyone
no one could quite contain it all
doesn’t it take the same amount of courage
to oppose reason as it does to express it
something further distinguishes
one (Ash) Wednesday from another
you still walk home with the mark of Cain
on your forehead wrecking your anonymity
you still feel like your life is like
being on probation for life
like you just destroyed your perfect
reputation with yourself
indulged your weakness for attention
felt the moment life entered you
and your death running to meet it 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Love Beach Valentine (for Jess)

We are creatures of the sun and sea
carried far from our native homes
slaves to our lives and daily dreams
at last to return to this lovely beach
to swim and lie in this angle of sun
not because we think heaven will
in any recognizable way resemble
this escape this respite from the work
of living in this worrisome world
but just to rest in the sand and recall
the fun and terror of younger days
what were they for if we could
forget them here where the blue
is blue again and the green is just
being born and the yellow
forever goes on and on