Saturday, September 24, 2016

Residual Valentine

Too perfect by half
The hibiscus discuss
The six minute poem
Placed on a piece of toast
What are these snails doing
Crawling between my sheets
I swear this is all
I could carry back with me
But even if I could retrieve
My steps the vision
Collapses into pottery
Broken to cover the bottom
Of a pot - good drainage
Makes good herbage

Friday, September 23, 2016

Paused Valentine

When the balance returns
He weighs the world again
To see who was worthy
Of summer who deserving
Of winter while Orion
Takes a stick to his options
So that things are equally divided
Between knowing and not wanting to
And then there’s Cassiopeia to pursue
Though they’ve never met
But the stars dream also
Pausing in their orbits
To bestow a few days on us
Of incomprehensible peace
The sun descending though dead leaves

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Return of the Beaten Valentine

I said come on rain
But first the body smell
The wet foxy odor of it
Swept through this hell
And then shy drops
Darkened the wall
Like the slow approach
Of the beaten animal itself
So much light here
Tears us out of ourselves
But with the rain we remember
To come back to the ground
We fall right down on it
Like the body of a lover

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Without Which Valentine

Reverence is the genius
Of the heart its deepest
Part without which
Even love is wrecked
For who loves what
They don’t respect or
Feel must be esteemed
As holy by the heart
Must all the virtues sour
If it’s lost or never found
Even the happiness of an hour
All runs to ground
Only reverence sees things
Worthy of its power

Goal’s Valentine

The ultimate goal
Is to grow the soul
Not as a figment
Of the imagination
Nor as a now-lost
Barely remembered
Musical instrument
But by some rhythmic
Alchemy of everyday terrors
Calmly viewed from afar
Your plan and name
You are the beast
That you must tame

Monday, September 19, 2016

Novice’s Valentine

The whole secret is
Said the novice of Sais
It’s not the movement of the veil
But what the mover meant
By not staying still
The secret is the will
And its efforts to be
Loved freely for
Itself alone the veil
Provides the pleasure
By which her beauty found
Reveals the treasure
Of the soul unbound

Enchanted Valentine

So far desire is wiser
Than knowledge the logos
Still dancing on the head
Of every pin-head the abyss
We still mostly regard
As optional the fact
Swims loose from its moorings
One feels one cannot act
With efficacy or pith
Enchanted by matter
As if it was the beginning
And not the end of an art
The painter not the paint

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Contra Naturam Valentine

A homeless cat makes a home
In my heart and then I learn
An epidemic of cats
Is decimating the lizards and birds
This phenomenon evokes
An intervention so the cats
Are domiciled inside but still
Wild they call out
To one another in the night
Slowly forgetting how to hunt
And kill slowly putting
Aside the need for claws
The old jungle laws

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Prelude’s Valentine

Another good reason
To be reincarnated is
If you missed Bach’s
Prelude in E-flat Minor
As played on a Saturday
Morning on a not-quite
Broken-in piano and a
Woman in a silk gown
Accompanies each tone
With her flowing body
A butterfly in a garden
While everyone in the room
Is weeping inside up to the
Final and only major chord
Which having seized your life
Gently gives it back again

Friday, September 16, 2016

Colder Nights Valentine

The lantana didn’t make it
In the heavy shade the black-
Flowered vine from Australia
Drowned in too much sun
The palo verde tree in its fifth year
Contracted esophageal cancer
Its leaves looked like dead coughs
The desert rose lectured on and on
About attachment and non-attachment
Using its neon blossoms as examples
I am I’m not I am I’m not
The compost grew fatter and wiser
Promising to start everything over
The way death always does

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Scientific Valentine

The more accidental
Something seems
The more fundamental
Something streams
Through it
This is the first law
Of cosmodynamics
A science that seeks
To get past paradox
By making it commonplace
It was never a question
Of what the truth is
But of who
And you
There is always another view

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Calling Valentine

Between the full moon and me
She rising in the east
Me sitting somewhere in the west
The moon catching the sunlight
Me catching the moonlight
Like two boys in a field with a ball
But what about the earthlight
Those who live in the moon
And those who live in the sun
Don’t they also say look
The earth is full and rising
And sit in their yards gazing
At the blue marvel blue marble
Each of us reflecting the other
Older sister moon and distant sun
All grown up calling to little brother

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

After the Feeding Valentine

So they gave me one of the leftover baskets
Of fish and a few loaves of bread
To take back to my village and
Share them with family and friends
Who all said they had never
Eaten such delicious food
And were amazed there were
Still some leftovers after
Everyone had gorged and
Had all gone home fatter
The leftover basket sat there
Quietly on the table in the dark
While everyone slept through
Another lovely summer night

Monday, September 12, 2016

Rich Man’s/Poor Man’s Valentine

Every socio-economic scheme
Only reflects the collective self-concept
Of any given people and place
Right now we think of ourselves
In a starkly Darwinian space
So the form that follows is either
Authoritarian or predatory
There are no Christians yet
On earth but one and he
Has only false followers
In those who claim him most
Though he would not like
Me saying that out loud
He is a gentle man

Already Valentine

If water woke and spoke
If air appeared not nude
If earth revealed
Its strongholds
So you could peer
Down into them
Like looking through
A lake if the fire
Let you hold it
In your hands
You’d be already dead
Or otherwise have
Left your head
There on the bed

Dear Valentine

You’re a dear you said
Yes tamed by the headlights
I won’t admit to being caught
The laughter of someone you love
Is the primary purpose of poetry
When it’s not being paltry
Which is always the risk
Not to have something to say
But everything to tell you
Here in this secret classroom
Of the mind which is the heart
A note passed from you to me
Which if exposed in all its glory
Would turn our lives into a story

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Grecian Valentine

We’re closer to Rome than to Greece
As close as Rome was to Greece
Though we love us some golden fleece
As close as Alexander was to Asia
The first universal man
Is still further than us
Greece before there was Greece
There was Egypt and the Norse
Gods and there was Utnapishtim
I think we’re closer to him
He spoke of a sea flower
That would become Greece
The islands of the immortals
But it was swallowed by a viper

Unafraid to Die Valentine

Why are you so nervous and late
Because death is after me
But death is only another gate
Death is a father they say
Giving birth to a new fate
If love is real then the dead
Must see our souls if not our bodies
As we their souls can meditate
If we slip out of our bodies
For a few deathless moments
Since the god died
Unstoppably his body
Rises through all things
Death was just the first to fade

Retro Valentine

When you gaze backwards
From today over your life
Moving from year to year
How far back do you get
Before you start to forget
Or wander off track distracted
By something you can’t forget
But would rather deflect
To the surrounding merriment
Or hellish conditions
I can get back to certain days
Of accomplishment and failure
But a lot of it’s a blue blur
Only from a great distance
Can I see myself nearly
And feel myself stir

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Mango Valentine

I love mango
I love mango
First I said it
Then you said it
With greater depth
And reverence
Remembering your
First bite
Finally finding
Something for which
You might trade
Heaven settling
For what it tastes like

Trolls Valentine

Real trolls don’t like
Themselves portrayed
As garden statuary
Smiles stacked in corners
Or ostentatiously painted
To identify some country
When they are the true workers
For the gods and wander
Through the ground
As easily we do air
Always breaking or
Building it up listening
At roots and veins
For their instructions
From moon and stars