Monday, January 31, 2011

Nameless Season Valentine

Water dissolves
what the fire hardened
earth holds what
the air gave up
red finches bathe
where dead oranges fall
in the nameless season
are not the rich
your oppressors
are not the saints
your neighbors
and friends
the rain rages
all morning
the sun snores
all night long.

Wordless Valentine

Sometimes I manage to rehearse
the two remaining scenes
where what I love is taken
from me or I am taken
from what I love
sometimes I do it in Spanish
which is the language I
would pick if magically
I could be given one more
language I mean think
of a wordless world as
against a world where
every word has its own
unabridged dictionary
of memory and change.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Haiku Surfing Valentine

Whether it’s
your booty shaking
or the winter rain

streaks on the eighth
view of Edo
the windows sigh

as if it was psychic
the evening spoke
of your departure

forty truckloads
of clouds carried
the train away

a monthly rose
late with
her rent.

Ordinary Valentine

Those contemptuous of time
about which we know
nothing at the time
any teaching that disdains
or makes us feel
ashamed of our lives
today in ordinary time
to shed light like
leaves the night trees
to roll over against
time another body never
more held than known
held to be forever
unknowable and held alone.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Egyptian Valentine

This nation needs
a nanny to stop
bullying the world
smoky clouds
slide between
warm fronts
of vehemence
forcible rapes
result in
free rent
even our speech
the language
of the fires
it burns in.

No Place Valentine

When you lose
your body you
lose your place
in the line
of things
there’s no place
like no place
but is there a
you still there
a remnant or
shred thereof
a shore of
conscious sand
waves of
light rush
over stroking
calmly or
is it just
you sun
you stars?

Virtuoso's Valentine

Some get Kerouac
lodged too far up in
them or Ginsberg
stuck in their throat
whose work if it had
arrived first would
have far surpassed
their teachers but
coming after repeats
and repeats in my ears
you were sick your
whole life you never
could win for dazzling
technique prodigious
prestidigitation note
for note only itself
with nothing to say.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Leaf's Valentine

A blue pail
of water a
pail of blue
water a yellow
leaf floating
spinning slowly
lefty loosey
is it the sun
sipping it up
dog star and
fallen dirty
cities of air
thrown off from
the center
who cares?

Springs Valentine

Selling Christmas cards
with a masters degree
one has to put up with
these things these days
but then one could like
what one liked which
now is in even worse
decline Proust to Joyce
once we visited all the
artists of San Sebastian
compulsively thoughtful
not by personality tell
me but did I get it done
the work the fun.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Doves' Valentine

Cut that out
a mourning
dove over and
over seems
to be saying
not speech
nor song but
then another
goes I’ve tried
that I’ve
tried that
back and forth
and tragic
as comedy
or art.

Nastic Valentine

Where the horizon
of this flower
goes at night
is it closure
of a muscular
kind or a pre-
nerve empathic
death of molecules
resulting in a slow
pivot of petals
a corps de ballet
as night leaps
onto the stage
the audience gasps
the horizon folds up
into its original dark
stitch and itch
a vertical line
I guess which the
dance unwinds.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Palm Grove Valentine

Every mind is an island
in a sea of minds
even if no man is
let’s face it
I'm no Hawaii
nor are you
but a cloven atoll
upon which has come
to rest all those
endless migrations
mental inflations
we began but you
who know me best
know when I look
at you I’m missing you
and yet among you.

War Valentine

If our true nature
is to scrounge
and hoard
to grab and run
our gratitude
and wonder
on a horse’s
head or hand-
tooled phrase
about your country
or my country
slouched in a
no-name bar
on the painted
edge of this desert
valley floor then
let the war rage
on till we’re all
done for and
can start again.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Trellis Valentine

Then I designed
a trellis to
look like you
or some falling
star or the wide
wings’ curving
of an albatross
or green heron
landing or motionless
coasting along
between two
rivers two rippling
beds of reeds
and tall irises
on either side
can’t you imagine
it when they bloom
you could you said
and did me too.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Momentary Valentine

In my last conversation
with your statue
an argument it won
though I’m uncertain
how you couldn’t
look more thoughtless
than I or more
inconsiderate of
winter’s gloom
in this sunny room
your gaze loving
its momentary
lapse into stone
and peace alone.

Eros Valentine

That feeling
for a healthy
body or an
unhealthy body
consider it actually
a creature
or a being
in its own right
and realm yet
tenderly a thing
of the earth
a figure of
our own making
recycling used-up
elements ancient
the ways of
being mastered
by the world.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Art Is Not A Natural Thing Valentine

Now oranges
will always
owe something
to Cezanne
blue and yellow
live in awe a little
of Van Gogh
the irises for sure
and for my part
I’ve hidden
a Rembrandt
a la Rothko in
my kitchen
their green
darkness against
my blue bowl
of lemons for
which the world
is always thirsty.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Goodbye Valentine

Look at me
when you love me
look at me
when you crucify me
look at me
when you talk to me
look at me
when you fuck me
look at me
when you have nothing to say
look at me
would you just please
turn and look at me
when you walk away.

Shrinking Valentine

Have you fallen
in the past
twelve weeks
for anyone
or anything
maybe more
than once or
what’s it for
for the same
bland speech
on the same
cold beach
when every year
two days more
slip off the
calendar soon
we’ll get to
one long day
and one long
night per year

Mistaken Valentine

For mantle woven
I read gentle waves
only a few alone
hours I have to
tell you this must
seem eggshell this
reality so brittle
when it breaks
it will look the
devil in the face
seeing he is as
real as I could
make him or we
have co-created
someone another
out of nothing
over and over again
longing to be
angels together
for good or ill.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Postcard Valentine

flint with some
steeply pitched
clouds acanthus
leaves woven
on a young
girl’s grave
strange as Suffolk
with its quaint
font and Norman
doorway at the
end of a track
by a disappeared

Economics Is All About Trust Valentine

What the rich
fear most
is the poor
what the poor
fear most
unarmed as
they are
by thirst
and hunger
is survival
perhaps a
middle class
is too fair
an idea
on what
basis did the
deny brotherhood
but with the
simple religion
of brotherhood
evolution is that
local drama
of learning to
share (again)
and to live
and let live.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Last Minute Moon Valentine

That point
where the star
has passed
the basket
both hung up
on the trellis-
shadow always
a distortion
of the moon’s
total refusal
to absorb
but just return
the sunlight
nothing hidden
nothing revealed.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Immortal Valentine

Even if
there were
no human
brains to
think them
the thoughts
would still
exist wouldn’t
they thoughts
not attached
to brains
bodies or
wills like
the freedom
calling out
for someone
enough to
think it.

Idle Valentine

There also Aloe Vera flowers
bring the hummers
to sip on our nation
our little window on alleys
and clouds a buzz-saw
piles into cords
where the mockingbird
swivels his tail-feathers
the way you do
your foot sometimes
legs crossed face
knotted on some
text as if it was
the Bhagavad-Gita
and you were holy
and I had found
you idly sipping
coffee after years
of searching for
someone else.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Thinking's Already Spiritual Valentine

And so
all this
is lost and
grass the
broken comb
all this
thinking which
goes into it
passing go
each from
scratch as
from a coma
come forth
all that’s you
is thinking
even as I am
here of you.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Jiggling Valentine

You just
have to
jiggle it
the key
to the world
the face
of the sun
strangely seen
something you’re
doing now
I feel as
the eternal
silence of
the future
leaking away
but if you
jiggle it
it stops.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Earth Valentine

Through these
beautiful stones
capillary worms
under the skin
what would be
a new sense organ
reveals how dead
the world we
regard as all of
beauty but an
animated corpse
not that even
this residue of
higher worlds
can’t be sanguine
fragrant even
modern at times
like any living thing.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Two Valentines Smashed Together Valentine

Are there more
ways to lose
than to win
I mean overall
they wouldn’t
be the same
number would
they you laugh
often it’s the
children who find
the dead first
I gaze on green
sip reliable
herbal teas
what do you
suggest I do
sir it’s 9:04
the evening of
a lovely day
in the valley
it only wanted
to be seen.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Timely Valentine

Right on time
for its medicine
the disease arrived
but it refused
to take it
tried to run
a rod of light
had to be driven
through its brain
the visions could
start again a hand
or a tree returning
you to your real life
already in progress.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Bad Idea Valentine

The idea you
must believe
what we believe
or we will kill you
once we have
the power to
kill you is an idea
that has never lost
ground since its
inception among
the very first
ideas that go back
so far in time
they assume a
god-like structure
we call history.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Early Valentine to Joe

Isn’t that the idea
to step away from
ideas a stain
painting or
a mood out of
formed color
when words become
too recognizable
too representational
except by this
magical example
all I might possibly
believe is to keep
working it.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Tween Valentine

Who are we when we’re
between incarnations
when we’re the outside
waiting and watching
old self dissolving
into new self is there
awareness of this even
if interrupted by long
periods of dreamless
sleep or nightmarish
or riven tearful by
fractal lifetimes spinning
out of control even if
we’re awake for only
a few moments passing
the crab nebula or
loosening Orion’s belt?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Candle for a Killer Valentine

If I passed you on the street
if I went to that school
if I knew you from the hood
if you were my student
if I knew your father
if you had been my son’s
friend or my son himself
if the death you brought
could be a signal from our
enemies ranged against us
greed anger delusion
those three poisons
if we could love our
children enough so
they could love too.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Epiphany Valentine

I see a mockingbird
a mockingbird sees me
but it’s not as real
as you might imagine
to be seen anymore
by one another and yet
our lives our very
depend upon it
the way everything
else in the world
depends upon a wish
to do better
not to be better
than anyone else.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Eighth Christmas Card (Madonna with the Goldfinch) Valentine

Just a technician
(of the sacred) the
restorer said of
herself that the
mother of the lord
should come to me
the painter at twenty-
three living in a time
so far away everyone
knew immediately
what a goldfinch
meant which John
is caught explaining
to his dreaming cousin
while Mary who is
the soul looks on.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Orchids Valentine

Is this how
they express it
roots up in the air
streaking away
from the sun
while the leaves
and flower stem
lean outward further
toward the light
as if offering us
our three choices
roots on one side
leaves on the other
and the flower stem
thickening between them.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Seventh Christmas Card (Madonna mit dem Fisch) Valentine

Dark green curtains
behind her pale blue dress
and the luminous skin
of the always naked child
reaching here for the fish
a young boy has brought
but in this detail
there’s just the mother
and her curious son
the way she holds
his chest and back
restraining and restrained
the way he points and
pushes to be let go.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Sixth Christmas Card (Madonna del Granduca) Valentine

I’m sorry my lady
I always came late
to your feet those fish
that swam the moonlight
now you’re so sfumato
in the earlier paintings
and here he’s moved to
your left side and you
seem ready to put him down
but your eyes won’t look up
as he goes on
staring right at us
still interested
and waiting.

On the Coldest Day of the Year the Ice Cream Man Comes Down Our Street Valentine

Is it ever too cold
for ice cream
too late for
an earthquake
too far for love
too late for lunch
is it ever too much
for you too out of
touch for you
all of us encased
in our high casements
that’s part of it too
and then the abasements
the abasing and being
abased is it ever too late?

Frozen Valentine

The proof is in the ¼ inch-
thick slice of ice on the top
of the rain barrel
in the morning
I wrote down all my debts
on a large legal pad
leaving little room
for poetry
gratitude impossibly
tries to square
arrivals with departures
but even in the warmth
of the narrow band of love
time freezes too.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Fifth Christmas Card Valentine (Bridgewater Madonna)

Again that loving gazing
at one another she’s
about to get up
but he’s resisting
squirming in her lap
is it time for bed
is this the painting
at the center of
the struggle
she could be Venus
he her Cupid
in another telling
just by looking at them
you’re better somehow.

New Year's Valentine (2011)

Snowball moon
yet quicker
the sun escapes

promises broken
write one hour
revise fifty

the sad fuck kitchen
four legs and a flat back
I just want to watch

come to the hall of desire
I’ll rustle up some grub
remind me to stab you

to have thoughts drift off
like friends dispatched
for success and curing

the supposed-to-be-sleeping gene
screams in the middle of the night
its bloody slaughter of the rest

at 440 rps the official pitch
for pianos I lay me down in
the snow’s glamour of hopelessness

the spiritual way a year burns
what shall it be this time
a litter of turnips or flowers?