Friday, January 31, 2014

Revelator's Valentine

We did see the catastrophe
coming right at us but we
were already in the midst
of our own personal disasters
our minds full of the hurricane
of the present moment
preoccupied as it is with collapse
and survival but would it be any
different without these bodies
as distractions to be mastered
or succumbed to at least
there’s that joy in the world
though we still haven’t decided
if we actually want to live here
or just keep killing one another 

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Tonight's Valentine

We accept as life
that we have never felt safe
on this earth
but we want to and do
come out of our houses
in search of it
after that it’s a matter
of the traffic and the questions
we come up with on the way
the fact that all of this
will have to be acknowledged
and then refused
so that this universe can pass
us on to the next universe
and we can sleep sound tonight

George Stanley's Valentine

A beautiful Asian(?) creature
appeared this morning and said
my muscles are for you
he must be an elemental
but he loves to make breakfast
after we make love
desire is never over
not in this world
or even the next
I’ve never seen anyone
sweat so much making love
which embarrasses him a little

but I rub him
all over me
until we are one

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Elegiac Valentine

One by one
the roses bow their heads
and die
some had already died
still standing
the bowing merely followed
in life they stood erect
and so red they ran
right into you
where they remain
speaking in tongues
calling our names

Human Valentine

Isn’t this just a picture
of us two white doves
one attacked by a seagull
the other by a crow
and is the pope Aesop
standing in the window
a young boy on one side
a young girl on the other
as if the crow and the gull
were always there waiting
to devour that sweet meat
while the children watch
as if the world had already exploded
leaving us with the gull
to carry us over the water
and the crow to drag us under 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Open Secret Valentine

The gods masked
as our co-conspirators
our logical comeuppances
having set us in motion
like a breeze through the trees
turned and waltzed away
so that we could argue alone
if they ever really existed
and that all this universe
made itself up out of nothing
that gradually became something
then many many somethings
the way a formula unfolds
in an ancient manuscript
the secret of all things
the faint aroma of the stars

Monday, January 27, 2014

Angel's Valentine

I hate when they
tell me I’m right
especially if it’s about
something terrible
but I have a knack
for disasters which
is why I’m always waiting
at the scene with water
and usually with laughter
that and a dozen roses
and the uncanny ability
to be anyone at all

Another Day With You Valentine

It’s cozy in here
I think it’s a Monday
the fog in the bay
may never clear
but then it does
lift like a draw-bridge
over the cliff-edge
floating away like fuzz
revealing an amber beach
we can walk to after lunch
down the eternal switchbacks
the way I keep backtracking
going over and over it
how nothing is ever done
but that’s why we’re doing it
and then we can lie in the sun

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Immoral Valentine

Always what I promised
was more than I
could deliver
I had to disappoint
which next to forgery
or fraud is subtler
and of a finer habitude
but when I was seven
I wanted my friends to
be happy so I pretended
it was my birthday and
invited them all to the party
which was in just one hour
so they better get home
and figure out what they
were going to give me
and yes we’ll have
cake and ice cream
I’ll give you whatever you want
that was just the way I thought

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Joy in the Movement of Life Valentine

Some people would rather
believe in luck
than believe in God
or in bad luck

than in themselves
but I love myself
enough for when
one grasps immediately

the illusory nature
of the earth but it
takes forty years to prove
that perception in daily

life’s accumulation
until we ourselves demand
our own purification
hungry for heaven

Friday, January 24, 2014

Historical Valentine

In the library of what
has yet to happen
I sat down and wept
I wouldn’t find you
when of course I found
that we would never finish
what we started and along
the way there were

squalid beasts and visions
of a powerful ogre
living inside our guts
visible when we were
drawn and quartered by
the world just another body
our souls would long endure

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Heart's Valentine

My heart remains bucolic
though my brain’s been urbanized
suburbanized ghettoized restored
and nobody’s planted there
for years and the woods overgrown
burn down every now and then
which only encourages the ruin
to be eaten by the green
but my heart remains ruined
as any castle in Provence
and only growing more so
it never had a chance
one morning it just ran out
like a snowflake in an oven
sobbing for everyone

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Orange Valentine

To really fill out existence
flesh becomes both necessary
and fatal or how else
would I be savoring

the sweet juice of this tree
I call mine barely
able to intuit any of
the alchemy by which

its daily lifting to the sun
and stars manages to
bring forth the blood
of this great deva

surrounding and enfolding it
like drinking cheerfulness
and then she taps your cheek

Lizards Valentine

Creatures of a certain
range of warmth
which like kindling
burst into flame now
and then under friction
or like love or hate
from interest or inattention
sail in and out of view
we come in twos
but go out one or more
lizards in winter who
dream continually of war

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Blind Valentine

Freedom has always been corrupted
by slavery that some with power
subjugate others to do the hard work
and to continue the animal traditions
of brute force as winners or losers
the illusion of freedom in big houses
the entitlement of property on the ocean
all this cannot be countered from inside
blind to its own faulty presuppositions
but we must seek an improved premise
from which better realities can proceed
whose only law is love
or something like it
if freedom is to succeed

Monday, January 20, 2014

True Valentine

The truth is as far as it goes
as far as you can throw it
until it runs into another truth
they just live up the street
but actually the truth is all
that exists outside of things
I mean only a mind
could believe a lie
like when truth sees a red or a pink
does it recoil in terror or joy
isn’t it always blushing
but no that’s what healthy
looks like on a child’s face
or on a mother’s hands
she does free us but only
into herself in the end

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Bathing or Drowning Valentine

I tell the birds
in my neighborhood
not to shit
in my birdbath
but then they sleep
in the branches above it
I say this water
is for bathing and
get quite political
about so much shit
accumulating actually
it’s not just for them
but a mirror I set up
to catch the other
side of light

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Nursery Valentine

Tell me street
where you lead
tell me tree
what you need
tell me moon
on whom you feed
tell me sun
am I your seed
(blink once for no
or twice in need)
tell me love
what in your eyes
I only read

Friday, January 17, 2014

World's Valentine

Photography fools us
how the world is only
a painting or an ongoing
series of paintings

so don’t get caught in
the world’s selfies
neither narcissistic nor
scientific that sell

themselves for millions
we have brought our
memories all the way

down into matter
but our words remain
the only thing we’ve got

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Emily's Valentine

In face of divinity
we grow weary
of sublimity
we look for nullity
preferring nothing after us
in face of eternity
we feel bullied
baffled and small
silently agreeing
not to think of it at all
in face of power
we pontificate
and cower in a corner
or else we defecate
on it and overpower

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Jess's Valentine

Under your full Cancer moon
I had a dream about you
when you were four or five
and I could still sweep you up
and carry you in my arms
in this dream you were sleepy
and quiet but taking it all in
and for some reason I wanted
to get you a pen to draw with
so here we were in a cramped
and crowded tourist trap we
found walking along the shore
but not finding what I wanted
to give you just as we were leaving
you still in my arms
heading toward the ocean
a stranger said something to us
that left us both in a wonderful mood
though I can’t remember now
a single word he said

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Soul Cab Valentine

I stepped off the curb
and found myself in the soul cab
but this was not New York anymore
and yet it was uncanny how
I could tell by the way people walked
either bent into it or looking around
as if asking if it’s the job
of poetry to confound
you now you’ve found it
how something of you
just by reading it or hearing
gets trapped inside it forever
no matter what city
this your final $300 question
forty blocks to go

Monday, January 13, 2014

Cassandra's Valentine

What isn’t dithering
or blithering or worse
the crookification
annual and perennial
of our purse culture
actually they’re called bags
as in bags of money
it’s rarely funny
but what’s the screwiest
thing you saw this week
as if we were all
in this together
one more river
went extinct
one more city under

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Annunciation Valentine

When I first understood
I was an I
a separate unique
human spirit-being
I felt bereft
like one cast out
and yet I knew
it was true
I was an I
and I had always
been and I
would always
be an I
and that this was
true of all I’s
a composite
flower conscious
of its flowering
fruit and seeds
a waiting hut
fashioned of reeds
a god was here once
and may come again

Left Lane Valentine

A pain in my elbow
a hummingbird zips past –
a sense of some connection
the Goodwill next door
to the Miracle Store –
‘memory laundering’
let’s drive to Florence (Arizona)
the cool breeze will make up
for the missing David
out of the unborn we were born
out of the death of matter
we were born again –
what’s next
star text

Saturday, January 11, 2014

After-life Valentine

First the coarsest
lusts are peeled
away to reveal
a veneer of woes
as one longing
after another
abandons you it gets
easier to let them go
so much to relinquish
every pleasure every pain
until even the idea of
relinquishment flows away
until by the end
only what you really are
is left

Friday, January 10, 2014

Impatient Valentine

I could not wait
I walked right up
and tore the veil
from the statue
I yelled ‘bullshit’
from the back of the room
I sought out the audible
and inaudible gasp
I chanted for war
and ran away
especially as a child
I advocated for divorce
for all of which I suffered
and died for my sins
but look I have risen again 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Arriving Valentine

Chicken-wire butter
and a juicer are all
I need today who
could want more
the promises of America
are vacationing in Bermuda
‘self-love is no love at all’
scrawled on the side of their truck
well excuse me for oversharing
the blue sky repeats and repeats
they’re called pansies colorful
thoughts on a walk in the park
I almost didn’t make it
I was running out of flowers
but here I am

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Words Valentine

The clumsy surgery
of words the corpses
or discarded husks of words
the words of love
words spoken only on Tuesdays
apologetic words about
the weekend the laughter
of words not spoken
words that never become flesh
and bones and learn to walk
across the street or field
and keep going
words without ends
words without virtues except those
only my own wanting will impose

Monday, January 6, 2014

Identity Crisis Valentine

Of what spiritual
lineage are you anyway
are you a shepherd
or a king do you

see storms brewing
or gods in the distance
do you see around the heads
of each of us pictures

of the dead or the dead
themselves who gather
singing Bach and Monteverdi
or doing covers

for Beck and Mraz
were you a monk or a knight
a happy victim or contrite

Epiphanous Valentine

That I am not
of one mind
or of one mind
but of two thoughts
who disagree for
the sake of disagreement
brother thoughts
sister thoughts
I grow up inside
their arguments
their decisions
the third thought
who can be steadfast alone
who can be hopeful alone
but who cannot love alone

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Sophie's Valentine

The way Raphael loved
his madonna and child
painting them over and over
as they appeared to him
against the background of
the beyond when the curtains
were drawn back and there
they were in their splendor
and yet always with a new
tenderness in the same way
did Novalis love his Sophie
whose purity could not
long endure the cold earth air
but like an apparition or a sky
take up its distances of sun
here in your willing arms

Friday, January 3, 2014

Singing Valentine

Mineral plant animal human
in the physical forming
these most ephemeral arise
but only thoughts survive
thoughts that surround the ruin
of Rievaulx or the flight
of a sparrow into dark woods
or the old cities of thoughts
their rich and poorer neighborhoods
their canals and empty warehouses
beside the great oceans of thoughts
torn loose from their moorings
raging or exhausted drifting alone
or my small thought of you
forever singing some tune

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Self-punked Valentine

Somehow in the night
I lost the next day
I skipped over it
I slept through it
so when I woke up
I was certain it was
a day ahead of what
it actually was
and got ready to go
to work before I
woke up to my error
laughing to discover
I had the whole
day ahead free as
they say no worries

Blind Valentine

That we could more
clearly see
the consequences of what
we think and do
that we could really think
them through to their always
sudden outcomes or is
creation just arrangements
by derivative composures
still so few who want to accept
and talk to the so-called dead
who see and work hard
to penetrate the nervous
obstinacy of our thought-matter
with their constant wake-up calls

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

New Year Valentine

Would you renew the year
for me my prescription
has run out I mean
my resolution
not my love that you
will warm your cold
hands on my hot feet
and let me drift
more often but that
the past too gathers
nipping at our toes
always trying to trip us up
and that we float forward
now I see only by pushing
against its flow