Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Palestinian Valentine

But who will tell the will
what to do if not the heart
having been confronted
hopefully by the head
what the will wants
at a particular time and place
won’t fit at any other
good and evil move
to a danceable beat
though the dance be death-like
and the hermit head retreat
and the heart be left there
screaming in the street

Sergei's Valentine

The bones from long
before the Big Bang
look almost human
settled in next door
beside the local government’s
violent histories
while the unbotchable sky
gets a nose job
to look more like Russia
non-events with a bail-out
for access and engagement
address community affairs
the way the heart
may or may not care
for a queen bed
with en suite and au pair

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Better Valentine

Death relieves us
of the weight of matter
hardly felt till then
when we maintained its
inherent unsustainability
like a close friend or
like at the second-hand store
one realizes there was a better life
with a different deeper sense
for appreciation and despair
for all the things that don’t
matter anymore the proof
is in the wear some stranger’s
shirt fits me fine looks like
he only wore it twice
dig the price

Monday, July 21, 2014

Pomegranate's Valentine

Now it all just keeps
getting better riper
strangely more bitter
than sweet the scent
shifts then the color
all this beginning
at a microscopic level
before desire creeps
in hollowing out
a den an emptiness
of gaze in case ice
blaze or face lose
all trace of fire
all love of sin

Torturer's Valentine

I’m watching a bird
who is watching God
or some shiny thing
when even your angel
won’t return your calls
which is simply not done
during the night my house
walked down to the lake
and just floated away
it was one of my boyhood dreams
but luckily it was still summer
so I could sleep in the canoe
life is watching things die
some quickly some take a little longer
but we weren’t interested in that

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Green Valentine

The green in the rainbow
is not the green in the meadow
but what fell to earth like a blow
darkening into the bruise of matter
from which the earth was made
hardening into emerald and jade
the offspring of yellow and blue
who kept their spiritual value
while fallen green agreed to die
after a long vigorous life on earth
sweeping the nations before it
only if after the glory of autumn
and winter’s abysmal blue
yet some new green ensue

Friday, July 18, 2014

Gerard's Valentine

You have a United Nations
for which no nation is ready
you have one people
trying to do to another people
the same heinous thing
a prior people did to them
you pretend religion is science
and make science a religion
you keep having children like selfies
born into spring blight
with the sun at midnight
shining on all sleepers
the moon at noon
on all losers weepers

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Bloody Valentine

Spend your life
fighting dying
moving matter around
taking evasive action
striving from strife
life-boats our bodies
clinging to mental debris
clinging to machines
or take death
out of the equation
not to live according to it
to have caught on
to the magic trick of the world
the mirror stepped through
into the realm of the real

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Emily's Valentine

What a thill is
coursers knew
in earlier eternities
we thundered through
let’s pull up here
under the last few lies
let all the old symbolic birds
and flowers ransom back
the light’s declining power –
the seed is formed
unransomed life
whose sun must
shine within
some other hour

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Lost Valentine

When the truth comes
and knocks at our door
like a lost child
we don’t have to
let it in – this is one
of our great freedoms
we can say no to it
apparently the plan
includes that possibility
and the world doesn’t
immediately end
the child still stands there
or somewhere else
but one notices
if left to our own devices
we ourselves would end

Monday, July 14, 2014

Mid-Year Resolutions Valentine

I’ll just have
another toddy
I won’t beat
myself up
I’ll monopolize
the quiet
I won’t start
anything or go there
I’ll sip
the afternoon to bloom
I won’t wrestle
darkness to the ground
I’ll let the moon
take my hand

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Fugal Valentine

I admit I was shocked
and a little frightened
at first grasping
how idiosyncratic
we each are I had
no conception who
would have thought
out so many variations
on such a simple
hummable theme
as if Bach had just
gone on writing
the Art of the Fugue
a Contrapunctus
for every single
human being

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Garden Valentine

I could tell
how the succulents
glared at me
I was in for
a serious grilling
but first they
wanted to sing
for me if you
can imagine
the music by
which each
leaf was formed
and left behind
empty at first
but then filled
in with joyful
worrisome matter

Monday, July 7, 2014

Rain Dancing Valentine

I caught a pair
of mourning doves
in the middle of it
high in the Palo
Verde tree across
the street at sunset
thankfully they
didn’t see me
naked standing
in my own yard
my cage with
its three trees
at first I thought
it was just one
dove but then
he trembled up
off her and
there were two
sitting side by side
with their backs 
to nosey me

Working Valentine

As more leaves grow
they shade the younger ones
isn’t this the original
morality and altogether
practical if nature
has found a way
you can be sure
it’s the only way
that works
like a cow-track
or a river which never
runs the way it wants
unlike us but always
the way it must

Wine-dark Valentine

There is a turmoil
in my thumb
after I slice it open
trying to sharpen
my pruner my scraper
and a gush
of that magic red
fluid that is always
wanting out
so it saturates
the grass with rust
under which its iron
heart is still visible

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Desert Rose Valentine

Looking at you
as though you were
a thing over there
when you are already
in my heart and I
astir in your leaves
feel our roots think
down through darkness
for the will to flower
to float transfigured
for a few afternoons
deceptive as youth
carrying the earth
to term

Saturday, July 5, 2014

One Morning After Memory Valentine

It was when we finally put
the birds out of the body
when we at last let them go
fluttering out from our joints
and muscles as we had every
beast and creature when we
didn’t need them anymore
filling the world with objects
and the traffic of life
when we traded the soul
for the body when we lost
the difference between them

when we forgot the time
before birth and the time
after death only then
in the darkness could we
speak the first words
out of our own human hearts

Friday, July 4, 2014

Independent Valentine

Don’t kid yourself America
is still a nation of slave-holders
and slaves capitalism is just
another word for slavery
nothing could be more the anti-Christ
than money used to control
the lives of others
the gross national product of greed
and collective smallmindedness
aided by an inane version
of freedom somehow devoid of love
tolerance or forgiveness
o say can you see
when the immigrant and refugee
love you more than you deserve

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Fraternal Valentine

Poetry talks about it
but prose gets it done
if something is happening
it’s not poetry or in poetry
which is always pulling off the road
suggesting we have nowhere to go
let’s sleep here in the grass
whereas prose is on cruise
control in the fast lane
as if pursued by demons or rather
as if it could escape from the demons
who are our constant companions
whom poetry makes friends with
marries and settles down
in the barrio on the south
side of town while prose
gets famous richer more remote
his own religion God knows

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Old Valentine

As old as sitting
in a garden
watching a cat
hunt lizards
and then go flop
on the cool bricks
startled by a motor
next door I’ll
call you later
abrupt hauling ass
down the alley
my hollyhocks
all my clocks

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Jimmy’s Valentine

When love
which is
a struggling
is born
and grows
or is strangled
left out on
the streets
to mourn
he who finds
it takes it
home to
sleep with
and nothing’s