Posts Tagged ‘Butterfly’

I.
There was a woman
Who I loved with all my heart.
It’s the only way
I know how
to love.
The problem I have
With falling in love
Is that I just keep falling
And falling on through.
It’s a perpetual autumn;
Storming leaves of memories,
Possibilities,
Skeletal trees.
And turning my collar up
Against the cold of this world.
Holding my hands out
To the warmth of the fire
That we had kindled
To keep the darkness at bay.
Every time these things end
I look up from the glow
Of the smolder, the embers,
For the ignition of a smile,
That familiar, beloved synching
Eyes to eyes:
It’s just understood
We’ll revel in the work
To pile on more fuel
From our common woodpile.
But nobody is there
Across the coals from me;
I’ve fallen through
The bottleneck of the hourglass
Along with all these ashes.

II.
Songs get tied
Like complicated knots
Around my feelings;
They remind me of how
I used to think about forever.
Some are bright blossoms
Stolen from yards
On the way to your window
In the middle of the night
To kneel and present you
With a moonlit bouquet,
My Juliet.
Another is the crosshatching
Of spray painted poetry
Hanging in midair
Amongst the tree branches
Between the shadows
Of the stars that were ours;
Witchcraft and wizardry
For an unrelenting passion.
Tapestries of smoke
And of tie-dyed freedom;
Soft paws of haloed kittens,
The chocolate and the champagne
Of the once in a lifetime.
Threads on a magick loom
Synchronicity unparalleled,
Spiderwebs like a hammock,
An embrace as if I was coming home;
Touch burning like the fire of a faerie,
Or the resurrection of the phoenix,
Tracing sigils in the sky,
Re-ignition of belief
Like a firestarter
Or finding a soulmate.
I am haunted
By the breadth of my music
And the depth of my commitment.
The failure
of my eyesight.

III.
The carnage is absolute;
A battlefield strewn with my corpses,
Beer cans and shrieks and cigarette butts,
The best of intentions and
The stench of taking things for granted.
These raw wounds
I have sustained over my lifetime
Of loving how I should have been loved
Never seem to heal;
They just ooze and pulse
Making heartbeats painful;
A crazy accumulation of luggage
Like owning an airport carousel
Of baggage you can’t strip off.
It just grows with you,
Older and less attractive,
Smelling faintly of urine and gangrene
When you can’t bear
To perform the required surgery.
It hurts too much;
I’ll excise memories I want to keep
Along with the decaying flesh.
Retrospective or post-mortem;
It’s still the death of a relationship
That I thought would live forever
As if I had infinite chances,
Infinite quarters.

IV.
I was pinned to a mortarboard
Like a butterfly from a caterpillar,
When I had to eulogize my friend;
My brother, my partner-in-crime,
Someone who understood
By the merit of not being female
The depth of love and an enduring relationship.
I don’t ever want to do that again.
It is the same with love;
I know I can, and it will be better,
But the pain of losing someone to provoke that work
Is too much to accept;
Besides, who the fuck will do that for me?
The answer is as clear as hindsight:
20-20.
I listened to my voice echo hollow through a church
That he wouldn’t have appreciated
To the people who were left behind,
And became even more haunted.
I did my best to represent,
Tell tales, romanticize, believe
And I went home with ashes in my mouth
To cry, cry out, want to evaporate,
Disappear, erase myself from existing
Because I had lost something precious:
A true friend.
It’s a lot like losing your love
Because you have lost a friend.

V.
The light switch is off.
This is the eye of the storm for me.
Now I deal with the still shatter of leaves,
The cold of being alone,
And shoving my hands into the campfire.
There is no warmth.
This destroys the fabric of memories
That took deep commitment
And sweat equity;
Deeper resources than I had without you.
And I see them all retreat,
As if they never existed;
Vanish into the thin, thin air
That I breathe.
Flatlined.

VI.
To move along,
Because there is nothing to see here;
It’s a pretty penance,
My cross to bear;
One that gets weightier
The more years I carry forward,
This boulder I am pushing uphill.
It’s that lost luggage from the carousel;
It’s those old wounds from the battlefield;
It’s those lyrics of happier times
When I would write, compose, sing
Of how I loved being in love
And how I expected forever
But you only had right now to give.

VII.
Perspective is a function of wisdom,
Which is a byproduct of experience,
That is what happens when you live and die
Through these things.
Perhaps they build character;
Actually, they create defense mechanisms
To try to prevent this from happening again
And again.
Expectations collapse
And you lay bricks and mortar in the fortress
That you think will keep you safe
But not sound;
You all are quite persuasive.
Certainly isolated
In the aftermath
Of bequeathing your everything —
Heart, mind, soul —
To your everything
Around that campfire
And you look up and discover
That she is long gone.

I
I can imagine a perfect spot
to have a picnic with you today;
the sky is a wee bit grey
at the edges —
I caught as many clouds as I could
with my butterfly net
(I came in wet
early this morning from the rain-dew
on the unmown grass stems).

II
I’ve found a circle of trees
by the brook in the forest
where it takes a toddler’s tumble
over a jumble of rocks;
the moss grows shaggy like old men’s beards
wisping from the branches;
faerie streamers from last night’s revelry —
perhaps Pan was here just a little while ago
rearranging or arranging this spot and my walk.

III
It’s only raining a little bit now
not like how it was this morning —
you were sleeping, darling —
I was watching the whole time;
the same clouds that dampened my socks
were protectively wrapped across your eyes;
It was no surprise that I found it so easy
to slip outside to explore, to find
a real secret garden for your majesty.

[for Dawn]

Tying Knots

Posted: July 1, 1993 in Poetry
Tags: ,

how is it that
you write and write
with so dull an instrument
as an everyday pen
and tie quick knots
in your letters
so that they stay
pinned to the page
like an insect collection?
when I steal
your butterfly net,
I am almost all thumbs;
I just get sweaty
and frustrated
watching things wriggle
their way off of my paper.

Untitled Poem #164

Posted: June 4, 1993 in Poetry
Tags: , , , ,

all I think of
in my most precious dreams
is that dangerous dolphin,
you.
flying golden dragon,
delicate butterfly,
wreaths of suntouched hair,
I know you
in each disguise.
you are dessert.

A Sunrise over the Phone

Posted: March 19, 1993 in Poetry
Tags: , , , , ,

I am the anvil that rings
with each hammer falling,
a star impacting, exploding, desiring, denying
that I love so deep, so much;
I feel when I hear you hurt, your voice
like butterflies in my ears,
the tautness of a drum
within my heart.

I will sing you a song softly
of a little girl I remember dreaming,
who would wink into the faces of
the flowers to see them smile,
perfume tickling her nose all the while
as she would wander secret places.
this little girl I did love
as I seemed to quietly spy
from the trees into which I’d climbed
as a boy, eyes opened wide.
dreaming her leaving colored footprints
skipping in the parted grass,
laughing like the flight of a butterfly.
and I’ve been dreaming ever since that time,
drugged with memories more precious
and sparkling than her diamond tears
of happiness when she chanced to find
the too-shy boy in the tree tops.

Net

Posted: December 1, 1991 in Poetry
Tags: ,

so many big
things to capture
with the clumsy
butterfly net
of my poetry.