Tomorrow, Butterfly

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On frail wings
Spectacles of memories
Perhaps well suited for the pin
To mount up in some gallery
Go sailing far beyond my reach
But I should never wish it so
That beauty on this grander scale
Be found confined
By greedy man
Or turn of hand
As time, life, and love demand

Tomorrow then, my butterfly
If winded currents sweep you so
I will not keep you
No, not for trophies
Not for thirst to see your colors
Freedom owes itself to us
Your gilded wings deserve release
The slightest touch
Might hurt so much
For something there so precious made
So, to the breeze, I send you off

Tomorrow then, my butterfly
Today may be a time unkind
The sunset speaks
Upon your fragile form so sweet
Fluttering beyond my reach
But I can be
Content to know I held you close
And met you on this journey we
Were christened for
Before today was ever dreamed
Farewell, I hope you keep your wings

Clouds I Packed

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Fragments of the bridges we burned
In the charred grey haze
In the soft blue grass
My hand on your future
Your palm on my past

Little scraps of clouds I packed
In the zippers and pockets
Of the walls we moved
And the paint we peeled
For the dreams we drew
Under stark white dots
Oh, the skies we knew
Were

Bigger than the snowfall over those mountains
And bigger than the love all over these hills
Our sky was on fire
Our hearts were our needles
Our eyes were a compass
Our bodies unbound

Bigger than the words repainted from ancients
And bigger than door frames over this house
Our sky is on fire
Our blankets untorn
Our love is like water
Our bodies still warm

(sorry for the delay. I’ve been relocating and adjusting. Thank you for your patience)

The River And I

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The river and I go side by side
It runs, though I, content to walk
Am in no rush, though tossed about
And ever turbulent, no doubt
But less intentional in stride

The river and I, we both do long
To find the sea–the open deep
I feel my path will longer be
For I am less at liberty
To chase the places I belong

The river and I have much to share
The downward path we both pursue
I feel I fall but never rise
And dashed upon these rapids white
The fate I find is rarely fair

The river has more voice than I
It has no fear to speak its mind
It gladly tears the earth apart
While on its path with steady heart
It makes no stops and forms no ties

The river has more force than I
To cut away at standing stone
Its lonely goal by soul inspired
It runs always and never tires
With naught a thought to quit or die

The river knows not how it moves
Nor does it out of malice roll
It merely seeks its distant love
Relentlessly at every ebb
And presses in, around, and through

The river and I, we both know well
The destination of our call
We know which way we need to go
Though how to turn we may not know
And what may come we cannot tell

The river and I, though without words
Walk side by side along the bank
I long to run as does this friend
But how I fall and how I bend
Has broken me in shattered thirds

The river and I have parted ways
It perseveres while I digress
Returning to my former lot
A life, a day, a time forgot
With sentences I long to say

The river and I will both go far
Adapting to our circumstance
Perhaps, since I am not allowed
The river will reach you somehow
In freedom on some distant shore

Painted Vessel of Passage

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Skin, oh the falsities stretched over flesh
As a smile, or a laugh, or a wish
Twisted in foreign hieroglyphics
Subtle nuances of portrayal
With which we deftly parry
The thrust of probing questions
Or misguided salutations
But skin is not what I am
And this boxcar bears no resemblance to the passenger within
Merely a painted vessel of passage
Oft’ the canvas of a graffiti made to fade
A forest, blocked by trees
Or, perhaps, a tale that no one would believe
That is us
That is me
Beneath

Sometimes You Can See…

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It isn’t all that often, but sometimes
You can see love
In tiny pinholes
Bleeding through a ebon sky in variable densities
Light
Ignited
Ancient
Caravanning the distance in waves
Predating the cracks in our fragile hearts
Washing upon celestial shores in swaths we call constellations
But we never really knew them
These eyes in the heaven are to faces unblinking
A glance by chance or divine
Falling across time
Onto a serendipitous second in which elements align
Providing oxygen to my tired mind down here
It isn’t very often, but sometimes
You can see God
Burnt through in the autumn hues of dying dreams
Shaken and piled up for sweeping
Where today’s decomposition becomes tomorrow’s fuel
To wake life where death stirs
Like children coming forth from sleep
It isn’t often, but sometimes
I think that centuries may just be unwitting catalysts
Love, launched long before the orbits breathed a full rotation
Locked in motion
Ancient beyond recognition
Struck here tonight because it was the only place it could go
And we are nothing new
Me and you
Just tiny allegories of immortality
Caught tightly
Spun lightly
And bundled up in woven threads of something
We did not create
Embodiments of unity even the stars do not comprehend
While bending arms of light to touch us
These broken compositions
These stolen notes
We have written in stone over the face of what we know
Are our epitaph
That
We love
And it comes with no permissions
Branded deep within a sky that casts no shadow, but is its own reason why
And so am I
So I decide
That if the sky makes no apology for light
Despite the blind eyes we bear
And if the stars believe the distance here is worth the weight of infinity
And if the pain of decomposing becomes the beauty of tomorrow’s bloom
Then I love you
And it must have been true
Before they wrote the first line of the first word
Or spoke of things like this
It isn’t often, but sometimes
The world moves
For small things
And life springs
From cracked dreams
Under the ancient eyes
In this ebon sky
Where, it isn’t often, but sometimes
You can see love

5 After Midnight

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The pixie dust
Long since swept up
Has left only a fading glow
Upon the harsh wooden floor
And I am here
Dangling between wand
And life
How long will I
Be caught between
Being the coachman and the dog
How long will I
Be snagged in thinking
The taste of these enchantments
Is bitter in the end
A hollow sound
Of fairy games
And riven souls

Not A Traffic Light

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Traffic lights have such an easy job
Blinking life away, oblivious
To shattered glass and acts of tragedy
Or signs of cardboard begging charity
Who am I to stand aghast at life
Twisted metal spilling in the streets
And ask the reasons why it all should be
When I could wait in quiet apathy
But I am not a blinking traffic light
I am not a lifeless entity
Conscious to the wreckage we create
I am not content to sit and wait
We have felt the force of passing forms
Ripping through the course of our intent
I can taste the spillage of our hearts
I inhale the putrid bitter scent
Burnt and broken heaps that once were love
Scattered on the landscape of desire
Empty vessels gutted in the dark
Hope that we abandoned to the fire
Sometimes I would like to be machine
Incapable of tears for what I know
But I am not a traffic light that blinks
I cannot tell when to stop or go

Chandelier Of Stars

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In the vaulted cathedral of night
An endless chandelier of stars
Dangles brightly overhead
Where bedded oceans
Speak whispered waves
Upon a shore of bronze-grey
Sometimes in the recompense of chance
Two hands pass
In fleeting grasps along parallel lines
Where neither gravity nor time
Stays long enough for tea
And neither do we
Surety for a pact yet unfulfilled
These glimmering fragments
Of twinkle-eyed enchantments
Blow in on the offshore breeze
For a dance on the hem
Of secret seas
Beneath the chandelier of stars
Where all we are
And all we ever were
Is a blaze of torn sky
Trespassing the atmosphere in night
To write initials
In a constellation
Visible for one millionth of a moment
To be held on lips too small
And kept in safes too thin
Before the breeze returns
And claims its stray sand dancers
Beneath a chandelier of stars

Dreams Of A Flightless Bird

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A wisp of scented breeze
Over gently stirring fields
If time is here at all
Then it must be standing still
My heart escapes my chest
A balloon without a string
The body that it left
All the evidence it came

I want to drift away
Where the mountains meet the sky
Ascending on the storm
Like a bird

I want to disappear
Without waving a goodbye
The sun to keep me warm
On my way

A wisp of scented breeze
Is my harbinger of grace
If pain was ever real
Then it must have been erased
My dreams escape my head
Like a flock of winter geese
These endless numbered days
Are the path to my release

I want to drift away
Where the ocean hugs the shore
The tide beneath my wings
Like a bird

I want to disappear
Like the early morning dew
Alive again and new
On my way

A Question Is An Answer

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A question is an answer if the answer is a question
A mystery is ruined when the secrets are all told
A moment is a lifetime when you live within the moment
The past was once our present but the future never comes
We love to hate the things we wish we never had to know
We hate to love the things we know we never can possess
We seem to be the best as seeing all the worst within us
But often we are worst at seeing what we do the best

I wish I wished I never knew you though I know I don’t
I’m glad to say I’m sad to know I never will forget
The smiles that make me cry inside and tears for which I smile
I’m proud that I’m ashamed to say I cannot find regrets
You’re always here when you are gone and present when you’re missing
I couldn’t do the things I could for fear I’m not afraid
A question is my answer when I ask if we are asking
For changes we would like to think we thought we might have made

Marionette

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Tugged from the box where her wrappings protect her
Carefully placed on the stage
Strings on the joints that will make her an actor
Fit for the part she will play

It’s a clever surprise
It’s a perfect charade
Not a soul would suspect
All the nights she has cried
With this sturdy disguise
And a smile that won’t fade
She is dancing in time
But she’s empty inside

Held up by ribbons and strings to support her
Well rehearsed lines and replies
Looking so much like the girl they have ordered
But for those colorless eyes

It’s a masterful turn
It’s a desperate act
To protect what is left
Of a magical life
But she packs it away
When she exits the back
And the smiles are gone
When she’s down for the night

Little marionette, you don’t have to pretend
You were made without strings
You were born into tears
Little marionette, you have color and skin
You can mount up with wings
You are stronger than fear
Little marionette, let the audience wait
They can come back again
You don’t have to perform
Little marionette, it is never too late
If you really must dance
Would you dance in my arms?

The Night/The Open Road

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The night–the open road
Where hand-in-hand the lovers go
With quiet eyes and hungry souls
And in the lights, a path is shown
But only to the end of where
The beam illuminates the way
And to their darkened fate they plunge
With hands and fingers wound as one

The night–the open road
Where fading in his arms she hung
Against the still receding songs
From newly smoldered wreckage sung
Now overturned, the spinning wheels
Of those whose light can see just far
Enough to drive them further on
Into the dangers of the dark

Tale of the Vanishing Artist

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His footsteps, once upon a time
Struck soundly on the paved walk
In steady, even beats they rang
Into the crowded streets they sang
A chorus of ambitious thought
They did before, but now do not

His fingers, once upon a time
Performed their craft for crowded rooms
To raise the spirits of the saints
And soothe the souls of those who faint
A glimpse of hope to them impart
They did before, but now do not

His eyes, oh, once upon a time
Were brilliant blue and spoke the truth
Believing in a better plight
Believing they could set things right
Without the fear of falling short
They did before, but now do not

For once upon a time, it seems
He vanished into nouns and verbs
And faded into distant dreams
To still be seen but never heard
His soul translated into rhyme
His heart converted into poem
No more to walk among the world
But now, at last, at rest–at home

Common Tongue

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In the language of the common tongue
We weave a strange uncommon tale
In the quiet of a midnight moon
We craft an everlasting spell
In the skin of frail and mortal life
We court an immortality
In the shadow of a thousand lies
We challenge what the truth might be
In the vacancy of happiness
We forge a kind of solitude
In the famine of our ignorance
We innovate a better food
In the winter of Indifference
We light the passion of our flames
In the language of the common tongue
We make ourselves uncommon names

Kinetic Pantomime

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We, in kinetic pantomime
Soaking rustic sunsets
Through dreamlike pores
Are evermore
And never were

We, in fused schisms
With effortless grace
Bequeathed by flames
Are tempered steel
And feather down

We, in double helix
Breathe rainbows into love
Like winter storms
Between despair
And open air

Eve

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Just another eve
Another star
Another night
To paint our lives
Across the canvas
Of the seconds passing by

Just another eve
Another thought
Another dream
To tuck away
Under the covers
Of a constellated sky

Just another eve
Another smile
Another tear
To fill the ocean
Of our lonesome
Sort of regal mysteries

Just another eve
Another heart
Another beat
To change the course of
Our tomorrow
If tonight you can believe

Ordinary Starlet

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Thinking in clich├ęs
As she jaywalks city streets she never
Drove through anyway
‘Cause the lights never turned green for her

Drinking galaxies
Through the straw of her peripheral she
Passes through the flume
Where a million other particles

Collide
Collide
The sparks have burnt the runners in
Her eyes
Her eyes
Are deeper than the drainage pipes
She rides
She rides
On not-so-magic carpets through
This life
Her life
An ordinary starlet who
Has never found an orbit
But refuses to burn out

Derelict parades
Of the ships she never anchored drift like
Ribbons in her braids
And cascade across her shoulder blades

Quiet escapades
Slither in beneath the burden of her
Unrequited days
‘Till the memories unbuckle and

Collide
Collide
The sparks have burnt the runners in
Her eyes
Her eyes
Are deeper than the drainage pipes
She rides
She rides
On not-so-magic carpets through
This life
Her life
An ordinary starlet who
Has never found an orbit
But refuses to burn out

Wonderful Mess

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We are all so perfect
So perfectly we’re flawed
Thoughts left unattended
Clothes left in the hall

We are all so tidy
So organized, we are
Emotions stuffed in boxes
In the backseat of our car

We are all so stable
Our feelings never stick
Honest, like a photo
Straight up like politics

We are all so certain
We speculate and guess
Twisted up together
We lose track of all the rest

We are so attentive
We can’t recall a thing
Scatterbrained and brilliant
Consistently insane

We are all so purposed
Accidentally in love
Our messes are wonderful
And we’re never cleaning up

Deepest Cuts

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It always takes
The deepest cuts
To wake us up
To wake us up

It always takes
The sharpest knives
To change our lives
To change our minds

It always takes
The strongest pains
To make us brave
To keep us sane

It always takes
The deepest cuts
To wake us up

Magic & Illusion

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Ladies and gentlemen
Feast your eyes on center ring
Witness the finest show
of magic and illusions
Ladies and gentlemen
This is art we’re practicing
It’s dangerous, you know
It may appear confusing
Ladies and gentlemen
You won’t believe the things you see
But keep an open mind
And you will be convinced
Ladies and gentlemen
Kindly find the closest seat
Now, let us dim the lights
And let the show commence

We will amaze you with our disappearing act
In fact I think you will agree it’s quite unnerving
Don’t be alarmed to see me saw myself in half
And if you must, then look away, if it’s disturbing
We wave our wands and pull our smiles from the hat
In fact you cannot tell the real from immitation
We swallow fire with our dignity in tact
And speak of things beyond your grand imagination

I tend to sleep at night on beds of sharpened nails
In fact I’m rather well adjusted to the feeling
We juggle swords and spikes, and you can hardly tell
Sometimes we use them to suspend us from the ceiling
You will be dazzled as we hover without strings
I’ve been left hanging here for hours all alone
And, for my final trick, I vanish into dreams
But, please, remember folks: don’t try these things at home