New post, old poems

These are some poems I wrote a long time ago, recently excavated from the late 1990’s. Some are older than that.

The Necessity of Ice

A December so warm
the cherry trees let down their hair
as women do at the end of the day.
Trees release sap to flow through limbs
like blood through kneaded muscle.
They break into bloom, tentatively,
a breath held in for an extra beat,
then test the air.
Flowers dot the fingers
of an opened hand
exposed to the coming chill.

Out of their time,
blossoms in the snow
wither as they begin,
open their essence
to the necessity of ice,
cold fragrance . . .
and what then?

After Giorgio di Chirico

In this city,
it is a train;
in the other,
foghorns.
Both voices
strum the blind night
strung from rooftop
to distant track or beach.
Both voices
drum the earth
where I press my ear,
listening
for buffalo,
the clack of wheels on steel,
or the sanding
of shoreline.
Those rumbles
counterpoint
the deep-tongued crooning,
a private warning
through night’s
still air.

Goddess

I

She breathes black silk
and condensation, clips
a crescent earring on,
then rises.

II

The cries of blackbirds
comb the dawn mist from her hair–
blond strands
rayed on the horizon.

III

She pours the light to darkness,
darkness into light
from cup to cup,
a lavender veil between
the bowl of earth,
the bowl of sky.

Maroon

these dark words,
poured in a bowl cradled in two hands,
like three or four tones
ringing out in the silence,
in the empty space that is packed
around them

these dark words,
signs of life heard randomly
from a distance, just that part
of the voice that makes its way
though wood, stone, and the barriers
of flesh that distort them

these dark words,
stripped of their language, brush past
like a stranger in the marketplace,
the one you never met:
sound, just sound,
as if you’d never heard them

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