Category Archives: Stand Alone Poetry

The Scheduler

He does his job,
sitting at a metal framed desk,
surrounded by femininity –
efficiently, perfunctorily,
satisfactorily –
and yet, his eyes
look at the others,
flat, snake eyes
staring back
with no reflection,
no depth, empty
beneath the color . . .
and I feel a vague nausea
caught by those eyes
and think, this is a man
who would kill without
blinking, for beneath
there is nothing
but mechanical precision
devoid of soul,
lacking compassion,
as he fills his cases,
sending caregivers
to the care given,
without heart,
his eyes a blank surface
leaving nothing behind
but the rustling whisper
of a snake
moving through the reeds
intent on its prey.

Joshua Trees

Gnarled old women,
holding on to the juices
of life,
watchful sentinels
of silent desert secrets,
holding firm
to a lore lone passed,
yet steady of resolve.
Not acknowledging
changes to the new
nor accepting
or even judging –
absorbing differences
yet protecting
the decrees of
afore gone days.
Old women watching
the passage of time,
held by fragile bonds
to a newer world,
yet never forgetting
a revered past
more precious
with its passing.

Allu Akbar

Allu Akbar
and others
swallowed in the dust
of death

Allu Akbar
and bicyclists die
on a bike path
away from a road
as truck speeds
twenty blocks
spewing bodies
hither and yon

Allu Akbar
when did a phrase
of Mohamed’s love
become a curse word
spit out in triumph
at death’s cruelty

Allu Akbar
and a political war
replaces religion,
a President using
the tragedy
as a platform
for rhetoric

Allu Akbar when
did it loose
it’s place of peace?

Beginnings

picture by Marty
Spring has announced its presence,
birds are pecking pungent soil,
sniffing air – content the remain
until the changing tides of autumn’s
gusty, chill bidden breezes.
Flowers are poking their heads
through moist, fragrant earth,
beginning to make their presence known,
butterflies begin unravelling cocoons.

All this is to let you know
the time has come
to vacate those dark corners
and seek light breezes
and cozy, sunny places
in the glistening morn.

For gloomy thoughts
and reluctant bodies have no place
in the glorious melodies of Spring.
So cast off those Winter chains
and break those bonds . . .
become as free as the winds.

A happy mind makes a happy worker
be she drone or queen.
And content people are more apt
to be productive, accepting of their lot
and enthusiastic regarding
their performance.

This is a general service announcement
for the disheartened, disgruntled,
disillusioned, discombobulated,
and thoroughly disheveled
Winter rung philistines.

Spring’s emotions

It’s one of those bitter Spring days. One of rain and a chill that seeps into your marrow. The leaves are unfurling, flowers are everywhere, but I’m not about to go appreciate them. This is an essential rite of passage (April showers bring . . . ) and our water tables need every drop, but I’d like to go out and play and doing so with an umbrella just doesn’t cut it. I vaguely remember a time when I enjoyed the rain but the key word is vaguely. Times have changed.

With Fibromyalgia and Arthritis, my body is screaming out in pain. It is a sorry state to be in and so many of us have it. The weather hurls its dispensations down on you. You are at the mercy of your body. When I go out, I watch people walking in the rain, umbrella-less, as if they hadn’t a care in the world. My nose glued to the windows, taking in the bounty of Spring through the drops sliding down the windows. Poor, pitiful me.

It’s Spring! I can see the beauty of the world resurrecting itself. Be grateful we still have the cycle of seasons even if they aren’t as in the past. The flowers are magnificently vibrant this year. They sparkle in vivid hues I don’t remember seeing so strongly in some time. I moan and groan in disrespect for God’s creation. I’m inside, my cat lying next to me, having the time to write and read for a change. I have every reason to be grateful and have I mentioned . . . It’s Spring!

Impermanence

A book lies closed, it’s spine
and cardboard covers holding pages secure;
but a page is open, graced by the light
to be perused and hopefully cherished.
But fragile – too close to destruction
by the elements – fire, water, air . . .

How different when sheepskin held
precious words inked on by scribes
who toiled hours upon days
for a finished product that lasted
centuries – even then its words
could be scraped off for rewriting.

But the Egyptians, Jews, and Greeks
wrote upon carved rocks,
polished smooth and etched –
so many millennia later
we can still discern their meaning.

Turks and Mongols declared their
feelings and thoughts on stones, boulders
carved into mountain tops for the Eternal Being
to see – freely witnessing for any and all
who chose to pass their way.

Even our forefathers knew
to carve words into monuments
names onto stone
erect and solid for generations
to see and understand.

So many voices now clamoring
to be heard – tumultuous, tempestuous,
lost in the vastness of the system
meant to carry them to be viewed,
to be voiced . . .

Are our words so temporary now –
as fragile as the paper printed upon
or coded to be thrown across
the world wide internet –
which hackers could erase
by the touch of a button
or the crash of systems.

And on the Mongol steppes the stones lie
more than a millennia old, two even,
the caves of the Anasazi and Inca temples
holding images with stories behind them
while a ripped, wrinkled, tattered page
lonely flies down the street . . .

Struck Deaf

Struck Deaf by confusion.
Your lips are moving
yet come voiceless to my ears.
Words rich with portent,
holding the essences of
what I need to understand,
fall short of intent,
fluttering in the breeze
only to drop at my feet
before their meaning
is understood . . .
It seems I must sift through
each thought carefully,
weighing its worth,
slowly digesting its content,
before a day may come,
long after the truism is spoken,
when I might think the words my own
and proudly display new found knowledge
to those who first sought to enlighten
now nodding with irritation or amusement,
and hopefully some compassion.
Always the student I must be,
but like an unruly child,
I learn at a pace of my own keeping,
comprehending only when comfortable
to do  so . . .
and my teachers’ continue
to wave scarlet banners before me
trying to catch the attention
of ears too often deaf.

 

 

Holding the Pain

HOLDING THE PAIN

Golden tresses softly caressing
a face filled with naivete’
yet her eyes are what draws for
they hold within their luminous depths
all the sorrows of the world.
This is her legacy . . .
to walk down paths
where burrs tear her skirts
and thorns scratch
sensitive, vulnerable skin.
So impressionable yet wise,
carrying the pain
of each crying soul she meets
in the private reaches
of her being.
Ever growing, ever changing,
but one fact remains constant . . .
a child she stays
in the deepest sense
and each tear she sees
becomes a bath for her soul,
a continual renewal of the pain
of her birth, a reaffirmation
of her most primitive essence.

Image courtesy of Danielle Niculescu

What’s to Know?

There is something I don’t know
that I am supposed to know

I don’t know what it is I don’t know
and yet am supposed to know

and yet I feel I look stupid
if I seem not to know it
and not know what it is
Therefore I pretend I know it

This is nerve-wracking

Since I don’t know what I
must pretend to know
Therefore I pretend to know everything

I feel you know what I am supposed to know
but you can’t tell me what it is
because you don’t know that I don’t know
what it is

You may not know what I don’t know
but not that I don’t know it
and I can’t tell you

So you will have to tell me everything