July 1, 2015

the finger lakes, monsters and I...

'Sunset on Geneva on the Lake',
by Karen Monroe and Doug Gehlsen ©
found at middleburgphotography dot com





the finger lakes, monsters and I

we took chances 
to break chains 
where motion 
explains things 
to us

we dragged the gang down 
to the shoreline 
to skip stones 
and break bottles 
in the cover 
of a quiet cove

these old glacial tongues 
where rain has rung 
an imperceptibly sharp bell 
leaving seasons 
and the wear 
of rocks to tell 
the stories here

the lapping waves 
and dancing shadows 
of a hastily lit fire 
of paper and quickly gathered kindling
played a thrust, parry 
and almost there game
we needed to see 
there must be 
bigger driftwood to find 
before time said no more
light stretched 
into a gloaming beg 
of more stars 
starting to poke holes 
in the blue black fuzzy velvet cloth 
of the night sky 

we were laughing 
and singing songs 
the wind makes when
the Moon wobbles 
its massed gravity pulls
tiny splashes 
the cold dark water 
gives us verse 
after verse 
and we only have to 
pick up the cues 
and chorus along 
flicker, flicker 
tide and gone



"...we are everywhere 
and no where 
and places between 
what is expected 
and what is unseen..." 



sometimes, we'd 
attach ourselves 
to stealthy saboteurs 
souls who were 
ritual angels once 
we thought like us
when hope still bled 
thus, keeping time lost 
becomes a scary nameless place
and we have needs to know 
what we must do too 
where we can be toothed
with pockets full of once ago

seeds, wishes and trees 
seeking rain pooled somewhere 
near a here that might be heaven 
or at least not too far from where 
the light can still grow 
inside monsters and I 
seeking a good time at night


EJR ©

June 24, 2015

idolatry and viruses...




idolatry and viruses


buried for centuries 
patiently waiting 
in a clay pot 

someone's tome open sources 
pit viper vestiges 
copper plated 
on fine stock paper 
hand bound 
sewn pages 
animal skin 
forged spirit well 
emotional impact 
stretching truth toward 
un je ne sais quoi
dipped in shiny rain...


poem once asked, 
with the gold all gone 
is humanity about to become 
another of God's abandoned mines

---------

you are nostalgia, the poem says
(I am looking at old photos) 
(exactly)


I am sentiment 
I said, looking back 
here we are, surrendering 
to every future almost...

poem says 
we ought be boundless 
a gone toothy awry 
poem is keeping track 
of place and purpose 
I am laboriously
slipping between 
riding and ridden 
hidden inside myself as
an elliptically social sometimes
funny farm-hand piece of work...


chaos 
has many names 
and charms 
all one has to do 
is think it through 
any I and you 
poem said 
would do...

and since Sumeria 
we can, enslave minds 
with our pens 
and pretend all life 
is a pattern 
and pretend freewill 
is only God 
in shadow disguise...

---------

(poem particle)
(now talking to one's self)

...formless ink, 
the wind says 
is a lot like 
the glass you make 
at night 
when the desert cools too
slow to bleed out
not needing much 
in the way 
of construct...

I like bees, infinities, 
the lead roles 
in bone cage plays 
and of course 
I like being right where 
I am supposed to be, 
hear here inside the poems 

I like being dead 
to most of you 
poem says 
I am home 
I am loam continuous
a re-purposed self
outside insider definition 
defamed debunked 
debauched deforested 
denounced 
deloused 
and delirious 

the poem writes, 
"...write me"
speaks, says things like 
"...bite the bullet" 
"...eat the poison", 
"...have fun while having at 
your fertile dark destructive bits"

for the more serious 
of inquiries, you must
go stump pulpit serendipity
Madison-ian manifest destiny 
a clearing overrun 
traversing comfortable 
as sickness transported 
o'er mountains 
seeds and grasses 
fire caught hold of wind
in the low bramble arms 
of thirsty pines 
that know Jesus 
like their cones
was born 
a Summer birth too

so...poem and I say
are You there...
God, are You listening in 
or tuning us out again

because...
with want 
of sky, perhaps
and declaration 
are we keeping time still 
enough to eat into our
character becoming myth...

I leave that question hanging 
twisted wading what wind wanders in, too 

I stick to
our here and now
and on occasion...
I wonder aloud...
does pride know us well enough 
to fall for the light of a divine You as well...?

God, did You know 
poem and I 
are an is 
an island 
a creation 
a sanctuary too...

a flag fly freak domain
something we have 
been claiming 
as divinely written 
no intervention or mention
of whatever bent fun
we could use to escape 
from this promissory world 
with Your subscriptions 
to an infinity 
that needs 
like we do 
all of our tomorrow(s)
wheels, cages, 
barrows and bones 
to keep paying 
the debt 
of the dead...

-----------

ideas 
and faces 
places we made sacred 
and time took back


EJR ©

June 21, 2015

carousel odd fish...


carousel odd fish

what time emits says 
work your bones, at least 
until humble wins/ 
this is my working class blues...

I am up tempo manic mostly 
tarantella-esque 
arabesque-ing clever
a wading bird 
knee bent 
waiting light rain, 
after midnight 
before seed birds rise
those still dreaming 
nuzzle tucked that
they're eating 
the quiet too, 
cranes to frogs 
to slow crickets...

and here hear I lie
tired from work 
keeping a promise 
made to myself 
years back 
selfishly enjoying 
the abstractions, locks 
and keys 
not caring 
all that much 
if anyone read 
what I said
writing sounds 
I could remember
resembled words...

for example
sounds this poem makes 
wandering on through
thought-place and wear(s)
of the little more(s)
of you...I keep...
for myself

for things like 
another arbitrary last line 
divination, just to feel
if you read that one too


EJR ©

June 18, 2015

wading shattered glass kinetics...




wading shattered glass kinetics 
(urban abstraction tremolo #37)

potential 
hadn't yet decided 
looking out the window 
to throw an empty bottle 
from the third floor 
outside was nearing 
Summer smelt air 

we pause and play 
under and inside 
broad leaf regale 
square patch flowers 
and ornamental grasses
the sidewalk beckoned me
mischief, I mused 
knew what long term strings 
could pull right now from me 

EJR ©

June 17, 2015

poem sniping snippet me...

giant papier-mâché head circa early to mid 1900's








poem sniping snippet me


in a perhaps 
or could be future...

a local constable 
or examiner took 
the call 
from a singular cafe 
in a little river town 
at the crossroads 
of anywhere 
and nowhere 
in particular...

he is careful 
as he walks 
and surveys 
the scene 
I am 
the one 
on the left 
chalk out-lined 
pastel yellow 
my body no longer 
a function of me...


the symphony begins 
low beckons building 
piano led


banks, became like medieval monasteries 
in these modern dark ages/
after all Camus said 
plague is still plague 
and needs to be fed/ 

by keeping time 
a dependent 
contextual reality 
you dress death 
as anything other 
than what it is/ 
body once caged 
aging decaying bones 
and eventually 
back to rain

 the lords no longer castled to heavens
instead they tethered themselves 
with miles of underground utilities/ 
sub surface pneumatic transports 
and cave port of calls 
all free of the sky cancer field generators of daylight 
of course/ 

late June was calling it always remembers me 
soft frontal zone prance 
and glance febrile dream slabs 
where I am now amidst mindful bodies 
slain waiting for new host souls 

the air is filled with acrid and aromatics 
smudge pots flank sacred tall column edifices 
giant papier-mâché head-ed ushers 
grotesquely distort themselves 
into fairy tale type heroes 
I might have had once 
when I was still 
a child of my mind/ 

the coda is a mask theater pollen advocacy 
choral shadow figures lurking 
bumping the night into forms 
one might imagine as wonders 
and murders/ 

it once tolled 
the lottery 
with its large bell 
it has told us 
of each significant moment 
in its ebb and flow 
its uses charted 
in the local historical society/ 

many decades after  
it turned belly cup forge 
ringing out the nadir nude
of a moment ritual-ized and heralded...
it became a kill box 
a lone silhouette
two canisters of ammo 
requisite camouflaged 
matching stones, mortar 
and painted wooded, 
the cupola copper nailed shutters 
were stenciled with crescent moons 
someone drove eyes probing flesh 
mine was on target 
soft enough to be invaded 
with a purposeful ending...

(underbelly entrance cross hairs)


the conductor now 
subtly implores 
the choir to song...

lead us out 
his eyes seem to say


where for art thou
core and seeds 
do you still inherit 
by wind and deed 
do you still merit 
each moment you feel 
life coming and going 
by way of bleed...?


EJR ©

June 16, 2015

ritual Vesta...



 'Las Meninas', by Diego Velázquez







   ritual Vesta


scrubbing stain 
like lady macbeth 
thou art 
an air breathing 
scream stream 
I tell her 
I am accepting 
subtle accumulation of filth 
as my own cultural patina 

I was going to be 
a polemic algorithm 
a usage disorder 
chaos and tidy 
wanting a series 
of interludes with
random wild asparagus 
and other stalk variant nutrients 

a dirty legume 
a room view womb 
the dust wind rain mud 
a broom neatly 
inside the door 
clouds and windows
to the right 
or to the left 
the clefts, cleaves  
and divides 
are all vines 
of some kind

you'll look back 
someday in a future 
not yet passed 
and seed imagery 
into your needs 
you might see 
even your humanity 
had left town 
some time back 
near when 
postal delivery 
became sporadic 
a now and then 
of people read more 
when wanting 
electric lives again 

circled upon the white hem 
she wore what had been 
at best: rust, dirt, 
active entropy 
and inert gasses
she had been cursed 
with collecting evermore

she is constant motion 
sometimes slowing 
yet never ceasing 
time she says
begs ash cover-shines 
hiding eyes in creases 
a soul for song 
she says, makes one 
forget melody 
but remember scent

afterglow is 
painting what 
there was always...

we document seasons 
and souls as bones and...

the empty mouths to feed 
a hearth will spit fire
and whisper night
back to morning's roar 
there is always 
going to be 
a yesterday 
waiting to be 
wanted by
an empty 
mouth to feed

EJR ©

June 2, 2015

aging my perspectives 'tween vinegar and wine...




aging my perspectives 'tween vinegar and wine

hobgoblin rain, third to first person poem and back/ what 
the fuck is this, a title?/ I don't know, maybe it's the first 
line, all jealous...yeah, old paper mill towns harbor mad 
and quiet poets in the bones at the bottom of rivers/ we 
dragged our fingers in this silk mud to collect them by the 
barrel full...

on the slickened 
algae covered 
wood planks 
I almost fall, 
slipping 
damp dark
clinging to everything...

outside, confluence 
of rivers cities eating the curds 
of forests and range 
clay tonguing time 
vines trees flood plains and eons 
watch the ever slow peel 
of mountains to the sea...

all the weather 
and mythologies 
have names and places 
assigned second tastes 
and nose bouquets 
are for those 
you burn fire 
and bleed with 
in and out 
of standing 
signature or 
stain 

are you current 
here in thought 
thinking back 
thinking ahead 
a theater piece 
what you are living  
what you are 
and have been 
what you yet might be 

when do you 
see destiny 
as only a word 
for those 
not willing 
themselves free...

do you give up your shackles 
and know fertile ash 
awaits your rise...

could I be 
only an escape 
or your demise 
you let yourself say
breathing in
a hand organ night 
June first 
full Moon 
cool air
socked in 
thirsty grasses 
and weeds 
never say please...

you leave out ales 
and cakes 
for the hobgoblin rain...

you know 
never to leave 
your clothes though...

because 
the seasons 
are watching too...

and bare skin 
is so pleasingly 
easy to carve 
the look 
from here 
to there 
and where 
you and I 
might have been
or will be 
when sleep 
eats the gaining summer short wave dark sides 
smells of roadside attractions taking us in...

wanting 
we are 
ever wanting 
more...

EJR ©

June 1, 2015

poem on the quick in the steam of a mirror...

vintage erotic postcard circa late 1800's


poem on the quick in the steam of a mirror

even the most productive 
and focused madness 
is a beautiful thing 
to throw off 
mendacity's chains with 
and though as Jacob Marley 
might attest, their sound weight 
make for a character's reappearance 
to be song-ful joints and jaunts...

when o'er landscapes 
with our articulates 
in tow our courtesans 
know to keep it 
under the sheets 
we can complete 
a verse or two 
without need 
for words to stay
what say you 
dream the day 
in animal skin too...?

EJR ©

illustrating myself as a continuum poem...

illustration by Constantin Jiquidi, 1893







illustrating myself as a continuum poem

I am an abstract symbolist poet 
said the flower to the rain
but the clocks in the water 
said we count not what you were 
or are but rather what you'd be 
if you could see yourself 
the son or daughter
inside the outside of infinity 

I motioned for another cup 
declined the cream 
sipping the steam 
rise staring into the pooled black 
shimmer wobble fantasy delves 
of a poet alone in his thoughts 
while people watching... 

at a 24 hour diner 
off an exit 
near a town 
that once knew 
more bustle 
than nostalgia 
what could I sing 
before scent drove me 
to pick apart and put 
back together, memories 
reminding me 
of a moment now and then
spending past here and now 
to bring me to once and again 
and yes, I'll have another cup 
before this poem ends...

EJR ©

what galleries and museums will tell our stories...







"This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper."

T.S. Eliot 'The Hollow Men'





















what galleries and museums will tell our stories...

the Goddess watches us 
scurry by playing 
 duck, duck, goose...

have all of us 
also God's children 
been turned into 
 hollow men and women...

outside my study window 
I watch another work week 
 drive me and drive by...

buses go off to school 
on a Monday morning 
other lurch diesel
automated transports 
and information streams
feed and feed off 
me and you
 and our dreams too...

are we told to 
avoid eye contact 
with games chance plays
because our humanity 
is sometimes too much
of a gambler to grace 
and spare us 
with resolute 
 spiritual change...

and because 
if we see 
a heart's content
does bleed through
will we sometimes silently 
 seed jealousy to the rain...

we can't explain why 
we might be programmed 
to hate more easily 
we just know or at least
 we think this to be true...

wormhole ocularity junctions 
will function as places 
ferreting knowledge 
of when souls passing 
each other here
wear out their futures 
in angel wings 
and demon tales
 instead of time...

this is where hearts 
beg for disorder to see
 in order to stay alive...

and even if it is 
for a second longer 
than love might 
stay inside of you 
modernity it seems 
is a Pyrrhic victory 
for the bone cages
no soul ever knew...

and this is why 
if I am ever 
in a coma 
without a poem
or a view
pull the plug 
send me home 
 too...


EJR ©