Patterns and Dust

Passing through eternity,
Through the cycles of infinity.
Things grow and flourish,
Decay and die,
Each end a beginning,
Each beginning and end,
Sometimes the same end,
The same beginning.

Circles and cycles of history,
Repeating, rhyming:
Patterns in the fog,
Order in the chaos,
A lotus flower in the swamp.

11/16/17

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Stormbringer

Cold black blade
Burning blood red runes
Wisdom worms
Burrowing into tombs

The price of the blade
Is the blood that is spilled,
The victories all hollow
When all else is killed.

11/12/17

 

I’ve been rereading a few of Michael Moorcock’s Eternal Champion novels (The Eternal Champion and Phoenix in Obsidian so far. I’ll be starting The Dragon in the Sword next) and this was the result

Laying Awake in the Darkness

I’ve felt old and ancient
Since I was 12 years old,
Worn out, road weary,
For reasons unexplained
Living in the Cleaver household
In an idyllic isolated Oregon valley.

It made me want to believe in reincarnation,
The only explanation for the
Spread thin butter feeling
That started in the 3rd grade
When I reasoned out
That death meant oblivion
Not fluffy clouds and angels,
Training myself not to think of it,
To fend off the icy black hole
Opening under my sternum,
Crushing everything within its event horizon.

I lay in bed, tears streaming cheeks,
meaninglesness pressing down; suffocating
I start to scream,
Pretending to have had a nightmare,
So my mother will come, hold, and console.
Unable to articulate the existential crisis
Of an 8 year old boy.

10/26-10/28/17

Reflections, Part I

There’s nothing left to say
There’s nothing left to feel

There’s no one left to save
There’s no one left to heal

There’s no reason left to cry
There’s nothing left to write

There’s no reason left to die
That’s really worth the fight.

4 January 1993, Gießen, Germany

This is another old piece from my files. It has a companion poem called Reflections, Part II.

Don’t Forget

iphone-x-camera-wide

The new iPhone X has
Dual 12 megapixel front facing cameras
That operate in unison to produce
Crisp lifelike photographs with
Bright vivid colors from across the spectrum
And true depth of focus.

But you will still die someday.

10/01/17

Perspective

“Thou art a little soul bearing about a corpse, as Epictetus used to say”
– Marcus Aurelius, translated by George Long

Life is short;
The Universe is forever:
An ocean swallowing
The teardrops of human existence,
Born a thousand eons
Before our earliest ancestors
Had drug themselves from
The primordial ooze.
So long ago that
Only God was there
To witness the blessed event.
Though, perhaps, even He
Is too young to recall the day.

A dozen millennia after
Our great-great-grandchildren
Have become dust
Blown on the solar winds,
It will still be here,
Waiting patiently
For its appointment with Death
At the other end of Eternity.

19 July 1999

The Last Secret

Your dog was left in her living room,
Still on his leash.
This the only note you left,
The only sign that something
Was horribly wrong.

Alone you walked,
The salty breeze blown
From the Pacific.

How long did you sit
Listening to the rhythm of the waves—
Your thoughts totally and forever your own?
Your last secret,
Under the stars, among the waves.

Why? Why didn’t you pick up the phone
Instead of picking up the gun?

8/27/17

Content (Senryu)

Pleased to be alive
Gardening in the hot sun
Grieving not its end.

6/6/17

This senryu (aka a “human haiku”) is my response to Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge # 36 – HAPPY & SAD. I subsituted the synonyms “Pleased” and “Grieving” for “Happy” and “Sad”

Survival Skills

In the chasm between dreams and reality
Falls pain and disappointment,
Bridged by madness and hope,
Holding off the suffocating
Black blanket of eternal night.

5/29-6/3/17

Reoccurring Dreams

The dreams return,
Can’t stop them from coming,
Dreams of the past,
Relived like a robot,
Unable to deviate from programming.

Dreams of things that never happened
–that never could–
But I that know to be true:
On stage alone,
Ukulele-playing Tangled Up In Blue,
Rock-Band-Playing
Won’t Get Fooled Again,
Sharing a backstage drink with
Early ’80s Pete Townshend,
Toasting a fallen friend,
Fidgeting for a fix.

Dreams of the future,
Not flying-car Flash Gordon future,
No Starships or monoliths.
The real future, my future:
The coming darkness,
Depression and death.
Standing on the beach
Feeling old and tired,
Isolated; alone,
Ready for the end.
But I’m wrong.

5/29/17

Adapted from Chapter II of Summer of a Doormouse.