Monthly Archives: March 2015

Warrior Poet

Lawrence Ferlinghetti is ninety nine
and still writing poetry!

His faces appears like a smiling Buddha
in the ephemera of the days news

still calling out to our better selves
to be the angels we forgot we were

still telling us to save the world
by loving it harder

like an Old Testament prophet with
a funny hat and a sword made of words

Practicing

I tried untangling the drawstrings
on the folding window blinds–
someone left them tied in impossible knots

I spent hours sorting the pieces
of the 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle
into piles of guitar fragments

Fender logo, fretboards and lots of
black background nothingness until slowly
an autographed Strat showed itself

all curlicued happy snarls
and whammy bar and sidemen
drunk but still wailing eyeing the blond

at the bar who would make the night in a Tupelo juke
less like a box of rusty car parts
and more like a savage night run across the delta

in a growly Mustang hand on a tan thigh
tongue in ear mistake worth making a thousand ways
all the pieces fitting together all the guitars friends

who forgave my decades absence
while I worked on drawstring knots
making a Tibetan mandala out of sand

again and again and again
on my knees in red robes
practicing breathing like I didn’t know how

Nothing vs. Something

He who does nothing for others does nothing for himself.

–Goethe

Finding Symbols

“The craft or art of writing is to find symbols for the wordlessness.”

–John Steinbeck

Chemotherapy

She holds on to the day
tighter than a lovers
embrace on the jetty

while her oaken fingers
harden like sea ice
into winter honeycombs.

The night nurse’s
chemical embrace
loosens her grip somewhat.

She stands on tiptoe
peering over the railing
at India rising from the sea.