Kindled

stacks of notebooks

like cordwood

fending

off the cold

paltry fire

barely big enough

to keep my fingers warm

so i can write

and count the pages

as they flutter

into the fire.

via negativa (for us)

The admin of the poetry newsletter

posts his name

and address

in the email signature

dry

droll

“Daring” 

Dave Bonta

Podunk, Penna.

An invitation

beating down his cabin door

but much gentler 

these poets

oh, they know it

they just don’t yet know 

how to learn 

at the foot

of this towering

mountain

hermit.

Pilgrimage

for his presence

and the wit

unsure

what to make of it.

the muse and I

the muse and I

are having yet another

state of the union

addressing

affairs of the heart.

she has spread out before me

love letters

my chest so full of pride

the intoxicating scents 

waft, slipped into

envelopes

moistened with her tongue.

no longer do we speak the same language

which threatens

an already uneasy alliance

backroom negotiations

the players

have changed

but this cold war

has never ended

temperature 

kept well below freezing

pen, hovering above the page.

STUNTED

Like the precursor

to a best-selling

teen dystopian novel series

with half-heartedly-made

cash cow movies,

the cherry tree in our front yard

has failed to blossom

for the first time

in twenty-six years.

We do not buy 

into symbolism,

yet trees being 

the lungs of the earth

those that still stand tall at the capitol

boughs branching out

embracing

amid further political unrest

pushing back

against barricades

for certain unalienable rights

each ones’ ideas 

of freedom

under banners

such are false flags

and comes at the cost

of choking on the pollen

that is tear gas

as flowers fall

gracefully

like defeat.

But home

is where the heart is 

    (no insurrection here

though unsure as to what this lack of affectation means)

while our love

written in lines of 

poetry, stories

carved into the skin

M.L.M.

    +

G.R.H.

like tattoos

bleeding that sap

sticky, sweet lifeblood

still pumping 

rings 

true

for you, our children

rings 

chronicling the years

the orbit around the sun

rings

around the rosie

ashes

take upon new meaning

as we hold onto life

neverending.

Another Chore

I found a teakettle

at the high water mark

after years

of riversong

movements

magic lamp

water djinn 

beaten up

broken in

boiling off

impurities

because all that mess

is still serviceable.

Three wishes

after dishes

because we still have cleaning up to do.

big pond in a little fish

tuning fork

only i can hear

my body

humming

with opportunity

to an unknown frequency 

the songs

of my brethren

vibrato 

whistling 

through my skull

in concentric

pulsating circles

ripples

in pools

that time 

has best 

left 

forgotten

A Little Misunderstanding

I can’t remember

our last date

or much of the drive 

back from State College.

Also known as “Happy Valley”

onceuponatime 

waybackwhen 

longlongago,

times sure…were.

The house we passed on 26,

and every time 

from that day forth,

I notice the awning you pointed out

that reminds you

as it in turn reminds me

of the eucalyptus tree

and the lies that we once held:

koalas are not bears.

I also misunderstood

the visual acuity

and leaps in logic it would take

as I look past you.

Much like whatever we had,

you don’t elaborate

and it’s taken me this long

after this many drives

to realize

why it is 

you didn’t tell me

why it is

you may have thought 

I wasn’t important enough to understand.

I still don’t.

But that I understand.

Featherhood

An American robin.

Randy robin redbreast

running

repeatedly

into the plate glass door

as if looking for a way in.

I worry about today’s youth:

the instinct

above all else

this drive 

to procreate

when 

for the life of me

circling back around

cannot recall the pros

only to be found

in prose.

Are you and I

birds of a feather

having already built this nest

just 

as concussed

beating my brains

looking

for a way out.

B-Side

when the songs you sing

have someone else’s lovebites on them

you are flush, burning:

though not from passion,

but embarrassment.

this here whores den

you rail against,

frequent.

not only as a customer

but as proprietor 

you write the checks

your saddle sore

ass 

can’t cash.

moseying down

poking ‘round

back stair

fire escape.

hell,

throes of passion

deep breaths

lying 

in the bed you’ve made.

you sleep the sleep

of death.

you know your guilt.