Triggers on the Gardening Tool

like swords to plowshares,

we no longer use these words 

to cut. 

our wits, sharpened

to peel back

layers 

of self-harm.

onions making me tear up

without knowing why.

Amid these sandy seaside columns

I remove my hand

and with a look back

throw my lot in

as the land 

furrows behind me

the saltiness

peppering my past

losing its flavor

working this potter’s field.

Forest for the Trees

I could not tell you the amount of time 

the sun

shone on that spot

each day, hidden away

this hidey-hole

the thoughts and fears

of squirrelly ten-year-olds

whose only misgivings

are for the rain

washing 

away 

that which we did not expect

as we speak of such sins

never knowing

the words to utter

but let the rain

just fall

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.

Ten dollars and a direction

she relays to me

that I’m odd

(not that I haven’t heard that before)

and that I’ll always

be that way

(yah, I’ve heard that too)

 

and this is why

she likes that chapter:

some steamy romance

going nowhere

because it’s not yet written

or maybe

the plot

dried up

as with my tears

 

accusing fingers

holding your place

between

the part I played

and the mock-up

of a man riding in on a white stallion

saving you

from God knows what

 

open hand offering, reaching

out to you,

and to look upon

you, your favorite

of all the pretty-boy

poster smiles

long, stately mane

flowing in the breeze,

my wizardly ways

which have seen

the world

 

and the knowledge

that this too shall pass.

 

Art credit: Harrison Dale Conti, age 4
“The sun and Daddy at Gumpy and Nini’s”

Child’s Play

Child’s Play

 

from Metro

a Traveling Tales of Waybackwhen book

 

He was here before.

 

In another life

removed from the

hustle

and bustle of

making

ends, and beginnings

meet. Always

toeing the waterline

as it rises

    rises

rises.

 

Castles in the sand, king

surveys his land

as the fortifications

lay bare, wasted,

washed up child’s play

sowing his wild oats

and beans and barley grow

 

but nothing

in this barren marsh.

 


 

based upon the photo

Dreaming of Sanibel

© Bruce Wallace

 

 

memento mori

pacing ‘round the parking lot

still

with white snow

ball bearings

    making their move

tracks

bearing the weight

that which

they were never meant

 

my back against the building

mirrors yours

against the door

grimy with

schmutz, and dust

this window’s

reflection

into a bitter, torn up soul

 

a shell of its former self

superheroic fortress

solitude, alongside Superman

robots, yet you

are no longer the hero

and one I could never be

 

so again I walk away

deep in thought, hands

deep in pockets

fiddling as I get my bearings

a worrying

balancing act

one forever alone

 

the other

Two-Step

Two-Step

 

from Homelands

a Traveling Tales of Waybackwhen book

 

What a tangled, mangled

web they weave

dancing

with the dewdrops,

mirroring universes

reflected

in each others’ eyes.

 

Hung up on the harangue,

breath catching

the sticky

sweaty stench

suffocating

beneath the spinning

twirls and dips

however harmless and halting.

 

Music

strums the heartstrings

and it triggers

something else…

primal

that which

needs to feed

waiting patiently

black widow

wearing white

hourglass

is but a mask.

Autumn Retreat

Reds and oranges

joined the chorus

skish and crunch

listened to the leaves

beneath the feet

of those that

forge the forest floor.

 

Ogethan pondered on

his path marked out for him

map, yellowed

at the edges

like calendar pages

falling

as time went by

quicker

and quicker

with the dying light of day.

 

Sharpe, Garth Addison, Jones…

…Lynnae.

 

Cheery cherry

pit in his stomach, turned

grew dense

caught up in

lives of little sparrows

and breathed

chest,

too narrow

inhaled the crisp

cool air, breathed

out a sigh of relief

and his heart

fluttered

migrated farther

and farther

how much more the Lord cared for thee.