Daybreak

When she raised her eyes and met his gaze
the train gave an unexpected lurch.
It was an ineffable moment,
like a deer looking up from the plain
for an instant and finding berries.
The sun was rising. His pale blue eyes
and the rye field rolling out behind
his broad shoulder reminded her of
the old town she’d run away from,
where the faded rye no longer danced
when the cold wind blew, and the mad crows
beat their wings against the stony sky.
And as she smiled at him, sunlight broke
through the tin-gray clouds that gathered on
the tip of her tongue all these quiet years.

 

Originally published on January 27th, 2016 on my old blog.

Many Years Later

Many years later, she saw him standing
in the cereal aisle of AJ’s Fine Foods.
He was reading the nutrition label
on a box of frosted flakes, still wearing
his mucky white converse with no shoestrings.

It was nearing seven. The blue between
two clouds grew paler but never vanished.
A bulb of white light quivered, and kept on
quivering still on the blank store ceiling.
Without a sound she turned away to see

if she has found everything she wanted.
Somewhere over the baking supplies aisle,
two shopping carts bumped into each other,
two strangers, mumbling soft apologies,
carefully went on their separate ways.

 

Originally published on January 9th, 2016 on my old blog.

Sylvia

She lay afloat, nakedly undulating
like a great maternal vessel.
Mother of the black corals.
A blinking eye, a quickening vein.
Hope was a mere pinnace to her greying ribcage.

She gathered death like she gathered water
around her wooden body.
Many have capsized this way.
Many who asked for roses got only thorns.
The leviathan approached her at midnight.

At dawn the light was soft like an unspoken wish.
Her hair grew heavy, her eyelids turned to a shade of blue
colder than the north star.
She opened her fists in the pummeled water.
Evergreen terrains stretched by her palms’ end.
Someone awaited her arrival.

The sea never ceased. With great power
it piled waves upon the hardened shores,
as heavy years piled upon the back of a defiant silhouette.
Forever bent but never broken, an ineffable wreckage.

From her sodden cartilages,
we collected things she once loved –
mushrooms and sows, skeletons and stones.
However ugly, however cold.
Our dearest smiling in her own shadow.

We buried everything in the moistened earth – those things,
melted lamps, fish bones, and the fat purple figs
fallen by her toes.
What was left from her pink knuckles and pretty smiles,
sewn together, became the map of a new voyage.

Then on a quiet night like this, her aroma suddenly came
from the norwegian sea, icy yet sweet like a comet.
It travelled through the branches of the moonlit laurels,
through the foliage of fond memories,
through the fingers of the solitary poetess,
through her burning artery, through her ardent hopes,
to the words as yet unborn
from her trembling lips.

In memory of Sylvia Plath

 

Originally published on October 8th, 2015 on my old blog. 

Fall’s Kingdom

On the first day of your claim,
a newborn raises his fist to the faraway trumpets
sounded for the triumphant return of October.

A league of white doves, oracles from the east,
adorn your royal robe with rain-soaked wreaths.
Before the trembling days and the darkened horses,
there are rivers, bright stars, and you

of pulpy lips and fecund breasts,
from which milk of nacre flows,
and fattened squash tumble down
into the palms of our arid endurance.

Your hair is golden as the maple leaves;
your breath is the scent of an apple orchard;
your earlobes, sweet
as the ripened grapes hanging from heaven’s vines,
have been kissed and kissed
by the doting peasants.

On your brow rests the throne of a butterfly,
dignified and full of sunlight.
Those beating wings reign over your vision.
We shall never despair.
We shall never die for want of another lilac
for as long as your courage perseveres.
The hapless take refuge under your sleeves;
the unworthy flee like indignant black moths.
Only one remains. Only one remains.
He is the great oak beneath the harvest moon.
As he bows to your grace, acorns fall to their deaths,
a season’s offering, a tribute to your life.

Your Kingdom.

 

Originally published on September 20th, 2015 on my old blog. 

The Tavern

At the edge of an atlas,
by the border of desert cactus,
stands the lonely tavern.
An unhinged door, moth-eaten lanterns,
and chock-full of dirty feathers.

The sky is a piece of dry cloth.

You move through a generation
of peanut shells.
Abandoned cocoons
fossilized in amber lamplights,
childless, unmoving.

The tavern’s usual patrons
travel from one end to another
in the hourglass’ desert, sifting
through god’s thinning fingers
between each dissipating hour.

The barkeep settles your tab,
five full tankards for five full lies.
There is no salvation for the dried-up souls,
only rum and gin and
an apple

for the the drunken crow.
With a pair of blotched wings,
it flies to the fevered moon, pale-faced,
bearing a glass coffin,

clear as vodka.

 

originally published on September 14th, 2015 on my old blog.