Saturday, June 25, 2016

shinotsukuame – intense rain

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shinotsukuame – intense rain

Damn this rain. It comes down in unrelenting torrents, taking my breath away as it strikes the roof above me. It forces conflicting ideologies to huddle under the same awning to wait to take action. Critical decisions are delayed by compressed, intense, unending condensation; lives hang in purgatory due to science run amuck, mocking my inevitable inertia miles away from home, miles away from her, miles that might as well be decades of waiting on this blasted storm to relent. She will patiently keep my place by her fire. I know this. But I also know that nothing lasts forever except for this biblical barrier blocking my way to her, mocking my best-laid plans to warmth and comfort. When I open the door to view the torrential shinotsukuame and curse her to her face, the sun gently kisses my face, and giggling children are bounding to and fro, boisterously playing outside. Both are tactile and sonic interruptions to my internal downpouring monologue. I could go to her now, but it’s always raining somewhere.

It’s always raining
Especially the moments
I can’t feel her warmth.

** *
Written for dVerse Poets Haibun Monday: 50 Shades of Rain. This is Toni Spencer’s wonderful prompt about rain. Since I equate intense rain with my ongoing battle with depression, combining the two was a no-brainer. It practically wrote itself.

Go here to read other dVerse poets’ entries to this prompt.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Hunger Pains

Image source: By Caroline Léna Becker - Self-photographed, CC BY 3.0,

Hunger Pains

It falls to dust
I can hear her gabbing
I can feel her grabbing
At the things that I trust

Unknown face I reflect
Genuflect, lose respect
In the power of lust

Freely spreading her legs
Freely shedding my dread
Penetrating my crust

I can feel it too much
But it’s not enough

I see where I should be inside of joy
But I destroy
And she reduces me to aching boy
Her willing toy

I want it all
She knows I want it all
I want it all
She knows, that’s why she calls

I wanted more
She was seeing what’s up
I was filling my cup
With whatever she poured

I was drinking fine wine
Feelin fine while online
We were down on all fours

We filled-up on new blends
I filled-up on her friend
Knocking at her back door

I can feel it too much
But it’s not enough to feel

I see where I should be inside of joy
When she plays coy
But she reduces me to lover’s ploy
And I enjoy

I want it all
She knows I want it all
I want it all
She knows, that’s why I fall

I want to feel all the things
And I’ll self-destruct with bad luck
As I gamble with safety that clarity brings

I know the folly of sin
But I feel my pulse, less repulsing
Than repressing myself before I begin.
** *

Written for and shared to dVerse Poets Poetics: Even Monkeys Fall from Trees. The prompt is to think of a mistake that we made and something positive that we gleaned from said mistake. Lessons learned and whatnot.

I went with the series of mistakes I made as I came of age in high school, thanks mostly to my poor self-esteem (my poor self-esteem is a recurring wellspring of inspiration). My high school girlfriend dumped me, but then begged me to take her back after the dude she was sweet on dumped her. Not only did I take her back, but I rushed into marriage with her right after high school. I knew she didn’t respect me, but it was better than being alone for the rest of my life, which was a very real possibility to young, naïve me.

Soon after joining the Navy and travelling abroad, I discovered how very wrong I was about being alone for the rest of my life. I discovered that there were some women who were actually attracted to me. I had the power to choose instead of settling. Once my possibilities popped wide open, I got a bit greedy (read: lost my freaking mind) and things went off the rails for a bit. But, yeah, that was decades ago…

The poem represents the speaker’s eyes opening to new possibilities. Or something. Christ, probably TMI, but fuck it.

Go here to read other dVerse Poets’ contributions.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Ocean Jelly

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Ocean Jelly

Reflects light
From unknown depths
Bluer and deeper
Refracted and angled
Oxygenated pixels
Dance with lone luminescent life
Seemingly aimless on buoyant fate
Resigned to vicissitudes of current
An essence, peering back from beyond me
Entangled in aimless emptiness
A lone slow dance, capacious mass
From pixel to pixie-dust
Piercing acute angles
Bluer atmosphere
Depths imploding
From my
** *

Written and posted to Getting in Shape for Summer–dVerse MTB, the Etheree. I loved Etheree’s before I found out there was a name for them, so I couldn’t resist. Also, the artwork pretty much captured my default state so... 

Other poets have contributed wonderful work to this prompt. Check them out here.

Sunday, May 08, 2016

What You Made


What You Made

“Come see what I made!”
you said, beaming,
your smile,
a fiery kiln
where my joy
finds new shapes
to fill.

It makes sense
that you took to pottery
so quickly.

over formless
lumps of clay,
kneading them into
something stronger.

You see potential
and beauty
where others
might see a
chaotic mess.

You are
of dirtying your hands,
applying heat and
firm pressure
to mold
and strengthen.

You are
immensely proud
of your creations,
just as you should be,
just as I am
when I see you
brimming with pride.

When you come home,
brandishing one of your creations,
I marvel at your innate artistry
bursting forth
as it sits in its
glossy, decorative brilliance,
but not for
the reasons you think.

You see,
I’ve had the pleasure
of watching you
with our kids
for years.

You’ve been
and spinning
nebulous clay into
beautiful treasures
long before you
ever took
a pottery class.
** *

Written for my beloved wife, molder of clay, on Mother’s Day.

Sunday, May 01, 2016

Day 30 - Haiku

Sun-kissed mellow calm
Visions of a final verse
Only a daydream

We made it! I didn't have quite enough time to myself to dive into another poem, so this Haiku will have to do. But I did write two poems on April 9, so technically, this is poem number 31.

Thanks to everyone who took time to read and/or comment, and a special thanks to m fellow poets out there who inspired me in numerous ways. See you next year.

(Obviously, I will continue to write as the mood hits me.)

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Day 29 - Restless Midnight

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Restless Midnight

I want you the way
midnight wants to bathe within
the kiss of sunlight.

In the way
daylight cannot find us
in the same space,
kissing our faces the same way
I want to kiss yours.

I want you the way
moonlight wants to hear
lonely souls cry out for comfort,
only to fall silent,
lest someone hears their calls.

In the way
dreams pervert desire
into songs I’ve never heard,
with fingers dancing upon piano.

I want you the way autumn winds
race across your plains to find your heart,
compelling you to close your parka
tightly around us.
I want you
to show me our differences
so that I can admire
the gap in our defenses
before dawn.

I want you
to smile more
and imagine

a world set free.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Day 28 - Contacts

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Whatshername stopped me
before breaking her plane
after having second thoughts.
But by then,
the credits were rolling
on the Dirty Dancing DVD
neither of us watched through
our indulgences;
we’d already done so much,
licked salt from skin,
crossed too many bridges and taboos
to undo the quest for flesh.
She claimed to be
“Not in her right mind”
bewitched by my long dreadlocks
and uncanny light brown eyes.
I smiled,
masking my disappointment.
Knowing she was right, but
still wanting to know her better.
I relented.

Whatshername begged me
to please her,
and so I dove in,
indulging her every desire
as if the sun would never
rise on our deeds.
She insisted on maintaining
eye-contact with my
hazel almonds as I
plucked her strings
at perfect pitch,
in synch with Swayze
and Baby having
the time of their lives.

Whatshername impatiently sighed,
placing my hand on her thigh,
wondering why
I ignored all of her signals.
After all,
she had seen Dirty Dancing
countless times and
could watch it at any time.
This time,
I took her queue and
leaned deeply into her.

As dad tried
putting Baby in the corner,
Whatshername asked
if my eyes were naturally
I replied with a lie.
She asked if I was happily married.
I replied with the sad truth.
She sighed, smiled,
and told me too bad,
but at least I had pretty eyes.

Whatshername made up her couch
for me to sleep.
I thanked her for letting me crash
and disrupting her Friday,
her smile told me she
didn’t mind too much.
I was planning on being a church-mouse,
but she refused to go to bed,
opting to screen Dirty Dancing
for me for some reason.
I politely lied,
faking interest in the film.
It’s the least I could do
for such a gracious host.

Driving to her place,
she didn’t catch my name last time,
so I tossed it to her again,
we exchanged handshakes.
She grazed my thigh,
but I let it slide,
not wanting to read too much into it.
Whatshername complimented my
pretty eyes
and long dreads.
I smiled, blushed,
and shrugged a thank-you at her.

Dropping me off at my place,
Whatshername waited for me to enter.
I patted myself down at my door
walking back to her car sheepishly.
It seemed that I locked myself out,
and the wife was spending the night
up north with her girlfriend
who hated me and was convinced
I was an opportunistic cheater.
(Can you imagine?)
Whatshername stared into the
pretty lies irritating my vision
and offered up her couch.
Having no other recourse, I accepted.

The nightclub was pretty dead,
so she came over and introduced herself.
I immediately forgot her name was Debra
while giving her mine.
I don’t think Debra caught my name either,
as Whatshername kept raving about how
I had the prettiest eyes she’d ever seen
in a black man. I smiled and thanked her
as her hand grazed my chest,
playfully raking me with her fingernails.
I shrugged and let it slide.
She asked where my girl was; I told her
having a girls’ night up north.
After a few hours of dancing,
she beamed at me and offered a ride home,
licking her lips.
It was a long walk,
so I accepted.

While twisting my follicles,
my beautician asked me
about my evening plans
without the spouse.
I told her the truth; go clubbing,
blow off some steam,
harmless flirting,
but I omitted the obvious as if
I wouldn’t respond to
certain opportunities.
Friendly with both me and my wife,
she knew our struggles,
but tried not to pick sides.
But even she eventually
asked about pretty,
unnatural hazel eyes.
I told her the truth;
they were contacts.
The stylist stopped twisting my hair,
stared intensely, square into my lies
and gave me this pointer;
if any woman complimented
and asked about my eyes in the future,
I should thank them
and never tell them the truth.
I agreed to trust her
and stick with the lie.
** *

Written for NaPoWriMo’s Day 28 prompt: Tell a story, but do it backwards. This one was tricky, but kinda fun.