waiting for the recoil























The gray-green glow of dusk
  peeked through the dark screen
        giving you light from the waist up.
Teardrop shaped holes
fell from your white brocade
        sleeves
leaving behind the image
        of angels crying.
I stepped in and out of your
        light
wishing the moment would
        freeze
leaving you forever framed
        by day's end
                    and just a reach away.

My mouth opened
to pledge my obligation to
        you.
Because in this time,
you gave me a piece of your
        heart.
And to let you know
that in this time,
        our time,
              my time,
  you owned all of mine.





















Post Patchouli Period






















One

Dexter Gordon died today.
Sad black clouds welled up
but refused to rain.
     Shame.

Man,
he could even make the word
        s-s-s-sister
          sound cool.

He was the
        daddy-o of daddy-o's.

Now he's dead.

Dex and a Rico #3,
it was as close to God
  as man born to woman
    can come.

He came in,
towering six and a half feet
over mortal men,
slouched back,
carrying a black overcoat
with a dirty black beret
    snuggled over his silver curls;
 his ax swinging at his side.

Dexter would breath
    and lick the reed 
and the gates of heaven
              would open.

When he blew sax,
        God forgave sinners.

He once said,
 There's just too little
        kindness in this world
.

Ain't that right, Lady-Dex,
        Ain't that just right?






Two

Had we closed our eyes
in autumn,
the night would have gone
with patchouli
and praise.

Had we dared wished winter
        away,
we might have opened our
        eyes
          to spring.






Three

The first frost came today.
I put a extra quilt
      on your shrine.
I miss you,
and I'm starting to forget
        how you smell.

The incense helps,
but it's the hot patchouli
        I crave.
No,
      it's you I crave.

          It's you I want you.






Four

An Indian summer,
    the harvest moon,
 and you
came together
to push me through autumn.

The seasons changed,
        the earth cooled
  and the pounding of your heart
  echoed in my brain
as you left me behind
to put your memory
            to rhyme.

In the days
since patchouli
    and the Greek Islands,
I've come to trust so many
        things.
I know that rivers run downstream,
    the sun rolls westward,
    and love is captured
       in my soul.

If only you were here—
  love is only
  good
    when shared.






Five

Smiles have been repaid
by kindness and generosity,
favors have not gone on
        unbalanced.
This world offered hope
in exchange for my soul.

In my time,
I have bled for a share
      of heaven.
I know now that the pain
was worth wait.

Now, I know you.






















WAITING FOR THE RECOIL




















one

If you are loved so
across a time zone,
imagine the belly to breast
        fury
            of ignition together.






two

We knew each other
in the black and white days.
With baby teeth and crayon
        worksheets,
  Beatles and bubblegum.
You saw me with my father's
        haircut
and I saw you in a dress
        your mother loved.

We've shared so many
sunrises to sunsets apart
only to arrive here today
to fall in love.

I wished I knew then how
        important
you would become to me.
I probably would have paid
  closer attention to you.
Now I wish
I could have watched
your baby teeth grow.






three

Cradling your head
above my lap
with the pillow
  that was my hand,
I realized
that I could die
      in love with you.

Three decades of hope
      and wasted dreams
passed before me
and I can't remember life
        before your smile.

I love you.

See what you've done to
        me?






four

Dawn forced focus
into the midnight dialogue
we had grown accustomed too.
White-gray shards of reality
raced across the sky
leaving behind blue
where there had only been
            black
and a million pin-points
        of light.

I heard your voice
    and saw your eyes
  inches above my face
kissing away the one tear
that had pooled around my
        chin.

At night,
 without light,
I could imagine you breathing
          on my lips
or whipping my cheek
with your lashes.

In the dark of midnight talks
we were always one.

Night time
was our time.

Damn the dawn,
it brings light
and leaves nothing.






five

I once wrote,
when a child cries
the whole world hurts

I believed it then,
today I know it's true.
I wanted you to know
              to me,
you are
          my baby,
      my lover,
 my mother,
      and my friend.

I wanted to be with you
      in your bout;
my impatient hands
stroking your fevered temples,
my eager lips
wetting your tired chin.
I wanted to crawl inside
        you
and chase the demons away
      and stay beside you
long after sleep conquers
the concern.

I love you . . .
    and I love you more
and I want you to understand
that when you hurt
my whole world hurts
        as well.






six

Front to back,
in the sanctuary that was
        my bed,
I hung to you like a leased
        cape.
My hands secured to your
        tight belly,
my chin perched
  on the strength of your shoulders,
I wished time to stand still—
    stretching seconds into hours.

I don't know of such things
                   
    but I believe
it would take the conviction
    of a mason
scraping mortar off old bricks
to pry me from your back.

In the end
all it took
was the time
and the adult in both of
        us.

With you gone
I curl up in my bed alone
furled like a deserted cape
waiting
        praying
for the next time
              in our time.






seven

So many memories
and days we speak of
  like diamonds in the dark.
But this morning
I thought of
the times we shared
with no design of today
        or together.

You and I,
joined,
 (lost in our separate worlds)
    braved the late autumn cold
at least a half dozen times.

We don't speak of those
        days,
yet we were as intertwined
 as wool and winter
    or white socks and Easter.

I wanted to ask you
  if you remembered.
I do.

I close my eyes and see
all the mommies and daddies
            and I bravely accept
the fact
that together
we were
the halloween parade.






eight

            Our song . . .
        our word . . .
    our love . . .
our time . . .
I'll always remember our
        dance.






nine

Mouth to breasts
where I have lived
 from moments to moments
I wanted you to know
that I needed to love you
before I could have loved
        you.

Long after you go
I'll taste your flesh on
        my tongue.
Each swallow will become
        a meal
as I hunger for you.

Tonight
I licked the sweat off your
        forehead
 and you closed your eyes
          in silence.

I love you.
I wanted you to be sure.
Because after you finally
open your eyes in time,
I'll be there.
You'll see me
living moment to moment
mouth to breast.






ten

One day
I think perhaps
the chord will strike,
and the last song
  will be sung,
and the last rhyme be fitted
      and harmony reached.
One day
the music will fade and die
and I will too.
But in the minute after
  and in the hour
    and the day
what will survive
is how I feel for you.

In the silence
that will follow
you could only hum my love
and there will be music forever.






eleven

I traveled a different pass.
I noticed that the trees
    or the grass
      or the shade
 hadn't changed.
I did notice
the contrast
between concrete and earth.
I guess the world
is too obstinate to change.
And I guess I am as well.
But after last night,
 after that bruising kiss,
I saw the world differently.
I saw the world
    through the eyes of love.






twelve

In our offensive retreat
        through life
We are blessed
              and blessed again
                          with love.

In our times of giving
we find what was given to
        us.
And we spend the better part
        of our lives
searching for that unselfish
        love
the kind that gives without
        taking too much
the kind that takes without
        giving too much

We search each time
        our eyes open
and dream of the search
 when they close.
In our times of searching
 and searching for a true love
we hope
              we wish
                          we pray
that there is someone out
        there
        our true love
 searching for us.

If we open our eyes at the
        right time
  and take the right corner
        and smile at the right face
  and open our heart just at the moment precise
we find life's ultimate
        blessing—
        not just love
              but true love.

In my searching for you
        you found me
and now I know that in this
        time
        my time
                          our time
  we are loved.






thirteen

Last night
I listened
    as the thunder chased the lightning.
Flash . . . then roar.
They moved across my valley
always giving evidence of
        the journey.

Even if I waited
  and held my breath
      and refused to blink
it would catch me off guard.
So suddenly
      flash . . . then roar.

I cried last night.
My first tears
fell like sprinkles
  on the desert.

I love you
  but I hurt you.
I'm sorry.

What you do to me.
It's you
 and flash . . . then roar.






fourteen

I memorized your neck
as it fell beneath my tongue.
          . . . and your hair
    pulled back behind your ears—
        your mast of eyelashes.

You have become a study to
        me—
Shapes and forms from a work
        of art.

I close my eyes
and see that smile
that erupts
whenever motion eclipses
        senses.
I see that playful wink
in your sometimes droopy
        eyes
and know that it's for
        me.

I've surrendered to love
        today;
                    a captive.
And at this moment
I feel safe in your arms
as I hover around your neck
          . . . with my tongue.






fifteen

Here we are
victims of the times we live
open hearts ready for the
        scars.

It's life
not death
we fear.

It's love
not lonely
we expect.

It's you in this time
creating life
where before there was none.

Rambling philosophy
from a victim
  licking wounds
from an open heart
          expecting scars
but praying for love.






sixteen

How fitting to be raining
on the first night away from
        you.

It was midnight
 in the nothing.
What was left was reason
  and incidental light.
Red was the only colour
  I could see.
Blue was the only colour
  I could feel.
I missed you.

I was given to memory
on the that rainy midnight.
It brought to mind
the moments you stood stilled
              before me
      waiting for movement
  forward or backwards,
or the pause before the smile,
      the sigh after the kiss,
  the walk toward . . .
and the walk back.

You completely fill my heart.
And though it's the touches
I'll remember most,
it's the waiting for the
        recoil
that will remind me of us.

Alone in the summer rain,
  one day detached,
      missing you like crazy;
    knowing
that with everything I could
        do
      all I really need is you.






seventeen

Drunk on Obsession
    and the darkness,
I fall to your belly
like rain to earth.
Wanting to be more inside
than in top of,
I hold off invasion
until plans are laid.

Mouthing your breasts
like a hungry child
          at birth,
I gyrate towards your womb.

It became another opening
        into you
I've tasted.

I wanted your mouth
on my neck
and mine in your ambrosia.
I yearned to drink you
and breath from your warmth
  and feel your flesh from the inside.

I wanted to press into you
with all my mass
and taste your sweat
from the swell above your
        breast
and help you reach the coloured
        lights.

I wanted you to feel my pulse
        beat
inside of your stomach,
and the quick pace of movement
that seems to rock in ice.

I want to hear you moan
or suck in quick unsure breaths,
      or lick your cotton mouth
  until the lights in your brain
fade like the pace of your
        heart.

This is what I wanted from
        you—
                          everything,
    and more.

I can still smell your belly,
        and taste your breasts.
It's what I own
after touching heaven.






eighteen

Stars never die,
the sun burns on without thought,
and I smile because of you.
There we were,
        we three
lost in the heaven
that was your eyes.






nineteen

Heart filled
  and energy drained,
I fall to your lap
and realize love.






twenty

On my back
late day
I stared into the sky
until the blue became your
        eyes.
Staring into the vastness
        of your soul
I witnessed an explosion.
A star a billion miles away
disappeared giving its life
        and light
so that I would imagine
that on that July summer
        night
you winked at me.






twenty-one

I know now that life without you
would be hollow.
And every sunrise to sunset,
be they too hot or too cold,
would remind me of what
I had and could have had.
I know now
that I could live without
        even a small
smile or shy nod from you
        walking by.
I know now that I could never
        let go
of your hand even after a
        storm
I love you
I love the rain
and I know now
that I love the calm.






twenty-two

In my life's voyage
the one truth
I've learned
is that what is correct
is not always what is right
and that what I've gained
is not always equal to what
        I've lost.
But looking in your eyes
I know that
what I could have won
could never compare
to what you could have lost.






twenty-three

In the relative calm
       of mid day
between your calling
 and his call
we spread out face to face
        inventing eternity.

Between the crashing
of synthesized waves
and the silence
at the end
  of the milky way,
we gave love definition.

I dream for a forever
when I give you moments of
        fury
surrounded by
moments of tenderness—
 moments of panting,
followed by moments of pure
        breath.
In my arms
we share the same dream.

You seem to grow in my arms.
Changing back and forth
and back again
Who you are with me
  is who are you
I watch you grow/change
and my love deepen.

I love you.

And I'm sorry
for hurting your tongue
 again . . . and again
  . . . and again.






twenty-four

It's hard to believe
that a full third of my life
  had to pass
 before you gave it meaning.

I try hard to understand
why so many brown days
 had to turn white
      and then to green
and back to brown
before there was
a sunrise
that I could comprehend.

Still,
I won't question your smile,
or the warmth of your breath
    on the back on my neck,
or the feel of your breasts
  on my cheek.
I'll just give thanks to
        today.
And to you.

I'm sorry
if I seem in a frenzy at
        times.
I'm not in a hurry,
I'm only making up
for lost time.






twenty-five

What is lonely?

It used to be the roar
of passing cars,
or the loud thump
of footsteps that just walk
        by.
It used to be the heavy silence
    of the phone not ringing,
 or the door not knocking,
or the reverberations
    of sighs just before sleep.

Now,
after the explosion of you,
lonely is
every moment you're away.






twenty-six

If you run away from me,
do so on a fresh beach
and only in a game of tag.
I want your tiny footprints
    to follow,
and I want you to have a
        turn
        at being it.






twenty-seven

I believe
making love to you
would be a ballet for four
        hands
and that every movement
would have meaning
and every breath
would become a frivolity.

I believe
you could touch a live wire
and not feel the charge
my tongue would produce
      on your bare skin.
And that even in the dark
you could see the pounding
  of my heart in my throat.

I've told you
I could feel your stirrings;
that you wind like a coil
around my love.
I believe that's true.

I also believe
that we could dance
all night long in the act
and that the morning
would find us tired
but still in choreographed
        motion.







twenty-eight

Something I haven't told
        you—
One day we'll bicycle in
        Genoa,
  and climb Roman hills in autumn,
              and make love
on the southern slopes
of the Rhaetion Alps.
You could wear your black
        dress
in Florence
and pull your yellow hair
        back
and hold my dark hand
as we walk along the Adriatic
        coast.

I have so many memories
in store for us
      . . . and I have yet
to plan our days on Corsica






twenty-nine

You caught me watching you
      from the shadows—
an audience of one.
You turned and smiled
and gave evidence
of an actress in prime.
You never once lost character.
Poised in poetry,
strong in motion;
I watched in wonder.

I knew that our life
was like a kabuki,
and all manners in our time
were like an elegant play
          of common man.
And that you
should be watched
  from the shadows
and alone
with an audience of one.






thirty

The day
was long series
      of flashes.
Between the burst of your
        smile,
and the blue sun
trying to sneak past
 my blanket portiere,
I struggled to impress
the million meanings
into each second.

There was one moment of brilliance.
As your naked back
pressed into my chest,
and the round of your breasts
          pressed into my hands,
and the gold of your short
        hair
fondled my cheek,
you whispered to me,
 I love you.

I swore you were singing.






thirty-one

In those moments of fire
when I'm fed from passion,
I wish I had one more mouth
  for your breasts.
And I wish we each had
more hands than the inadequate
        two
God settled us with.
There is so much more of
        you
I want to touch.
So many hills and gullies
        and plateaus
I want to explore.
I have my tongue and my two
        hands.
I imagine
they'll have to do . .
        .
unless you have an idea.






thirty-two

At the moment
your heart slowed
 and left me in the quiet of us,
I realized the anatomy of
        silence.
There is a certain emptiness
      —a void—
 that comes with you gone,
a barren yearning for sound;
    a need for noise.
That is one sort of silence.

The other comes when you
close your head into my chest
    and effortless breath.
It is a content peaceful
        calm.

It is then
I realize the depth of love.

I can't always promise
        quiet.
But if you stay after the
        loving,
and tell your heart to slow,
I'll try to give you kisses
        so softly
you'll forget the need
        for noise
and live with me
in a certain silence.
 






thirty-three

Being set adrift
in the wide blue of your
        eyes,
or huddled in the safety
 of the warm breeze of your breath,
or even nesting
in the crags and coves and
        caves
      of your arms and legs,
I remember loving you.

We fought time
in the quest for the coloured
        lights
and ended victorious
  (and simultaneously).

We accepted surrender
from the rest of the world
and marched on as victor
still wet
from each other.

I'll remember nights like
        this
long after the heart stops
        quaking
from tire tracks on gravel
        alleys
and distant, unknowing door
        slams.
You and your dreams
have become important to
        me.
We started conquering them
        last night.

But what I wanted to tell
        you
is that last night,
in our journey
to capture the coloured lights,
as I begged you to open your
        eyes
    to the blues and red and greens,
in our frenzy for vision,
and for the first time in
        my life,
  I too saw the lights.






thirty-four

I wanted to write you a poem.
I wanted to tell you
  what I meant
when I didn't say a word.
I wanted to give evidence
        of my heart.
But all the bromide seemed
        wrong.
No words could suffice.
No poem today,
just three words . . .
    I love you.






thirty-five

Forever in my mind,
 be it with tongue
      or fingernail,
I'll be lost
tracing and retracing
the road map
that was
your back.






thirty-six

In the beginning
before there was time,
and light was the only truth,
You smiled at me,
  took my hand,
 and then began love.






thirty-seven

You wrapped in a lame'
        belt,
me wrapped in your arms,
'round and 'round and
        'round we spun
until the rest of the world
was caught in our orbit.

Last night
I dreamed
the music stopped
 and we kept dancing.






thirty-eight

A decade away
 and two valleys over
we ran away
aimed toward each other.
I chased the midnight
and you replenished the earth—
 both of us searching
for that certain something
we had no idea existed.

We finally connected.

Today
I will miss you.
I'll hear your voice
    and melt
and hear your laughter
      and cry.

Today
I look forward to tomorrow.
I'll cherish a future;
 a future not alone.

Today
I will think of you.
And though I give you
yet another rose
it's really my heart
  you hold.

I love you.






thirty-nine

Just after the autumn equinox,
when thirsty dry leaves turned
        brown,
and strong green ones turned
        red
and the yellow tree looked
        orange
    through filtered lens,
I watch you
and wonder if you're watching
        fall
  with a self hint of irony.

I wonder if you sense autumn
with the worry of winter,
or it the change to you
is yet another change in
        you.

I wanted you to know
that fall is important
if only because it brings
        the winter;
and winter brings a spring;
and that the bright red of
        tulips
and the pastel of chrysanthemums
and the yellow of a daisy
would seem pale
if they did not follow
the nothing of winter.

I also wanted you to know
that in your Octobers
and through your Novembers
(and through all your seasons
        of change)
I'll still love you,
and that will never change.



     








forty

The day
was long series
of
  flashes.
Between the burst of your smile
and the blue sun
trying to sneak past
my blanket portiere,
I struggled to impress
the million meanings
into each second.

There was one moment of brilliance.
As you naked back
pressed into my chest,
and the round of your breasts
  pressed
  into my hands,
and the gold of your short hair
fondled my cheek,
you whispered to me
I love you.

I swore you were singing.












forty-one

An orchid withered
on the dashboard
of an old Pontiac
in the cold.
The sun,
the same sun that give it
        life
  took it away.
It is one week to the day
that we ascended in silence,
pseudo-flight,
loving at 1,000 feet.
As it is one week to the
        night
that you said was the beginning
     
of your new life.
I watched you perform both
        feats
with caution.

I want you to be careful.
I want you to be successful.
I want you to be free.
    And I want you
    to be with me.

I love you like the orchid.
And I love you like the flight.

But I want you to remember
     
that we have tomorrow
and so do your dreams.

I love you.


     

     








forty-two

Some summer day ago
we trampled a wine glass
        underfoot
and promised a forever.
I said I love you
and I meant it.
How was I to know
that love to me
was a spark
ready for the fire.
And that forever meant
beyond the end.

I've grown to love
the sheer existence of you.
The quiet breathing,
  the unsure sighs,
and the grin that rose from
        you belly.
I promised forever.
I want to give you more.
When the last pink sunset
        fades to black,
and the willows of our past
        refuse to snap back,
and the euphony of summer
        children
              falls silent,
I will love you.

And on that day after
I will love you more.

Remember that
when you are alone.
Remember the shards of glass,
 our blood in the wine,
  and the fact that I pledged my soul.
I said I would love you unendingly.
What I know now
is that when I promised forever
I meant forever
  and then some.






forty-three

Who's to say
we were not meant
to spend these Sundays apart;
seeing each other
only through an amplified
        voice
    and a modular plug?
Who's to say
that weekend dishes,
and ceiling cobwebs
are more important
than my scratching
that itch that always grows
    on the expanse of your back
 these winter weekends?

Certainly not me.
If I were to do the choosing,
we would be dressed in the
        same shirt,
          share the same mouth,
  and lie close enough
 to be inside of each other.

Still we'll spend this
        Sunday apart,
the miles and tons of new
        snow between us.
I accept that.
But if I turn my head just
        so,
and reach inside for my heart,
I can smell the mixture of
        our perfumes,
      the taste of your honey breasts,
  and the feel of your hot breath
        on my neck.

And if I close my eyes,
I can see your pastel smile
and hear you whisper
    you love me.

I love you.

Darling,
I can't believe we're
        this close
and still spend Sunday apart.


     

     








forty-four

Let's go to Greece
before we're too old
to dance like children
on stone walkways;
before the wonder
of a blue harbour
is lost to only dolphins;
before we run too fast, too
        far
that we're more concerned
with drachmas than dramas.

I want to be young and barefoot
on that Aegean beach
and kiss the bitter wine
from your open mouth
as boys and men
watch in jealousy.
I want you to wear a white
        shift
through the Acropolis,
even if it is only I
who see you as a goddess.

Go with me to Greece.
Can't you hear
the Mediterranean call?






forty-five

Given the grace of dialogue
and the girth of your wide
        eyes,
there is little wonder
I need little else as sustenance.

It is for that reason
I felt like a drowning man
      this past weekend;
flailing wildly
  with nothing solid underfoot
and land in plain sight.

But I survived,
as I so often do,
with a greater realization
  of what you mean to me.

You are my life
You are my hope,
 and the good that I become
is for you.

I thank you for giving
and forgiving.

And I bless you
for our conversations
and the graciousness
  of your blue eyes.






forty-six

Days away from you
nights spent alone
evenings of yearning for
        your arms;
I've filled completely
     
the spare seconds of my life,
dreaming of your almond scented
        throat,
 and the influence of my gentle fingers
on the wisp of your hair.

I've rearranged my memory
so that all the minutes
you are not transferred
into a loving edifice,
you're tracking through
        my mind
the times we've shared,
  (and times yet to share).

I wish you could turn
a different corner
and end your journey against
        my chest,
        and that the voice
that quakes you awake
each morning is mine.

But that is still to come.
I can hope for the future
as long as I rearrange our
        yesterdays,
and you can give me moments
    in our todays.

I love you.






forty-seven

There are roads
I yet to travel,
paths yet to take,
beaches still to slumber
        on
 and summer grassy hills
for games of tag.
So many tomorrows
I had no idea I could conquer.
So many dreams
I felt out of reach.

Then you smiled on me
and said, I love you,
  lips-to-lips,
and stroked my back
in time with your heart.

Now I'm grateful for my
        reach.
There is not a star too far,
    or a dream too large,
  or winter too long.
I own the confidence of a
        god
and the world is ours.
All we need do is believe
        and take a chance
      on a new path
or rest
on a new beach.