From my chair

Only, from here, in winter
have I the scope to see the extent
of clouds and the milky way
else, as now, the leaves of my forest
occludes, shades and hides
sun and storms alike,
in summers calm and peaceful state.

Leaves fall, bare the woody structures
limbs and trunks; a lattice work
fencing, but revealing distant hills.

In summer the animals, deer
fox, coyote and fisher cats appear
at the edges of the density
of green dark enclosures,
birds dance between and above. —

We need both the enclosure
and the bare openness. The exposure
summer and winter bring
is a long slow deep breath,
our spirits inwardness and exhalation.

October 2010


Thursday, February 01, 2007

Undulant passages, a bird light song,
and a brilliant sun mocks the melancholy
music the quartet unfolds,
a cat jumps, dust motes float
I am content.

Bare trees waving in wind gusts
screen the farther dark ridges
behind their woody lace
a barren mauve, a blue skyline.

But within tranquility is subtle shifting
nature is not content

We cannot ignore
cannot pretend like sheep.

We’ve eaten all the grass
and the wind is blowing
the soil away.

The sheep are content today
their stomachs are full

will the grass grow tomorrow?
Who can foresee,

Roman Attraction I

(Canto XIX, Dante’s Inferno)

Skulls in the Cappuccini basement.
All the brothers, few and old
observe the future undaunted
for there is no other point
to their live’s praying potion.

The Via Veneto outside is fashion
gaiety and indolence, and tourists
come to look at the gruesome
result of long dire devotion.
The quatromille cupochin skulls
left here for contemplation.

For this is the point of belief
a demented, yes unfashionable now,
proof of existence, priests
with head below and flaming feet
in heaven

The Mechanic Comes

engine junk

Into his dark place, cars hanging on lifts
carded lights dangling beneath them,
arbiter of failures, renewer…

With black greasy hands
tossing out dead parts
into piles of metallic hard edges
unyielding gray rectangles
riddled with dark round holes.
ripped, tool twisted
out of larger pieces,
These fleshless residues,
engine blocks,
inert things.

Fleshy hands and minds
thinking, created,
wore out, tossed out
really dead, dead robots
will never dance, not like
Mexican skeletons in sombreros
pretending to be souls ascending.
no spiritual pretense ennobles
this hard black gray rubbish.

I remembered then my friend
telling me, long ago
from some other dark place,
‘when I came here
I was young and I believed
I was dead,
.          because
.                        death exists.’

What could I say to my friend?
What was death to him, like junk, or
the black clad figure with the scythe
reaping us up for the guy in the sky?

His long dehydration from study
of relativity, of the darkness of the sky,
hardened his spirit into blocks
clamped still as these
cast off engine parts,
and closed perception
into thoughts of death

What does death mean
if there wasn’t life at all.
Where is the mechanic
that wd restore him,
grease joints
restore fluidity?

Nothing absolute exists
no people mechanic comes
to save one as if are we nothing
but the dark stuff.

We can open our own curtains
illuminate the junk piles
change the teachings,
see what is not life
see what is.

Conomo 2011

‘Envy, resentment, an auto intoxicant, an evil secretion
in a closed vessel, and prolonged impotence’
Camus, from the Rebel, pg 23.



Essex is this
a marsh, mud at low water
a grand drumlin, Hog Isl
center of a vast gyre
of tidal waters.
Herons, egrets, white dots in the sweep of salt grasses
an ocean beyond white beaches,
gull screams, crows roccus on the flats
and the town at the head of the river,
A great blue heron glides by
in silence.

Essex is this
Clams, farms, woodlands, granite ledges,
The great fishing schooners built here
floated down river at high tide
past Conomo Point and out
to Ipswich Bay and then to
Gloucester for fitting.

Essex rents coveted land at Conomo
for modest well kept cottages
owned for generations.
Jutting far into the river’s marsh
the Point is the center
where sea thrust empties and fills
the wide wild grass space,

But there is envy in the town
that some owning houses there
on this rented land enjoy
the sky that harbors clouds of birds
majestic storm clouds lightening
heavens rage and sweet calm.

So came Realtors and developers
and those who take away the Common
who feed on anger and thirst for profits
to set fires in the hearts of the town
until they vowed to have no more tenants
have them simply go away
leave all the cottages
many more than a century old
to be wasted, removed.

Now, we face the ruin avarice brings
emptiness, unkempt scrub,
inhabitants gone
rats will gnaw at the rubbish
beside a desolate parking lot
tourists inside their metal boxes will view
won’t like the mud
there are no beaches worth much
no one can stay overnight
except the furies;
The green heads bite.