the need

the moon beckons
my thoughts, my needs, my skin

it is at times like this
when whispers become growls
and howling flesh
claws at the sedate and senseless
concrete coffin
in which i all too often repose

now when I feel
oh most sincerely, most sensually
the man in me
the primal carnal beast in me
chained too long
restrained beyond my wits’ ends

and I cannot give
a monkey’s about what it means
to don this suit
and mew over mealy mouthful
droppings of decorum
that daily masquerade as civility

now is the time
when this pricking skin stretches taut
over pulsing veins
needing to touch, to taste every
sweet inch of you
thrusting to fill you within

for this, too, is me
this is the very needful man in me

spectres

Again they come before me
these constant spectres
eyeless, mouthless, faceless,
pacing across my ragged breath
as I watch the fading sun,
weary wanderer, sluggishly
dip at last beyond the hills,
no longer caring for the day.

Ravenous, these ghouls
sally fourth, palely pouring
across the brittle sky,
more voracious they
than I had ever seen them,
swiftly consuming the fractured sun
which bleeds yellows and reds
across the angry heavens.

I knew them, I am sure,
I must have, for why else
would they shadow my days
if not for the chance
to accept the offer of my self
to sustain their petty
vindictive needs, feeding
oh so grossly on the flesh

that once shrouded my heart.

[Once again I must thank Allison for her inspiration, having drawn from her “black” certain images and words that fed upon my thoughts. I highly recommend her collection of poems, Vein, which you can find here.]

I am still alive

Mystical memories tremble this heart
imparting moments of will that once filled
me with impassioned zeal to live, to love.

I believed then, with near perfect certainty,
believed in the veracity of my hopes,
trusted in the capacity of this me
to be as good, as grand even
as my ambitions had painted me
in my own thoughts, long since faded.

But the memories are there still,
only greyed and frayed somewhat,
torn by the incessant tumult
within a soul that could never
quite be sure it even existed.

I know people who compose lists
that lyrically lead them from one bright aim
to the next, inspired by the very abundance
of their most meaningful dreams.

In the dark of the night alone
I carve my moribund dreams
into the very flesh that drips
over my dubious ill-intended soul.

Which is how I know
that I am still alive.

without making a sound

this greyly patterned prayerful sky
pendulous above the shadowed trees
pleases me this morning, to be sure

it seeps life and care even while
it baleful stares soulful and sage
across this yet tumultuous land

and i muddy-headed and alone
mourn the passing of time as these
tremulous whispers wire my heart

however long the days, the years
imperious proceed, i unmanfully
remain, as every leaf, lie, star falls

without making a sound

Tracing Thoughts

love, what would you say
is the color of laughter
the scent of sweet hope
the sound of deepest green

thoughts become verdant
and fertile and clear and
christened true by your
most empathic touch, dear

rivers sing polished stones
of time heartfully humbled
by the much vitalizing voice
of you so undiminished

while I climbing cling as bark
to the flesh of you rising
earth enchanted fibrous
and feral yet wisely oaken

striving soulful for heights
that I most numbly naïve
could not dare to conceive
yet the barest existence of

whisper-bless these hands
please, grasping at oily colors
capturing a likeness of you
on roughly textured paper

yet knowing, ever assured
that the finest truth of you
can no similitude enthrall
being all in every moment

could I but endeavor being
clever and capaciously old
a monument to your eyes
in ebony marble to construct

then surely would enchanted
the sun itself its sphere depart
and dipping delighted down
genuflect before beloved you

ever yours

this is the moment
that solace brings
in stillness sweet
when the breath
slows to a saunter
and the mind ponders
in playful paces,
no dragons raging
no callous cravings
to harden the heart,
just this serene skin
singing again songs
of Caledonia while
imbibing slowly drams
of majestic dreams,
that clearly recall why
willing I am ever yours

darkness only carves the light

He vies for some unnecessary sense
of recognition, of temporal attainment
before it is too late,

striving against need, thriving in light
that begets pain as pride gains prominence
over what remains of his injured soul.

In confusion he wails, zealously
rails against unready answers
and unacceptable truths.

How could the light deceive him
so completely, when meekly he mews
please please please,

I have learned all of your lessons,
I live in blessed acceptance of your light.
Why do I still not understand?

Why am I still so alone?

But how could he know—

having followed only the sun,
having held up light to the precious path
unto its finest illumination—

how could he possibly ken
that darkness only carves the light.

the dream

The sun was still rising.
I could almost feel it
moving across the sky,
but daren’t look for fear
of spoiling that moment.

It caressed my skin, my heart,
imparting warmly a need
to feel the grass tickling
the soles of my bare feet,
pebbles poking at my toes.

I laughed, for this was not
at all where I thought to be,
and yet it so magnificently
manifested sweetly a dream
I had ever sought in my mind.

This burn I knew unvisited
bade me disrobe and splash
my feet beneath its coolly
coursing surface sedately
draping water around my legs.

Isolated, yet never alone,
naked before nature’s beauty,
I stepped out of the water
and wandered wondering
through a pristine forest.

Beyond the trees, I found a path,
shimmering stones painted by the sun
and nestled in the grass,
warming as the day grew
calling me ever forward.

It was then I found the bothy—
simple wooden slats for walls
a small sturdy frame,
woven thatch for a roof,
standing empty, waiting for me.

But not just me, I dreamed,
and without calling out,
I stepped surely forward,
whispering tender her name
to the eager blossoms around me,

and opened the door.

A wee bothy in Scotland. (Pixabay)

interment

Do we really have to talk
about this now, she says
with a fearful determined grimace.

No, no, of course not, he says,
feeling the desperate silence
between them straining engulfing,

like a voracious cancer
growing consuming presuming
only to expand until all is filled.

She hugs herself tighter
into the corner of the sofa
glancing at him suspiciously.

He smiles uncomfortably
not knowing what else to do
when words are forbidden him.

You could hold me, she says
at last, and he does so,
recalling how this used to feel.

Nothing more is said then
as he stares into the darkness outside
wondering, Doesn’t she know:

with what ruthless efficiency
hearts may be buried
beneath the frightening fetid soil

of all the things left unsaid.

beautiful destruction

What is done

when even the moon,
my lovely Luna,
has mincing mangled
the many mysteries
of once you and me?

What is left

when stars shatter
shards slicing
through my heart,
hanging so heavily
below Polaris’s glow?

More the fool me,

for I believed this us,
trusted this you
to be true to a song
that no one has
ever fully understood.

And so it was that

the metaphors lied
lisping lascivious
willfully dismissive
of august scales
for foolish fairy tales.

And in the end

life constitutes a path
of partial truths
and whoresome follies
that at best compose
a mournfully moaning dirge

of beautiful destruction.

[My thanks once more to Allison, this time for “hunger” in her amazing collection of poems: Veins.]