the bluest sky

When breaks this heart
may it be a matter of some weight,
not a trifle but lightly beheld by some
even more easily cast aside by others
but greater yet by far than that which
‘neath bended knee did Atlas nearly fail.

When breaks this heart
may time itself in dread possessed
grind swiftly, irrevocably to a halt
and worlds shatter like plaster cast
sensitive even to the abrasive touch
of Aurora’s gossamer veil.

When breaks this heart
may it not in whispers pass unheeded
but cleave the general ear of man and
woman too with a rending of hearts and
a beating of breasts bared the like of
which even Hector could not inspire.

When breaks this heart
may not a single bird take wing aloft
nor infant in mother’s arms sweetly grin
nor child giggle lost in folly’s delight
but all take fearful notice, all beware
all cease to breathe lest this they miss.

When breaks this heart
may it find an echo in the pounding
waves of imminent doom that dance
across this soul made weary by want,
grown pale with the cast of thoughtless
wandering spirits who love embrace.

When breaks this heart
may the pieces thus rent asunder alight
on none but thy sweet wings enfolded
carried hence o’er lands untrammeled yet
guided naught but by thy sweet voice
that in verse does sing the bluest sky.

everything changes

He looks back now
at the words he once wrote
with such effusive passion
and dauntless hope
in the heady days of youth
when life felt endless
and love eternal.

In one regard, I must say,
he breathes easier now,
at least for a time,
knowing so much better
what ideals really mean
and what it is that hope,
in all honesty, represents.

Those whose hearts
breathe blissful being,
careless of tomorrows,
may yet happily know
the fulsome joys
of love so very pure
and unrestrained.

But everything changes,
and nothing weighs down
with greater severity
than to see the ponderous
decay of primal passion
when the light of adoration
is slowly extinguished.

I have seen

I have seen

the deepest red in gently folding
petals of a humble rose
not the one beside it which was more
than arrogant and unworthy
but that one, the little one
the quiet one
and it touched my heart and
made me long for love

I have seen

the most verdant greens stretching regally
and true across all of Cumbria
encircling Derwentwater
where swans splash while ignoring
the many curious visitors
who have come to honor Wordsworth
and revel in romantic verse and
glory in ever trembling song

I have seen

the truest blues bedeck the skies
over the bewitching redwoods
ranging over California’s mountains
standing proudly above the Pacific coast
looking down over Santa Cruz
and those vibrant sands and eternal waves
that ebb and flow and never seem to find
a reason to cease

and I have seen

the grayest of grays on solemn days
and felt inspired to be nothing
to do nothing
feeling naught but the bitterness of age
while listening to the mournful sounds
of a heart that once believed
only now to shudder in lonesome fear
just waiting, still waiting

oh yes, I have seen

Sunset over Derwentwater, Keswick, Cumbria

dust

the besmeared merchant sighs
his dilapidated stall shivering
even from the weight of the dust
that covers his trivial wares

useless all but for one piece
one timelessly treasured vase
facelessly reminiscent, recalling
nana’s gentle hands folding the clay

never would he have chosen
but for the direst of needs to place
her final work beneath the sun
shunned by one patron after another

a screaming child races past
a cloud of dust clinging to his heels
which kick at the angry world
with zealous determination

behind the child, lost in his clowd
an elderly woman growls, teeters
blindly rubbing her stinging eyes
as her hip collides with the stall

down it falls, beautiful in despair
down it falls, crashing to the earth
smashing a heart that had nothing
left to hope for beyond simply this

he does not scream, does not yell
does not tear at what remains
of the bedraggled gray mess strung
limply over his sweaty crown

his jowly countenance drips sorrow
into the dust of his finality
his skin cracks across brittle bones
enthroning a once proud man

as a naïve prince of fools

brighid

o, exalted daughter of dagda
passionate penetrating flame
arrow of seething fire
shot straight and true
and oh most salient

your brilliant burning heart
so remarkably intrepid at
encasing folly and fear
and hope and hearth
in precise syllables

your spirited voice enchanting
demanding and nearly as deft
as your ever healing touch
at texturing trembling
love’s finest adjuration

in the rising winds of winter
growling hungry harrowed
against these thin panes
i hear your keen lament
for murdered ruadan

but the earnest hush of solemn night
translating your crackling flames
is truth enough for we who remain
of how zealous love can be
and how enduring

winter

dust

this flight of fancy
fickle though it may be
defines so very nearly you

your angry urges
these too petulant dirges
merging strident anger and sorrow

your private passions
madly dancing like demons
with sweet voices and torn skin

how little did i know
this damning demanding you
cruelly cursing and ever dismissive

how foolish my ambitions
despair masquerading as hope
my soul loping across brittle decay

this night be ended
bending briefly and repentent
to claw this clay into most fecund dust

Dead Horse Point

Dead Horse Point, Utah

scales

the weight of your words
was more than i could bear
dreadfully tipping scales
tottering on unadorned tables
scratched clean by the claws
of my grayly craven past

it was never really about you
nor yet about fervent us
with no blame attributed
i pondered the fatal dearth
of my forgiveness—not for you
please understand, but for me

with each word that fell
from your precisely shaped lips
with each ounce of your
carefully pronounced certainty
the left bowl dipped and
the right leg slipped until

it all collapsed
quite perfectly

coldness

and when her lips did part
at last
’twas surely not my name
to speak
nor yet my hardened mouth
to find
for in those closing days
held she
nothing of the warmth
of hearth
nor of a heart beating still
to share
anything but a bare breath
that fell
from her lips like granite
entombing
my hopes in stone as frigid
as poe’s
deathly dalliance on a cold
october morn

Salt Lake City 18 Feb 2013

counting

every hour, every ticking
tocking clocking hour

every minute, every single
loathsome laborious minute

these same distant stars
refuse to dim their rays

this same frigid moon
fails to shatter as it should

and why do I have to know?
what could it possibly matter?

my skin freezes in the wind
yet my heart stubbornly beats

still counting the hours
still counting the minutes

as another crack appears
in the stolid face of the moon

Salt Lake City 24 Nov 2012

tears

believe

if i could only
whisper the truth
bending my will
to season softly
this tempestuous
and outraged heart
then most assuredly
would i swiftly kneel
keenly commanding
cleverness to heel
and canvas clear
to bear the brush
of an honest hue

and yet

time torments me
with petty whims
and pretty fears
encased in tears
of sullen sorrow
borrowed from erato
who plays this fool
being overly bound
to aging thoughts
my mind trembling
darkly at the barest
hint of lover’s loss

Salt Lake City 11 Oct 2012