Friday, December 05, 2014

Walking away from the scene

From Claudia Emerson's poem "Aftermath"

'You see, aftermath is easier, opening
             again the wound along it's numb scar; it is the sentence

spoken the second time - truer, perhaps,
             with the blunt edge of a practised tongue.'

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

the evidence

"Poetry is just the evidence of life. If your life is burning well poetry is just the ash"
-Leonard Cohen

I came across this quote today and it caused me to wonder whether my life is burning well right now. I feel like it burns with chaos mostly. Mainly the chaos of my own confused mind half the time. And I suppose that is its own unique sort of burning. Some things never change. But the poetry is not coming fast or easily to me at this time, and that bothers me. It could be that I need to exercise some other art form right now. It could be due to the fact that many changes are on the horizon, and the shape of my life is evolving in ways that I did not expect them least not right now. Changes can sometimes turn ones world around. Even the very good and life giving ones. 

The main burning for me right now is that of love - quite unexpected - which I thought had left me behind for good. I had all but resigned myself to a kind of monastic, mostly solitary life. I think up until pretty recently I had convinced myself that I didn't want or need the love of a partner and had become impervious to it. (Truthfully there still is some part of me that feels drawn to the life of a monk) But as of a couple of weeks ago I'm engaged to be married. So that whole nun thing is not gonna happen.

Yes it's true. I'm engaged. For the second time in my life....which feels a little weird. But it feels more right and natural than anything else. More right than anything before, actually. I am beyond floored and thankful that I've actually found someone I know I can't live without, and who can't live without me. Miracles do happen.....right when you least expect them to.

So I guess in some ways my life is burning. Just not with poetry at the moment. I almost feel too full of words that I can't figure out how to concisely express yet. It needs time to settle. I've become somewhat used to life throwing me curve balls - both bad and good - and I know it takes time for me to process these kinds of changes. 

My hope is that the evidence of this joyful time of life transition will show up in my art, in poetry, whatever way. Because I want something to show for the love and gratitude I feel.

There is my September entry. 
Burn it up,

Thursday, August 07, 2014

dodging bullets

i am so thankful
that i dodged that bullet
that i got away just in time
i am so thankful
i could fall prostrate and kiss the ground
thank you thank you thank you
that i got away
in time to receive
the thing i most needed
i am surrounded by this warmth now
and everything rings true
and i'm not sure why
but today it hit me
and i just have to say
thank you thank you thank you
that i dodged that bullet

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

What we don't expect

Why does it seem so often that whenever something really good happens in my life, something really shitty seems to follow up directly?'s fucking creepy sometimes.

Here is a poem about that kind of stupidity.


Blindsided Squared

the unexpected shows up
so unexplained
almost outrageous
in its arrival
like a desert oasis
or a flash flood.

Sensory assaults:
heat and cold,
joy and sorrow
caught me unaware
so that I was left blinking, stunned
and tingling.

These are the things we
never expect.
The ones that throw us hard
into the wide open
where anything can happen

and nothing
is rote.

Monday, June 30, 2014

question for Robert

“Classic is our daring, classic our cowardice. Classic is our cruelty, classic our charity.” 

― Robert Ardrey, The Hunting Hypothesis: A Personal Conclusion Concerning the Evolutionary Nature of Man


what happened I wonder
in the span of time 
between the Killer Ape 
and the human.

what will happen next?

who or what will lead the way
to our true evolution
without cowardice 
or cruelty?

when will we move past the corpses

and be known only and always 
by our poems?

Tuesday, May 27, 2014


It was late when she decided
to read through years
of your words,
which are the memories,
which make up the experiences,
which are all that's left
from a wreckage of regret.

She saw with new eyes,
renewed perspective,
intelligence in each phrase and rhythm,
in every rise and fall,
in the cadences and spaces between words,
in each colliding emotion evoked,
in the hope, pain, clear-seeing, honesty, compassion,
terror, relinquishment, veracity, avalanche,
bitterness, courage, opening,
rage, free fall,

Hindsight being 20/20,
it was only then that she fully understood -
your words,
separated now from the entanglement,
the wisdom,
as if it was glowing from the page.

It was a good read.

Each phrase reminded her
with deep appreciation
and keen sadness,
whom she loved

and why.

Monday, May 05, 2014

that moment

I am like a student of aloneness.
I rifle through pages of verse,
which speak of it.
I pore over dusty tomes of philosophy
and rhetoric,
In the dim lamp light,
My eyes dry and squinty,
I run over each line with my finger as if I'm searching
for deep treasure,
as if among these poets, philosophers,
mystics or fakes -
I might find a word,
a sentence even,
that will satisfy
this curiosity
of alone.

The school may be elusive,
bound up in dark cloud,
but not so harsh anymore.
I even try and come as close as I can.
I sit on my cushion cross legged
and wait
and wait
for that utterly blinding moment
that moment
( so beautiful )
when my aloneness transforms itself
into my closest
and dearest

I'm lucky when this happens,
because it doesn't always.
But it drives me back to my seat again,
and again,
even kicking and screaming,
and sometimes terrified,
back to my alone school
because I so crave that moment.

Maybe that's a bad thing. Who can say?
But truthfully -
I crave it more than I have ever,
ever craved.

Saturday, April 05, 2014

dirty streets

We'd never know what lay beneath
the glistening snow,
the rumpled sheets,
until the joy revealed the grief
on dirty, dirty streets.

With Aprils lie of winter gone,
belaboured sighs,
forgotten songs,
I swore I wouldn't walk so long
these dirty, dirty streets.

The fissures in the sidewalks show
the way our separation grows,
the freezing silence:
friend turned foe
on dirty, dirty streets.

Trails of discarded cigarettes
which lie under each place I step,
it's here that I will place my bets
on dirty, dirty streets.

My bet is that your dam will break,
I pray you scream it in my face,
and there I'd meet you

on these dirty, dirty streets.


 "APRIL is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing 
Memory and desire, stirring 
Dull roots with spring rain. 
Winter kept us warm, covering         
Earth in forgetful snow, feeding 
A little life with dried tubers.
What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow 
Out of this stony rubbish? Son of man,  
You cannot say, or guess, for you know only 
A heap of broken images, where the sun beats, 
And the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket no relief, 
And the dry stone no sound of water. Only 
There is shadow under this red rock,  
(Come in under the shadow of this red rock), 
And I will show you something different from either 
Your shadow at morning striding behind you 
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you; 
I will show you fear in a handful of dust."

- T.S Eliot, The Wasteland - 1922

Saturday, March 08, 2014


These words will mark the beginning,
and the end,
and the end and the beginning,
around and around,
circling deeper and deeper,
until the core is reached -
The true recollection
of who I am:

One unobstructed by desire,
or defeat.
One who's future rushes towards her,
and who's past is at her heels,
but this one does not yield,
because she is held still,
within the deepest silent centre -
the core.
This is the hard seed
of Right Now.

And Right Now
I hold steady in my mind
the vast, ever expanding, always regenerating
of my own impenetrable soul.
All of this infinite majesty and love,
contained within the smallest hard seed,
buried in the deep fertile compost
of my very self.

Nothing can stop this slow germination.
Nothing could have stopped
this death
and this growth.
Nothing can change the joyful bursting forth
of the inevitable new life,
which is in its strange silent formation,
Right Now.

Who can ever understand
the blooming galaxies
contained in such fragility?

But this is Nature,
in all of its utterly incomprehensible evolution.
Its holiness,
It's mysterious science.


And so,
Right Now,
These words will mark my end,
and my beginning.