The Readers [Poem]

By low lamp light and long after
the sun has said its goodbyes
Our weary and tired eyes
run across unfolding pages
Seeking all the knowledge
that by the light of day passed us by
And losing daylight hours
in the process

We lean drowsily in reading chairs
against bookshelf backdrops
Watching raindrop reflections
roll thoughtfully down window panes
Borne along their whimsical way
by subtle midnight breezes
That dance strands of hair
from our eyes like ballet

Our split screen symmetry
is separated by mere miles
Filling our solitary spaces
with a shared energy
So that each time my absent eyes
turn to scattering raindrops
I expect them to return
to find you here

Each page I turn is soft marked
with traces of your fingers
And your scent lingers
among allusions and allegories
I hear each word sing out
as though sprung from your alluring lips
And I find myself smiling
not knowing why

There is passion amid these worn out pages
and bookmarked thoughts
And the way your fingers
traced each word is almost erotic
Feeling my palms soft folded
against the small of your book’s spine
Makes me want to lose sleep
between its covers

The silence between phrases
pulses with such heated tension
That I cannot help but lose myself
in that silence so that
I might grasp the pieces
you let me see of your history
And warm them tenderly
in ardorous hands

The tired longing
of the early hours of the nighttime
Draws us both – at length –
to the comfort of our separate beds
Our internal rhymes slowly syncing
through shared breath and heartbeats
Dreaming of morning
reading between soft sheets

Photo by Natalie Grainger on Unsplash

A Romantic Dinner For Two [Poem]

Fried chicken, texas toast,
hold the slaw,
and add an extra texas toast.
A large sweet tea for her
and a lemonade for me.
Some extra sauce packets in the bag,
Please!

A meal fit
for a prince,
or a king,
or a god,
or just me and you,
two broke 20-somethings
with no pretenses between us.

The dining table is set across the dashboard
in a mess
of haphazardly stacked
sauce containers
and 32oz cups
packed into
already over-flowing cup holders.

The air is humming
with soft background beats
as we trash talk
and watch the street roll sleepily by,
streetlights and neon flashing
and reflecting
off the dash.

You kick your feet up
on the steering wheel mid-joke,
and my distracted hands
spill sauce down my shirt,
freezing us
in a moment
of silence.

We break the silence
with a flurry of laughter,
tears mixing with the sauce
until it seems
like the whole world
is nothing but
an absurd joke

and all
I want to do is
laugh at the world
in my sauce-stained shirt
with you
next to me,
laughing too.

Photo by Andre Ouellet on Unsplash



The Dead Sea [Poem]

Under the darkness
of a new moon,
The Dead Sea
is a mirror
that casts
no reflections,
A surface
made of glass,
primed to shatter,
or burst,
doomed to return
to sand –
forever to run
in-corporeally
through the fingers
of cupped hands.

Wade into the water
as deeply as you can,
but you will
not leave a ripple.
Your brittle bones
will slip beneath the surface
like a ghost
and if you dream
to dive deep into the sea,
know that the thick water
will swallow you
in a single breath
and spit you out
on the coastline
long before the water considers
giving up its depths.

Photo by Dave Herring on Unsplash

This poem was written based on the below prompt titled Eugi’s Weekly Prompt – Reflections – April 15, 2021:

reflections mirror

past, present and future, the

outset of purpose

Since everything is a reflection of our minds, everything can be changed by our minds. – Gautama Buddha

Go where the prompt leads you and publish a post on your own blog that responds to the prompt. It can be any variation of the prompt and/or image. Please keep it family friendly. Prompts close 7 days from the close of my post.

More Than A Stranger [Poem]

When you
visit a new city,
treat it
like home.
Hold it tenderly
and love
all of its
rough edges.
Roam outside
of the usual
tourist traps
and turn
the worn pages
of each
passing street.

Find hidden places
and turn down
chance
side-streets
without warning.
Walk briskly up
escalator
steps.
Glare at those
who
do not.
Grumble at tourists.
Wish you had stayed home.
Experience
the city
as more
than a stranger.

Photo by Kamil Kalkan on Unsplash

The Howl of a Wolf [Poem]

In late evening,
I sit on the porch
washed purple
and grey,
criss-crossed
with fireflies
and echoing
with silence.

The howl of a wolf
splits my silence
in an instant,
rending open the sky
to let all
of the passions
of the world
pour across my head.

That lonely wailing
is jazz
to my ears,
played to an audience of one
long after last call,
when the low lights
still glow
faint-mysterious.

I feel
almost sacrilegious
bearing witness
to the world’s heart
poured forth,
but I cannot help
listening to
that heartbreaking solo
drip from
the wolf’s throat
somewhere out
in the darkness.

My heart
knows all of the notes
of this haunted ode
but as it begins
to synchronize
to that arrhythmic howling,
the howl of a second wolf
join the first
with piano key-soft tones
and a third add drums.

A spark of warmth
appears
and the wolves howls
harmonize
across an otherwise
lonely night.
I feel my howling heart steady,
comforted in knowing
I have a pack
to run with
when the night
grows long.

.

Photo by Miti on Unsplash

On DVerse this Tuesday, the challenge is to write a poem in the first person that compares some trait of ours with something animal. It should not be a whale, but another creature (mammal, fish, bird, insect, etc.) with which we have something in common. The title should be the animal thing, in the same way Marjorie Saiser chose ‘The Print the Whales Make’.

The Sweetest Wine [Poem]

You are
the sweetest wine
to parched,
sun-dried lips

the bluest oasis
in deserts
no one
could survive alone

the last drop
of rain
in a flood

a sudden rush
of blood
to my heart

a rhyme
without reason
I repeat through
wine-stained lips

Photo by Jr Korpa on Unsplash

I wrote this poem from a prompt in dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. The prompt calls for the writer to write a poem of exactly 44 words, not including the title, and including the word “wine” in some form.

Ripples [Poem]

I trap the sun in a thousand dots under my skin,
crafting them into maps wrapped around tired shoulders,
so I can guide myself by the braille of my body
when darkness shivers over me and night grows colder.

Wind scatters the mapped seeds of my dandelion dreams,
casting my traces across oceans and continents.
My second hand shoes plod through places I will never see,
leaving footprints to sprout second hand monuments.
My roots grow like thick, tangled vines through all my places,
re-drawing my map with a thousand small traces.

The night sky I thought to be unnavigable
is washed bright with the light of innumerable stars
which cast sharp reliefs against my uncertain shadow
and write me into small footnotes in the sky’s memoirs.

I find nourishment in streams whose quiet waters have 
washed clean the tarnished faces of kings and tyrants,
cleaned sacred altars of unholy sacrifices
and witnessed the rise and fall of civilizations.
The water flows its history through my tired veins,
and when the water is gone from me, pieces remain.

I am older than history, younger than time,
formed full from the beginning of the universe
and doomed to remain thus until my final days
when I drink from the river, will you question my ways?

Photo by Jr Korpa on Unsplash


First published online on Pen to Paper.