Coltrane and Rainy Days

Cursor blinking on the page

unfinished labor of money, not love

while lost in a moment of Coltrane

always back to those honeymoon days

where it was cool and rainy outside,

cool and warm inside, barefoot in blankets and books

philosophical political purposeful conversations,

nights filled with red wine, the soft twinkle of

patio lights surrounded by passionate minds and

laughter, the burning of more than just candles

between us.   Another time before children,

before the fast-forward of life and cymbals

banging, before beds were strictly for sleeping,

before bright lights.  Maybe it was only a moment

or something we saw in a movie once

where Uma Thurman played me, and Brian

Greenberg, the light skinned Jewish version

of the brown and beautiful you,

but without the conflict.

Lost in the lazy piano and hot-blooded

trumpet, I can see those artist hands

of yours against my white arm

resting on the slow breaths of your chest.

Music drawn to a sad close,

I hear it– flashing cursor, pinging email,

stacks of paper.

But this day; this life,

was meant for so much more.

Splendid

Alone on a morning walk
splashed in a rose watercolor dawn

Together in the forest
under a clear sky raining glitter

Watching these babies
freshly bathed and sleeping

Oh—what a splendid life

Love Letter

Remember when they called you head-turner
and the comment turned your head around
to hear what they were saying.
You dipped yourself in that moment, and
soaked it into your skin,
when life was a ruffled white bikini.

Now gentle brush of the cheek,
a full frontal inspection
demands a closer look
revealing– who?

Tiny lines doing simple multiplication,
a smile making them exponential.
On the verge of condemnation
I felt something, recognized a familiar face
Suddenly and for a moment
doubt and mockery of everything self-love
cast aside,

I wrote what I could not say out loud:
Dearest,
Let all the drug dealers pushing Prozac
and cognitive-behavioral worksheets
with their calm Nurse Ratchet voices,
for once–  crack open a new universe
and say…

It’s okay to prefer darkness to light.
Go ahead with disdain for the day.
Celebrate the night!
It is only in total darkness
where we see the brightness of stars.

Like Einstein’s fish,
no happy pill can make a star feel worthy
by extinguishing its flight, roaming the earth
in full daylight.  Only swimming in the dark skies
of poetry, art, and philosophy can reveal the truth
worth living passionately for–

Sense the rage of injustice as it builds its mighty wall
feel the starvation for love,
in every orphaned child and
empty bottomless tearing off of limbs
for the world’s orphaned parents.
Cry.

Fill every watershed and well.
Let no wetlands remain dry,
and when all pain is sufficiently spilled–
released into the earth for regrowth,
sit silently smiling on the edge of the world.

See the green and the gold of your eyes,
embraced by the life lines you’ve earned.
Sit smiling for youth gone by and love
every small joy, every breath of early morning mist
every yellow butterfly against a blue sky

Let secrets flutter to the past
Throw your words of rage into wishing wells
Feel the tightness of the urgent present melt away
until now fills the room with a calm blue.
Let gratitude drape the shoulders of the mother, daughter, and friend.
Let it live in life’s poetry–

a familiar scent like autumn apples,
a welcome home to the voice
I have always known.
Welcome, my first love.
Come into the rain.
This is where the real you grows.

On the Road

Sooner or later

she’s got to realize,
1969 at two and a half,
blonde pig tails, and
embroidered bell bottoms
was a banner year.
The best of ’em.

When she said,
“I a hippie.”
She really had a good idea
of self–
back then.

These days, it’s just a run
for the money.
Watch your words, your back, and your
bank account. Forget those new
running shoes, I’ve decided. No shoes
will do just fine for this next part of the road.

What I want to be when I grow up
is everything I ever knew in the
sparkle of dandelions growing in
my backyard. I a hippie.
Not workin’ for the man or
the woman in his suit.

No, this jungle animal is breaking
free of this food chain. Dean and
Marylou would dig it. Time
for me to hit that high note too.