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I’d forgotten how hard blogs are. There’s a story to tell and I keep thinking it’s about Nepal. I should be writing about Nepal. I am supposed to be writing The Nepal Story, after all. So, why can I not write about Nepal?

Dramatic sigh.

I was once told by my mentor to trust my instincts when piecing a narrative together, meaning I shouldn’t be so arrogant as to think I can manhandle an experience if I don’t let it unfold. My story hasn’t even unfolded yet. I want to write a redemption story that hasn’t happened, so it’s no wonder I can’t write about it. Truth be told, mine is probably not a redemption story anyway. Deep down, I know Nepal as a requisite transformative experience will be dark because, when reduced to its smallest divisible parts, Nepal is all in my head.

And there’s a writer in there, too, who refuses to shut the hell up.

From a distance, a shadowed mirage is waving at me like a summer heat reflection on hot pavement and this passage comes back to me:

         Despite our best intentions, we forget the dead.
         Do they forget us?                                  Jane Summer, “Erebus”

So. Leigh “Bindo” Binder*, if you refuse to die, I’ll just have to kill you off in a mediocre poem that’s an apology as much as a lament.

Sleeping Beauty
When the stem drooped and the petals died,
I slept
Sleeping beauty sleep

I awoke to gold
Light too bright
You offered me a dim corner

You and I shared caramelized melancholy
Like cotton candy
Adolescent sweetness, the things that grew in our heads

Restless dreams like your cigarette smoke
From a few thousand miles away
Choke me awake

Weighed together like stone
Bound and pull down like some English great, we weren’t built for this life
But mostly: Have we lived our eternity?

 

*Leigh Binder was a friend and fellow writer, who died two years ago leaving only his writing and YouTube videos (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-43KL2khFHhJ-LmRqA-y2A) to haunt me.

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There was a time when you mattered
The last bloom
On the Rose of Sharon

Of
The
Season
In which your spirit did not survive

Another fall
Falls near
As the sky
Or a petal from a poppy
Or a child of God

Did you really believe that?
That there was a time when it mattered
The way beauty fell away to reveal something more beautiful and terrible but toxic

But time
It mattered
Because it was yours
The lost blossom

In a sleep, the wound wept its tears
Bloodshed
Seeped from itself without knowing
But I knew
I saw your death a million times before you did

But then you said
In a sleep, all around was death, death, dea th
You knew bloodshed
Wept for us both before I ever did

When the petals died and the stem drooped,
I slept
Sleeping beauty sleep

I awoke to gold
Light too bright
You offered me a dim corner

When you drooped and died,
Gold was gilded with light
There is no sleeping beauty sleep now

I was featured on Annmarie Lockhart’s fantabulous poetry site, vox poetica, yesteray. http://poemblog.voxpoetica.com/ (a divination was the poem).

Thanks, Annmarie for the shout out. 🙂

I awoke to screaming lips
a sigh beyond
teeth clenched
with an image in mind

blood plastered image on my mind
blood splattered image on my mind

caught up in the stream
of things
the streamers I made as a 10-year-old
still hanging from the rec room ceiling where my father tacked them
a long ago place
never touched
and now a new place
that takes me back to when I was 21 and how much I couldn’t enjoy my life then

The punchline wasn’t the real punchline
Or at least it wasn’t funny

She wept.

Like most things
It’s what comes after the punchline that matters most

She wept.
For him.

part a

this has been the year of guilt
last year was the year of reckoning
I go through cycles like the Chinese horoscopes

I’m a horse
I’m also a goat/fish tail in the regular astrological wheel
I never liked goats

I’m guilty
I’m also depressed/manic-but-not-in-a-Patty-Duke-sort-of way

I’m moving and surprisingly it doesn’t hurt.
I have distractions from my distractions.

I’ll do anything to make you smile
is not going to replace
I have no affection for you
heartfelt, the latter wins out.

part b

he is no rock star

in accordance with tradition
he wears plaid golf pants up to here
a yellow shirt always with crisscross suspenders
he does not actually golf

he is no ladies man, either

his deep wrinkles sag
he looks younger than Larry King
whether that’s true or not is of no consequence to him
but the little old ladies across the street want to know
just in case he might be a younger man
with all of the perks of younger men
more energy, more sex drive
and with a body like his, how could anyone blame the ancient biddies
creaming their panties in anticipation for his arrival

they drew blood, sure enough
soliciting my veins
as if touched by a dirty homeless person
the thread of string
winced and jumped back
trying to avoid the inevitable

SOB with me

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