you cook

we do not touch
not unlike the stars in their constellations
on the table
the flickering candles dance
in your eyes

youth has the power to swiftly pass
half the hours I have
have vanished
pain and knowledge
are a wisdom of sorts

you cook spring onions
in the rain
with yellow millet
you cook with soy, sesame oil
and ginger
you are saying
drink

I fill my wine-cup
ten times over
trying to satisfy the beast in my chest
that wants to eat the world
and having that
eat the sun
and moon and stars
and then . . .
nasty beast

you were speaking
I look up lost again in the world
you say
the bright flowers have gone
say
writing unfolds the heart
like an ever opening flower
you say
we could meet in this thought
though we cannot meet in Time

I say
the artistry of the high clouds across a cyan sky
is almost worth the cutting winds

And you are gone

You flew East
and I went West
Reality is such a subjective place
sometimes Fantasy is Best

Fire and Rain
Fear and Pain
Fall from the Northern Skies
Past is all pretense
of lost goodbyes

I fly East
and You wonder West
Reality is such a speculative place
ofttimes Fantasy is Best

Tears and Pain
Fears caress
Lights across the Southern Skies
Lost is all pretense
of fond goodbyes

None know East
None went West
Reality is such a subjective place
sometimes Fantasy is Rest

Swirling Rain
Wind caress
Lost beneath the Southern Skies
And you are gone

i fear no creature

save love
for love is the shiniest demon
cavorting in the temple

love has the tiny teeth of time
the tsunami that takes your breath
the perfume that would be illegal
in 37 states
the subtle poise and grace
of a water dragon

and she makes the most wondrous sound
as she tells you the tales
that will steal the precious moments
from your pocket

Lady Writer

Ten thousand things
Left done and undone
The tea steams

The Lady writer is watching one of those hideous
Cat clocks
Where the tail is the pendulum
And the eyes shift back
And forth
Back
And forth
Back
And forth
It seemed like such a good idea at the time

The wane light of a coming day
barely wins a fight with the sheer curtains
Over the breakfast nook

She lift her instrument of self torture
She lifts the pen
Touches it to the journal . . .
The nib skips a bit
Then bites the page

3 More Pieces from The Lost Art of Loving a Difficult Woman

Cast Photo

Here we are at the Globe
Yeah
She had a walk-on part in Mid summer’s Night Dream

I helped with the set
got paid and what a resume booster

This is the Cast Photo
That’s her right there
Pale
Raven hair
Obscene gesture

That’s her

The Street Cafe in London

One of the best runs of clement weather in 25 years
And we were lucky enough to score a walk-in table

Parmesan skin appetizers
Puffed up little pork scratchings from a rind
Espresso poured over vanilla ice cream
affogato style

She said
“In Germany
you can drink your beer on the streets
and in the subway if you don’t spill it.”

Café Babalú

Took this picture in Reykjavik
The airport isn’t actually in town
Keflavik International Airport is about 50 kilometers to the east

If you do a lay-over
and spend some tourist-time in Iceland
you get free flight continuity

The waitress dared me to eat snails
but we ordered sandwiches

She said
“The first boy I ever kissed
smelled of wanting
desperate wanting
and hurt. . .”

She pulled a stalk of parsley out of her sandwich
sniffed it
flicked it on our tray

Sipped her soda
(an Eglis Applesin)
Made a face
checked her phone
Said
“You guys are all alike
Just the same. . . .”

And she said nothing else

3 Pieces from the Lost Art of Loving a Difficult Woman

the Archon of Romance passes

wars come
wars come again

the Archon of Romance passes

caring too much
is the same kind of numb
as caring not enough

Leviathans in Dark Waters

She found me after the play
She said
“I would paint my lips with your words”

She said
“I have brought you this flower. . .”

Said
“Walk with me.”

Ellis at the Coffee Shop

He has his phone
doing that thing that everyone does
Scrolling through a life he was too busy photographing
a life he didn’t have time to live
because. . . well, you know

He said
“This is a shot of a used coffee cup.
The paper kind of cups
you get in airports. . .”

Next, he shows me a picture of a woman
He name?
Honestly, I don’t remember

Said
“She said to me
‘It’s not easy to be so loving.
People. . .
They don’t know what to do with it when I’m kind
but kindness is the only way I know to deal with people.’”

He flicks back to the picture of the cup
I notice the cup in the picture
is on the floor
He said
“She knocked the cup off the table
and left it.
She wasn’t thoughtless
just too thoughtful, perhaps. . .”

Tatakai

The Lady says
“His soul drifts somewhere within the waters of stillness
Fetal curled amid clouds of billowing white
he falls through a summer sky.”

Donzela sees into his soul
it almost kills her

The Lady says
“Fear not
he is still numbered among the living
He is only sleeping.”

Donzela applies her hand
to the seared flesh across his heart
Winces as she takes the injury into her own hand
The Lady places her hand on Donzela’s
sending the injury away

They mend the burns and gashes
They straighten the right leg and mend the bones
The right shoulder is restored

Potions for fever and building blood in him are forced
Some time near noon the next day
both women fall of exhaustion

The savant lies peacefully
His breath ebbing and flowing
Yet his face is troubled. . .

In Donzela’s dream the Lady says
“He is quiet
but given the suffering of his Living Hell
one might wonder at the intent of those who would call such continuance a blessing.
Given the nature of his nightmares
perhaps it were better he snap erect
and scream till all wind leaves his lungs.”

Donzela says
“How can there be sense in this kind of anguish?

The Lady says
“Pain
For all its discussion
Tells the body to avoid something
Hit your hand
Hurt your hand
Don’t hit your hand again . . .
Simple

But there is pain
Pain that makes no sense
Unrelenting
Horrible
Gut wrenching
Everlasting PAIN

And you have to ask
Where is the wisdom in this?”