Archive for April, 2020

Time Capsule Capsized

April, 2060, Federal Landfill – Staten Island NY:
Found a box of 125 cards, white linen stock, badly yellowed,
inscribed in beautiful cursive type,saying
“Save the Date, Amanda and Chris, April 25, 2020.”

Not sure what that means. Anybody?


I am certain there once was darkness there,
obscuring the life underneath.

But now?
Just look at it!

Chagall 2020

Once Beneath A Time

My heart yearns for lighter fare,
for frolic and whimsy, a stolen kiss

mid-morning, and the day is yet ahead
with all of the promise the years once held

bright sun or warm rain,
either would do

it is timeless here
in the garden

the aroma of the earth is you,
the burning heart of stars is you

the breeze that holds the memory,
the foretelling wind

a single thought indulged,
over and over

detail slips away
until there is doubt once ever was

perhaps there was no sun,
no rain, no earth or stars

perhaps there is no garden

Chagall 2020


I lie down
beneath the bough of the lilac
in dappled shade amid fragrant peace
I sleep

Chagall 2020

Much Ado…

the sun, the earth, and my bathroom’s casement window,
are aligned such that this morning a tiny rainbow appears
on the tiles of my shower stall

I leave the curtain partially open
to allow the prism-effect to continue to shine there
while I luxuriate under the hot water

my large plastic bottle of soap is near its end
so I fill it with just a bit of liquid from the nozzle-head,
and shake it up to make the most of the last of it

when I pop the top, tiny bubbles emerge and lift in the steam,
brought into existence for a brief moment, the delicate film
of each orb – scented of shea and lavender – caught in light

and I see the rainbow reflected many times over, swirling around me
in the face of the glycerine – the hydrophilic and phobic hydrocarbon
caught between the soap molecules, striving to become spheres
to minimize the surface tension, expending the least energy

so delicate, so ethereal, each tiny bubble, here but for a moment
then gone

as the earth tilts ever so slightly, so too disappears
the rainbow on the wall

and I am once again
alone in the mist

Chagall 2020

Inside I scream,
a panicked shrill cry
of terror to break the glass
between me and the world outside,
to clear the debris, the dead insects
off the windshield that prevent me from seeing

I seek the button to release that fluid which wipes the dust away;
clearly, I want to see clearly

With a vibrato so intense, I shake
until I shatter, the momentum of my resonance holds over
to coagulate the reassembly of all my pieces, binding me at the seams
as if brand new, as if once again whole

But I know I am merely a puzzle, a pastiche, a patchquilt,
a part apart from form, a formal departure,
a mere formality of the species,
an uninformed biological unit,
a uniform of skin
akin to nil

When all is said and done;
when all is screamed and done

Chagall 2020


After the rain washes us down
the dust turns to mud in which I frolic until sunlight
begets a hazy rise of mist tinted emerald upon waves of warm air

ascension –
and I sense what I think to be God, blinding, euphoric,
the supreme celebrant of all good and alive

thoughts now crystalline, out of the vortex, the eddy
that once captured every moment to divert me from the actual,
the purveyor of the shifting real

in the rain I turn my face skyward, to drink in as much of the deluge
as I can, so engorged that I am washed clean in the purge
with eyes opened to the world, neither strange nor new

washed simply clean,
crisply floral and herbal

upright and human

Chagall 2020

Just Like J. Goldblum

I am getting quite adept at playing guitar with my eyes closed,
and the other night I navigated fully around the house in total darkness,
even stopping here and there to pick up errant socks, strewn about,
unseen by the human eye.

I think I am developing bio-sonar.

Chagall 2020

I’d had quit smoking almost 4 years
when 9/11 happened. Broad Street
turned night though it was day, and debris descended
like snow when the first tower fell. Oh God, that rumble.
We huddled in the stairwell, assuring we were all
accounted for, and that the exit door would open
before we trusted allowing the upper door to slam shut
behind us, for fear of being stuck with no way out.
On the street we were near-ankle-deep in white ash,
a collection of steel, concrete, paper, human destruction.

We broke off into many separate groups of two and three and four,
making our way into the city, to find our respective ways home.
Someone in my group lit a cigarette and I asked for one.

I quit again in June of 2005. It took that long to collect my bearings
after that day.

Tonight, in the steady rain that is falling around me,
in my isolation, in the warm breeze that blows through the porch,
I find myself desiring a cigarette, a pack, some refuge
in a handheld tiny fire, the acrid smoke that fills the lungs,
a few minutes of soulful departure, selfish moments really
of indulgence, enabling contemplation, facilitating introspection.

But I don’t give in. I need to know that my lungs are working with
15 years of cleanliness, my mind and bloodstream clear of toxins.
I don’t want to have to quit again.

I don’t want to die staring into the eyes of a nurse,
so young as to have been in elementary school when the towers fell.
I want to live to be able to hug her, to applaud her and her colleagues, to embrace their collective sacrifice and never let go, for doing their best to keep us all alive. Once this is all over.

Chagall 2020

In This Life

The wedding was to be this Saturday,
rescheduled now for August of 2021.

My mother-in-law, 94, had been waiting
all year to see her granddaughter married.

“I don’t think I’ll live that long,”
she said, hearing of the new date.

So I told her, “If you don’t make it to this wedding,
I’ll kill ya’!”

Chagall 2020

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