Turning, Pt III (draft)

The afternoon holds just enough

Life and dying,

To be familiar

In the narrow, empty spaces

That keep to themselves

In a confusing mass of briars,

And dried or mildewed berries:

Take your pick.

While the shadowed visitors of place

Return home.

.

The day’s path gives a ride

Good sojourns,

Moving, really moving along.

And this time:

Like the knob of some old radio,

Cranked slowly one way,

Boisterous and fading

Again and again.

.

Nobody talks about this stuff,

Making for poor politics.

None, really.

Unless we can all turn askew,

Upwards. All of us.

.

‘Cause we all see it our own crooked ways.

.

And one more:

Don’t fall for the witching hour,

Telling you, this moment:

Some speck of time,

that could turn the day.

No. Don’t.

Just watch this time,

like it was back then.

How we Count tombstones;

The graveyards of climate:

Like fishing,

where a scant few days are easy.

.

But mostly,

August’s forced languor

to some other eden,

Far from this nihlitude of sapped topographies,

Calls us down.

Now: the dusty dry interludes of impossible

Hell hole hermitages of heat.

Oh, Hell yeah!

.

And those cruel, cheating soft years.

.

Neah, the feint tries of Autumn:

Failed shadows of yesterday’s

Arguments over long drives

Through once watery green valleys

Where tiny creeks had life:

In those old memories we write about now,

And dream of,

Before the tiny earthquakes stir us,

From the empty, dark hour before dawn.

.

All this:

Left behind now.

.

If I could wish on a genie,

Just for this time:

Give me the geologies of water,

Grandma’s fountain,

once again.

The Way Summer Turned – Part II

Speaking softly now in a still lingering light

Measured in long peeks out the window,

Until the life of darkness

Resumes the ongoing day:

Slipping,

Stretching,

Into something else.

.

Some of us lost the light

Before we were even able

To sequester its sparkling splendor

In some imaginary pause.

.

I walked right past the bus!

.

That’s how it grabbed me:

Before I could even catch up to it

And after it was long gone.

.

Now cardboard afternoons,

To box the passage of days,

And the frayed edges of old towels

Hanging stiff along a sagging clothesline:

Barely swinging back and forth.

Enter left, exit hopefully (draft)

March, April, May

Those hideous months of spring

And dying.

Times to drink to oblivion

Or get sober

Because things have gotten that bad.

More than once.

.

Summer is just a known

Constant staleness, defying perpetuity.

And time of asking calendars

About the rules of a waiting game,

Measured in drought,

Day length,

And sometimes tomatoes.

.

Give me those 4 days in October,

September, November.

Doesn’t matter:

It’s when the counting ceases,

And the shadows come to stay.

Anniversaries

And Summer’s Dwelling.

Now:

The soft urgency of evening comes as a call of light.

Light in windows,

And the closing edge of shadows,

Where far off night calls for tomorrow’s respite.

The last places fold themselves into corners,

Where sounds hide,

Descending,

Slipping into a quickening stop now,

While yielding to the hills beyond

Staring down at our polka dot splendor,

While they wait their turn.

.

Now, the calendar gets marked,

Not in numbers and squares,

But in these lines,

Those corners,

And the rough shapes of passed time.

.

Now I remember this path,

Where it led,

How it was worn somewhat,

But tread in new shoes,

At a steady pace,

To the whims of clarity,

And the luxuries delivered

From the old shadows

Lurking all the while

Among the familiar.

The Many Solitudes of Sun –

Life on the ragged edge of a Mediterranean climate:

Born raw

Again this morning

Sudden, under the monotony

Of unchanged days.

What’s left to tip this scratched record?

Slipping beats, mercilessly turning

To an old song

Still sharp and biting

But in new ways not heard then.

How far south

Or north

Or just across

Do I need to go

For the broad skies

Painted in pastel masteries.

Haunted eden,

Before the waiting time resumes.

The light still slides

But plays to a bad rhythm

A bad rhythm going down.

.

Again,

Some of this time might linger.

Mix.

Into the endless eddies of days

But is quickly lost

On the downhill slide.

.

One day, crazy boisterous

The next,

Of long slumber,

Or the deep haze

Cast across dry fields

And the aches fired by dust and wind.

.

Here the days slide with the light,

The rhythm of new times again.

Experiencing Climate (in progress)

Afternoon breeze:

Throes of some beloved time

Mark this place,

Scribbling old, stale letters,

With the earth casting the scantest of shimmers.

.

Recalling its vast flatness,

Where things far gone

Seem close,

Is a breeze that weans all

From time’s pulsing song

And the golden bars of space.

.

Lazy:

Like days on end become.

.

Secretive:

Passing through leaves

And other spaces.

With barely a gesture:

Surprising in its arrival,

Fading in its passing.

Like lifting a finger

To a circling moth

And seeing another

Move along a ragged edge of focus:

Near soundless wings a flutter.

.

The breeze sits and waits

‘Til all else passes,

When it will stand and tell stories

In a hushed voice

That carries far,

Like grief and love

All mingled in the fields:

Meeting for the first time.

June 26

June 26.

Is the real day here,

Latest sunset of the year

When it all comes gathering up

To glide into the doldrums

Today is the crest of a small wave

On some pond

Rarely visited in the brush

Especially on hot days

When it becomes the throne

For snakes and frogs

Having their day

On the crest of a small wave

This is the silent pulse

The long ebb

The onset of exhale

The practice of patience

If I could count flowers and leaves

I might try drawing the ripples

Depending on the amount of time

Getting lost in time’s subtle traps

Pulling us into drying gopher holes

Where new life goes on.

I have to step gently from today,

Steadfast in foot,

Hopping the waves

Or pointing to the shadows

The marks they leave

The same as the last go

Except changed

When I start counting.