Saturday, November 5, 2016

Medical Sonnet #5

illustration by Racquel Aparicio

Into the earthy realm we come, with friction as our gate
to don ill-fitting garments that our forebears did create.
But some unlucky soles, it seems, who would have worn too thin,
Become overly hardened here for want of thicker skin.
Still others look to chemicals, as though we can escape.
Alas, there is no exit when we’re circular in shape.
And even when we do dissolve, are peeled up from our flesh,
We may decide to start again, in agony, refreshed.
Physicians in white coats advise to take in fresher air,
In padded rooms with wider berths, perhaps, while we repair.
Still, pressure from all sides can mount when trouble is afoot.
Our suffering is certain, and we can’t give it the boot.
Yes, misery is guaranteed; we run on solar pain,
and sometimes it is doubled, when we go against the grain.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Medical Sonnet #4

From blissful slepe, her brown eye blinks.
Unbidden ‘rousal of the sphinx.
She aches, and with a moan and gasp, 
secedes the peace that is her mask.
A baser need, a carnal wonder,
beck and calls in raucous thunder.
Raging tempests churn the seas
that only one prayer can appease.
A flood ensues that can’t be dammed,
as rosy cheeks kiss porcelain.
And loudly, geese descend in throngs
to punctuate the dun brown pond.
Of perfumes, there may be sweter
but of release, there is no greater.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Medical Sonnet #3

art by verismaya

Shall I compare thee to a cloggèd lane?               
The king’s road should but flowe with ease,           
But here the horses lurch and strain.                     
Or to a danse, if yt you please?                             
Thou duck in darkened corners, meek,                   
And shirk the beat in stagnant pain.                       
Or to a drunkèn captain’s fleet                               
with no North Star in night’s terrain?                      
And too few knots to stay the course.                       
Or to the gnarled oxen’s knees                             
That lumber through the blooming gorse?            
Whose remedie the swell doth ease.                       
Or to a world together held by modesty in vain       
while you stand out as painfully as an Americain.    

Friday, December 18, 2015

gallopy draft

art by Rachael Shankman

I arc, cemented to the prow
of this great ship, the wind it howls
the night is cold and fire burns, 
the wind does rage, the sea, it turns 
the silver surface from our grasp,
can’t hold what’s close, can’t hold the past,
these remnants glimmer
real as rain, when gathered, gray
can’t separate the single drops
collect in buckets, then we mop
the present with the murky past
besmirching windows to our hollows
dark and vast, and bright and neat,
the sun it bleaches
dirty sheets to our relief
the stern does steep in tides that reek
above the water, proudly pleated
lurching sail, a choppy meter
lightning reigns in peals of wonder
blights a skein, alights our pain
and so we venture ‘neath the deck
closer to the very waters
of the one who’s haunting us,
but rocks and coddles nonetheless
there’s no escaping endless water
tide recedes with time, then gathers
us to its moon-swollen breast
drink it in, there is no rest
swallow now before you’re swallowed
by the sea, we’re being followed
naturally, by time it leads us
to the shore that no one’s seen
it’s only lore, an open door,
an endless light, or endless night
as brightly and dark as sleep
provides our refuge and relief

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

revenge poem

You burned me, a forbidden book,
a pawn before a pompous rook.
Puffed up with your mating plumage,
a feather duster streaked with sewage.

You burned me, a forbidden book,
an old and wordless tome you took
to pyre: just a scrying flame
portending you more of the same.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Come dip a quill into my bones
and draw with blood upon the stones
a liquid song, each note bequeathed
by mother tongues (and lips and teeth),
held hostage by a primal urge,
creating wakes that sound the dirge.
I swell and swoon, and rise and break--
a tide of titles, tales, and ranks.
A wartime trumpet of the swan
must take a shape to carry on.
Oh, who still peddles Grecian urns?
Whose marrow boils till it burns,
whose watermark upon the flock
is still just water on a rock.

Thursday, April 9, 2015


soaring on the jet stream of a million heirs,
you pluck your quiver from our feather'd hearts, 
invisible impact retrieved and irretrievable,
leaving us gaping, whole.

you buried your bright baubles in our brambles,
raven in a bamboo grove,
sucking out all the marrow.
we won’t backslide
I can say everything better now that you’re dead