Archive for September, 2010

entropy

Posted in Poetry with tags , on September 29, 2010 by redshoes3

Only

entropy

has the luxury of choosing the direction of time

All matter follows in orderly surrender

Time’s arrow flies from love’s bow.

chicken feet

Posted in Poetry with tags , on September 25, 2010 by redshoes3

I keep my heart in a cage of bone
with space for curiously unjoined notions
about pickles and tomatoes
We are ringed by a moat stalked by death
Shark fin scythes like a dirge with skin thru thin water
In a land where only mad dogs
answer the selfish prayers of pilgrims.
My house walks about on chicken feet
when we become bored by the neighbors.

Carol

Posted in Poetry with tags , on September 10, 2010 by redshoes3

Carol talks back.
Sitting at a picnic table
half in shade
she pulls the cardboard
people out of a box
puzzles over each
as tho it were a
codex written by earth herself
Sassy and clever, brilliant
with stacks of crystal lives
that catch the light when
she turns.  And sighs,
“Now darlin’, this death
card is just a new beginning.
Nothin’ to shed tears over.”
She pulls her tattered, ragged
gypsy queen to lie down
across that collection of bones
and captures his attention
right off the page and into the
now for the frightened pilgrim.

Deirdre

Posted in Poetry with tags , on September 10, 2010 by redshoes3

Your name should have been Ramona,
riding wild across the corduroy hills
of winter California three hundred years ago.
Local hidalgos swoon and suffer as
you ride past beyond the grasp of mortal
man and mother church.
Only the sea can enchant you, grab
your heart and squeeze an exquisite
sigh from your moist lips.
The day will come when the wet and
wildness with reclaim you.
The day will come when grass will want your eyes
and sun will reclaim your hair
and the sweet sandy beaches
will borrow back your skin.
The soul that you have made for yourself
all by yourself
will leap from confining substance
and make the world cry your name.

Silkies

Posted in Poetry with tags , on September 10, 2010 by redshoes3

Those who foolishly go to sea again and again with an unnamed desire experience a soul deep sadness of separation from some essential source, a well that can’t be full or empty.

The few humans who feel a yearning for something lost, something forgotten.  Them that has the tides running through them from the day they’re born til the day they die are the children of silkies.

Those seal-like creatures who are human in form when they carelessly remove their skins and bear their half human children only to return as quickly as the skin can be recovered.

For these children there is no such thing as sleep the way other folk know it and a terrible torment.  They become drunks or poets until they tangle their lives in sails and lines and knots.

Until they plunge back into the water drawn somewhere by a pattern of returning as old as water and part of the water held by our frail tissue is the shape of water.

Old Gods

Posted in Poetry with tags , on September 10, 2010 by redshoes3

I hear the fearsome caterwauling of old gods
The fabric of humanity tears at the seams
and with it a whisper of ruin
The girl, a dancer narrow as a shadow
turned to stone
and dropped slowly backwards
eyes white, empty
shivering in a chill of ecstasy
on a night warm and moist
Ragged, tragic deities
linger in mute agony
abandoned by fashion and conquest
Time, the smuggler of fate,
as each new generation brings
their own new gods,
new prayers leaving
the former lords of the universe
to wander begging for scraps
of worship, the scant attention
of simple people, fishermen
and farmers who leave
small offerings out of habit mostly
Mnenos – the god of tape
Ramos – the god of chewing gum
Fratos – the god of pie

In Love with a Selkie

Posted in Poetry on September 10, 2010 by elainewatt

I grew shrill in wanting her, in calling to her from the shore,
in promising her anything, manic with regret.
She cared not, out in the estuary, floating on her back,
eating small bony fish and shrugging off my love.

Even when I overlooked the stench of rotten fish on her breath,
she scoffed at me.  When I was at my worst, when I gave her roses,
how her eyes smiled, as she edged back towards the surf,
trailing the flowers from her fingers.

Then months of nothing.  The redwoods dripped with rain.
The stray grey cat stayed a while, then left.
Back to waiting by the shore, seeing the empty rockery,
even the occasional seal, but where was she?

The woman I never fully believed in.
The Irish myth brought alive in Northern California.
She who broke my shifting expectations,
who scurried back to the water’s edge at the first sign of a fight.

When she came home pregnant, she took my hand,
placed it on her belly.  I pulled my hand away.
We sat on the sofa, as she put her pelt away in its box.
I longed to put a knife through it, to keep her here with me.

“This time I’m visiting until the baby is born.”  “Visiting?”
Her skin was still damp, with its boathouse algae smell.
I could hear the ocean in her voice.  The selkie in her was still awake.
“We’ll call her Riannon,” she said.  I simply held her hand.

the pelt

Posted in Poetry on September 10, 2010 by elainewatt

her pelt came wrapped in a package
like a mystery she could solve
during her empty nights

her living had reached a torment,
within closed doors,
behind suspicious looks

all her friends remembered
her creeping towards the water,
slipping away

land, she said, her shoulder to the sea
held layers of crying people
like torn oysters

she was longing to say, the seal is me
it’s a house, that pelt,
a liveable set of shoulders

when they kicked down the door
to the boathouse,
her jacket hung inside there in the night

already she was diving under the waves
swimming full tilt
in the cold glinting water

No Longer Drowning

Posted in Poetry on September 10, 2010 by elainewatt

In her dream, she swims without breathing,
gliding through the tranquil moonlit water,
without ever rising to the surface for air.
In her dream, the water is warm and soft,
easy to move through, almost airy.
She feels weightless, an astronaut in space.
Flipping and twisting, her stomach tight, her thighs taut,
she feels like a gymnast dismounting from the parallel bars.
Flowing through the water, swirling like an eddy,
in her dream, she grows gills and a tail,
silver, with a shimmer of green and blue.
The slightest flick of her tail jets her though the pool,
which expands into a pond, then a lake and an ocean.
In her dream, this peaceful swimming feels like home.
She decides to stay and never wake.

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