the subconscious exhales
electric inner worlds
surreal and remote
release their tenuous grip
chambers of dark
protest their demise
cryptic revelations cry
gnarled fingers grasp at the night
morning pierces reluctant eyes
cautiously through translucent doors
into an expectant dawn...
Birthday wishes to myself
Approaching the age of 37
A time to reminisce
A time to reach for Heaven
Ah! I love this time of year,
Autumn brings the leaves down
Halloween brings the orange
Pumpkin with a twisted frown.
Halloween keeps my Octobers
Busy with fright and fear,
Which means November 12
My birthday, is quite near.
I celebrated this year with my family
In October, for my parents went
To Florida, lucky them,
It's always time well-spent.
On my time with them,
I went to the art supply store.
And also a pet shop,
Got some catfish and more.
But now the wind blows the leaves afar,
And the wind warns of winter days.
Cold is no friend to me,
When old man winter stays.
Thanksgiving looks promising,
I'll spend it with Carol Till.
The night before I'll go out to eat,
My sister will take the bill.
But could I be lonely?
It couldn't possibly be true
I've got more friends than ever
Plenty of fun things to do
But when I reflect on my life
Many birthdays before
Everything led up till now
So what am I living for?
If there's not a God in Heaven
There's no meaning to this play.
I'm an actor with no lines
A kid who forgot to pray.
I want birthdays in eternity
Where the frost is never bitter
In a spiritual house
Without this emotional litter.
So a birthday toast
To the one and only holy ghost
He's the one who matters most.
He can be the sacred host.
And to those I knew in the past
I wish them home to the Lord's house someday
I wish to go there too,
It's not always easy to obey.
But I know salvation is a gift,
That everyone should receive.
Accept his free gift,
Don't let the serpent deceive.
So this fall, my spirits won't sink
There's a lot to be grateful for.
Here today, gone tomorrow,
I can't really ask for more!
There is an electric valley between both hemispheres
And a miniature madman with a neon palette works there in its shadow
He's an artist of the absurd and paints with bold, bright brush strokes
Lightning fast from the past
Scratching the brain with velvet diamond dust
He makes the ground leap like frogs
Turns thick marble pages over in an old book
Paints portraits of the ones we love then makes us swim in sticky sheets
Cuts scars into our imaginary skin that burst with cotton candy
Rolls pink flesh away from cold, clear skeletons
Turns falling leaves into black bat wings
That fly through the three fire rings of a Holy Hell Circus
Slaughtering white-faced phantom clown creeps wearing wiry, blazing hair
Throwing their twitching limbs into a giant screaming box trap
Then hiding in a hollow cloud where the mind resides
Beautiful flowers used to grow in Iraq:
full of promise and hope.
Then one day,
a phosphorus downpour
killed them all.
Now, only weeds grow in their places.
Where do you think flowers go when they die?
Allah waters these flowers daily
with his tears--
tears of joy,
for these flowers are laughing and playing once again...
like children are supposed to.
I dream of the Virgin Mary, that I believe
in a valley of twilight, on Christmas Eve
Over the hill, I see, rise a pair of hands
In their center, the face of Mary, over the lands
Moving slowly toward me, in her graceful style
All around her, was a brilliant light of her smile
She stopped to speak to me, ("Pray for this rhyme,
That there may be peace at this Christmas time,
To all your families that are near and far,
Tho they may be parted, I bring the Lord's Star.")
At this she began to disappear out of sight
I heard her say, Mary's Christmas into the night
Overnight the rain turned white
Everywhere the crystal sounds
In the movements of grey light
Swirling blowing quietly found
Falling drifting in our sight
Through the early morning rays
Virgin cover snowball fights
Tasting what the clouds all say
On the tongue tip that excites
Remaining through the scatterings
Of midnight's speculation's height
Waking up the pristine memories
On all the children's faces bright
With their loud triumphant cry
All is well and good and right
As long as snowflakes fill the sky
how cruel a punishment
being pushed out to be decapitated
at the Meridian Gate
the poor old official must stumble through
one long corridor after another long corridor
one huge mansion after another huge mansion
one tall threshold after another tall threshold
after a treacherous road to power
an endless road to the dead end
on the uneven brick floors
one can still see his indistinct footprints
markings of calumnies and heavy chains
The hibiscus flowers
of dark yellow shade
are awaiting in the flower basket
to decorate the gods
in the temple,
they would be strung as garlands.
God Sri Rama
will not set out
to hold court
and give 'Darshan' to devotees
until he is decorated
with flower garlands.
sits near her husband Sri Rama
and is waiting impatiently
to go along with him.
Brother Lakshmana Swamy
is pacing up and down
not understanding this undue delay.
fully blossomed like the full moon,
the thin red bordered
tender mango leaves,
that bathed in white fog,
that are ready to drop
with just a shake of the plant,
are watching and eagerly awaiting and
wondering when they would
go for the worship.
She won't set out anywhere
until after she made her
offering of worship
to her personal god
who dwells in her own home.
She knows that
She is bringing
the garlands she has made
with hand-picked flowers
that feast the eyes
in heavily-loaded baskets,
with trembling arms,
walking ever slowly,
to the temple.
If those gods in wait
at this supreme devotee
with her skeletal body
bending with ripe old age
muttering God's name in herself
mildly, in low voice,
their anger, irritation and anxiety
would become vaporized
in one moment
like sprinkled perfume water,
once they see her.
with His devotees?
The gods in town
may be great for everyone.
But for her
any god is only secondary
to her own personal God,
In red dress
the skater swirls across the ice,
a spreading wildfire. Drums beat
with a strange, strong rhythm.
In the night
the dark-skinned beauty seduces us
body curling around each musical note.
Spiraling, leaping, whirling
she fills the arena with a force
The ice burns as she lands each jump,
pounces into the next one. We cannot
predict where she will move
as lithe arms singe the air
and feet catapult her into a back flip.
She returns to the ice with
a crackling triumph
scorching our hair to the roots.
What is never, if not for always – not
I wake up to never every day
the never of old loves no longer
the never of old friends lost in the mists
of forgotten nations
Friends at the foot of the Andes
and on placid beaches of Margarita Island
pearl of the Caribbean
Remembering the cordillera
the hairpin roads of ever-burning hills
in the heat of summer forever
while in the piranha jungle
the Orinoco flowed on banks of slag
nudging titillating flirting
with the fabled El Dorado
I climbed the mango tree
admired the hibiscus and
avoided the pretty and
deadly coral snake
And now, after never,
am still looking for my own
We met in high school
You were wrapped in a ratty army jacket
Blue eyes twinkling with mischief
No matter how dark things looked
You could always make me laugh
Looking nothing close to Mr. Right
Maybe you tried harder
Everyday was exciting
I never knew what to expect
Your mind was fascinating
Your emotions ran deep
Your creativity was like a kaleidoscope
Colorful and unpredictable
You made me feel safe & nestled in our love
Your soul struck a chord in mine
Throughout our marriage
We played some beautiful music
But it wasn't until you passed away
That I realized you had been the best present
I had ever received in my entire life
Have you ever heard snow?
Not the howling wind of a blizzard,
not the crackling of snow underfoot,
but the actual falling of snow?
We heard it one night in Wisconsin
while walking up a hill
toward our cabin in the woods,
a soft whisper between footsteps.
We stopped, switched off our flashlights,
and just listened.
All around us in the darkness
we heard the gentle fall
of snow on snow.
No wind, no sound
but the snow.
Have you ever heard Christmas?
Not the traffic noises in the city,
not the bells and hymns and carols,
beautiful as they are,
not even the laughter of your children
as they open their presents--
but Christmas itself?
Have you been by yourself
and just sat and listened to the silence within,
patiently, without letting the mind
race to the next Christmas chore?
Perhaps if you have,
you felt the pulse of all humanity
beating in your own heart.
Perhaps you noticed
an outflowing of love
for all your brothers and sisters
on the earth,
a soft sense of Oneness
with all that lives.
In the silence of a snowy night,
listen intently, holding your breath,
and you may hear snow on snow.
undisturbed by thought,
listen to the silence in your heart,
and you may hear Christmas.
Copyright Notice: Copyrights for all of the above poems remain with the individual authors. No work here is to be reused without permission from its author. To request permission, contact a member of the ISPS Web Committee.