Friday, June 11, 2010

Criss Cross

The children criss cross paths
around their grandmother in
the square on the 4th of July.

Sadie pretending to be hiding
behind her backside as if it
were as wide as a poplar or
an elm tree.

Hers is a buttocks that is
prolapsed, each hemisphere
is separated into two lobes
like lungs, which were made
even more discernable by the
panty lines visible through
her khaki shorts.

She squatted like a wrestler,
or an ancient japanese fish
monger, to lift the oblivious
toddler from the side walk.

The distended veins bulged
in her calves, flanked by
legions of thin blue ones,
that criss-crossed the
topography of her legs, like
veins of mold in bleu cheese,
or canals on the surface of
the moon.

But her veins were soft,
though the calves were still
hard and well defined.

Soft like her waist was,
coursing with oxygen rich
blood to a cavernous four-
chambered heart that would
still flutter like a surprised
canary when her youngest
would grab her around her waist,
and look up like she does,
when she says,

"I love you grandma"

And her heart would melt a little,
as her bottom clenched itself
back to equilibrium, and
she would bend over to defy gravity
one more time that day
and squeeze that child
as hard as she would allow,

draping those wizard sleeves
for arms across her bony
exposed back,
criss-crossing them,
and resting her soft manicured
hands against her shoulder blades,
and whisper just above her

"Grandma loves you too precious."

And kiss the top of her head,
and pour a little more of
her heart into the child,
then let go,
and allow the earth to resume
it's tug of war yet again,
as they walked together
out of the heat,
to eat strawberry ice cream.

Cosmonaut Darling

She enters the room
as if she were only gone
for a second, and time
starts again.

She is small,
She is lithe.

She stops time among us to
stretch it out a little more
for herself.
So she can be oriented,
in time and space.
So she can be sure
no one is watching,
and breath and rest,
and stoke the fire unbothered,
at rest.

She doesn't tell us where she's from.

You have to just sort of...
put it together yourself.

An unexplained spare make-up kit,
a little drum, out of tune.
A broken gameboy,
two shoes with the toes
pointing together,
as if she had just slid out of them,
leaving it like a shed skin,
to go else where,
all shiny, sheeny, and fresh.

Some would say,
she crawled out of a leathery egg
somewhere, left to fend on her own,
like an ancient prehistoric reptile
still roaming the swamp, just trying
to be sure it's safe.

And it IS safe.

She makes her living,
spinning through hoops of fire.
Plucking out the oxygen in the smoke
like little bubbles in mid air,
grabbing as many as she can,
because she doesn't need that many.

She has survived so long
because she has been equipped for it.

She has been weaving her way through
centuries for millenia,
stopping time for a while as she enters.

Perhaps she was there from the start of it.

Perhaps that glean, and that
cool, soft, Saturday smile
is the last reflection from Paradise Lost.

I traveled for half a day
to see that smile again,
to feel that sense of relief
after waiting in a cornfield
outside of a McDonald's for
only 45 more little minutes
in the middle of nowhere,
to feel that sense of relief
at seeing a maroon nameless sedan,
with another marooned nameless driver


to rescue me with an explosion of sunshine
bursting out of the front seat,
candy beads clanking, plastic cup in hand
pressed against my back.

She has weaved her way,
back into this world,
and when I see her,
I know her instantly.

Every fiber in me says love this child
though you know better, and I do at a distance,
and I let her come up close, and
I let her touch me and I know what it means,
and she knows I know and I know she knows I know
because she told me once in a somber, serene face,
"I knew we were similar the moment I met you,
but now, I know we're so similar it's scary."

It sticks with me.

Each word, each smile cuts through any and all B.S.
They cut through the flesh and its just Love that comes in.

And I'd make that trip again,
and take a witness to see this lost
ancient treasure. My own sutton hoo,
my own Coelocanth swimming through fire,
and smoke and crowds, carrying
time behind her-

Emerging into the room again
with a smile and sheen that's

that's warm-cooler than a Saturday breeze.

Another earth-bound Bodhisattva like me,

Spinning in infinity,

unquestioned, unaccountable,

A hunter-gatherer goddess,

as timeless as she is

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Love's Uncertain Care

We seldom talk now,

But when she called last week,
I listened to her crying over the phone.

She had lost her granfather the week before,
not the one I had met,
but her other one.

She appologized for crying,
I told her it was alright
in soft baritone.

She said she felt justified,
after all the times she had
listened to me.

I asked her plainly why she
wanted to end our prolonged relations.

She replied just above the trim
of a little girl's pleading whisper,
'because you didn't make me feel special'
It startled her when I rolled
my eyes at the announcement
that she was going back to Collin.
'But I've always liked you more',
she says with a smile.

Somewhere between these conversations,
these hesitant, naked, proclamations
is the truth about love and the
viscosity of it's surface.
Why we reserve it only for
perfect strangers,
and hide it away when we come
to know them, to keep it fresh
and moist so that when we
talk a year later to see if
it's still there, we can be relieved.
We will know, that which we gladly
used to share is
forever as constant
as uncertain is it's care.