Category Archives: Love poem

Dappled

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Dappled

Shadows of leaves stipple the ground
in swirling patterns, all around,
like footsteps left by tiny feet
dancing to the wind’s wild beat.
They lessen as the sun goes down
and the forest floor turns brown.

The sunlight that all day has made
each leaf stand out as dappled shade
sinks into some other sky,
but soon enough, the moon comes by
with shadows of its own to cast.
With wind died down, their patterns last,
sure and steady, through the night,
each ringed by the moon’s soft light.

Staunch resident of the heavens, the moon—
your constancy our guide and boon—
the pathway that your light lays down
brings my lover from the town
to stand beneath my bedroom pane,
handsome, gentle and urbane,
to nightly plead my hand and troth.
Soft call of bird and wing of moth
likewise beat against the glass,
supporting what will come to pass.

Our passion, soon to come to light,
was birthed in shadows of the night
whereas the light that without fail
will fall upon my wedding veil
will be the dappled light of sun,
revealing what the moon has won.

 

The Ragtag prompt is Dappled.
Fandango‘s prompt is Lessen.
Daily Addiction‘s prompt is Resident.

 

Eating Crow

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Eating Crow

There are a plethora of reasons why you didn’t win my heart.
It had been captured by another, who had it from the start.
But now I am reduced to this—knocking at your door.
I’m seeking some attention. Have you any more?

Love at first sight is a bomb. A victim of its blasting,
where once I was engorged with love, lately I’ve been fasting.
That love affair is over, and so I’m once more casting
to try to find a romance that I hope will be more lasting.

Your timing was just off before, but if you’d try again,
I’m reconsidering my Rolodex of rejected men.
I’m casting off my present, reconsidering where I’ve been
and right here on your card, I see I rated you a ten.

So if you’d like to give romance another little spin,
if you are still interested, if you have a yen
to set your sights on someplace where you’ve already been,
call 726-9483 and tell me where and when!!!

 

 

https://fivedotoh.com/2018/06/28/fowc-with-fandango-captured/
https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2018/06/28/rdp-28-reduce/
https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2018/06/28/plethora/

Not Impossible: NaPoWriMo 2018, Day 22

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Not Impossible

Somehow she feels he’s out there,
moving through a world
she’ll probably never brush against.
She feels his breath.
She tastes his shadow.
His molecules
invade her dreams. 
It is possible that the stars
might rearrange themselves
in the sky.
And it is possible that one of them 
will stray into the other’s world.
Pigs will fly. 
The clock will strike thirteen,
and oh, see the brilliance of the sun as it rises in the west?

The NaPoWriMo prompt: take one of the following statements of something impossible, and then write a poem in which the impossible thing happens: The sun can’t rise in the west. A circle can’t have corners. Pigs can’t fly. The clock can’t strike thirteen. The stars cannot rearrange themselves in the sky. A mouse can’t eat an elephant.

Footnote to the Revolution

Footnote to the Revolution

The red clay from the cane field in your hair,
leaves pressed into my neck from lying in the tall stalks,
we heard in the trees
the movements of the shepherd
who had watched.
Later, at the Filowaha baths,
we washed ourselves from each other
and slept in a room
rattled
by the eucalyptus.
I would have wanted you more in that room
if I’d known about the bullet
already starting its trajectory through the minds
of men spending youth fresher than ours
in revolution.
I remember watching your shave
in the lobby barber shop,
your face mummied by the steaming towels.
I tasted bay rum afterwards
as we shared cappuccino.
Parked at the roadside near enough to hear our parting,
I imagine they drank katikala,
its bite sealing brotherhood
your blood would buy in the street
outside the Filowaha baths.

 

 

 

 

In 1973-74, I journeyed to and lived in Ethiopia. It was not my original intention to do any more than visit and pass through, but fate had a different plan in mind. I was first detained by violence, then by love. The Filowaha baths in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, were probably the equivalent of the “No Tell Motels” in Mexico, but for Andy and me, they were a place to be alone, to soak in hot water together and to make love with no listening ears. I guess that is what they were to everyone who visited, but there was nothing illicit in our relationship. We were both single and in what at the beginning we thought was a committed relationship that would end in marriage. His family had accepted this. My parents, thousands of miles away, had long ago given me the message that they did not want to know anything that, as my mother had stated, “would make them feel bad.” My sister knew, but they never did.

This poem actually chronicles two different visits to the Filowaha baths–one near the beginning of our relationship and the other our last night before I departed to fly back to the United States. On this second visit, we both knew we would probably never see each other again. Once again, we had figured out that the relationship wasn’t going to work, and our own feelings were complicated by the revolution that was already raging around us. We had both just spent a month in the hospital–Andu Alem recovering from the bullet that had gone all the way through his body as he defended me from a man whose intention was to kill me. Not able to return to my house, I had stayed in the hospital with him so we could both be guarded by his father’s soldiers.

Years later, when I made my first assemblage boxes, I made this music box that told the story I’d already told in the poem years before. The song it plays is “The Way We Were.” I’m now trying to tell the story a third time in a book. Now that I know the true ending to our story, I might have changed the poem, but I leave it as I once thought it was. There are many truths in our lives, according to which vantage point we are telling them from.  This story is as true as the very different story I will eventually tell, if I have the courage to face up to it. Please enlarge the photos go see the details which should be self-explanatory. The hand I sculpted out of clay. I photographed the assemblage box on the table where I had been rereading letters I’d written home from Ethiopia as well as letters Andu Alem and other friends living in Ethiopia had written me once I returned to the states.

Shine

Shine

Your smile is luminescent. It has no warmth behind it.
But for these long years with you I’ve come to barely mind it.
All day long I bask in the sunshine of another.
How can he be so different from one who is his brother?
Like the sun and moon are you, two different sorts of light.
Both bright enough to read by —one by day and one by night.
I recall the heat and passion and humor in his eyes,
as I lie with you in moonlight, waiting for the sun to rise. 

Luminescent is the prompt word today.

The Betrayal

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The Betrayal

There is a story hidden
In the majolica mug
that sits on the
terraza table.

Pasiano the gardener
drinks 
echinacea tea
with honey

from this cup,

coughs loudly
behind the hand

that does not cradle
a telephone.

His sly smile
betrays a love story

as clearly as the small child
who sometimes
accompanies him to work.

Some senora’s, he tells me,
but the child has
his eyes and solid legs,
his shy manner,

lives with his mother
and her husband,
but sits on my steps
with a sugar cookie––

betraying
no more secrets

on purpose
than his father does.

 

This is a rewrite of a poem written 5 years ago. The prompt word today is betrayed.

Unopened: Haibun for dVerse Poets

 

Unopened

Every situation, every human relationship contains a number of possibilities. No person could guess them all. When we are too hasty in our judgements and our reactions, we cut ourselves off from all of those potential realities.

Your face a closed bud
hiding what might have flowered
had I been your sun.

 

For dVerse Poets haibun challenge.