Category Archives: love poems

NaPoWriMo 2017, Day 16: What I Do with Love Letters

 

What I Do with Love Letters
(Forbidden Love)

In them, I talk about his eyes.
What they say to me across the room.
His foot against my foot
under the table.
The rush of air as he walks by.
His body’s honest odor.
I can’t pull away,
he can’t look away.
And yet we do what is necessary.

When I write what I really want to say,
I stuff the pages in my shoes.
Limp over them.
Dance over them, too.
Let other gentle men
dance me over
songs of him.

 
I’ve folded him
a paper mouth
to house his tongue.
I want my words on his palate
where he can taste them
salty
fragrant
cheeks
gums
tongue.

I want his tongue to press
my words
against
my cheek,
tattoo them on my face
where I can see them in the mirror.

Instead, I fold them into origami castles,
set them on the sand,
hope the wind and seagulls free them
before beach squirrels
shred them
into their full cheeks
and carry them
to hidden burrows
in the hillside.

The NaPoWriMo prompt today was to write a letter in the form of a poem.  This poem is about love letters.

 

When in Love

“Love Charms” mixed media assemblage, Judy Dykstra-Brown

When in Love

Life’s puzzles all seem solved when love makes you replete.
It  fills in all your caverns, making you complete.
No matter what the the time frame: a lifetime or a minute,
love is not an abstract when you’re firmly in it.

The prompt today was abstract.

Snap

 

Snap

You flavor my memory with common tastes: Spam and corned beef hash.
You wanted to be the common man, but you were anything but.
The bold aggression and the subtle feminine sweep of what you formed—

beautiful. Your hands never clumsy as they sculpted wood and stone.
Metal bent and melted into beauty at your touch,
and colors lifted the wings you gave them.


I floated, also–– too independent to be formed by you,

but still uplifted that a man like you could love me.
It validated something in me—those hard choices I had made
because I listened to something vivid in myself I had not yet found a name for.
Dreams taught me. And synchronicity.

I had always wanted to be a wanderer­­­­—to try to quench those yearnings
that had haunted my daydreams since I was a child.
I cut the ties that bound and wandered West to find you—stable man
pinned by your wings to obligation all your life.
Instead of pinning me down, you wandered with me.
The gypsy life of making and selling art. The easy camaraderie of that circus life.
The vans and wagons circling every weekend in a different convention center parking lot.
Nights pulled into the woods or by the ocean.
Short nights in transit, parked in neighborhoods where we’d be gone by six.
The song of tires on the road, Dan Bern and Chris Smither. Books on tape.
Pulling quickly off the road to lug a dead tree or a well-formed boulder into the van
or to engineer its route up to the roof,
so we returned home as heavily laden as we had departed—
bowed under by the fresh makings of art.

The texture of our home life was silver dust and wood curls.
Its sounds were the stone saw and the drills and polisher.
The heat of the kiln hours after it had lost its art.
The fine storm spray of the sandblaster,
the whine of drills and whirling dervish of the lathe.
The smell of resin, redwood, stone dust, paint.
The sharp bite of metal. The warm bread smell of cooling fired clay.
Every bit of my life was flavored by what you loved––what I loved, too,
our interests merging so completely that for awhile
we had no separate lives, but one life welded end-to-end.

These remembraces are not organized or filed.
They flutter into my mind like hidden lists blown off tall shelves.
That life now a scrapbook of the past with certain photos plucked out
to be tucked under bedroom mirror rims or carried in wallets.

Snap. You put yourself into my mind.

Snap. Another memory follows,
and I am an old woman replaying her life.
Snap. The creak of the tortilla machine across the street in the early hours.
The loud rush of the surf, the rattling startup of a motorcycle.
The raspberry seed between my teeth,
the scent of the dog’s bath still on my hands,
sand gritting the sheets
and art projects taking over every surface.
Snap. I am me, looking for the next adventure.

 

Below photos snapped a few minutes ago. Proof of the tale.  New projects.
Click on first photo to enlarge and see all photos.

 

 

The prompt today was vivid.

Desire

Version 2

Desire

All those nights of passion, those years spent in desire,
we were tightrope walkers, balanced on a wire.
We never knew from day-to-day which of us might fall.
Never knew for certain if we’d both be there at all.

Desire in the meadows under shelter of tall grass—
in our youth we never knew that it could pass.
We had it firmly tethered. It could not slip away.
It curled in loosened coils around us as we lay.

Desire in the morning or in the afternoon,
each time we fell into it, was over all too soon.
Then life leaked in to wash the passion from our day.
We balanced, raw and vulnerable, wishing it could stay.

Desire in the darkness was easier to hold.
Something in the shadows made us wild and bold.
But when the morning beckoned, we left each other for
all the business of the day that lurked outside our door.

Heartbeats built the passion that footsteps cruelly bore
away so pulses of the night became the stuff of lore
as our desires migrated into memories
just beyond our fingertips, too distant now to seize.

Note: If sung to the tune of Suzanne Vega’s “Gypsy,,” as per okcforgottenman’s suggestion, sing the following two-line chorus after every verse: (Anyone want to think up an original tune for this?)

Oh, tomorrow, wrapped up in today.
we never know the dreams that we will throw away.

 

The prompt today was desire.

Allergic to Love

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Allergic to Love

Henceforth, I will not flirt with guys.
Don’t like the trouble that it buys.
It starts out with a single rose
and ends up with a stuffy nose,
first due to all the histamines,
and then due to his macho genes.
Sad when he’s here and when he’s gone,
and I am feeling spent and wan—
sneezing over a thorny stem,
feeling pricked by both of them!

The prompt given in my writing group today was “Eyes,” and since I’d already written a poem about eyes for the WP prompt of “Arid” earlier, I asked my neighbor for a different prompt.  He gave me the word, “henceforth.” So, here’s my poem

Cross My Heart

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Cross My Heart

I’m counting steps from one to ten,
across my heart, them back again
to see the places it has been.
First loves were merely friends and kin
before my heart first snagged on men.
Then well do I remember when
the swell of love turned into wen.

The cure of it beyond my ken,
with all my pain I filled my pen,
then released it on the page again.
Once cured, I uttered an “Amen,”
discovered the i ching and Zen.
Turned into a comedienne,
and sought to leave love’s gambling den.

In truth, though, that was there and then.
So now, as through my heart I wend,
I wish that love might never end.
I seek once more its tricky bend.
To welcome in, the heart must rend,
which causes pain, but oh my dears,
a lover’s breath will dry those tears.

 

 

 

The prompt today is “crossing.”

 

 

Racing Man

Version 6                                                                jdbphoto

Racing Man

I’ve parked you in my dreams
where you sit sputtering,
engine racing,
ready to be off
over the next hill.
As always,
reaching to release the parking brake,
adjusting the seat back,
never noticing the rear-vision mirror
is slightly off-kilter.

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