There’s A Child I Know

Ready for School

There’s a child that lives just under my skin

Who refuses to come out until I’ve settled some things

Let go of others, learn to breathe.

He only comes out when threatened or pleased

And is quick to decide whom he won’t play with.

His temper is short–the length of a smile exchanged

Between two strangers who briefly meet.

Everything’s a reminder of the playtime he’ll one day enjoy

When he learns to be good.

There’s a child living between my desires and my need,

Thirsting for acceptance and comfort

–my embrace he awaits.

A Poem For You, Upon Seeing A Rainbow

Rainbow in PR
Poems flow easier when the air is stacked with lava vapor and mint

And Lucinda is singing o’ sweet despair, somewhere south-west of me.

Your essence awaits my arrival, everywhere I follow these aching feet,

Like a recurring old melody, it climbs up my torso, breaching my peace.

Feeling your breadth take residence under my fifty-something skin

I come alive, the way I’ve never lived, instantly transformed, released

Of all I fear, soothed again by energy emanating from your fingertips.

I surrender to you. I let go of the grip. I plunge, head first, into your sea.

No reassurance. No answers. No need to know our lives beyond this.

A Poem and a Selfie

WHO ARE YOU? You Asked.

I am the rays behind your clouds,
a true believer at your church,
the earliest singer celebrating
what your life would become.

I am each distinctive brushstroke
in the portrait of your hands,
as they pray to know the answer
to the questions that you face.

I am the last few pages of a book
you read alone in bed. The words
you remember the next morning,
when the blue of your eyes awake.

A childhood friend, a lost pet found
a decade later in the afternoon rain.
A forgiving thought for an old hurt,
the healed wound, this is who I am.

Your Sunday paper. The roll of waves
laying their passion at Jersey’s edge.
The morning cravings of coffee.
Long afternoon walks by yourself.

I’m laughter now. Tears then.
We met before and meet today.
Apart we walked these roads—
together we’ll walk them again.

I am the cabin that sits by your lake,
the light when the dawn breaks.
The voice you trust, the hand you held.
Yesterday. Tomorrow. And today.

I am your eternal companion.
An optimist blessing your fate.
Your improvised poet. Your expert lover.
Your tireless supporter. Mate of your soul.

A Poem (And A Photograph)

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Waiting

New York, like my heart, is desolate since you left
and the presence of yesterday remains encrusted
to the lining of my lungs.

You’re not here and I can’t think of much else
or find solace in the corners bent on hiding
the face of hope from my face.

I cant stand being inside this skin
you’ve not caressed in an eternity of loss.
I’ve tried escaping through the surface cracks.

Waiting is a foreign game I never learned to play
and yet, waiting seems to be the only way to get
to where love patiently awaits.

A Poem (And A Drawing)

My Idol

I’ve searched for an idol colorful and fat

to sit with me at my table and smile

a reassuring smile at my plight.

This idol of mine should know

what my needs are, without the need

of any confessional crap — anticipate them even —

in keeping me satisfied.

The empty feelings I’ve had by my side

will magically disappear,

my idol must make sure of that.

He’s to provide comfort, look out for my interests,

and correct all shortcomings

that might get in the way

of a full enjoyment of life.

My savior. My hope. My pal.

A Tribute To Leonard Cohen (In The Hopes Of Impressing A Leonard Cohen Fan)

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When I was a younger, less wise, man, I dated a woman who was an ardent admirer of Leonard Cohen and his music. I had never heard of Mr. Cohen back then, but I had heard — and treasured — Jeff Buckley‘s version of Mr. Cohen’s Alleluia. For years, I thought the song had been written by Jeff. Later on, I saw a video of Mr. Cohen performing Alleluia and I remember thinking the man had done a very poor job of covering Mr. Buckley’s classic.

This has all been corrected. I have since given Mr. Cohen his due. I have since given Mr. Cohen’s music as a gift. I’ve recognized his genius and I’m blown away by his prolific talent.

I don’t know what became of the woman I once loved. She might still be a fan of Mr. Cohen and his music. She probably is, wherever she’s listening to love songs these days. I think that once you fall in love with this man’s music, you’re probably a life-long devotee. So I dusted off this old poem I had written, I set it to music and I recorded it.

It’s here:

After I listened to the finished product, I thought that if she ever heard it, she might think that I sounded like a very poor imitation of Mr. Cohen — just like I thought Mr. Cohen compared to Jeff Buckley.

But at least she’d know that I was still thinking of her. Still trying to impress her.

A Poem (And A Drawing)

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Grace


I entered the cathedral
of the sungod, slash sungodess
—their mythological names
escape me now— barefoot and
weary, under branched arches
of ash, maple and oak.
On a bell tower of tall clouds,
birds of color clang in unison,
the scattered flock called
to worship in the lit afternoon.

We gather, silently,
under the celestial dome
emptied of all need for repentance
because we did not sin,
in confidence, I’ve been told.
A priestess of sincere smiles,
like ripe fruits, blesses herself
and tells us to bless each other,
before yielding the altar
to a choir of youth.
A spiritual joins our voices
in joyous exuberance, clapping
to unrehearsed notes, clapping
bodies swaying in the wind,
tasting the certainty of heaven
in scales flavored with honey and milk.

The celebration winds down,
the service will soon fade
–as dew by early morning rays.
I sit in quiet reverence, breathing
ecstasy, eating truth. On this day,
in the majestic simplicity of nature,
on fiery wings, I saw grace descend
onto the shoulders of earth.