7 years later

 

File folders clothed them,
alphabetically arranged,
in soft manila suits.

Their stories, each record
of submission, publication
duly noted in colored caps.

They wore published clips
buttoned at the back
like jewelry.

A wardrobe of time,
collected life, whispered secrets,
screamed epiphanies. Gone

in a moment of unintentional
unraveling, a thread caught
on life’s edges —

weak seams pulled apart until
the cloth gave way, the threads
broke
turning into a thousand tears.

composed January 2011

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Sunday is Sliding

 Another Sunday is sliding into its ending. It will become an event, a moment, in past tense in just a few short hours.

Hopefully, we have spent the time well – making our music with whatever unique, creative gift we possess. Writing poetry, speaking encouraging words to loved ones, knitting a scarf, painting a picture, writing a letter or journal entry, or playing a flute.

I am still a product of the time in which I was raised – Sunday remains a Holy day to me whether I attend church that week or not. It’s a time for quiet, introspection, reflection, and artistic musings. I love the deep vibration the day holds within itself.

There is a certain sadness as I watch the clock hands move and the minutes tick by… as if I am saying goodbye to a lover I completely adore. And, like the essence of that lover, I hold Sunday in my deepest self as I get ready to meet Monday in the week ahead.

Blessings,

~Marissa

 

Destiny in the Parking Lot

A young girl watches you
get out of the car at Wal-Mart
and thinks – one day
I want to be like that! The pretty car,
the nice clothes, expensive purse,
the perfect hair.

You are the vision
she holds onto, cherishes
in her broken-ness.

She will strive
to become . . . You.

You are her symbol-metaphor
for success – a chance sighting,
a living image of what it means
to have made it. . .

Out of the fear of less,
out of the poverty of nothing,
away from the cold truth of being
inconsequential.

Photo courtesy of Bigfoto.com

Hate Math I

hate math. It has no
sing-song deliberation,
no melodic double entendre,
no aim at speaking
soft or hard wisdom.
There is only truth factual,
a hard steel glinting of
the one true thing represented.
It comes in quick, cold
bursts of delineated vision.
This war has been going
on forever between the
two sides: words v/s
numbers.

December 24, 2000

These desolate days
of wasted space when
time becomes
the movement of water —

droplets raining
from unfrozen snow
lounging on the roof.

Tree branches leap
from frigid cover —
undulating from confines
to seek the sharp winter

sun. Beacon of time
that shines crystal clear
on this day as meaningless
as the thousand days before.


Originally appeared in CCEQ, Winter 2001 issue.

A Few Favorite Poetry Quotes

Drawing of American poet Emily Dickinson (10 D...

Image via Wikipedia

For today’s Post-a-Day2011 entry…a few favorite quotes about poetry:

 “A man should hear a little music, read a little poetry, and see a fine picture every day of his life, in order that worldly cares may not obliterate the sense of the beautiful which God has implanted in the human soul.
 Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Poetry is finer and more philosophical than history; for poetry expresses the universal, and history only the particular.
 Aristotle
Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen
 Leonardo da Vinci

Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion; it is not the expression of personality but an escape from personality. But, of course, only those who have personality and emotion know what it means to want to escape from these
 Emily Dickinson

Impossibility

When you have said
all the words I need to hear
and told me everything
in warm whispers, except
“I love you.” It won’t be enough.

When you have given me
flowers, apologies, soft
sentiments and fresh hope
in softest whispers, but
haven’t said “I love you.”
It won’t be enough.

When you have told me the
truth about who you were
becoming who you are, and
have lulled my heart with
dream-songs. It should be,
but it won’t be – enough.

When you can tell me
in quiet-tones, face-to-face,
eyes-to-eyes that you love
me, I will know that you
see me clearly for the first
time. But, it won’t be enough.

When you can love me
across the miles of time
without hiding in the silence;
when the pain apart defines you
through the essence of my absence,
and your soul recognizes the loss —
then, and only then, will it be enough.

 

Alabaster Altar

I cried hot deep
bitter tears – a sacrifice
upon your alter,
ravaged broken body,
cold marble against
warm skin – as I lay
weeping.

Degradation and
humiliation built
these walls
that hold me, but
I remember the
story of the Phoenix
and suddenly find
myself turned to ash.

Doves lift in flight
from silver tree limbs
where gods and demons
frolic, awaiting the
trial in court, where
an alabaster altar
still gleams – ready
for the next sacrifice
of bloody atonement.

Scenes in Sepia

All we ever had was
time. Stolen from clocks
ticking our normal lives
away. A flash of minutes,
images on a transient stage.

Theater performance.
Limited screenings – a few
savored scenes in sepia,
playing against
an orchestrated hum.
Symphonic melody rising
until the heavy red velvet
curtain fell, the lights
went up, brightly glaring —

and in that hot white light
of mourning – the hum hushed,
as the symphony quietly ended
and all we ever had was
time stolen from clocks ticking
our normal lives away.

Pages of Memory

 

(On my last visit with my grandmother before her death)

Her age-dimmed cloudy eyes linger,
watch me being my mother on the pages of memory.
She tells me how much she loves me and
asks about the baby, turns to see.

Trembling-aged hand that held me and
spanked me and cuddled me as a child
shakes as it reaches out, then
tenderly touches a baby’s silken head.

She grows impatient, wants me to listen
to the important things she’s telling me
about how to raise this child — ooh, so sweet,
precious little Colleen. I, adult Colleen, stand

watching and listening as she talks
remembering me into reliving our lives
over again from her memory of 17 years ago.
I promise to do everything she says.

I tell her how much I love her and become
my mother for her today – again and
become my infant self again – one last time –
watching her through both sets of eyes.

Until, my daughter takes my finger
with her tiny hand and I look down to see
her child-dimmed cloudy eyes watching me
being her mother on the pages of memory.