Monthly Archives: May 2010

Pentecost

The Spirit rests
With pyrotechnic grace
On the chaos of betrayal
Seats suddenly empty
Dreams derailed
Even death itself
Fragments gathered
Like kindling
Raised in a giant
Holy bonfire
While we retire
Exhausted
And marvel
As something
Keen and sharp-taloned
Rises exultant
From the flames.

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The final straw

To see you
Standing in the yard
Casually waving
A bottle of beer

To find you slipping
Shamefaced off the couch
When I emerge
On Sunday morning

To stand and wait
And wait some more
While you catch up
With all the neighborhood

To run the gauntlet every week
Of neighbors
Tired of all
Your endearing little ways

All these I can and do endure
And love you still

But when you
Throw up on my carpet
And then return to lick it up again
This is too much to bear
Get out of my house
Bad bad bad

Neighbors

At half-past three
I heard you gasp
The dull concussion
Of fist on flesh
The icy scream
Of rage-thrown glass
His voice
Rough and spirited
Dancing punch-drunk
Around your frantic taunts
You cried again
Appalled, I closed the window
Against the storm
Then lay awake, uneasy
At the siren in the distance
And your sudden silence

Oh no, not again

Lord Jesus Christ
Of Belchertown, Mass
Almost died today
On the godless streets of
Northampton
He was run down
On of all things
A crosswalk
By a 20-year-old girl
Whose initials were
B.C.
She was probably an
Atheist.

(True story)

‘Lord Jesus Christ’ Run Down In Crosswalk
by The Associated Press

May 7, 2010 The victim might have forgiven the woman who ran him down in a Massachusetts crosswalk, but police haven’t.
Police say a Pittsfield woman has been cited for running down a man named Lord Jesus Christ as he crossed a street in Northampton on Tuesday.
The 50-year-old man is from Belchertown. Officers checked his ID and discovered that, indeed, his legal name is Lord Jesus Christ. He was taken to the hospital for treatment of minor facial injuries.
Police say 20-year-old Brittany Cantarella was cited for failing to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk.

Boys

What is the point
In having children
If at some point
You can’t enjoy
Breaking the rules
Together?

A controlled explosion
Of excess
And dissolute behavior
Can be just the thing
To bond a father
With his boys.

Letting go

Her face like prairie earth
Deep scored and then abandoned
She wavered at the lip of undulating rug

I have a present yet to wrap she sighed
Green paper spread in invitation
Like the cloth at her once mighty table.

Moved and yet unmoved I smiled and kissed her brow
Knowing I must not carry
One more piece of that inheritance

Some few treasures of our imperfection
May be welcome to those who follow after
But mostly we must grieve and then let go.

Specific gravity

Upon these wooden shelves
Above my head
Stood more books than I could
Throw my arms around
Every volume with a story
Of my life
What I was doing when I bought it
Where I lived
What I hoped
What I still promised
For someday

Each cloth-bound personality
Invited or accused me
Daily from its dusty perch
So that I dared not raise my eyes
For fear of censure
From my past.

I had not realized
The gravity of history
Until I seized upon those solemn watchers
And like some literary hitman
Bound and gagged them
Laughing hysterically
As I pushed them from the car
In the alley behind
The Salvation Army

There is space now in this room
And the heady smell of Pledge
I can breathe and dream
Again.

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