Tag Archives: writing

strings

Winter’s melting into the apartment

In the misty light, my insides warm and brassy
She and I lay in a heartbeat’s hibernation

She exists in telegraph bursts,
The moments between a switched flip and a bulb exploding to life.
From time before time, the question and the echo,
Ribbons and a kindling spark, heat and smoke and everything

The very zipper-teeth of her tumble over everywhen,
A hundred thousand backbone dice cast into the pit
Some lost to history, more stuck between the pages, others now

I’m rattling in the cup of the future, waiting to roll
I’m learning to be less present

I dreamed my mother’s eyes were taffy-stretched
Woven in forever knots through the skeleton beams of our unfinished house
I’m tangling more and more

The frayed ends of me wander, winding, riverlike
Crossing, curling, turning ever away toward her
Vibrating to her pulse–the waves and the warped

Winter is lifting

My breath rolls in like a stranger, and the heart wakes

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Blind shoots and wooden bones

Blind shoots and wooden bones
through the slow, sandy strata of time
wove through hidden mineral years and split trunks
searching arms to skeletons.

Twig and claw from a distance
the dime portrait of a great neuron
frozen forks of lightning in the blue clouds
soft cotton colors in the early evening.

Gentle and warm behind the bisection, no aid in illumination
the light breathed slow and bright around them.

A tin-can grey train
intermittently
battled with inertia like a great bear, grumpy and afraid
from its long hibernation
rolling, limb by limb, back into the waking world.

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From a bridge

Iron flake and orange
Strength and sunset
Earth in an Easter dress
Tapped at with tree-fingers
Peach-blanched with winter
Roll over my shoulderback
Five or fifty dozen times a day
Face-down to my deep dark bloodlines
Molded to their hills and tracks
Warned away from touch
Huddled here under old fish bones
Invisible to the sky, and in it
Staring at the earth, and through it
Rusty old body under a big new sound
Here with you ’til you forget
My joy to sleep and see so much
And never waking, never say a thing

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Shakin’

Shake me ’til I freeze my bones
I am warm here, shakin’ on my own
Warmly I watch th’ ripples pass
The lull of the water is a magnifyin’ glass

Out of that stillness I’m a dying leaf
There’s no more life in a tree
Than what’s underneath

Here I’m shakin’, it’s divine
Won’t you come to my basement for a bottle o’ wine
Down in th’ dark we’re cozy and warm
Looking over the rooftops for a rollin’ grumblestorm

One of us has got to fly out there
Shake off those wings so I can watch you
Shake in the air

Back on the ground I will fly soft n’ low
Growin’ my patience; growing cold
Put your foot in my hand and we’ll look out o’er the lake
Stretch out your fingers and feel th’ muscles ache

Listen to the lapping it’s got to make your heart break
When all I can do is stand on a stump and shake

The roots share a secret with the damn ol’ docks
See ’em if you can see ’em from the back of a rock
Down in th’ dirt they were connected by time
Thinkin’ of leaves that they lost, climbin’ into the sky

I’ll come and find you and we can keep all our leaves
Between you and me we’ve got two up on the trees

Shake me in your arms and tell me there’s no mistake
Out in the storm or on th’ frozen lake
Here in th’ hold I can make my escape
Outta my bones and into yours I shake

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Stomping and Yelling

The simulacrum heart
at estimated life-time
Beats to bits and digits
of a pulsing software suite

Soon we will all be in the ice
Waiting to forget
that we-
were-
                 HERE
Deaf and sober
Twisting idiots
Stomping and Yelling,

We closed our jealous hearts
Tight on crunching glass
We   spit   out   the   shards   all the way home

I sucked ice with my lungs
I tip-toed over the cold white way
tip-toed and whispered
smaller and smaller

Warm arms revived us
And our heart began to beat at the breath of life

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BANG-on mind of a drowsy brain in a rust-lit hole of a saloon
Every face here is pretty enough for the D.M.V.

Stack a plastic up, knock a whisky down,
Wonder why your hair’s grown long
What’s if feel like, all clammy-neck on the pillow?

The original heroes exist outside our time and inside our walls
“They” are dead, but “they” named it after “their”–
The lie we all pass on into stories and pictures.

None of us go to heaven,
But there is an afterlife if you keep your mouth shut
And sell beer to strangers
Looks like I’m immortal
After all

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Observation

“No,” he thinks.

“Yes,” he says.

He keeps a nervous eye toward the paneled glass door.  An unkind face could lock eyes with him through the vestibule at any second.  A sense of shame sticks somewhere between his Adam’s apple and his sternum.  It hovers in the hollow of his chest like a cold sludge.  But the man behind the bar has been moving all this time, and he slides a cardboard circle over like a paycheck, and he crowns it with a glass of something cool and dark.

Our man pulls the glass to his lips.  He takes the liquid just like a shot in the vein, mainlining the comfort of ale to the heart of his shame.  The sludge softens, and the shy coat of his guts takes it on for armor.  It won’t dissolve him from the oppressive crowd, but it might submerge him to a matchable depth.

A dead-eyed man rolls unhurried through the vestibule’s airlock, back from a mid-lager smoke.  His aura is ash and hollow plastic lighters.  His heavy eyelids will only fall with age.  His shirt is clean.

The man’s cough is deposits of brown stained phlegm.   They stick and quiver against choking lung sacs, reverberating and rattling up through a tortured esophagus and into the cracked desert of his closed fist.  He is not asking any questions or making friendly sallies.  Inside, he is a tin-metal wind-up toy, jerking and starting in a locked pattern of gears, a simple and useless machine with a painted metal smell. The smoke and eyes and slime and metal and well-bottom isolation of a man in his self-imposed and inescapable hell.

The smoke works its way through his pipes and valves.  He  takes a moment to close his eyes.  In the glow of alcohol, light like the fire of smokestacks rolls from his arms and shoulders.

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Jerry’s story

Jerry moves like a boulder in the wind.

Humped over in a brown leather shell like a bomber,
he takes the gusts to his left cheek.

His whole
big
body
bowls around something protected
(in the shelter of his lap)
while his eyes fire at squirrely random for thieves and p r e d a t o r s!

Jerry’s jaw is a shelf of consternation JUTTING from a punched flour face.

His eyes fix on a limping man he knows.
They share a wave. Stiff and incomplete. Starting halfway. Cut off at the high note. Truncated gesture of shy, ungestated acquaintance.

Jerry is: rounded back of the great ape. Shoulders, pinched in by weary chub, sloping not ungracefully up a tire tread neck to downy pocket-lint cue ball head.

He has the sculpted-bust profile of a rubber nipple.

All around Jerry, empty cafe chairs face together toward a lonely direction. Sideways, they take the gusts to their left cheek. It is an empty audience where only Jerry sits, uninterested watcher of a wintering tree.

The tree has selected an elegant sylvan gold. Gold Leaf!
None of the harsh but brilliant flames of the furious oaks by the lake.
It will drop its clothing
willingly, repeatedly, deliberately, with the timing of a striptease, letting
each
leaf
dance,
a chorus becoming a troupe becoming isolated pairs and clusters of clinging lovers in the final gentle orgy of a life-year, until slip-slip
and the bold tree, demure and humbled tree, waits in a bright spot for Jerry to dumbly take it in

Jerry palms his thighs, hefts the entire human machine of himself to a working compromise of height.

Rolling step-by-step away from his front row seat, he takes to the corner of eroded sidewalk. A lurch propels him ponderously across the earth-curve of the street.

There on a distant shore Jerry stands swaying through currents of people coming
standing
stopping
crossing
standing in the middle of the crowds and to the side of parents with small hands folded into theirs,
hurried brown coats with important papers tucked underneath arms and into leather cases,
scarves and hats and sweaters of knitted sheep hair,
choruses and troupes and tiny orgies of a life-year burning their way to other corners.

Jerry stands like a boulder in the wind.

He turns: takes the gusts to his right cheek.

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low thoughts

A staggering wind like drunkard heaving presses unwelcome against my mass.

What red infant’s fist unfurls the buds of leaves in the spring, and what bony talon rakes them into a rattling, dry death when the warm breath of fall whistles away into steel winter?

I remember pushing through walls of bodies in crowded streets and at events and during instances of urgent passing.

I am not entirely aware of myself. There are things I know: dimensions and lengths in units that make some rough sense of how I stick out into space. I have an idea of my appearance, and have studied my reflection vainly or with dissatisfaction from day to day.

All of this fails to come entirely to use when I attempt to steer myself sideways and slide, coated and careful and catlike, past an oncomer rushing opposite my direction. I mean no molestation, but there is an error in my awareness and the bulk of my great ship careens, victim to some careless undercurrent. Some belly, limb or ass failed to report its sum to the navigator and now we smush, crash, or sliiiide across the hull of our adversary.

“M’sorry” as I pick up speed, beating a hasty retreat, a practiced and well-worn tactic in escaping a distressing encounter.

I am in years just beyond the blind corner of thirty.

While I do not expect that I will ever die, I admit that an eventual end hangs around the front of my brain more often these days that when I was stumbling break-neck through those foetal days of teen-age and twenties.

Leaves fall with the imperceptible shattering of limbs. Did they know when they were green, or when they fought the sun for golden brilliance? What exhale of a sleepy god tells the leaves that their time has come?

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Descriptive exercise

Padding across the wood plastic floor of their high, safe rooms, he paused. His eyes raised from the dusty sill, peering through the weatherproofed panes and fine metal screen that held the room against the icier drafts of winter.

Through the diced and blurred reality of the mesh screen, the rooftop world was a blur of tiny cells. The cells were blocked in places by a thumbprint smudge, a loose hair, or the windblown fuzz of seeding plants. In the fruitless suspension of the window screen they waited out their half-life of promise, potential randomly entrusted to each seed and just as randomly wasted.

The dimming sky slipped from ember-glow of sunset to the dull bronze of oncoming night. Perched atop skinny iron poles, the big orb bulbs of the city street lights mingled with burning firefly-orange strings from shopfront awnings.

Two working men stamped across the broken paving of an alley in the deepening dark. They stretched a long banner of fabric across the width of the alley and vigorously shook it clean, giving the impression of old woodcutters biting at an unseen tree with a skinny, silvery saw. Behind a nearby church, a piercing white emergency light flared to life like an angry star.

High above, in the safety and warmth of the apartment, the angry white light stared into his retina on long sleepless nights: “This time is not for you”.

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Marack Friesach

Ihr Premium-Jungwagen Partner in Österreich.

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