In Gratitude

Ants

 

When I am made young again

To endow the world with glow

Of golden morning sun

So a normal day will go

With all the joy of baskets of ripe oranges,

When sound will crash through moments

Like clean fresh water splashing

Over mountain rocks that clack

And tumble into chasms to a cataract,

Then shall I know time has been reborn,

Mind will yawn and shake itself awake.

Then will sharp eyes snare the small industry of ants

Who bear breadcrumbs in triumph

To succor busy fellows in necessary labor.

Each small bird will be marked in eagerness

And hopeful gaze for offering as I walk by.

The multitudes of leaves will strike silent lightnings

Of jagged blue sky as loving winds ruffle their green.

And I will know the goodness and the wealth

Of this, my Earth, who made me.

 

 

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Old Thoughts

Third Ave El

 

Old age has thrown its cloak on me

Blurring eyesight,

Slowing down my walk,

Blocking off old friends

Who have problems of their own…

Or more likely,

Simply died.

Who knows?

Contacts are cut off.

I survive,

Still alive, holding cups of hot tea

I wander in the maze of my memory

Through times and places

Now, wholly theoretical.

Tilley and his steeplechase,

His teeth like tombstones

Grin from a subway poster

At fourteenth, Union Square

To tempt me down to Coney Island.

Even at that time Luna Park

Was just a dream.

The snakey curves pull a moan

From the 3rd avenue El

As it twists over the housetops

On 23rd on its way to the Aquarium

At the Battery.

That old fort, inhabited by sharks

And seals and open pools

Of horseshoe crabs

Which sit like warted blisters

Lost in antediluvian contemplation.

That New York is now long gone,

With its Cascade laundry wagons,

Horsedrawn or electric.

These days the internet, full of the buzz

Of stranger’s offerings of sex and wealth

Spamming through electronic mail

Slithers through the tangled jungles

Of the kitchen middens

Of the chaos of the mind.

 

The Speed Of Light

seashells

 

Come with me to a star

Eighty light years away

And look back

With super eyes

At the small blue point

We call the Earth.

Squint to see the peninsula

We call Florida.

The morning sun

Has struck the sea

With lines of fire.

There on the beach

Where quiet waves

Throw long smooth curves

On the flats of sand

My mother and my father

Perch on folding stools

Before stick easels

Wetting Whatman paper

With streaks of ultramarine

And prussian blue.

Strands of seaweed

In thick tangled piles

Meander on for miles

Along the empty beach

Concealing treasures.

Curly spiral wormshells,

Pink scallops, purple mussels

Thumbnail sized,

Strange hooked eggs of sharks,

Round sea beans liked cusped doorknobs.

My brother, ten years old,

And I, twelve,

Shuffle slowly through the piles

Garnering delights.

Florida like that

Is long gone.

But the image

Of my father, my mother

My brother and I

And the glory that was Florida

Is sailing out

Into the universe

At the speed of light.

 

 

 

Creation Of The Universe

Eye

 

Sits in my skull

A curled gray beast

Molded to its cup of bone,

Alone.

 

The outside world

It cannot know.

Not light, air, bulk nor hues.

Just clues.

 

The nexus of

A finespun net

Which terminates its axon fist

In mist.

 

Its billion lines

Transmit responses

Sifting pulses; all compiled

And filed.

 

Confusion, first ubiquitous.

Unvectored bits, zero, one

‘Til the sources are assigned,

Aligned.

 

Woven nerves

Festooned with figures;

Puzzled with the patterns, matching,

Hatching.

 

Lacing through

From point to point.

Architecting, congruencing,

Sensing.

 

Congealing concepts.

Counting, seeking.

Logic engine freely dreaming,

Scheming.

 

Fitting this,

Forming that,

Smoothing, joining, multiplying.

Trying.

 

Granting trope

Its own dynamic.

Now it all agglomerates

And mates.

 

Sloughing off

All errata,

Chaos clears.

Universe

Appears.

 

 

Spring Visitors

ant

They wander up from within the bowels of my house,

These ants, in twos and threes; not savage nor menacing,

But filled with awe, I suppose. They come to browse

Among the majesties of my faucets, or perhaps, to sing,

In small subsonic melodies, the praises in short phrases,

Of the glories of my kitchen plants: the rococo twists and turns

Made by geraniums. Flower petals, short red dabs that hypnotize their gazes

While they stroll in endless wonder in and out of the forests of my ferns.

I don’t know where they come from. Probably the long black microchasms

Where the wood and concrete don=t quite meet far down below

To form the avenues and streets for their communal protoplasm.

 

In late March they come and stooge around inside until the snow

Transforms into Spring mud, then off they go to blaze their odor trails

Out through the fresh green shoots to rehabilitate their Summer place

And walk all season single file with singular monotony as if on tiny rails

Up and down the pine outside the house at steady philosophic pace.

But while they’re here inside I must accommodate myself

To Spring visitors, careful in the morning not to squash a guided tour,

And with moistened fingertip lift endangered strangers to the safety of a shelf.

Small six legged horses glad to wander randomly but quick to take the lure

Of a tiny crumb of cake, delighted with a grain of rice.

As the temporary host to a rather small contingent

I adjust to their arrival, but their departure is quite nice

 

Suspicions

 

 

cellar stairs

Have you written any poems, painted any pictures?

Walked upon the Moon and noted its odd mixtures

Of the deadly lack of air and the bleakness of terrain

That would surely scare the hell from any capable sane brain?

There are things in dark corners in my cellar late at night

Where the spiders and the mice persist that I can’t get right

Or understand. It speaks in squeaks and mutters, growls strange.

And when moonlight hits that very spot behind the kitchen range

I dare not look too close to see if things I see are there.

It’s rather large with glowing eyes and ragged twisty hair.

I get the oddest feeling it came down from the Moon.

Perhaps it ate an astronaut and found it quite delicious.

And now, beneath my cellar stairs, it sounds rather vicious.

A week ago our old cat strangely disappeared.

Perhaps it tasted astronautical. It’s something I have feared.

The government has warned us of foreigners and strangers.

Perhaps I’ll notify the CIA, maybe the Texas Rangers.

They should certainly be warned and made fully aware

Of the horrid thing that lurks and growls beneath my basement stair.

 

Toenails

Toenail picture

There’s nails upon my toes that thinks

They’s claws. Oh how they grows

Inside the midnight of my shoes.

They wants to fight some foes

To bring some glory to my toes.

They’s got these hero thoughts,

All sharp and nasty, ego crazy,

In frustration chews my socks to shreds

‘Til I cuts them back to civilized behavior.

But they rests so restless in their beds

And dreams their savage dreams.

And grows.