Friday, May 27, 2011

house on greenwood

A neighbor walks her spaniels at dawn
in the green park and orange light. A bullfrog
croaks alarm or desire near the pond where ducks glide.

On my walk to work, I pass a house
left empty by its black owners.
The overgrown lawn and old quarry stone steps
bid one long, lost welcome to friends.
They will not come again to drink beer,
grill brats, and sit in the shade of elms.
The for sale sign is a sign-post for lost worlds.

I've never set firmly my feet in this world,
or found the stillness of heart to plant
body and soul in earth. Like the lone firefly
announcing summer days ahead of its tribe,
I only brighten a night of loss.

Called to account,
perhaps bared teeth and claw
will slink from angled corners of my self,
those oblique shadows we cast unseen,
the blindness to what our acts produce,
the refusal to see who or what I was and became.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

humid morning haze

Crickets scrape humid songs
in between the railroad tracks,
the hazy morning waking in
the faces of morning commuters.

On the train, I read emergency
instructions and decipher the map
of exits: windows, doors, aisles.
The days grow shorter, they say,
with the years, so I must know
my options when the time comes.

I still see attics bathed in dust and light,
the pictures and letters once read,
hear absent breaths forsaking words
and shadows conversing with a broom
that sweeps the ceiling clean
of derelict webs strung between
the rafters as the sun ripens on the sill.

I hear more clearly now the rhythms of silence,
the spaces between acts that sign
more than what I touch or taste or see.
I wanted to live in unclaimed
territory, remaking history
so that finding me would prove
a chance event, work
in progress without end, accident
on the verge of transforming
the moment in undeserved miracle.
little did I know that the exit is the way in.

In the dream, I'm on a road
that leads to purgatory or hell.
I meet humbly clothed fishers
just in from the sea. A woman
opens my dog's jaws like a fish
and pulls out a pestilent breath.
They point to the heavy load that I must haul
on my back to reach my destination.
I hurry after my friend who's gone ahead.

copyright 2011 Charles David Miller

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Sunday, May 15, 2011