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Posts Tagged ‘formal poetry’

I hear a nighttime sound within my room

Who’s that, hooting right at noon?

a Great Horned Owl, a Screech, a loon

Whose call disturbs this sun instead of moon?

 

What owl hoots by my window right at noon?

my senses must be dampened by my sleep

Whose call could disturb this sunny room?

a false owl, raven, such a tiny peep

 

Surely my ears deceive me, drunk from sleep

it cannot be an owl, no not at noon

a false owl,  perhaps, a finch’s tiny peep

I’m not awake, I’m weary still from sleep

 

It cannot be an owl, no not at noon

perhaps a Great Horned Owl, a Screech, a loon?

I awaken, weary from my sleep

lulled by a nighttime sound within my room

 

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These are the facts. This is what I know.

On gloomy days, we have to face our fears.

They say the rain today may turn to snow.

 

The sky is gray, a day for saying no.

A day for feeling lazy, shedding tears.

These are the facts. This is what I know.

 

Beneath the clouds, there lurks a fiendish glow.

The pounding rain assaults my quiet ears.

They say the rain today may turn to snow.

 

But Spring is on its way, it’s coming slow,

Arrives more slowly with each passing year.

These are the facts. This is what I know.

 

When rain begins to fall, I long to go.

Wrapped in a blanket, with my warm dog near,

I watch the rain slowly become the snow.

 

With my mind, I will the rain to slow.

We don’t need rain; we’re done with water here.

I’ve heard the facts. I know what I know.

I don’t want this chilly rain to turn to snow.

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I worry constantly that I’m getting nothing done.

I fold the laundry, take the dog on walks.

What I want to do is read, or have some fun.

My husband doesn’t listen when I talk.

 

I fold the laundry, take the dog on walks.

I should be writing novels, thinking thoughts.

My husband doesn’t listen when I talk,

When I complain about the shoulds and oughts.

 

I should be writing novels, thinking thoughts.

I drink coffee, daydream, talk to rocks

who listen to my complaints of shoulds and oughts.

I fret about my writing. Go on walks.

 

I drink coffee, daydream, talk to rocks,

but I just want to read, or have some fun.

I fret about my writing while I walk.

I worry constantly. I’m getting nothing done.

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Up and down my street, flouncy tulips

flaunt their colorful be-turbaned

heads, bowing and dancing in the April

 

breeze. I watch, transfixed, how every April

gray and brown succumb  to everything tulip,

magenta, peach, yellow, diaphanous petals, turbans

 

like those for which they are named. Maybe. Or “turbans”

was a mistaken translation. Either way, welcome April,

the tulips emerge, evocative, suggestive, tulips

 

Tulips, tulips. April, intoxicate me with your petals, your turbans, your fuchsia, your green.

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Delaware, I’m not going to lie: we have nothing

in common. I’m mountainous and you, you

barely keep your nose above water. Highest

point: 450 feet. That’s not even a baguette

in the road. But I like your name. “What did Della wear?”

Or, truthfully, the name of an English Baron,

De La Warr. You were the first: first to ratify

the Constitution. First to become a state,

December 7, 1787. But Delaware, we have never

intermingled. I thought I had driven through you,

but I was mistaken in that, as in so many things.

Delaware, let’s make a pact, to become better

acquaintanced. We both love potatoes.  I’m going

Right now to get some tangy Boardwalk fries.

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Year One

They cut me open, gave me you. My heart
Stopped and then started again. Here’s what
The doctors don’t say: outside you, a second heart
lives now, beating, bleeding, fragile and cut
off from you, but connected by mouth and arms.
You touched me with your hunger, your fingers
on my face as if you were blind and formed
me, wholly, from your desire. I wanted to linger
there, each moment a cove of quiet I could inhabit,
or destroy. I wanted to whisper, yes, I could give
up so much more: food, water, art. But I can’t.
I can’t. Love is a child, a blank sheet, also a crib.
I want simply to love you. Let me love you, please,
but don’t make me surrender. You surrender to me.

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Birth

Didn’t we know you would always be difficult?

Even before you were born, you turned

and twisted my insides. So it began. All

we wanted was you, before we learned

your sex, your name, the intensity of night

and your cries. Before you opened your eyes,

saw me, gave me life. You had a light

that shone from within you, found me. Why?

I never thought to ask. You were one week

old. It was enough, I thought, that you lived,

that you were mine. You belonged to me

the way only a child can, as if you never did.

But wait. I’ve skipped the most important part:

They cut me open, gave me you: my heart.

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Running Sonnet

On days I run before dawn, my fav-

orite sight is blue-black becoming pink.

If it’s afternoon, I prefer feeling my legs

moving, quickly, through warmth. I think

I run therefore I am, but actually, I am

therefore I run, as our ancestors must

have, running from lions or toward lambs

or just the next meal. Really it’s a way to trust

the body, a method that outstrips cognition, just

neurons firing away. No better way to learn

the body is just a machine. A machine of lust,

and desire, wants, pure animal need. My turn

now to be just a body, not to see but to be,

the way that, running, the mind is finally free.

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I need Battlestar Galactica, the way

a junkie needs smack, an addiction more

fierce than lust, a need that may

lead to more need, how, when the story

moves toward resolution we approach myth,

every character becomes an archetype: the leader,

the rebel, the heroine. I want to be the pissed

off, ass-kicking Starbuck: pilot, drinker, gambler,

puncher, harbinger of death. I still don’t know

if she will save humanity or destroy it. Who cares?

She’s sexy, focus of the hottest men on the show:

Lee and Anders. That’s all TV is anyway, story stripped bare:

Plot manipulations to get characters to in bed and fuck,

People we’d want to sleep with if only we had such luck.

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Euphorbia myrsinites

  • When pulses of light heave to air

    the bulge and bloom of growth,

    around late March through April,

    if you walk along a certain trail

  • the bulge and bloom of growth

    as alien as a neon sign will stop you.

    If you walk along a certain trail

    you will see a plant that doesn’t belong,

  • as alien as a neon sign in the Arctic,

    all blue green leaves spiraling like stars—

    the plant that doesn’t belong, you see—

    stars from sprawling stems that bleed

  • blue green leaves spiraling like stars.

    It is a lovely plant, vibrant with color,

    sprawling stems and stars that bleed

    milk when their outer layer is pierced.

  • It is a lovely plant, vibrant with color,

    but beware of their inner poison of

    milk when their outer layer is pierced.

    As ornamentals we introduced them,

  • but beware of their inner poison.

    From Eurasia they entered the States,

    as ornamentals we introduced them.

    They thrive in harsh, dry climates.

  • From Eurasia they entered the States.

    It is illegal to plant them in Colorado.

    They thrive in harsh drier climates.

    They have spread through the foothills.

  • It is illegal to plant them in Colorado.

    North ridge of Big Cottonwood Canyon—

    they have spread through the foothills—

    just in the mouth, along an old mining track,

  • North ridge of Big Cottonwood Canyon,

    they bloom inbetween native Gambel oak,

    just in the mouth along an old mining trail,

    around abandoned slabs of concrete.

  • Around late March through April

    they bloom inbetween native Gamble oak

    when pulses of light heave to air

    just in the mouth along an old mining trail.

    Ug!

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