Skip to main content

Shiver

This bench is so cold.
Its painted metal joins
The cold air surrounding me.
Bricked up in the atmosphere,
I sit watching my shadow
Stretch forward, reaching
For the bay, perched
On the grey slats
Of a phantom raft;
Watching steely water
Quiver as if at the fall
Of a giant’s step.
You’re a million miles away,
And I don’t even know
What direction I’m facing,
But you’re as present
As if you were standing
On my shadow.
The chattering of my teeth
Is as good as laughter,
And that single star blinking
In the slate blue
Of coming night
Is as much your smile returned
As it is a splinter
Of the fractured universe.
You might as well be calling
Up to my window
In the exterior light of a church,
Or scuffing shoes with me
On the ancient streets
Of a railroad town.
You’re as near as the day
Your life direction led you
To my doorstep, or the night
I hugged your children
At the bus station.
It’s cold here tonight
And it’s good to shiver with you,
But let’s go now
Where it’s warm.

Comments

Hi M,
Because of your flattering comments a while back on my blog in reference to Jack Kerouac and my natural curiosity to taste him beyond "Google", I plopped myself down on the floor of a local bookstore about 6 weeks ago, and read each tiny paperback that had been on their shelves.His work, as you predicted, resonated within me, like plucking the guitar strings of my heart and soul with finesse. Amazing experience.

During that time, I also wished I could have bumped into you for those thoughts that begged discussion. Or, that I'd have been on my way to a poet's group to talk of this discovery. Thank you for opening my eyes to someone I never read before I began writing poetry.

I shall return to comment on your own work, after I catch some zzz's, so I can convey more than "Your painterly words caress the page with evocative imagery."
Brian said…
I've read this over and over again. I'm just mesmerized by your play on shadows and cold. Brilliant poem, I've been moved.

Thanks.
I always wenjoy your poems so much and this is no exception, I love the lines:

But you’re as present
As if you were standing
On my shadow.
writerwoman said…
This part is amazing!

And that single star blinking
In the slate blue
Of coming night
Is as much your smile returned
As it is a splinter
Of the fractured universe.
"I sit watching my shadow
Stretch forward, reaching
For the bay, perched
On the grey slats
Of a phantom raft;"

This is something I read over and over again. I will come back to read it again. I can relateto this somehow. As Brian says, brilliant work!
Anonymous said…
square traveler what a beautiful poem!!!! you are an amazing poet because you draw your words from deep within your soul. I am touched by your emotion laden words....
...deb said…
I was sitting on the bench, shivering. Great imagery. My favorite lines (of many!) were
"The chattering of my teeth/ Is as good as laughter,"
twitches said…
I agree - too many lovely lines to mention. You have a natural lyrical style that makes each line fall naturally into the next - my favorite sort of poetry to read!
Marcia said…
"Bricked up in the atmosphere,
I sit watching my shadow
Stretch forward, reaching
For the bay, perched
On the grey slats
Of a phantom raft;"

Favorite lines.

First time here, the photo background is amazing.

Popular posts from this blog

When I See It

I don’t believe in time.
There's much more world left;
So much more to learn,
And I don’t believe in time.
I believe in shadow birds flying
Through the green of mown grass
Under the squint-bright sun;
An ocean dappled with clouds
And the white sails of small boats
Crossing my shoulder;
A thousand dynamic blooms
That I can’t name, speaking
With voices of children
And laughing as they pass;
The reassuring chatter
Of great wooden beasts
That sermonize patience
And continuity.
But I don’t believe in time
Or the limits it implies.
I don’t believe in the failure
Of the manifest soul.
I don’t believe death will result
From the cessation of habits
That feed my blood,
Because I won't believe
In a future nothingness
That I can’t see from here.

Dawn in an Hour

Dawn is in an hour;
in a night.
A light on the long street
on the grey river,
on a long walk of broken clays.
It takes only a streetlight
to bare the sighs,
the yawn of dark alleys,
of quiet honesty;
the great peace
of telling without cause,
without want.
The arm stretches
and guides the body;
the body doubles its warmth.
Laughter snaps
against brick and glass,
and the eyes combine;
heart combines with heart.
And dawn is in the hour,
in the night.

Hidden

I think, sometimes,
that I can do anything,
but that can change on the way
to the elevator.

I prepare for outside.
Rain makes it easier,
bends my eye to the ground,
to the architecture;
turns everything to gold.
The new gravity holds me,
turns the voices into hums,
the walkers into clouds.

But outside my door,
there are voices already,
breaking through planks of wood
that should mean security,
and I’m in their path;
every word an arrow
tipped with poison.

They’re only voices.
They are not harsh;
they do not threaten.
They’re not aimed at me
at all. Yet I suspect,
hidden from me,
there are faces attached.