Burning Joy

Fallen warrior soldier

Petals and stems strewn and littered

No mercy from disingenuous, mocking skies

Torched umber and saddened dirty browns, clinging to life

Once taut and lengthy now waning and submissive

The last of their posture sucked dry

They weep, pucker, and wither

Scorched
Blistered
Begging

Cells clamor for evening’s dew

If only a solitary, swollen bead

Their silent struggle claims no pity

From tattered soles lumbering by and by and by

Shuffling suffocating tornado swirls

Atop and around their parched battlefield

Only a fool’s eye deems them forever gone

Downtrodden equates not with hopelessness and despair

But musters mighty strength

Inward they march

Tending to the wounded

Knowing an escape from swelter

No luxurious joy manifests

Their rise-up shall be swift and remarkable

No one the wiser to their quiet plight

Lest they who fought and won

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This Me, This My, This She, This I

This me, this my, this she, this I
My coronation came as quite a surprise
Tis where the Queen of Spades resides
But we call it Crazy Eight’s

I never filed an application
But I’d love the form for abdication
But please not too much arbitration
I possess no Queenly traits

Royal blood flows through my veins
Prancing horses, collected reins
The King is gone, no one explains
The Kingdom all debates

Round and round and round we go
My crown lopsided, to and fro
I’m dressed in gold from head to toe
But how my body aches

I think I’m entitled to explanation
My queries end in misdirection
I am quickly losing all affection
This foundation trembles and shakes

Come Prince, Come Duke, Come Princesses all
We must bare witness to what will befall
It’s not my position, after all
I command those horns abate

And whence they came from near and far
Peasants, paupers, the acutely bazaar
They gathered under the moon and stars
In search of their children’s fate

I grasp my sceptre and self-esteem
Put on the face of reigning Queen
Fulfilled each beggar’s every dream
At address: Crazy Eight’s

I shed my gown of green and gold
Tossed the crown to Prince Leopold
He sat the throne and did behold
A crowd below irate

I fled the scene and hopped a train
Fate tapped my shoulder in Key Biscayne
My fortune found in whiskey’s pain
In a place I can’t escape

So I bought that place and call it mine
Threw out my bait and dropped a line
Now it’s crowded all the time
At my bar called Crazy Eight’s

This me, this my, this she, this I
Escaped the palace flying high
The Queen of Spades did slowly die
My crown sits tall and straight

Furious Rapture

O black night, unhappy space

Why no stars nor Heaven’s grace?

Mine eyes do strain to find thy bounds

Where earthly plain meets hallowed ground

 

And crawling my skin warns of truthful risk

Beseeching my feet be firm and brisk

Alas, my heart doth beckon me

Toward this darkened mystery

 

For in its mystery a lustful rapture

I stand and quake in painless capture

Come forth you demons, trolls and fae

Envelop me in Satan’s fray

 

The Lord Almighty, Hosanna on High

Did leave this babe to suffer and die

At the fists and force of a father’s rage

I spit on every Bible’s page

 

Mother Mary begged His grace

But Jesus deemed me a disgrace

Angels joined in loud applause

N’er doubting the great King’s cause

 

The Holy Ghost did wail and choke

As this child bled and broke

But God helps those who are deserving

Sinners like me aren’t worth preserving

 

This child shall never fall to knee

And honor His hypocrisy

So leave me now in Satan’s lair

It’s he who utters sacred prayer

 

Worry not, I’m now baptized

By scars burned deep into my eyes

Christ chose His death on bloody cross

I never asked Him to take the loss

 

We dance by fire burning bright

We writhe and twist in sin’s delight

So leave me now, in Satan’s hands

I delight in the pain of his commands

 

He spread his wings and took me under

Burned my soul with wicked wonder

Smitten, spellbound, I decease

His pain doth grace me sweet release

 

It’s all I know, the pain and fear

It’s what I’ve learned to hold fast and dear

So drink from chalices gold and garish

Cheering God and His holy parish

 

I shall revel in my Master’s Hell

Heaven’s gates did slam me well

Eternity is just forever

This soul shant kneel, not now,

Not ever

PRESERVATION

Are you thrilled with your new found sobriety
Hobnobbing with high society
Spouting all  your hot-white-bright revelations
Waving your wand with sincere indignation

Did you stumble and bleed when you opened your heart
Did they cheer you profoundly for your shiny new start
Or did you just check your heart at the door
And pour your drunk guts right onto the floor

Where did you put all that beautiful magic
Before you decided your life was so tragic
In a mason jar you keep high up on the shelf
Each day its unopened so proud of yourself

Don’t get me wrong, I’m so glad you are well
That you pulled yourself out of your self-imposed hell
Pulse beating so strong and stature so tall
Who would have guessed you had such a long fall

Now you and your magic can stare at each other
And vie for attention like two jealous brothers
It’s best to conform and do as they say
God knows you’re too crazy when you have your own way

What if I told you you weren’t ever crazy
That all those around you have vision so hazy
And that the magic of you is in no pill or bottle
It’s a runaway train still going full throttle

And you think if you keep the lid on that jar
It will serve as a leash so you don’t stray too far
So sit there and stay, be a good little boy
You know if you’re good you’ll get a new toy

But nothing compares to snapping that tether
Like watching the sun and the moon dance together
When we rocked the Casbah there was no night or day
Two hearts, one spirit in the bed where we lay

I sit back and applaud your climb up twelve steps
The ones strewn and littered with tears and regrets
Buck up, be a man, no more make-up and dresses
Black suit and striped tie prove all your successes

No talking to those who might rattle your cage
You’re far too fragile to see the next page
So long, fare thee well, I bid you adieu
Our time it was brief, but at least it was true

Now you and the friends who live in your head
Can all sleep together in one king-size bed
Keep them rested and quiet and all to yourself
And the best part of you in the jar on the shelf

And were I to see you at that bar on this day
Would I spark that magic that once made you play
Would the lid on that jar turn on its own
And free all your magic to venture and roam

Would you want me to come take that crown off your brow
And bring back what was to the here and the now
Or would you have love’s fate left to chance
Like the sun and the moon just waiting to dance

Turn Your Love My Way

Summer breezin’, short-shorts teasin’
Strawberry mescaline glow
Heat wave scorchin’, young hearts torchin’
“Might be your man, I don’t know”

On the dock, sweet southern rock
Cassette tapes scattered round
Helter-skelter, bodies swelter
“Baby, you know I’m Southbound”

Pushin shovin’, Chesapeake lovin’
Free-floatin’ in the Bay
Hash pipe smokin’, keep on tokin’
“You’re my sunny day”

Munchie snackers, cheese and crackers
Candles in tin cans
Teenage crushes, twilight hushes
“I was born a rambling man”

Young love faded, life so jaded
Could it be so long ago
Got those laugh lines, all those good times
“Momma turn your lamp down low”

Legend’s fallin’, Heaven’s callin’
I hold on even tighter
“But I’m not gonna let ’em catch me, no
Not gonna let ’em catch the Midnight Rider”

WHERE ONCE

I tumbled into the ease of you

Like my favorite billowed chair

And lounged my body cross your arms

And pretended you were there

I nestled into your sweetest prose

And reread my favorite pages

The letters bold of just our story

My memory engages

And down the lane and across the way

I twirl inside your eyes

Through them I see you watching me

Through mine the morning’s rise

Dawn’s light it plays a jester’s trick

I fumble for the book

I frenzy fast to find you there

I beg for one last look

But alas this jester’s magic prank

Did make dawn’s sunbeams bend

Where once there was a story grand

Is one which has no end

Where once I danced within your eyes

In fields of flowers fare

Is now but just a lonely spot

And these pages stark and bare

Betwixt

Between the notes the music plays

Between the hymns the angels pray

Between the words my heart breaks

Between the tears my body aches

Between the waves the giant swell

Between the days a silent hell

Between the sheets my body shakes

Between the breaths my spirit quakes

Between the stars the great divide

Between the falls the sting of pride

Between the spells the magic powers

Between the kiss the longest hours

Between the truth the powerful doubt

Between the knots the lines laid out

Between the love the saddest heart

Between the loss the brand new start

Between here and there a sacred place

Between folded hands the state of Grace