Tapestry


When did we cease being

Wide eyed and curious

Of this velvety world

Not ever

Shouts blue rinsed grandmother

And sings her baudy war songs

To the chip chop chop of her brothers clumsy accompaniment

On stairwell piano with missing ivory

It was said

Parlor tricks began with family visits

Light a cone of newspaper on your head

A second from setting fire to your hair

There were jugglers in the house

Catching Xmas clementines by the handful

And ladies whose pure voices lifted up sagging furniture

Such the gratitude of survival

Friends of shared blood and homemade eye patches

When did we cease lighting candles to cast a glow

Making magic of things otherwise ignored

Not ever

Today, everyone is dressed in threadbare finery

Auditioning for heaven, the old ones say

And all I thought of was the last licorice stick

Staining the inside of my mouth like forbidden wish

We remain alive by sheer will, it is the rush of nature

To keep us tethered by thinnest string, weaving our own

Tapestry

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Girls tilled the earth

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I wonder now

what happens when we grow over

the time we planned into an unknown future

you lost your baby fat, angular and drawn

pinched from the hunger of war

the masculinity of certain girls

who can carry off strong chins in their twenties

male inheritance flaming in visage

lends them the strength to become hard

for the sons who were not present

it was girls tilled the earth

scraping their legacies furrowed with dirt

to inherit freedom outside mystique

where judgement lay omnipresent

how the worth of plain faced women belies

the fire in their belly

I didn’t want it enough

to leave behind the soil and its

deep sonorous calm

because I grew content

for some that’s poison

but the fevered mind

lusts for silence

she will paint her room yellow

climb behind wallpaper

rather than survive nearly

in a room of grinding egos

some of us just want to watch morning dew

transform into steam and rise thermally

evaporating pinches of magic

staring into the silhouetted trees

nursing sorrow like a sudden cold snap

kills the large plants in the garden

despite their deep roots

and look there!

the young tree you planted only last fall

survives

 

Era

03om12jumpPerhaps we are all born in the right era

growing up regretful we did not come of age

when life was better

the tinge of past tense

greener fields and sentiment

but should we care to revisit them

time shows we are all here when we should inherit our turn

for children of today

do not wish to sit sloppy and long gaited sharing close space

our communication and intimacy has barriers

we have not learned to be comfortable with intrusion

going about our lives unmolested

I could not have endured the proximity

continual chatter and energy required of those

born without headphones and opt outs

they knew how to socialize

crammed on sweating buses before air conditioning

whilst I believe

had I been born in an early century

I’d have taken myself away and reverted

back to the iron age

becoming a mineral underneath earth

where excited hands could pound

their fists of enthusiasm

for I have no wish to be

celebratory or illuminated

more than the passing of one year to next

it is in the quiet avoidance I find most pleasure

those born in times of chatter and noise

rationed by over-head bombs

heralding progress, talking to strangers

you think the world unfriendly now and it is

when it came our time

everyone went quiet

the buses were empty

just a book here and there lay

bent at the spine and unread

for we who keep our windows shuttered

do not wish to join the throng

but sing in lilac trees over looking

the quiet fish pond