Saturday, July 7, 2012

here among the sacrificed.... a poem


Here among the sacrificed
The beautiful and the yellowed
Still grow the roses

They are growing alright,
In back alleys and down railroad ballast
Forget-me-nots, there are forget-me-nots
Growing behind red brick walled dive bars
Wilting over late autumn versions of the blues

Here among the abandoned
The lonely and the blue eyes
Still grow the roses

There are roses in Old Weller bottles
Daffodils in bar pint glasses
There are cracked seeds
Caked on the bottoms of hiking boots
Pacing downtown streets looking for
Forget-me-nots and roses
In smiles and chapped lips….

It’s a sad one, a bittersweet poem… loneliness and forget-me-nots… I think it might have been a poem to Denver as much as it was to anyone in particular.  I just finished revising it.  Its one of those I revisit again and again, at least the first stanza is something I have used and abused again and again, its one of my favorite beginnings to a poem I have come up with… one I will always come back to.  I like this version, there are other versions that are up there, but this one I keep revising hoping to one day reach perfection, maybe my place in the breath of poetry’s influence on peoples imagination and ears.  Who knows…

Solidarity fellow workers, ride free, ride fast, live slowly and with purpose.
Your faithful Muskrat.

Dear Mink a letter that says nothing and goes even short distances

Dear Mink

It’s raining a soft drizzle on a Muskrat’s whiskerless cheeks.  His stiff eyebrows wiggling beneath his tweed newspaper boy cap Muskrat smiles and tugs at the ripped olive green wool Harris Tweed further down over his soft blue eyes.  Peddling his small frame around in circles, an evening bike ride with headphones and songs about trains, Muskrat savors the small sharp drops dancing across his naked cheeks.  The neighborhood park is quiet a few days past the Fourth of July and he lets his peddling slacken a bit as his mind wanders.  The beach cruiser he had inherited from that marbled polecat Mink needed new brake pads and some love, affection and oil; otherwise she was in perfect riding shape in the garage.  For now his father’s old dark green French-made road bike carried his little frame leisurely through the darkened Albuquerque side streets in those perfect moments just before the streetlights hummed their evenings into being.  We may not have paparazzi lightning bugs flashing their bulbs at your every move down here in the desert, but the haphazard blinking of ageing streetlights shutting off as Muskrat peddled by passed for an electrical grid inspired insult and shrug of their wooden post slight.  The sudden shutting off of street lights as he rode past for some reason always offended Muskrat, it was as if his mere presence made the street lights turn themselves off, he did not emit enough consequence to the world to waste their precious electricity on, let this slight framed blue eyed Muskrat amble his way home in the dark.

As always Live free, live simple, ride free, ride hard, breath in the fresh air, Solidarity forever amigos.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

something short and new

Amigo’s, I know it has been months, an unforgivable amount of time since I have posted anything amongst these pages.  It’s been a long dry spell.  I aim to force these things as the long hot days of summer push themselves forward.  I hope to start forcing my way through Muskrat and transcribing its pages onto the interweb.  I Hope to offer you new poems and amblings and brain farts over the summer.  Until then, here is something simple, a few paragraphs, one new, one found in my cardboard box of typewritten pages from last year. 

The black silhouettes of a startled flock of birds on grey asphalt, early morning commutes from telephone line to telephone line.   Telephone line black bird silhouettes framing bicyclists in vintage frames of telephone wires in an era of online messages and phones meant for anything except talking.  Muskrat doesn’t do much talking in person much less over telephones these days, mumbles and stumbles over his words fine tuning them in conversations in his head he never manages to convert into appropriate gram to cup, mouth to ear ratios in face to face interactions. 

There is an Old Weller Whiskey bottle half empty and collecting dust in the back recesses of Muskrat’s Denver memories.  It sits on a drafting table surrounded by dead roses and unfinished art projects, a pen and ink portrait of Willie Nelson, bathroom comics, instructions for flushing grey water toilets and a southwest green chili cookbook.  A few years and a few hundred miles southbound, Smokey Robinson is singing over coffee shop airwaves and Muskrat is digging under dead snow pea vines.  Underneath a green candle is the first and final page of a scribbled attempt at a garden journal.  Over the Sandia’s and south towards the Manzano Mountains black rain clouds are gathering, skirting the issue and teasing the metro area with a light smell of rain filtering in through the swamp coolers. 

Until next time, be safe, ride free, solidarity in struggle and dreaming.

And dear dear Mink, I promise a full blog letter soon.