I’m carving a draydel out of cedar for you. All is right with the world.

Sometimes
I would like to live with you
In a wood cabin on a lake.
Lying awake at night
By an open fire
With your hand on my cheek,
In my hair,
On the back of my neck.

A Star of David
Hangs in the window.
A pine wreath on the front door.

The pop and crackle.
Your breath in my ear.
The wind at the chimney.

It wouldn’t be so bad.

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It’s not a war to be won, but…

And then quite unlike the
Way in which she left,
The muse returned.

I knew I was in trouble first
When I woke to the
Thought of her
In green and navy pajamas,
Hair a golden mess,
Carrying a tray of tea and toast slices.

The dress that I saw,
A shimmering grey
A pale mint
That was no longer
Behind the shop glass but
Twirling around flower beds
Above a pair of bare feet,
Was a bad sign to be sure.

And it is now that I find myself
Lying awake deep into the night, Biting into my pillow
And cursing myself,
That I know the real battle
Has only just begun.

Sepia Toned Loving

You lower your gaze
To your feet.
A hand emerges
From deep within a woollen sleeve
And pushes a few strands of
Yellowish-brown hair
Back over a yellowish-brown ear.
Your lips part minutely,
And yet so generously.

Standing under a flickering streetlight
We have been sent back.
Back to a time when
Colour was an idea
That you read about in books
When you should have been working hard
In the fields.
Toiling in flannel and corduroy.

But now I notice your brow is furrowed,
Eyes cast expectantly upward.
I have been staring but not listening.

I send a prayer out
Into the night sky above,
Silent and profound,
And lean down into you
To hear yours.

The Spector had a heart shaped hole in her just waiting to be pasted over.

You can tell it’s a good song
When you slow down
So you don’t make it home
Before it’s over.

Select weaknesses in me
Set fire to my brain
And spiderweb around my heart.

I hold the glass up to my eye
But I can’t tell whether it’s
Too full or too empty.
For certain, it’s draining fast.

The piano may not be firewood
But it sets a merry blaze.
And the cloth rests over my face,
Over my eyelids,
Like a hood.

If everyone knows it’s going to hurt,
Then why wasn’t I expecting it?
One day I turned around
And realised I was fucked

And there’s nothing I can do about it
Except take the clock off the wall
And set about winding it back again.
Right back to the beginning.

Chanson Naturelle

What I should do is
fall completely
for a girl with small hands
who can play piano with some flare
and who knows all the words
to Debussy’s ‘Chansons de Bilitis’.

Or at least a girl
with delicate wrists.
A girl who can hush me to sleep
with sweet susurrations.

I sit up late into the night,
drinking and dreaming
of perfectly manicured fingernails
and softly spoken words.
I imagine her drooping fringe
and the colour of her eyes.

Green, grey, blue, brown
Black.
It matters little.
I yawn and fold my hands behind my head.
Eyes are eyes.
Love will be love.

A Lot Of Dreaming

Something is very wrong.
In my mind thoughts are clear
And lucidly float behind my eyes.
I can feel soft words,
Some of them for you,
Dangling from my fingertips,
Hiding in the drowned spaces
between my glistening teeth.

But up close this mirror
Is muddied and scratched
With fingernail marks and
Something closely resembling
My very own brand
Of unsettling bullshit.
My tongue drips sour,
The saliva frothing and bursting
And steadily becoming
More embittered and lonesome.
Suddenly there are things
That I can no longer impart,
Not nearly so readily at least.

These problems course
Through my arteries and veins,
Through the skin on the
Back of my hands,
Along the bloodlines
That feed my brain,
My arrow-filled mind.

They lead me to believe
That some creatures were designed
To break with natures bonds.
And perhaps we will always blame others
For what we refuse to believe.
Or hate ourselves
For what we know to be true.

Dreams locked in a dead man’s chest

Close your lips and discover
The bitterness that sleeps
On the tip of your silent tongue.

In the evening the lights you see
From the shore are far off and pale.
They dance to the waves rhythms
And haunt your dreams.
If you close your eyes too
You can hear faint whisperings,
The succinct susurrations
Of children lost to the winds
And the waves’ roar.
Songs of dead sailors
Echoing and ringing
On the zephyr.

The blind see the world but through a veil.
The deaf hear more than they tell.
At night they come down to the sea
To touch fingertips.
They share our secrets with the wind
And their own with the sky.