fall

Typewritten words on a crumbled page
There is static as a record starts to turn
Wood grains painted appear, are not
Fingerprint texture of unfinished wood
Warmth is the color of cool tea
Smoke swirl-disperses in a still room

Brick by brick built turns to ruins
Rust as nature takes back space
Unswept leaves and snow in paving
Cracks and crunches underfoot
The temperature gives breathing room
Inhale, I stretch my lungs

The scent of dryer-warmed linens
A pulse presses skin against skin
Repeated notes twice more than thought
One time before became too much
Blowing eyelashes from fingertips
For consistency

We watch all as it changes

microexpressions

There are sounds of movement and an opening door and then eye contact and then I watch as you press the corners of your mouth together not like a smile but like the beginning of a forced smile –

like the beginning of the forced smile that is a mix of annoyance and this-isn’t-my-choosing on the face of a stranger trying to scoot by a second stranger in the too-narrow space between rows of seats on the way to an airplane restroom in the air somewhere above and between home and another business trip.

I wonder is this is personal, and about the expression on my own face, which I think is one of perplexity or contemplation or perhaps both or neither, but changing now to respond to:

an actual smile. No longer reacting, but recognizing, feeling something more familiar.

settling in

the palette of colors contained within combined to form
one space;

warm and cool dark grey timberwolf
not sun setting but warming

campfire crackling embers wood grains still
burning blackening greying whitening:

ashes single finger painted smooth
drawing lines forming letters spelling names.

cardboard boxes broken down unpacking
here finding homes for these and those here

life expanding to rebuild reorder something
new filling in blanks more than some from none

somewhere outside is overcast blind
but light catches angles through my windows casting shapes

patterns textures colors reds to auburns autumn
crisping crunching giving reason for a pause

a flip a second side music mixed with sirens
rising up from the cobbled streets

flutterthought

rush into the room to grasp a thought a fleeting feeling scribbling trivial stumbles jumbled backspace pauses soon long lost with twiddled thumbs and wires crossed

to try to get it back to remember to rewind to retrace footprints fresh-erased backtrack playback too late too late the song is also already changed

abrupt disrupted loss of focus words tangled in a tightening snare with fingers gripping striking matches running out of fresh white lines

the curtain-drawn background is daytime lit one-sided the other side is darkened light-outlined and fading as breathy sighs extinguish embers

this screen is far too bright

higher education

i am sitting i am
still i am
waiting for some other
nothing to distract
but nothing will never
nothing will

the failures in my present i
watch them
as they pass
my successes
steeping stumbles
sticking twisting
thorns in sides

teach the youth
to learn
upon success throw them
food for wolves
so uselessly conditioned
tear their soft flesh
leave remains to harden
with soft skill decay

ramble

The albatross picks plastic pellets to try to feed its young. Smoke cigarettes blow cocaine rust with youth intact die unabused. His time was over before it began and mine just hasn’t happened yet it hasn’t come it couldn’t happen here at all. Remember when we laughed we sung that song the one where the world was ending remember when the world ended while we wasted away hands tied to desks? This is my unrest just my unrest just my second second failed attempt at what will only ever could only be second best it’s not my best. There are diminishing returns as a good thing becomes too much of one and there is tipping point for which quitting is winning for when it-was-enoughs reach toward the point of superunsaturation but never quite crossing the line forcing hands. To take the accepted risk a loss of everything for one more night just one more flight accept a loss of everything as fair exchange and is this how addiction is to be defined? The counting down to a two-tailed coin flip the holding hopes in hands with loaded dice the always betting on the losing side always hoping for low odds always leaving it up to not a chance always giving into chosens without a fight. Forsaken innocence grasps at what-is-still-to-comes but what is still to come what hasn’t happened yet? Reach for felt-too-surface-level unknows forget to let it seethe. Just remember to breathe only to breathe the most basic needs to reprieve without delay forsake aging wisdom’s pressure points forsake it as hearsay it’s just what they say it’s just what they say. But wait: that city’s skyline is never sweeter than its first appearance rounding final bends on the return trip home. And never more than that. I wouldn’t play the card if I held a full deck. The city skyline stays sweet where it melts away in memories return to tie loose ends. Go back to melt to ends to melt to end to say ‘the end’ this is the end.