Monday, January 5, 2009

The Way You Looked

My deepest
crawled up from the back of my throat
And quietly waited by the gate of teeth
For its queue
“You know you can tell me anything”
You said
and I believed you.

So I let the animal loose and
It came running up to you wagging its tail
Resting its head on your lap
Looking up with penitent eyes
Aching for your hand
To swirl around its floppy ears
And stroke its long unkempt fur.

You turned away
and mentioned
going shopping later
or to visit your father’s grave.

But I knew it was to bury me
Deep within some memory
Of what you wanted me to be
Like the photograph of us that always looks the same
The one you keep on the bureau drawer

O Tannenbaum

I saw a king once
Waiting for his carriage at the end of a driveway
leaning up against bags of wrapping paper
piled nearly as high as the Styrofoam bricks
where he stood away from the wind.
I wondered if he knew he reminded me of Humphrey Bogart
With that lollipop stick cigarette dangling from his thin lips
trying to forget about tinsel town.
I caught him staring at the silver threads
Caught in between his fingers like rivulets of water falling from his hands

I know he was dwelling on the children
adorning his branches with jewels and strings of beautiful lights

The very same little ones
Who were trying with all their hearts
To stop the peasants from unraveling his regal attire
and dragging his carcass out the same door
Which only days before
Everyone had fought to be the first to open .

When the sight of him was greeted with cheers and squeals of delight
when the cooing of the youngest one
Reminded him of the mourning doves that nested on the very same bough caught in the slam
as his skin was being scraped away on the aluminum frame

He was thinking of his corner near the fireplace
And the amber beads on his crown
when the dump truck arrived.

Jealous Moon

He is all at once
a clumsy anxious lover
And the light is exquisite for a time
But her eyes are rolling their knuckles
hard against her tightly held lids.
And she is not there with him.
But dreaming of me perhaps
in his touch
reaching her in every way
in this longing darkness.