I want to write poetry and nothing is coming.
It feels like that elusive orgasm and the frustration is killing the mood.
The poem that I want to write is about the blackberries that were bulldozed last week, over on the abandoned lot. Someone’s house will take their place.
The mistake was thinking that those blackberries were ours,
and that they are a metaphor that I have not yet
grown to understand.
The poem would be about grief and beauty, about watching you avoid the thorns and laughing when you couldn’t.
We would take the leather gloves and a paint splattered ladder,
pick a clear summer day with a sunset,this matters because the sun doesn’t always set here .
The blackberries were always best warm
with the day fading like a poem that I can almost remember, second best is eating them out of your hands which would happen in the winter when we are snowed in and eating the remnants of last summer because it’s all we have.
Stolen berries, summers, memories, bulldozers, each other in this moment– it’s all we will ever have and we will have them –whether the poetry comes or not, and poetry–
she always comes.
Poems are paintings
Painted in warm tones on cold days
Layer over layer
Only to be painted
I am a poet
Who paints over things
You gave me a box of rocks
for my 30th birthday.
30 rocks in a pocket sized box,
tied together with a ribbon.
You brought them back from the coast of California.
a coast staggered with pine trees, fault lines
the ghost of john Steinbeck
and acres of vineyards.
You told me each rock represents a
year that you have survived,
and all I could see was a little monument to the pieces of me
that died each winter, marking solid thoughts-
misguided respect on misunderstood tombstones-
You told me that you are strong
but not like the rocks
picking one up- You asked me
how big the rock was once before the water got a hold of it,
how long the water worked it until it washed up on the shore
and to think of the strength it took to mold its current shape.
Again, You say-
you are strong like water
a strength you don’t even know that you possess-
At 3.99 for two handfuls,
I have never thought much about strawberries
out in the fields they are known simply
as fruit of the devil
I took that at face value
I haven’t eaten one since.
I have thought strawberries
and packed with pesticides
and most likely molding
from the long ride
up the coast.
Last year someone passed on two little plants
and I couldn’t help it,
I planted them
they grew into themselves
and every surrounding area
one little runner at a time
crossing one border and then the next.
They survived the winter
the hail, the snow, the rainbows and slugs
They survived despite
the fact that I didn’t think much of them,
I didn’t think they could do it,
I didn’t think they would live.
Today with my garden full of
ripe red strawberries
I know fierceness when I see it
long live the little strawberries
that nobody wanted.
The goal was for it to be perfect.
Almost real, almost pulsing, almost beating.
You asked about it today-
My heart locked away in the garage.
You asked why it wasn’t finished and if it had chambers and veins.
The last time I touched it, I cut it open just beneath the aorta.
I want it to told something- pennies, pens, keys, lint
My perfect pocket size chaos.
But I can’t touch it.
Refuse to unwrap the hard clay
Afraid that I will notice the little imperfections
Perhaps the shadows won’t hang like they do on perfect autumn afternoons
Or the veins won’t curve like the hips of a secret.
I have not seen my heart in weeks
Because I just might