How long can you run

In the white light of a candle, sainted Jesuits open the scripture book:
They lash out at the long tongue liars-
The Ignatius man
The holy ghost
The big grave digger
A secular cleric in a church house shuffles on his angel feet
pelts these sinners with his dark milk speech:
how long can you run
run for a short time
whistles out his hounds to chase you down
His shovel with bullet-headed steel shoots the ground
a layman in the hole asks
how do you live here.

Walk in the dark and grab the iron gate
pull out your cards
and play the spades
God in the burial yard shouts, my hand is full of death
slams his hammer
down on your sacred earth
whistles out his hounds to chase you down
how long can you run
run for a short time
He summons up a Jesuit priest
shuffles on over on his angel feet
stones your heads with his dark milk speech:
Be damned you long tongue liars-
The Ignatius man
The holy ghost
The big grave digger
God’s going to strike you down
come nightfall you will be
in the dark hole ground.

What did you do? Desecrated the bible-
Seminated the night
The Jesus plight
The holy scriptures
Purloined and plucked the man born blind’s bread
drunk away his blessed red wine
Black, like a memory wound, stole the jewels
from the Curia crown land
gave seed to the catholic diocese
Rolled the day blind dice, the bones of your followers
rolled them into dead-end lives
In anger, the wrath of God hounds away your temptations
puts you in the dungeon of earth
And the pope soft-shoed on his angel feet
stoned you with his dark milk speech:
how long can you run
run for a short time.

How long can you run

Two fantasy poems…

The ravenous beast of Bagwater

From beneath great depths like a breach, the violent serpent,
There the blue mist and hoar on spiny back,
Ere the crescent wave doth dwindle, shrink, and fall into the dead sea’s tomb.
Round the masted ship whose heights the first-born cloud doth touch,
Round the sea’s brow once a course set long since bade be free,
Breaks, whence all the ship’s sailors begat pride and spirit
Nurtured where north wind holds its reign in canvassed sail.
All the wandering waves of a sea with deathly waters, foam-flakes of scattering schools-
herring, grunt, salmon, hearts endless pounding;
If the prey ye be, within you fail, be broken in your breasts,
Shall ye drive the vultures from crag and rock, slaves to a feast.
As the sky darkened, the scourge of a beast seaward towards a vessel,
Strife to strife aboard soon panicked, rammed the bow thrall and bond;
The serpent’s mouth lashed and thundered, laid waste the soul of men.
Clothed with blood, rose-red curdled- frail to fetter fast in an engulfing sea.
None survived, sheathed into the great beast’s gullet, limbs all gaunt and riven;
Round the sea beyond the shoals bared the darkling screams-
The creature’s wrath smote thee; ship’s remains on soft-sanded banks,
Scavengers with tongues together rapture on wings, trembling in cold
As they trod triumphant, rasped their murderous song; saluted the dead with feathers.
Yeah, no god may stand betwixt them and the shadows of the deep,
Nor family’s prayers may plead- they are clothed in black; they close the graves.

The ravenous beast of Bagwater

G’mueth early found a sacred love

I.
The Battle

It hath been seen and yet it shall happen
And evidence of wise kings witnessing,
No liege shall set sight of the great throne;
The strength of an army has been the strength of one,
Among the downs, deep in the fields,
Of great blood to make warriors men.
He, G’mueth, flawless and whole upward from foot to head,
Wore the armor of a lordly man,
Full of quick sword in a wind and many a shaken earth,
Laid waste of soldiers, all but one,
Was nigh feeble before her fearful blade;
Her mercy in her from least years of battle,
Would ease the fallen, a most gracious thing.
The chapels of her beliefs of saintly priests
And in the thought thereof worship
That in the fighting, time was bled.
The lordly knight with marvel of blade knelt before her-
St. Aurelia. Golden hair and eyes like sleepy pearls,
Stooped her neck sideways and spake pleasantly:
Thou shalt have grace and my love full tenderly.

II.
The Heart

There is no touch of sun, of fallen rain
That ever fell on a more gracious warrior;
I will face the wrath of armies, the bite of swords,
I bid you my love, for this my pleasure,
O sweet one love, O my heart’s delight,
Not twice in the world shall gods do this.
And by the great sea they wed, under sunbeam and breeze,
The betrotheds with lips athirst for thine to slake.
The dust of victories cast into the sea’s fervent flakes of blue,
Battles allured no more, now king and queen of air and sky;
Their love deeper than all plummets sound.
St. Aurelia subtly warmed in time soon bore child,
A princess of bluest eyes, the bluest of life;
Great gods in heaven, what beauty shall be,
Yet all immortal are they, clothed with power,
Not to be comforted by all- a kingdom too great to appease;
By a creed, all ye shall not live, but die.
The sound of iron oppressed the sun, can anything be otherwise-
Soldiers marched, held fast to swords, to death.
To each other: my sweet, for me no more with you, goodbye…

G’mueth early found a sacred love

Still waters run deep…

A dream, a dream is it all

Dawn is dim once upon
The clear soft flowing water,
Its smooth round stones no longer deep,
No longer fair and flawless.

So once the rivulet sang for lovers souls
Softer than sleeps caresses,
Brighter than moon shadows waxed and waned,
Now sighs for love it cherished.

Sunless hangs the dark sky’s weight,
Cloud on cloud the storm winds veering,
Heaped on high, veiled with ominous vapor,
Lures and lulls subdued by drought,

Less mighty than the heaving of time or fate.
Now, clothed in dust-colored clay
Lying beneath wooded trees,
Warped and wrinkled, endures a woeful state.

It scorns the shore and leaves them free,
Strange as death, fair as life,
O sea-robbed November;
With once statelier semblance, now feigning.

Come early Spring, the white-winged Nor-Easter,
Snow doth melt and spurs the sea,
A dream, a dream is it all—sky, water, wind;
Rivulet, feel your rebirth, your slumber leaving.
(Fulfill with the pulse of diviner pleasure).

A dream, a dream is it all

Sea waters and a small unregarded sun

A desolate land that is lonelier than the
Salt-encrusted sea,
Far fields where weft of grasses lay beneath
Thick woven clouds,
Exhausted by the changing tides;
The marsh holds the wreck of its riches—
No shelter for fallen boats or fishers.

Far flickering sun and winds lacking breath
Offer no hope for waifs of Glaucous gulls,
Their thrall of flight hath sinned;
On wings of mercy they are relentless
In the wan sky where nightfall stands erected.

Late day the seawater is haggard; in her darkening
The sound of tiring carp, bass, bullhead,
Their breath fulfilled for a day,
Yet the hands of waves are not weary of giving,
Whitecaps lay the lash on until fish call in the billows.

Seawalls have no granite for girder,
No fortalice fronting its stand,
The reefs are less bank in its sands,
For the fishing boats have no surety to be
When the bank is abreast of their bows.

The dawn out of darkness is but one,
Out of waters that hurtle and crash,
No rest from the wind as it passes,
Where, hardly redeemed by the waves,
Lie thick among the grasses,
Scatheless across the sea.

As the souls of fisherman disburden
And clean of the sins they cast,
The sea life is guerdoned,
Its flesh the dust of wrecks.

Wave upon wave that the wind cannot
Number are lulled by the chimes of the tides
And here in the sea press drifting
Are the anchors of time—rusted fast and firm
In the marshes, the tomb of those denied.

The sun’s eye flashes to the sea’s live light,
Its warm lips breathe back to breaking clouds,
It kisses the wafted breeze; dense waves change
Under its colored arches, its caps are tipped with gold.

Miles and miles in leagues without a change, yet time
Forgotten, the sea’s borders deep as deep; its plumage
Sharp and soft—salt and splendid, gleams and glows.
Streak of glimmering shoreline, its steeples cleave the low
Bright sky; stern above, the dune hill ranges where life
Has ebbed, too fast its faith of heart was broken.

Sea waters and a small unregarded sun

Two poems from the crypt…

A bizarrely improbable coincidence

A coincidence ago,
She who once held the iron justice gavel,
The sea sexton clapped in a diver’s bell
And a waxed contemplating skull
(Spoke not a word in three lean months),
Swapped all in a relic scrapping
For a road east to Prague, a fishing rod,
And water on a frog- exchanged not a word,
As her twin gab banged a blind exchange,

Now merrily on her way, compassed, puffing her
Excess pounds, to a Czech republic by a dissected
Fishery water (with reel and bait), with a
Riveting-tongued amphibian; all in dusted conjured
Footprinted soil; she, chiming the time with a gavel,
Sextoned salty directions (fogged breathing), and
Skeletal candle, spindled laterally with enough
Currency for both; their destination near with the
Proper passports and bus terminal lockers.

Both arrived like an exodus from a book chapter,
Who then is she? The den of her shape seemed
Remarkable; dressed like a folded garden (the other
Intricately cultivated); both pleasing to the eye of
The beholder. Image of images, stepping forth
Through the timebell, the bronze clapper in motion-
An unnatural parallel. The world stood still in this
Thimble of coincidences- bizarrely improbable,
Both ghosts up from the conjured earth soil.

A bizarrely improbable coincidence

The wayside bride of the empty house

Under a conceiving moon, on the dry
Grass plain,
There this night she sat on the
Swing board
Where barren tree longed for death in a
Cemetery of leaves,
She labored in love, many dark hours,
Pleaded for
The seed to grow inside her, yearned for
The wisp of a breath,
Yearned for a child in the milking moonlight;
Time by,
Dust on her flesh, shy with the rough riding
Boy that died there

Who once in a summer loved her, twined in
The roasting sun,
Clung to each other, thrashed in the bushes,
Rippling soft
Like a white lake; white gown bride in the
Church house,
Wooed flow of words, promises, soon scurrying
In the dowse
Of betrayal, he, quick in another love,
Bounced in a bed
But nothing bore, no mouthing veined;
He was a simple Jack
With a boulder of affairs, he kissed the
Mouths of dust

With his mole snout blunt. Man of my
Flesh, know now
Your vice and the scythe-eyed raver,
The bridal blade.
Fear not the flat, scathing blood, fear
Not the pine box screws,
Socket and grave, the grassy earth;
Ghost with your ghost,
Stroke your bones on mine, look into
My spittled eyes,
Feel the desolate child dark of the
Wombed coffin;
Feel not the holy flood of my desires,
My stuffed lung crying for love.

The wayside bride of the empty house

January 2020

Because the winter wind teters on the steel rope bridge,
Shall a blind man walk straighter in its shadows?
Shall a white cane and tin cup lodged in his palms suffer
The emptiness of a dark room?
The snow sniffs, pours on the tip of his tongue for a thirst,
It clouts his spittle like a broken life;
The sightless beggar alone in the twigs of his
Eyes, two burning embers
Smoldering, licking his life through a deadly accident,
Plucked by an explosion,
Forever, as his tongue breaks its
Tomb,
Rounds at the end like a wagged root.
Because he stands alone, one story out of a
Bum city,
His frozen wife’s juices drift like a fixed
arctic sea
Secretly in statuary,
Shall he, planted in the cold and desolate street,
Turn to stare at an old year
Toppling down in the muddle of glass
And cement
Like the mauled reflections of immigrants?
The salt trucks and melted asphalt
Furnish heat from manhole covers in a
Dead warmth,
He, a bent over man in anticipation
Is plucked from frostbite in a saving grace.

January 2020

Omens

I make these in earnest warning when
Each omen, like a stone-tongue
Breath’s rag, puffed and blown into
Your breastknot, your nettled innocence,
Quite frank like a closed pearl,
Molested sea, glint like sirens, staved
Into whale caverns, the ivory town,
Huge as Jonah’s five assassin fingers,
Who made a weapon from an ass’s
Skeleton, walked the sea-sand in the
Toppled sundown, eyelids fastened
On a killing, murder’s sake, dark into
The jaw-bone like an approaching wave,
Wounded the whale skin- the hero’s
Head lies scraped of every legend.

From his mother’s womb, he has a religious
Tongue that laps up the mud, love’s
Anatomist with the righteous beads,
Saves the hopeless with their inch-taped
Lips from the Roman rank and hood; his
Cross to bear- buried in sacrificial linen,
Sewn with black venom’s thread; resurrected,
For all the dead ascend, summoned up by the
Breath-white, curtained mouth of forgiveness.

These blind eyed lepers breathe a wind of
Vision, their cauldrons rooted, fume like a
Dead Sea; toss in the burning crows feet,
The crumpled packs of toads, the rindless
Hares, beat the cobwebbed drums; pour it
On the terrible world of their brethren’s skin-
One rood dropped down like stacked cards,
A dismal pyramid, ruins filled with rooms of
Errors, the rock shroud in a sharp wind.

The burning bush with its loud fire, written
Tablet scriptures, and the Jesus ghost,
Mild as a pardon, delivered to the Moses
Man on a hailing hill covered with cold
Flintsteps; his words lost to the limp,
Uneating silence and the locked tents;
These are his contraries cast in stone.
The golden beast follows in its molten
Flight up cinder-nesting columns of
Nonbelievers, the starved herd; they walk
The warring sands sprawled to ruin,
Bray with the jawbone of an ass; seek to
Hang with beheaded veins for murder’s
Sake- the noose in a sun-gloved hand.
They have picked the live heart of a savior.

Omens

Prologue to a marsh

Autumn winding down now
As nature speeds winter’s snow
In the solstice frigid sun,
In a marsh’s tidal lagoon
By a river’s bend
Tangled with sawgrass and reeds,
Mire, fowl, fin, and feathered quill
At a basin’s dancing current,
By salty sediment, starfish sands
With their fishwife cross
Terns, pipers, cockles and snails,
The sky up there, crow black, rain
Tackled with clouds who kneel
To the sunset nets,
Heron nearly in flight,
Mummichogs, silversides, and shells
That speak brackish seas,
Eternal deepened waters away
From the urban sprawl
Whose neon towers will catch
In the lighted night
Like stalks of cattails, strumpshaw grass,
A poor wind sings
To you suburbs, though a melodious
Yearning, a faithful act,
The screech of owls in
Disappearing wood,
Splayed sounds
Out of tree-thumbed leaves
That fly and fall,
Crumble into earthen soil.
The rumpus of snowflakes
Trumpet the marsh,
A bellowing white ark
As winter begins
Over the sleeping bogs,
Moonbeams flickering on
Plumbed byrns of mud
Down to the sea, curlew,
Into the dark shoals,
The water-lidded lands.

N1 Prologue to a marsh