Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Queen of Spain Fritillary

A honeysuckle-yellow and brick house on Laurel Avenue listened by the train tracks as it backed to an alley.

Sidewalks and grass and a wandering garden of cacti, herbs and wildflowers waited for a little girl who waited for a man with a truck and a dog.

Sometimes the girl and the dog waited together for the man, on the cracked and rolling pavement of the dip-dizzy driveway.

Remember when butterflies mattered?

Just large enough to hold the boat, behind the garden and the humble-bowing house, stood the proud garage. An enormous structure up and huge before the girl and dog could find a new place to wait!

And almost as fast as it was new it was old.  Dusty and cluttered and full of secret smells.

Bamboo fishing poles.
Two baby quail cooing and purring about a custom cage.
Duck decoys for dog training.
Pictures of the little girl.
And of course, the boat.

But we're talking about butterflies and there weren't any butterflies inside this boat-filled building.

A secret, then.  Because you've been so kind I'll share it with you!

Between the garden and the garage was a very narrow lane made for secret-seekers.

First you had to believe there was more than what you saw and then you had to be brave enough to go there, even if you thought you might find less than what you wanted.


I know that's a lot, but secret-seekers must be strong.

But look, there on the roof's ledge just above a scary patch of snarling weeds and precariously suspended on sticky prayers, a chrysalis for the secret-seeker to find!

A tiny, dangling pod of miracle and hope.  A caterpillar wrapped in instinct and trust.

Then the building made sense.  Everything was understood.

Even the guardian dog accepted that the building was so the lane could lead to the chrysalis that would make a butterfly, and she only-just-a-little nervously let the little girl go.

Maybe you're a caterpillar looking for your ledge?

Are you a butterfly already winged and singing gossamer songs?

Or are we still waiting?  The dog after the girl wishing high above to that tiny hope-spun locket?

Well, I'll tell you this.

If a butterfly flew from that pod the girl never saw it.

Not one hint of a budding wing tip.  Not one glistening antennae to broadcast a victory.

Now you see how butterflies can't matter anymore (or yet?), don't you?

You see, the dog still waits for the girl watching the ledge.

And she hasn't finished hoping yet.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Games and Prizes

The honest, wile and guile truth to be wrenched from this drip-dreary day is:

I love the mystery you are.  

And I think you love the not-so-innocence I am.  

But until you find me, we're only playing tag between secrets and dreams.

You're it!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Siren Song

What's left in the scraps and debris of a day?

I've just run two miles; my ears throb from the music (Counting Crows, Bob Dylan, The Killers) and my thighs throb from the unpaved pavement that is this city's roads.

Not much poetry at all in this debris.  But you're reading and I'll write.

I want to know your middle name.

I want to know what color sheets you sleep on; I want to sleep on them while you work.

What do you think about when you can't sleep and why can't you sleep?

When was the last time you laughed so hard it hurt?  When was the last time you cried?

How long has it been since you buried yourself deep in an arching, gasping girl?  And then let her recover herself lying on your chest?

These are the things of life, I suppose.

What's life but breath and smiles, sunsets and goodbye?

Come tumbling toward me, then.

Bring your wants and needs.  Bring your darkness and desire and let me be the siren singing you home.

We'll wreck a landscape of sheets, streets and sunset-glazed grass and laugh, laugh, laugh.

Now, truly.

What's your middle name?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

A place to put my things.

Catch a roar-crashing wave in a shoebox to keep beneath your bed.
Bridle a rhinoceros to ride it through a library.
Imprint your desire on a butterfly's wings,
and ask it to swim.

Are you listening?

Tell your secrets to the Dark, then promise to keep his.
Make breakfast for the Moon, then be sure to wash her dishes.
Bring gifts of acorn oak to the Sun,
and watch the glittering burn.

Listen still.

I need a place to put my things.

I seek a shoebox for my waves; do you have a bed?
I'd like a rhinoceros to fit my bridle to; is your library closed?
My butterfly is too strong.

Please seek my Dark secrets before the Moon rises.
Light your way with an acorn blaze
and be my beacon home.