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“On soft Spring nights I’ll stand in the yard under the stars – Something good will come out of all things yet – And it will be golden and eternal just like that – There’s no need to say another word.”
-Jack Kerouac

Seeking Physical Presence In A Stock Photo

Teenage intuition seeks alternatives to baring witness
Conversations  delayed till no longer relevant

Legs run
Tracing root systems to river’s edge
Flames whisper from peripheral’s blur
Time capsule’s accordance
Flesh is buried
Trinkets sewn of heart string
Reunite with hand prints on hinges
Pulling heavy breath through narrow openings
Stumbling still abled
Safety in knowing but not showing face,
Translated shoe laces missing
Tied a knot somewhere
Stopped the bleeding for a little while longer
Scrapbook sheets left behind
Licked a stamp as last chance exit
To be returned anywhere
Except every moment not shared

A picture framed
Gravel roads kaleidoscope stained
Porch light projecting a phosphorescent montage of letters kept
Context shown as postscript flashbacks
Narrated by voices in tones of bodies present,
Pressed together pen under skin
Wrote in cursive slender yet elegant,
A signature and hyphen followed by
A smile with some numbers added
Replaced the thought of never seeing you

Feather Weight

A kiss creased into a back pocket
Smiled unexpectedly
In reference to a present opened on Christmas,
An item thoughtful and needed
Following a fence post wanted

A knock prior
Passively echoing a feeble voice
Whispering

Shake dry the sultry atmosphere
A brush of moist air passing through

Dive down stairs like submarines learning to sink
Releasing ballast out of habit
Plunge mechanical
Skin rusting
Oiled joints moving with effort
Onto couch cushions-
The very bottom yet just beginning to,
This is where it begins

Trading finger prints with hand shakes-
A continued attempt to show these arms are
Harmless
Continually striving for contact

Laughter asunder
Subtle oxygen deprivation
Pupils dilate in accordance
With action perceived,
Teeth reveal themselves
Peaking around the corners of a mouth worn upward

Ambient gossamers of cerulean float freely
Between
Two telescopes meeting-
Bashful harmony brushed gently
Into the inner folds
Of knees swollen,
Wading water convinced pressure
Could crush such a thing

A throat ladened dry
Spoke as if swallowed by
The undertow
Gave response to tension-
A note to be read
Until the words are wet and impassive

Wait To Be Seated

Cups of orange juice spilt
Over minor street vocabulary words,
Spoken softly sifted
Through subtle smoke signals
And parenthesis, cued laughter genuine
And honest caught between pauses in sentences
Off timed phrases- “I could piss in the street”
“Well wouldn’t that be a sight to see” she says smiling, quirky
And clueless the silverware hasn’t been touched
Excuses brushed aside with hand motions,
Shy tongues napkins used
To clean the table stumble with
Meaningless phrases like
“I’ll have the chicken cordon bleu”
And “I love you”

Asunder

Sleep within us Great Bear
Ever shifting as we wander, oh beautiful
Land of unknown pockets and
Crevices brimming with innumerable
Narratives passing passing by,

Not a minute before ten
The car speeds seventy-five,
Landscapes and hands collapse in cacophony
Speaking a crossbred language of consciousness and abundance,
Stopping at a river coloured meadow unassuming
Stopping at a crosswalk downtown Traverse City
Nursing cups of tea noticing that familiar feeling
Of being somewhere previously unexplored,

Fervently kind, comfortably gentle
At sight this trio of denim and nylon would be
Placed in a coffee shop cloud cover casting threats of rain,
A map would have us be bountiful-
A brilliant constellation dotting the state,

Every footprint or photo taken
Becoming another piece set free still to Michigan’s wilderness-
A story a few years from now
Seen in a valley deep down a field
Between monoliths Dwarf Iris blooming
With the colour of our laughter

Driving home felt like night turning to day

A Long Weekend Away

Received in the mail today
An image and handwritten statement
Declaring that someone was somewhere
And they thought of me,
Stamped and dated visiting Paris April 26th,
From Europe over ocean
Great lake to Michigan
To all places I never thought
To inspect

Given context or suppositions,
How do I know when wandering with no destination
In mind that I’m wandering in the right direction?
These trees and faces all look the same
Seen from a distance, following a map of convictions
Hoping this faith in getting lost will somehow
Lead to a place where I’m comfortable
In my own skin, a place occupied with laughter
Vistas vast and brilliant and I can sit for a moment
In company of coincidence and evanescent idleness,

Flipping the Eiffel Tower over
Reveals a string of numbers and letters
That resemble a familiar address
One that I’m still trying to discover

To All Things Missing

Sunshine dances in three-four
Down red winds of the Day’s River,
Canary wine pedicels litter deciduous
Plateaus intoxicated if only, petals reach
For my tongue wanting to be swallowed or
Acknowledged a faulty reincarnation of chemical
Reactions, I’m human now nothing
More than ever, ambitions stifled
Reduced to making minimum
Wage and fighting each day
To stay awake,
Ran timeless together a brief escape
Encompassed again by distantly
Nostalgic surroundings, unable to bloom
Stripped of beauty, given skin and lungs and sent
To suffer here I lie spine pressed to chartreuse quilts
Hair whistling gently impersonating bluestem
Meadows dreaming restlessly suspended
In relief, speak loud oh wildflowers oh wild lovers of mine
And I unable to communicate, will listen

As It Is

Joy consummates the soul, sews the ragged seams of one’s heart shut, cleans the wound and filters that putrid mud which has soiled the liquid purity of blood. All to often however, failure is accepted- falling asleep to Parks and Rec. caked in sweat with the volume up so damn loud your own dismal conceptions drown without a second thought, whispering compliments into whiskey bottles hoping they’ll return the favor with friendship become hobbies. When not working or studying for twenty years of debt these are the things that occupy us. No more do we dream of grand fantasies or shout impossibilities to the heavens as if we ourselves are the gods the oceans answer to. No, we are but human, idle and defeated existing under ironbound weights; our skin a canvas of lacerations exclusively okay, never better, never worse.

To find joy, fleeting as it always is, is to realize that the innocent idea of “infinity” lasts a measurable amount of time. A first kiss unexpected and rushed on a school night walking briskly home before Mother realizes that you’re thirty minutes late for dinner, a road trip in rust lasting a week of curse words and cigarettes- I left my accent in West Virginia, the smell however, stayed for another ten days. Each petty attempt at holding back a smile that would strike a sun in the darkness of my gut remained for as long as needed. For a measurable amount of time the chains were lifted, arteries were allowed to heal, the heart allowed to beat. Let this body be a map of cuts and bruises, perpetually determined to convalesce as much as I suffer, I will find my way home cleansed and honest if only for a moment.