Stripes

Every other line
Your favorite color, once.

Every other lie
I see right through.

Every other line
My favorite utterance.

Every other try
I get more you.

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Return To An Empty Shelf

I came back to look at who we used to be,
     and what I found was void of life and love.
I looked at our dreams,
     and everything once there was gone.
I looked at our achievements,
     and they were only broken trophies;
     all the nameplates baring other people’s names.
I looked, and there wasn’t anyone here;
     even you had flown away.
I looked, and our proud past was a sham;
     forgotten memories on a dust-covered shelf.

I should not have come back.

Tramp

Maturity watches her step,
walking among the daisies
and dandelions.

She is a visitor,
respecting the beauty
of the meadow.

She kneels down to smell
aromas—
those fragrant delicacies.

Immaturity hikes into view,
crushing flowers into grass,
pointing and commenting.

Both enjoy mother’s gift,
savoring flora—
breathing in her spirit.

Both leave footprints,
evidence they were there;
significant to nature herself.

Maturity treads carefully,
preserving the beauty
for the next admirer.

Immaturity plucks a daisy,
sliding stem behind ear,
taking whatever she wants,

trampling the rest.

Monochromatic

I was listening to a critic
just back from a museum visit.
Those paintings;
just solid colors
over the whole canvas.

So simple.
Boring, even.

He didn’t get it.
He didn’t feel
as the artist intended.

He criticized those painting
while lounging with me beside his pool
staring up at the clear blue sky.

He stopped his bitching
long enough to exclaim:

“God damn it!
What a beautiful day!
Just look at that sky!
Not a cloud in sight!”

I looked up
at monochromatic sky.

I looked at him—
at his giant grin.

He got it.
He was not bored
nor critical.

He felt exactly
as the painter intended.

Where We Once Loved

Snow blankets fields
Casting youth into darkness
Purifying the landscape
Hiding from us the realities
Of the harsh land on which we live

Wind bites cheeks
Splits lips
Pounds against shutters
Tears at safety and destroys shelter
Whipping us all toward chaos

Agony boils blood
Explodes from capillaries
Bursts from tear ducts
Divides us from each other
Severing our familial bonds

You drift further out of focus
Fainter and fainter
Blurred into extinction
Like the love we shared
In the warmth of summer

Plenty were my hopes
Plenty were my dreams
Now, I have only memories
Projected on the white canvas
Covering the land

where we once loved.