By the time
I got to the end
I didn’t know
where I started…
By the time
Some wrong is right, some right is wrong;
the only matter is who sings the song.
The man who could
teleport as far
as his eyes could see
in a room full of mirrors.
As early March had come in biting and the best were kept inside,
a span of two weeks had passed slowly and sleep had become elusive.
Professors watched second hands tick and gave out faux tests;
these symbolic life quizzes—it’s who makes it who matters.
Desks became confines as concentration went out open windows,
to welcome hands of mild weathered-breeze and new-season sun.
People—tired students, red-eyed lecturers, they didn’t exist;
regular situations became stimuli for a stagnant comatose: why?
No answers formed, except that three days later a person could be a week away,
anywhere—abroad, nothing to do, only to read titles and books which please.
Yet we all sat watching that clock, it moved slower despite us;
now, it would have to stay indoors and assess classrooms of empty chairs.
Scholars and administration would hopefully be in Spring air, taking it in,
with a cold beer in hand and tender sunrays on their back;
minds would exist as empty—blank slates, to pen a tale—an experience,
with no thoughts of what was left sitting behind, with not a hint of rigor.
Waking to this early Tuesday overcast
Love and work scatter the wooden floor below
Amongst dust rhinos and smudged folders, as
Stacked bound books beg for openness
Violins float in the apartment, making classical
Air, as though class systems didn’t exist
A tea kettle is burnt alive at the stove top,
While I starve in scraps of last night, of last minute,
Of yesterday, and of the rest of my life;
These pieces abstract on this yellow kitchen table
The body is fine when the temperature is above freezing;
Spring is here, teasing us back out of our shells—
Newly just out of bed, just in new light,
Now is the product of our sensitive closed eyes
And a person should acquire all of it,
And it’s just the second day of the week
Words we use which we don’t “know”,
Have been framed from a storied past;
Sedimented by interpreted histories,
Always portrayed by fools as fact.
On a bridge
In broad daylight,
Somewhere in Minneapolis—
Between something is the metaphor…
Below light rail trains and buses pass,
The sun is out, yet it is cold.
Alas, we have mirages in Minnesota too—
Desert quality right here, local.
The highway buzzes; 35W is Nascar, and gridlock, and exits;
People are frantic, manic and relentless.
Commuters are driving into downtown,
Between high-rise shrines proof sponsored by your dollar.
But you can only watch.
On East Bank:
Students are walking fast to class,
Near traces of snow, they appear fleeting for February.
Is it spring yet?
Can a poet get two cigarettes?
See what others exhale.
Coffman Union is aflutter,
Not with birds,
Or domestic animals,
More so with paper and motion,
Punctual devotion for the prestigious scholar;
Little trappings and emotions,
A queue to loosen the tight collar.
Trash bins stand, cement benches sit, and the air moves through carrying few leaves and even less sentiment.
Though, they are evidence of last fall.
A lifetime ago, standing on a bridge like this would have been the future,
But it is now,
Here is to another day in the crowd,
The traffic moves without you.
First alarms sounded of a white snowy morning. Heavy and wet, flakes covered the ground as those in the river were covered by water, never to come home again. Fast late last year turns to right now present; and years, and sorted experience before. It came out like a pocket knife to test, to screw, to cut once, deep. It was the kind sharpened to a fine edge. Dead bones rested below, and in the back of one’s mind. People came and went; flesh loosened, darkened, slackened, and dusted with age back to dirt. Blades of toy windmills caught the grey air, while leaves fell zigzag to the browned December ground. We just ran by. Air brakes of a semi sounded off far on a distant highway, for those who traveled about the countryside, between the bluffs, near the riverbed; all to hear, all to unite in this one thought, some time, some date, in one mind. Ubiquitous green trees once loomed watching over this tiny town, Apple Capital, providing breath, under thick blankets of sepia cloud; brisk and cool in winter light, it moved through valleys touching rock, touching sand, touching faces, creating must and dew, on bark, and Fall’s fodder, on all who caught a glimpse. Each little speck floated soundless, seeming endlessly to the darkened pavement, as eyes took to more than they could unpack.