One of my favorite phrases to hear on Monday is,
“Oh, you got a bit of sun over the weekend…”
The idea of going outside and sitting in the sun
without buildings, without work, without people,
without being stuck in-doors, without a thing to do,
without being paraded around like a fool at a party,
without the constraints of what society deems correct:
you should wear sunscreen, you should cover up!
you should avoid a sunburn—it will cause cancer!
I have to assume that people die of accidents daily.
You should avoid cigarettes, and expensive scotch,
and domestic beers, and fishing, and jerking off,
and relaxing for no reason, and not doing anything,
and cooking raw red meat, and frying fillets of fish,
and reading a book, or two, and driving an old truck,
and thinking about sexual fantasies, or debauchery.
Yeah, you should probably avoid all of those fun things,
and while you’re at it, make sure to hide from the sun.
Nah. I want to say, “You didn’t get any sun at all?
That’s great, I am sorry to hear you are a shut-in.”
But rather to save some time, I just say, “Yeah.”
How the rain goes.
The day the morning skies opened up,
rain came down in steady droplet form.
We know that feeling, the coming change,
or at least the animals do.
Around were deeper shades of green,
deep sepia trunks of trees, and veils of standing water.
There was no dry in the air, no dry in the heavens;
precipitation entered, and we are waiting for it to pass.
Bodies came wetted through,
going door to door so far away,
at any destination, at any time—covered.
It happens out of the clouds,
out of miracle,
out of nowhere,
out of thin air, out of life.
Miniature trails come sluiced as streams veined out,
their knotted design along sidewalks spread.
Now it is everywhere, on you dripping, on leaves, on outer matter, and on the ground.
It is soaking, seeping, as it follows gravity down—this life, new and old as one pooled.
Rain went sounding harder and harder,
pouring and pouring,
cats and dogs,
jazz crescendo, percussion,
high hat smashed, pit-pat pit-pat,
drumroll going, please,
to this bursting waterfall overflow,
there was no escaping its element.
The day the morning skies opened up,
rain came down in steady droplet form,
and you were caught in between this transition of wet and dry,
not there, then alive,
then entrenched, then changed, just so.
How the rain goes.
“I can gather all the news I need on the weather report” –Simon & Garfunkel
There is a varied world view at 9:00am.
I sat in a bathroom on a chipped enamel seat,
where devices scattered and dusted lived on the floor,
or clamped to a metal bar on the pale skin of a small wall,
they were begging for a purpose.
Here, the white draped hand towel symbolized stormy conflicts
which could become a bit less precipitous,
next to that, the hair-iron and blow dryer—likewise the same, utilize me now.
They were items I seldom ever touched.
They called me, shining, purposefully—let’s fix this problem.
We have a solution.
They spoke of their warmth in the form of buzzing,
in the cool air of the bathroom.
They were not like me on this cold beginning, I was unplugged and exposed.
They were about to be turned on.
In morning a system of systems was awoken.
My hair was too short to be straightened, too drought dry—no need for blowing,
and sometimes I liked my hands wet because hydration is key.
And they still needed something to fix, still needed a purpose.
The Ides of March to
April bird song,
where sprouts push
and pull to, through
fertile soil; come the
warming sun heat
on affectionate breeze,
past the months of
cool cold torturous toil.
A few brittle flakes of flesh fall to
the standard grey University desk in front of me.
Evidence of one memorable bench-sit sunning had brought me gifts today,
parts of me and more.
They came in gaggles of yoga pants, sparkling wet sidewalk pools—dripping,
and the wafted smell of thawing topsoil.
These odors damp and dank, some familiar and sweet, natürlich;
smells a boy can never forget.
Sharing words of Baudelaire and Schadenfreude,
Chaucer and April—but, hypocrite reader, you are not guilty,
it is I with the pen and the paper and the view and the thought in mind—
These other student-creatures saunter forward naked, empty, out of
static blasé bundles of winter climes, too Springtime is due, unawares.
I smile at the idea of my taut semi-reddened flesh, dried and cooked
in yesterday’s ultraviolet rays—as my significant other warns of skin cancer,
but this is my proud ignorant trophy to own.
I can only thin-lipped big-tooth express, and fiddle with dead skin cells
as they rest on my desk in cross-shadows and heated-light.
Sitting an hour between classes seemed as days elapsed,
at a Washington Avenue coffeehouse table,
where tall transparent windows
beamed reflective light,
beaconing inquisition: “just look outside”.
Taking the hint, lazy eyes gazed to witness a fashion of layers,
dark shades of boots, and clench-fisted gloves,
blankly moving full-through their owner’s stepping saunter;
blurred these creatures came going along the sidewalk’s edge,
tracking herds in asymmetrical circles,
in late-winter’s dressings—
they gave a bob and weave dance,
contrasting against the
silhouetted patrons standing inside in line, motionless.
A cigarette had fallen central to the commotion,
and became squashed-to on the wet ground—
accordion-like, a thin pale smoke drifted above and into the street air,
between stoplights and cars,
vanishing with exhaust fumes
and puffed exhalation plumes of each passing pedestrian.
Cold feet, slick rubber wheels, and the Green Line’s steel
came around loud moving through,
bounding over the dotted masses of miniature speckled glaciers,
emitting a cacophony of moans, shrieks and squeals
one’s ears could not avoid, even within shut doors.
On a stage there stood warm vessels waiting
for huddles of hypothermic;
metro transit arrived late near soon to be ice-melt
and future city gutter streams.
I sat sipping hot sepia
with this view, with this wildlife,
wondering how the animals at the zoo
felt about the
who poked and smudged at their glass view.
June: It seems so far away, I wish it were today.
Overcast clouds open to
A downfall of frozen crystals;
Which sparkle broken on the ground,
A straight wind carries me off – strong,
To far, to present, to past;
Grey sky day
Take me away.
Weather which is not to be overlooked.
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.