13 West Side Road 1997.jpgWinter poems - these may not reflect the brutality of winter or the bitterness - or not always anyway - perhaps at times. As with any season, we experience different things at different times. Part of The Tant Mieux Project was to see how the seasonal shifts affect our work... going through the seasons does help clarify. Other poems is an interesting section that is carried from season to season for poems that defy categorization, but then, as I write this, I wonder if most poems do not defy categorization. The world is ours for the writing. Let us write. - s.r.p.

 

image: owen hartford, '13 West Side Road' 

Friday
Dec282007

2.12 a.m | nyc

Four hours and I will wake wake as I wake now,
uncomfortably lonely; this yearning it parses miles.
Does it travel the Harlem current? Can you feel me?

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Friday
Dec282007

a void

Careful. The beam is narrow.
On either side, a blank-fog abyss.
Hard to say which is which;
fall to heaven, fall to hell.

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Saturday
Nov202004

annie said -- for j.d.

Annie said, Never mind. It is over. If she could get over it, then by God, so could i. All the nights of tearshed, empty bed, or sorrow that snaps fresh

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Wednesday
Dec052007

ashes to ashes

These traintrack abandoned buildings
- vacant yards. Only the ailanthus grows.
I remember their fecund, earthy summer scent.
       Things change.

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Sunday
Dec232007

blue hive

The hive is warm – even after this first frost.
A bee-space between each honeyed-comb ensures such warmth.
They swarm, buzz about the Queen, unseen, locked in her chamber.
My hands reach deep within,

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Wednesday
Dec052007

bruiser, she

She’s a four-foot ten bruiser,
all flank fat, no lean meat, just crackling.
Her nails wet, bloodied from scratching at my eyes.
She is a Dictator  - Mein Herr – Mein Fuhrer
following her good book Mein Kampf for easy reference
The rules are set; this or that verboten:
She’ll see us apart yet.
No matter we are cousins, she weaves a knot of no undoing,
Begs it off to the indefinite future – promise not to promise.
She’s a wheezing bellow sump-pump,
machine sucking yellowed bile from a crimson slit throat
virulent, loud, it sucks the room of oxygen, infects the air he breathes
It swallows him up
This is love he says, convinces himself daily;
repeat it like a mantra – pray that it comes true.
She is a plus-sized grinning Cheshire Cat,
yes, we’re all mad here, and we’re so so very angry.
The marks of her storm-trooper boots leave black skids –
obscuring the words of so many love letters years past.
Not even this undoing will content her:
she knows it in her folds, You cannot unring a bell.

Friday
Dec242004

conception - france

I can tell you the exact day.

 

When you and I joined

 

And I felt the delight of conception

 

And the Loire earth breathed

 

Deeply, sighing, and the Pressigny

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Friday
Dec242004

dateline - december 24, 2004

68 degrees and raining in Northern Florida. It’s Christmas Eve day and a jogger Was hit by an elderly woman who was Sure she had ran over a pelican.

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Thursday
Jan252007

divest, then invest -

You should know that every thing you gave:

a note, a card, a book a film, a jar of honey, a card

with the slant of your pen and which bears my name

I have never discarded one. Each is bound, a photo

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Tuesday
Feb072006

divination

The end of street sea sings to small, curled ear and I know now that I can rest.

The fisted, hard sounds of my jerked weeping will soon enough wane, leaving only a void.

The commotion has ceased, for now - at least. Still, I do not sleep.

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Thursday
Dec092004

Electroencephalogram

It took two to hook me up; The wires, the glue, my head Bearing coils, an electrical Medusa. A brain to poke and probe, the swing Arm strobe hangs above me Flickering fast and bright, Stare

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Thursday
Nov182004

emergency room or fear of dying

Just a punch of anesthesia. A needle to the vein. I am all insouciant and light, all pain hushed, the heart now quiet. The hours bears the insignia of the moment.

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Sunday
Nov142004

esplanade tears

I have fought, and I have lost Confronted every demon, each new Woman you drew close. So long I tried To be the shape of your desire; Sweet and soft and dulcet. Instead, I flail, I fail. am lost, never found. What now, then, with such grief, wrapped tight in my tissue, the wet ball with which I curl My constant companion.

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Wednesday
Feb152006

finger tipped with ice

It is as if the ice-storm herself

had taken her bony fingers to my hand

held it there a while, until my hands turned

dead, white and grey, why the blood had

gone missing! Has nobody noticed?

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Sunday
Nov282004

geometry

For days now, I've turned around the garden stone and thought about the whole thing of it. I glide smooth, quick circles, an orbit around the birdbath and the koi pond, and still I see no way in which what you want to be can be. You have left out the variables, the a the b the c, the x axis and y may indeed intersect, but at which point and why? And if they do, are they even headed in the same direction? If they intersect then they are not parallel lines as is needed to sustain love. Love runs parallel, it runs a steady course and forever. You are all triangles, hard-edged and sharp. A love that would leave me raw and bleeding

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Sunday
Nov142004

in the heart of the afternoon

I remember the gentle tap Of my shoes on cobbled stone On the linden-lined street That led to the brownstone Where we?d meet. The balmy July air, heavy w

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Wednesday
Jan052005

january 5th | winter sorrow

Look at me. Flat and white, blank as the snow that falls steadily, a gauze to bloodied land. I am hurt. Can no-one see

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Thursday
Nov182004

lilac skin

it is there. Undeniable, in the cool- hot touch of your hand, the way it cuts the layers of grief, the day's air would travel the champs elysee for just one touch. Sweet, it is wanted. Welcome.

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Tuesday
Feb072006

lovers - tahiti

She offers you shadow.

Not darkness, too heavy.

But shadow, gentle light

grayed rolls of silk, they drape

every problem. Look:

the way the loft is unlit.

The window panes - their

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Thursday
Dec162004

memory 

I remember everything. One thinks not. That to forget is so easy. Yet no. You'd be wrong. Even the love, the church-bells

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