Friday, August 24, 2012

Tuesday Poem: previously published by Melusine in Summer of 2009

Moonlight Calving

They say those who begin under 
moonlight, give the richest milk.
A cow lies down in the field when it's her time.
You're summoned out of warm bed
into the damp, the clover underfoot.

The shepherds were drawn by a star,
but here in these rolling fields,
all silvered and shadowed,
you've come because you can't sleep.

There are no choirs singing.
All you hear is the lowing of one in need of relief.
You will be her annunciation, her benediction
as you reach up inside her and pull as hard as you can.


But the writer worries.
Who cares that they have to be yanked out?
And it hurts, goddamn it,
that she's full of a rage
she knows no one wants to hear about.
It's messier than she ever could have imagined.

Don't look away in embarrassment, though.
She delivers, she does eventually.
As she cleans it up, you'll see,
the thing will develop a presence.

This tender scaffolding of words
still too wobbly to stand,
curls on the moonlit page
fresh from its difficult birth,


For the sake of argument
why not say it is also effortless:
akin to Jell-O setting if Jell-O suddenly set and came alive.

One minute there is moonlight.
Well, we call it light, but really it is nothing
even remotely resembling true light:
the white of sunlight with its hidden waves of color.
This is light reflected from a body curving toward another body.

An ethereal whiteness
slowly solidifies in a field,
comes alive as a newborn calf
bleating for its mother,
and we feel the milk of its yearning,
thrill to its nudge and nuzzle.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Tuesday Poem: previously published by Caprice in 1996

 Genesis (The Real Story)

In the beginning there was violence.

The two of them struggling for dominance.
His rage a black hole
sucking the two of them
out of time and back again,
Her defiance lacerating Him:
the sharp edges of a nebula skirting too close.

It takes two to tango,
my mother always said,
and it came from her knowledge of this:

The First Tango,

when the tension between Them
caused what scientists call 'The Big Bang';
what actually was the first and last separation.

She shook Him, you see.
Wake up you son of nothing!

So He tackled Her,
just to restrain Her, mind you,
but then She maneuvered 
and bit His celestial finger.

Suddenly, it was Wham!
A huge fist square to Her chest.

How dare you hit me in the breast!
You stinking Red Giant!
You White Dwarf!

She flung planets in His face
so He pushed Her hard until 
She thudded against this one,
knocking the wind out of her 
and all the fire too.

That's when She wept for emptiness,
the wounding of the two of them
stretched thin across eternity's indifference.
 She wept for loneliness, for having no one else,
and as She wept She tore at the planet's sides,
until there were great holes to fill with tears.
She wept for thousands of years.

You know the rest.

When the place came alive Her mood changed.
She began to try to find a way to love again,
for the two of them, some tangible alternative.

She kept messing around with water and dust, 
remaking Herself over and over in miniature,
until She got it right. And then She made Him 
as She wished Him to be, over and over 
until She got it right. She made their bodies 
fit together. She made them willing
to reach across the night.

She gave them more to work with, 
you might say, flawed though they were.
Let there be a light spawned out of darkness,
She said. And She saw that the light was good.

It was the outcome of a fight,
the end of a cosmic honeymoon,
a bubble that suddenly burst: Blake's 
mystical spheres torn apart.

Of course His story is altogether different.

He dreamed Himself moving 
over the face of the waters,
Gardener of the Firmament,
benign, and of course, betrayed
by the slither of woman's 
dissatisfaction, her hunger 
to know it all.