Collapsed in a Pearl of Decades

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Collapsed in a Pearl of Decades

Against all ritual we slept
Without sex, more intimate and aware
Of our innate deeper connection

We were souls that had been
Swallowed and mumbled by the world
Against all innocence, we had been played

Down to our roots, like boughs receded
By the elements, living & loving
There were idioms in Mandarin

That encapsulated what we had become
Monks or ghosts, or valleys of rain
And a shrinking of orange light

When dusk hits you bare-chested
On those days somewhere
Lurking between Spring & Summer

We were the unsung breaths suspended
That collapsed in poems, we knew absence
And cherished our abandonments

Like the self-pity that stored deep feeling
For a universe that begged to be forgiven
We had to undergo periods of purification

The kind solitude that is a shelter & a curse
A kind of barefoot splendour
Of learning again about the mute warmth of self.

Burning the Journals where I left you 

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Burning the Journals where I left you

I made a fire
For burning letters
It’s not subtle, I won’t wait
With tin eyes and sorrow
It’s merciless to let love bleed away

I’d rather dream in clear waters
And rejoice in night swimming
For riding my arctic shade
I’ll swallow glistening for breakfast
I made a fire

To light my poems on fire
So that I’d forget you
And find wishes more divine
Between the yellow lettuces
And the weird blue dreams of yoga

Underwater, at least I’d be ready
To know love in a different way
The sort of mental love that
My non-animal self prefers
That does not require wombs

Or divorces, or vows for orchids in bloom
That will probably be taken back.

Ode to Split Lips and Midnight Poems

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Ode to Split Lips and Midnight Poems

The way all light must be, I felt
It on your cheeks, like pure Ukrainian blood
From the veins of the open-wide landscape

And who would have thought we’d be
By your side, Pacific ocean breeze
Recast to our chosen brood and poems spilled
Again, it must have been the laughter
And the tears on your smiles

Your lyrical soul tossed in the
Whispers of the wind, the velvet
Contour of your melodious expressions

A clarity of purpose in such serenity
Our cats couldn’t read The bear
Who ate the stars, but they had contributed
You know what I mean, and I was happy
For you, with a split lip of divinity
You deserved even more than you got.

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Thighs of your Genius 

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Thighs of your Genius

(for Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach)

I brought your Jewish soul some water
For your literary festivity
We both kneeled by the muse of spiritual words
Our collarbones angled to the skies

We knew the sacrifice and the longing
We were migrants of a different sort
We had travelled with necessity
And ached to find a home somewhere

Beneath the different dialects
The open-ended wounds we had sustained
Getting from one place to another
And sustaining the years where injuries

Were slow to heal, our hearts and lungs
Felt the fear of too much shirting
Our pulse steady as a loving pupil
We felt the silence of a lifetime of breath

In the steady gaze of each other
And then we let go, for all our dreams
Had already existed in the written word
There was only an unlived memory of love

That stuck to the back of our throats
Like medicine for poetry, and dispatched anonymity
Our dance of vocabularies were
Like Piscean windows that met the Eastern symbols
An alchemy of goose bumps and organic teasing.