It Doesn’t Matter Anymore – Part 2

The least interesting man in the world:

I don’t always write poetry, but when I do I am usually inspired by impressions and feelings, rather than incidents. I let my mind go soft in the face of overwhelming forces like love or nature, then search for words to capture the resultant swirling phantoms.

There is only one time that I wrote a poem inspired by a specific event. On June 12, 2016 a man opened fire in the Orlando nightclub Pulse. When the shooting and screaming stopped, 49 people were dead and 53 more were wounded. Beyond those victims, many times more people were sickened and scarred by the All-American phenomenon of gun violence and the cowardice of government officials at every level who allow it to fester.

I wrote this poem in reaction:

It doesn’t matter anymore
Why it was done, or how
Bright red splatter is everywhere
Mixed with chunks of flesh and booze
Eventually it goes down the drain
And gets washed out to sea

It doesn’t matter anymore
The deed cannot be undone
The memory cannot be forgotten
There’s only so much that tears can wash away

Angry voices yell and tell
Who to blame and who to punish
Terrorists
Gun nuts
Liberals
NRA
LGBTQIA
Muslims
Congress
Obama
Killary
Drumpf
It doesn’t matter anymore

We like to pretend that we want it to stop
We like to tweet #neveragain
We like to send our thoughts and prayers
We like to hold candlelight vigils
We like to weep together
But we don’t want it to stop
We don’t want it to stop
We don’t want it to stop
We don’t want it to stop
It doesn’t matter anymore

 

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Falling

There is a reason we call it falling in love
We are always looking forward
and neglect to see the thing
lying at our feet, across the path

It only takes a little tangle in our
toes or in our ankles
to bring our tower of illusions crashing down

Crumbling rationality and reason
independence and clarity
future and past
continuity
sanity

Love leaves us humbled, lying flat
squinting up at her blinding light
grateful for the warmth

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Drawing

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I thought I might do a drawing today
and maybe you would pose for me
You don’t need to reveal anything that makes you feel uncomfortable
I can see all that I need in the skin
under your eyes
and the positions of your fingers
and the width and length of your lips

Instead a person I love died
and my eyes won’t work that way today
I won’t see fingernails or eyelashes
I won’t see the geometry of your crossed legs
or the devastation of the sunlight that rampages through your hair

The things I see are in-between this
world and another one
One that comes before and also after
the world that embraces both stages of infancy

His cold breath is on all our necks
He wears a watch that tells no time
that only ticks and doesn’t move
that bruises and stretches and breathes heavily

This morning I felt the sun on my chest
like it didn’t know summer was over
that lit a new path for my feet to follow
and offered plausible explanations for
the lies I told myself
about how I’d draw you in stuttering sunlight
and ask you all I want to know
like I didn’t know summer was over

The Path

There is a path inside my heart
that leads to you
A path of sand for naked feet
to sink into

I walk the path while the sun comes
Out of the sea
And follow footprints that can only
Come from you

I walk the path on a cold night
without a star
I reach into the emptiness
and touch you there

A soft wind blows the sand around
and hides our tracks
So no one knows that we were here,
just you and me
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