A Shimmery, Summery Sound

I hope, for you,
the singing of the insects is
a shimmery, summery sound

I hope the water that trickles
across the slippery rocks
brings you something that can pass for peace

I hope the light
that filters through
the endless rows of branches,
casts its longest shadows
on the grass that almost tickles
your bare toes and heels and arches
in a way that makes you
smile

 

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I Never Knew Your Name

When I say I never knew your name, I am not talking about the one your parents gave you. I am talking about the one you gave yourself. You know the one I mean, the one that bubbled to the surface of your life on a hot summer night, like this one, when you were all alone in your room, feeling inexplicably sad but hopeful.

This name was not one that you had heard before, yet you instantly recognized it as yours.

Although at that time I was hundreds of miles away from you, and had not met you, and could not hear the name you gave yourself, I felt the reverberations of its echo.

When I am calm enough, I still can.
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The Thing in Me

thing

The thing in me that
your long look kindled,
that grew and blossomed
under the soft light
of an all-forgiving sun
will not wither
will not die
but also will not grow again

The thing in me that
made me feel like something new
has turned around to look at me from the other side
and makes me feel like something old

The thing in me that
keeps me warm when the sun goes down and
keeps me cool when everything boils,
that keeps me calm when the bullets fly and
alerts me when the whole world sleeps
has reached the end of the circle and
like a song at the end of a verse it
has come to a chorus that will repeat
until the fade

On summer evenings, after rain

Across the drops of streetlights
faces shine and fade with time and other
forces of destruction and deterioration

Blankets that we pull across our
sore and frozen memories that
cry out so pathetically
for comfort and for warmth

The hour has already passed
for final judgments falling down
for making up excuses that
not even we believed

Centuries, like dominoes,
teeter, waver, slip and fall
until none are left who can remember
any other life at all

Millennia of mystery
centuries of confusion
decades of disaster
become years of empty long and
those days we lost to dreams

Vagabonds in stolen clothes
will try to rewrite history
because the lessons that we learned
are not the ones they taught
Birds and flowers try to tell us
stories buried in the earth with
bones and swords and walls that fell,
and rose, and fell again

We are crushed beneath the heels
of soldiers left on battlefields
to cry, and die, and rot and mark
our histories with their curse

On summer evenings, after rain
when clouds hold back but can’t stop light
we will sit and read our books
and listen to the aching trees
telling us the only stories that we need to hear
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One night only…

Please note that this post will remain at the top of my blog until the show. Scroll down for more recent posts.

For one night only – Sunday, September 22 – you (yes, you) can experience a show that is a little different from other shows you’ve seen. I hope you will come to the Kraine Theater at 85 East 4th Street in Manhattan and witness Mr. Mike’s Mostly Musical Mashup.

Get your tickets here.

I will be performing original songs written from the 1980s to this year, including ones originally recorded with Late Model Humans, and performed at CBGBs, the Bitter End, and Kenny’s Castaways. In addition to the songs there will be instrumental pieces, original poetry, visual art, and a few surprises.

I hope you can join me on September 22, as we find out together just what Mr. Mike’s Mostly Musical Mashup is all about.

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The time for us…

The time for us was never right
but even right goes dark at night
Even right goes wrong sometimes
and desperation blurs the lines

The time for us is always now
When it ends, we won’t know how
all the pieces fit in place
that scattered into empty space

The place for us is on a hill
that balances the wild and still,
that overflows its narrow banks,
and walks on weatherbeaten planks

The time for us will never end
The road is long and does not bend
With love, you cannot lose the fight
The time for us is always right

Central Park flowers