As a note; none of these poems have been edited. That's not what 30/30 is about.
Also, we're allowed one haiku day. Today is that day:
He'd show up shoeless
for shabbas dinner. How did
he forget his shoes?
If I were walking
home over spiky gravel
barefoot, I'd notice.
But all his friends did
it too! We always had flocks
of pairs on our porch.
I went to camp with Cassie.
Today I'd call her an
'at risk youth'
but I don't think anyone noticed
We shared a tent
and she would tell me secrets to the ceiling
about smoking pot
and what sex felt like.
Finally our glasses would go in the pocket
attached to the tent wall.
She would sigh and snore
and I would stare up into the blur
both present and future.
Try to penetrate.
In the mornings
Cassie was very fastidious
about her sleeping-bag.
I'm not sure anything she taught me stuck;
all I learned,
is that Cassie was very good at rolling things.
Twenty federal judges
are wandering around the law school unsupervised.
They are eating boxed lunches
while they wear name-tags
and survey this, the landscape of their histories.
One of them, with his tanned skin
and white, wide-brimmed hat
looks like the Dos Equis
“most interesting man in the world.”
Twenty federal judges,
many of them friendly and talkative
am supposed to network
have no idea what to say to them.
When the air is absolutely perfect,
hovering high-70's and slightly breezy,
it's effectively gone.
Moving on this earth is easier.
Atmosphere and I have equalized
and so air turns to water
and life is liquid.
I feel a grace,
skin in harmony with wind.
arms flinging to love
this lack of resistance.
I am in the world to move through it.
I am here with these people to enjoy them
and nothing important will come of it.
We are here to like easily,
argue bitterly through our giggles,
and eat burritos around our beer and wine.
When air soothes the lungs
I feel I am parallel to it;
with no tempestuous temperature to rankle me
I lean back
unaware of the air all around me
and so able to know it, finally,
in the absence of its touch.
To Kill A Sim, the poem I slammed with a few weeks ago, has been filmed and put on youtube thanks to the lovely and talented Jill Greenseth.
Here it is:
Not nostalgia; simply reality past.
Your summer sunlight here is lovely,
but I need to sink into Ohio grass.
I need to lie in dappled shade
under a tree older than Oregon.
It's time to skinny-dip in the Kokosing
and as I dry, watch the hills turn orange and brown,
buggies crawling up them, creeping down.
It's time to survey the woods and fields, wrapped warm in heartland.
To almost-nap in persistent flowers.
And when I'm full of soporific peace,
wipe off my dress and wend back up the hill with big, reaching steps.
Large, Gothic buildings with cool, stone vestibules
wait for me, for my hands to run over rough-hewn edges.
But the stoops are smooth; come, sit and watch the people arrayed on the lawn,
see sport and study splay into dinnertime.
Climb crouching and dusty to the bell-tower with me
and watch the sunset ring.
my legs look
like someone has been beating me.
I'm just clumsy
and I use my knees as doorstops
and I don't watch where I'm backing up
and my car door tends
to swing shut on its own.
Golden sun so quickly fades clear
after 9am hits
and even on Sunday
the rumbling noises start outside,
and scratching from upstairs,
and tired radiates from my eyes down to my belly,
which replies with hunger.
It's been so long since I did this;
since I woke up to read
in my sunlit bed
in the company of all the green leaves looking
at each other from behind
both sides of the glass.
My banana plant points one leaf accusingly out.
My pea plant unfurls like an alien flag,
taller every day
and slightly less full of potential.
(written yesterday but posted today because I fell asleep on the way to my computer last night.)
At a yard sale today,
still carrying the leftover half of my plantain from dinner,
my friends and I ambled up and down two sides of a fence.
The outside was like many white flagpoles hung with clothes.
Hardly waving at all.
Inside we find wires in baskets,
John Grisham novels,
and scores of video cassettes;
a medium we handled with modern alacrity as children
and now can barely remember that there is an arrow
that points “this way in.”
We also see pictures of bridges
and teapots, one shaped like the Kremlin
(I almost bought this)
and one like Mary had no lambs.
What I do buy is camouflaged against the table at first,
flat and inconspicuous and sheathed.
I buy a samurai sword, tasseled, still sharp
enough to cut watermelons, my friends propose.
It costs seven dollars.
I present the weapon and the seven
to the women sitting in their fence-matching pavilion
looking to get rid of their husband's arms.
Walking home, Bryan remarks that
I look quite natural, even in my sunhat,
with the sword swung over my shoulder.
I am holding the strap, it is dangling down my back.
What an excellent compliment!
This means, I take it,
that I am a survivor.
We walk on in search of melons.
You are being assessed.
And a word of warning;
your sloth is going to cost you.
You are being audited
because you failed to report over 25% of your gross lust for this last fiscal year.
An error of that size triggers the audit automatically, you understand.
The US Government thinks no less of you or your math skills.
In fact, the math on your wrath comes out perfectly round to the cent.
I'd say be proud of that, but then your vanity figures would be off.
Your abundant anger was also how we knew your lust was misreported.
How we knew it wasn't negligence.
But 25%? What happened?
Were you getting greedy, not wanting to let any go...
or was that 25% you were trying to forget?
Either way, you were sloppy.
Either way, you've glutted yourself on our tithe,
and we must wring it from you.
I know you don't envy my job,
but it goes both ways;
I don't much envy your heartbreak, either.
Thank you for your continuing cooperation.