Monday, February 29, 2016

Magpie 307: I Asked for Music

image courtesy of Magpie Tales

I asked for tubes of lipstick, pots of eye shadows, boxes of faces;
He gave me old tubes of oil paints,
Blue gas flames blooming orange
Spitting through rain in an umber grey forest,
Fat black rabbits bending from horsehair.

I asked for lace gloves and bubble skirts, for chandeliers for my ears;
He gave me a tent and a SpoonForkKnife,
A bed that smelled of attic and plastic,
A room that unzipped on Texas clay
Where the javelinas rooted by the water.

I asked for hot dreams, hazy streets; for music like Mezcal;
He gave me sunny roads melting
Into lakes, roads dreaming of asphalt
Angels rising toward neon spires
Until evening flashed viridian.

I paint my own bare skin but can't find the lovely ruins
Of old dreams, only the shadows of trails
Hiked and streams waded, bare
Like the walls of the room,
After everything was packed.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Magpie 306 - Soft

(image courtesy of Magpie Tales)

My hand strokes the deep blue wall, soft as fleece,
Blue as the curls of the woman five pews up.

Is He counting my prayers or my sins?
My hopes or my days, my fears or my pride?

Religion was a good seed in season,
But it broke like the light against the brick.

But He's soft in Spencer's sight,
Fat and soft as Santa, not burning in holiness.

I remember the touch of the back wall,
Glass walls and warm mornings, soft as faith.

His house, but not Him.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Magpie 304 -- City Shadows

Photo courtesy Magpie Tales

We built them tall, for the shadows. Oh, we knew, from the time we spent beneath ones we didn't design, that shadows were swarming, just a breath away. Too many, too full. So we built these, thinking we were building places for us, believing these interiors are for our needs and the exterior for some lordship of artistry. But we were building our own massive shadows, our own obelisks that marked the boundaries of our space and our time.

And we did gain those spaces, banishing all we could. Even light had to be bound within our shadows. When the shadow of the building falls across me as the afternoon advances, I relax. It points toward the street, to the space that moves like water but is metal and tar and crushed gravel, dangerous but governable. I have yet to go down that street, have yet to feel the edges of those buildings, to check for the kind of rot I've felt along the streets behind me, however massive their buildings might be.

This kind of rot grows from sunlight, from water and light and the weakness of concrete. Sunlight calls down to the soil beneath the sidewalks.

I follow the generous shadow, promising myself I won't weaken these edges any further. Not this time. Not here.