Thursday, August 23, 2012

You and I will meet again.

the patchwork pattern of my city reflects
the quilted rectangular lakes of yours
museums, palaces, and parks
plotted perfectly with an artistic eye

in my ears, the Nordic night still serenades
as it did when I balanced on the back
of your bike as you pedaled forward
each rotation bringing us closer and closer

my hands pulse with the rhythm of your chest
the cycle of air in your lungs, emptying and filling
surrendering carbon dioxide to the harbor
exchanging oxygen for your blood

your phantom scent still haunts me
convincing me that your cells must be
embedded in the fibers of my scarf,
clinging to the strands of my hair and inside of me

you linger on my tongue and like everything,
alters the taste of all that comes after
so I wonder if you've damaged the receptors
and robbed me of every future bittersweetness

but soon the exhausted summer sun will rest
and I will forget these hungry fantasies
our sweaty impatience, the cadence of our cravings
my satisfied sigh, and the symmetry of your face

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

This Messy Life

There was a poem hidden there, I think,
as we said goodbye the first day
after walking down West Street
to the combis that will take me home
for the next ten weeks,
when the palm of your right hand
lingered a noticeable second on my back.
Like street kids vying for scraps of attention,
deconstructed clich├ęs loitered
in the periphery but I was
too distracted by delicate kisses
of fragile butterfly wings
inside my stomach
hinting at things to come.

There was a poem that night
we walked along the beach.
The moonlight licking at your curls,
your hands stuffed in jacket pockets
striking facsimile of a seven year old memory.
lurked in the Indian Ocean
just beneath the inky waves
crawling towards our feet
again and again.

There must have been a poem
when I nested myself into you
tangled in hotel sheets
and allowed contentment to unfold
itself upon me
when I forgot to wipe the smile
off my lips.
It was right there when you held my forearms
branded by melancholy
between each thin white scar tissue
meters, line breaks, stanzas.

There is a poem here
not just because I am flying
not just because I pulled you down and let you in
not just because I swoon in Durban's warm embrace
not just because I see you brimming with potential
but because rhyme and form are always tucked into
this messy life.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Friday, November 26, 2010


thirty days of falling leaves deserting
barren branches for the soft ground
below, leaving them half naked to weather
the encroaching black-hearted winter

this is a month for harvesting ripened
remnants of loss, regret, and senses,
for tracing your writing scrawled in books,
each stroke and letter trembling of cancer

some four centuries back, on an island,
men plotted assassination of a monarchy
fittingly begging, remember, remember
their destinies fated and engraved in stone

it’s a time to honor those who sacrificed
in times of war and gilding vestiges of glory
but I would not dip your army jacket in gold
and rob it of the natural faded maroon

still stars leap forth from midmonth nights
landing their futures in the refuge
between words you loved famously spoken
seven scores and seven years ago.

so they say it’s time for giving thanks
for chrysanthemums to bloom, but I think
it’s time to battle the gray descending curtain
of emotional anesthesia, so remind me

just how red was the blushing maple
at the entrance of Sloan Kettering ?
how stubbornly did the birch outside
your window cling to its summer dress?

how deeply were the scars from the burden
of history and tragedy on your neck carved?
but most importantly, tell me, in the six years
since you left, why hasn’t a single day been easier?

Monday, July 12, 2010

Wrapped up in books - Belle & Sebastian

Summer's hastening on,
I'm trying to get a feeling from the city.
But I've been unfaithful-
I've been traveling abroad.