Category Archives: fiction

Slipping 04/13/19

She slipped away

With the dying of the day

Facing east

Sun in the west

Darkness rising

From the ocean

Before her.

 

She felt peace and comfort.

Strange

Because all she ever wanted

Was excitement.

A tormented soul

No longer tormented

By demons of her own

Creation

And others who found

An empty shell

Where happiness

Once resided.

 

She was happy once

Way back before the

Needles,

And alcohol,

And depression.

 

So far away

And long ago.

Barely remembered

Until the slipping started.

Sitting under the

Japanese Maple

Listening to the birds

Feeling love

And safety

In that house

On Laurel Lane.

 

 

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Sliver Moon 011019

I was walking my dog

Late last night.

It was cold and clear.

I was in a hurry being

Tired and wanting

The comfort of my bed.

 

It was then I saw her.

Old Mrs. Mulvaney.

Standing on her porch,

Holding on to the bannister,

To steady herself in the frigid air,

Looking at the moon.

 

It was just a sliver of a moon.

A thin smile

Cheshire cat like

With secrets to tell,

If you would share some of your own.

 

Mrs. Mulvaney had shared,

With the moon and the man she loved

For over fifty years.

He had left her long ago,

To make a place for her in heaven.

And now he waited for her,

Quietly, patiently.

She was not ready to go

But she missed him.

 

So she looked to the moon

Like she did with her husband

And thought of the happy times,

Small moments of joy

Which filled her heart,

So full, that there was no room

For sadness.

 

My dog stopped to look at her

For a moment

And so I stopped as well

For a moment.

And I thought

As I continued on my way,

If only someone, someday

Would look at the moon,

And think of me.

 


13 Words 11/04/17

 

Another broken promise

Reminds me of

Why we are

Where we are

Today

 


I’ll Know 10/28/2017

I’ll know

I no longer love you

When my phone rings

And I no longer hope

For it to be you

But I do.

For now I do.

 

I’ll know

I no longer love you

When I no longer need

To hold a pillow

When I fall asleep

But I do.

For now I do.

 

For now I do.

A phone, a bed

A breakfast plate

For now I do.

A book, a song

A broken date

For now I do.

 

For now I do

A hidden hope

Inside a prayer

For now I do

As days rush on

And chances fade

For now I do.

 


Love Fades 011617

 

As this desire for love fades from me

Fades from me again,

I stand looking over the great chasm

Of a solitary life.

 

I used to be afraid of living alone,

Of dying alone

When the doctor said, “I’m sorry, Mr. K.

But the treatment has been ineffective.

It is time to make your peace.”

 

I, used to be afraid of not being able

To care for myself

In the last months, weeks, days.

I’m not afraid anymore.

 

Death comes when she is ready

Ready to take you on your journey.

I, no longer want someone to squeeze my hand

As that heavenly angel closes my eyes

And steals my soul,

Leaving a helpless lover behind.

Death only brings pain to the survivors.

 

I, have given up on the fantasy

Of finding true love.

Meeting that one person who completes you,

As if there was something missing from you all along.

 

I am complete without another

Without another’s touch

Another’s laughter

Another’s smile

Speaking gentle, calming words

In the middle of a dark and stormy night.

 

I will survive the night

Without her words

The sun will rise

Whether or not I wake

Cradled in my true love’s arms.

 

I’ve tasted love

On serene shores,

Like a picnic

On a warm spring day

Under an angel oak

With a girl whose face

I’ve forgotten.

 

I try to remember her

but she is featureless

No eyes, no nose,

No tender smile

Softly formed

On the corners of her lips

Her laughter muffled

Within a missing mouth.

 

This is my picture of love.

Idyllic from the distance

A gurgling faceless creature up close

I, no longer want it to complete me

But its strangeness still quietly calls,

Like a fading memory.

 

Soon, soon its call will be forgotten.

And I will take a step from the ledge.

Falling, falling swiftly into the chasm.

Trusting, trusting that my landing will be peaceful

In the green, green valley

Of solitude.

 


the ghosts of hope

the ghosts of hope

continue to continue

although my desire for them

has long ago dwindled

into unrecognizable forms

stealing softly like the mists

of early december

after thanksgiving

before the new year

when hope is strong

but never tidy

 

I stand under the tall pines

as they change from green to black

in an ever darkening sky

dripping with twilight and moisture

the sound of thunder far, far away

heralds the darkness and rain

 

this road is both familiar and frightening

I have traveled it many times before

thinking I was on another trip

another’s trip

but it was always my own

and I return to what has passed

on an ever darkening path

with shadows of my past

 


Quiet Desperation

It’s more than just a writer’s block that has stopped me.

This malaise has reached into every aspect of my life,

Work, hobbies, relationships

All halted for the time.

What is left is a narration

to describe where I am without artifice.

 

Artifice, malaise, labored word choices

Hiding the frustration.

Used to mask the transition from mid-life to…

Change in hair styles, earring, trip to a place of my youth,

Hitchhiking, climbing mountains, performing again.

 

All of these things cannot hide the fact

that my life

to this point

has been unexceptional.

 

I wanted to be so much more

by this time

in my life.

 

Friends would say,

You have done a lot

You are teaching and helping to mold future generations,

You have a good job, a car, a dog

You’re contributing to society.

You have great kids

You’re a wonderful, caring father.

Consider yourself lucky!

 

And I thank them for their kind

And generally truthful words

But is that what I really wanted

Or are these situations that I have fallen into

And did well because I do things well?

 

Is it time to make a break?

But what do I break from?

What do I break to?

 

I stop myself.

There’s fifteen years left on my mortgage.

And three years of car payments.

 

I sit at the coffee shop,

Quietly, desperately drinking my

Iced coffee, no sugar syrup, soy milk,

Watching the other patrons

Fiercely living their unexceptional lives.

 

Teenage girls debating whose parent is worse.

The business person conducting deals while surfing the internet.

The gym junkie with Yahweh tattooed on his arm.

Did he even read the bible?

The old testament forbids tattoos.

Is he taunting the god of the ancient Hebrews or praising him?

Why is this even a question that I am concerned with?

 

I feel like screaming at the top of my lungs,

“Wake up people, time is fleeting, and your days have almost passed.

If you do not hurry, you will soon find yourself,

Rudderless,

Drifting on the angry sea with no hope of salvation!”

 

I stop myself. The words sound stupid.

My thoughts sound stupid as soon as they are formed.

Besides those words seem more for me than them.

 

My head hurts.

Face falling hopelessly into my hands.

Good catch, again and again.

 

I rub my temples

I close my eyes.

But my helplessness does not go away.

It remains although I cannot see the people.

I still hear them.

Hearing the music that is supposed to be hip.

The clamor of the too, too caffeinated child not much out of diapers

But who is frequently offered too much sugar,

As a bribe for his silence,

By overweight caregivers

Who consume too much sugar and too much caffeine.

 

But who am I to disparage these people?

Maybe somewhere is this confusion

There are the seeds of exceptionality.

Maybe thirty, forty years ago

I was sitting in a bar, or restaurant, or park,

And I was given the magic beans.

I did not see the value of them.

And I tossed them away.

Tossed them away without a moment’s thought.

Which in an instant condemned me to this coffee shop.

 

How many seeds have I thrown away?

How many chances have I missed?

How many chances do I have left?

 

The shop has quieted down.

The preacher trying to save

The Yahweh boy sits quietly

As his student uses the bathroom.

An old woman waits for her husband to bring their tea

Lost in a bitter sweet moment they once shared.

The barista stares at a syrup dispenser.

The rush has ended and his mind is drifting

Only for a moment

Before his shift comes from the back

And he snaps to attention again.

 

My headache has receded for the moment

The voices have grown softer.

They never go away.

They are the ghosts of the dreams

I once had.

Reminding me of the greats things

I planned to accomplish.

Reminding, chiding, taunting.

Never letting me forget.

I have more things to do.

I get up to go

Walk over to the condiment bar

To throw away my cup.

 

I stop

On the counter

Are three coffee beans

Three seeds.

 

I smile

Maybe there is still time.

Maybe.

I pick them up and put them in my pocket.