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The Summer After

The girl is lost, in the tawny wheat of the steppes,
in the cold waters of the river washing past,
in the ruins of the city and corpses their.

The girl is lost, and I am lost, the world burned.
We hold close in the empty field in the summer after,
holding on like drowning sailors to driftwood.

The games we played are echoes in dreams
and voices and laughter half-remembered,
a phantasm of something lost.

The first kiss as we swam in the cold river.
Chasing each other through the tall wheat.
Looking up and the endless stars.

The girl is lost, and I am lost, our world burned.
The cannons and gunfire is silent for now.
The city built again.

It is the summer after, and we hold close,
her head laying upon my shoulder as she sleeps,
and I look up at stars that have never seemed so distant.

Quiet Moment On The Front Lines of an Eternal War

I was tired, from something more than battle and fatigue and hunger. I was tired not just to my bones, but to my very soul. My heart felt like it was pumping sludge instead of blood.

Me and her, Lt. Parris, were sitting above our dug out bunker that was basically home, known, not at all affectionately, as The Tomb. We had tinned fish and bottled water, so we were in high cotton!

Lt. Parris, I dared never call her Taelor, was happily chowing on down on her tinned fish, as if she were on her lunch hour in the park, not a care in the world. Not that she was careless, and not that she wasn’t as wrung out and exhausted as I was, it was just the meat grinder of a war never seemed to dampen her brightness, she shone even in this night.

It was the last dregs of dusk, the last bits of golden and red light been washed out of the sky, and the teacup of the sky was almost completely turned over to close out the light. So many holes in the tea cup. So many stars.

Their was a cool wind coming off the desert. Always so cold at night. Very cold. But I felt something in that wind, almost, almost…….peaceful.

Lt. Parris finished her tinned fish, and washed down the salty aftertaste with the last few swigs from her bottled water. She looked out onto the bare horizon, which ghostly and uncertain under starlight and with no bright moon. There not fear in her eyes. Only peace. And resolve.

“Something to eat besides MRE’s are a rare treat Jones, you should have savored it more.” She says, wiping her mouth with the back of her hand.

“What are tinned fish when we’re all being devoured, and The Red Dragon is coming take us. We’re all burning. We’ll be ashes on this cold goddamn wind.”

Lt. Parris, sighed, still looking out on the horizon, but she saw something…..else out there. Something……beyond the night and the demons and all the bloodshed.

“Jones…..we’re facing a lot right now. Don’t think I don’t notice the state you’re in. Don’t think I don’t know the Principalaties are amassing, and we’re hemorrhaging soldiers, and that it’s seems like everything we’re fighting for is hopeless and lost.”

“How many years have we been at This Lt. Parris? How much has been lost and how many have we sent how in caskets? How many rivers of blood has flowed on these dusty hills? And for what? The Red Dragon is still pushing hard against us! The demons are everywhere! There’s no bloody end to them! Home, is almost lost!”

I was howling at this point, as if to offer a scream up the sky and heaven itself! Once again, I was getting to worked up. To emotional. To bloody moody and unstable. I sighed, and brought myself back to earth, I think.

Lt. Parris sighed, but didn’t react otherwise. She didn’t threaten to have me reported to the platoon priest for blasphemy, or threaten to have me court martialed for defeatism. All the same, this was stuff she’d heard before, often, and was exasperated with hearing. Almost as exasperated as I was for not being able to shut up about it. But this war I’d been fighting for so long, and nothing seemed to every change in a good way. All that changed was what poor sucker caught it that day and had to be sent home in a box, perhaps a box that contained many pieces.

“Jones, Home isn’t lost. We have held them. At cost, at pain and loss. But we have held. It will never end, not until The Revelation and The End of Time. We’re going to fight here until we can’t. The others who follow us will do the same. The Red Dragon will always be a threat, because just as we have the divine light in us, we also have the darkness in us. Demons were once us you know. They got seduced. They let themselves be taken.

“There  will always be people who let themselves be taken.” She said.

She reached over and placed arm around my shoulders, and gave me a squeeze. I tensed, surprised by her showing any sort of affection. But I then melted into it, and felt the warmth of her, and I felt as if the light and the peace in her was pouring into me.

She disengaged herself, squeezed my knee, than looked up at the stars.

“Remember what you have won, and what you’ve saved, all that you’ve been, even here.” She says.

She collects her empty tin and bottle and goes back inside The Tomb.

I sit by myself for a long time, in the darkness, beneath the stars, and in the wind.

I Can Make Her The Moon

A dream made a star and placed in a dark, empty sky

that has lost the treasures that it was born with.

A dream in Veronica’s face, and eyes I can make suns

on a world that grows green now, after the war.

Glad to see her, and steal some talk, words I can make

the moon, the sheered out sister keeping me stable,

as the massive black hole in the center of my heart,

ever tries to pull me to the place where there is no light.

I say goodnight, and keep her close, the sun lighting

the ashen forests returning from the war and it’s fires,

tender shoots and buds, that I hope will flower, and perfume

a world of gardens, a shard of Eden, maybe sealed with her kiss.

Pinpricks of Angels

She is lithe, with dishwater blonde hair, and a distant look in her eyes.

               A black and white beanie, and dark loose clothes, and the ghost of a smile.

               An ember of some past joy, some long ago dream come true, flickers alight

               And for a moment, her feet raise off the ground, and life feels sweet again.

 

               As she walks home, she stops, and looks up at the sky, rarely clear and clean.

               The city lights chases away the heavens, but a few pinpricks of the angels light

               Still get to her here, on this cold and bitter night, and they are sweet manna.

               Still light in this darkness, in this city, in this world it’s so easy to believe God forgot.

 

               In her little apartment, with the plants she nurtures, and the place she can hope

               Or cry or just simply be, try for the quiet as the traffic and shouts come through

               Thin walls,  she starts to make her evening meal, and somewhere in the darkness,

                A quasar beats the rhythm, a code from the distance: “It can still be well.”

March To The Sea

Waiting on the train station, a drizzly dark winter morning,

               Heading to work before the sun comes up, but at least it’s quiet.

 

               Lucky people sleep peaceful and with someone holding them.

               Lucky people find a measure of peace in this world.

 

               My mind is dead and burning, nothing rising from the ashes.

               My heart cannot feel love anymore, not even for her, who I hold on for.

 

               I shiver, out of the rain but not out of the cold, and it’s an endless march,

               To the next day, the next morning, that never comes with a promise of relief.

              

               The train horn howls, the lament of a repentant demon, forever tormented.

               I’ll go to work, I’ll smile and be happy on the outside, I won’t let it show.

 

               I refuse the siren call of laying upon the tracks, to let the demon take me,

               To just no longer be here, because if I’m not here nothing hurts anymore.

 

               I’ll get on the train and soldier through and do my duty, the good son always.

               How can I hope for peace of warmth, when not even tears will come, just the rain?

 

              

Just Another Chance To Dream

Too early to be up, to be away from dreams, from peace.
The sun isn’t up and it’s cool, something soothing for me.
Alone, quiet, maybe the roar of rage with fade away for now.
I don’t know what to do with it at all, what can be done anymore.
 I dream of Brie, quirky and sweet, or so I believe, the face I put on her.
I dream of us having a beach vacation in South Carolina, happy in the sun.
I dream of holding her hand and holding her and holding on to a sweet thing.
I dream of some perfect life with her, to chase away the rage eating me up.
 Maybe I’ll lay my head down on my desk, close my eyes, push away thought.
Just count to ten, thinking of her face, and all she makes me believe in again.
And sleep, just a little more peace, just another chance to dream, to be an angel.
The sky in the city has no stars, but we can fill our hearts with the universe, if we choose.

Solace In The Time Of Death

Ellen watches out her window, at the clear, snowy day.
The TV cheerfully babbles cartoons and high spirits,
but she doesn’t hear it at all, only watches the snow
and the colorless, glass sky, and mourns the sun.
 She remembers walking in tall, tawny grass, the sun
warm on her face, the breeze on her bare arms,
the promise of something magical in those deep woods,
in the whole of the day stretched before her.
 But the world was now cold and without pity,
all the pretty things and bright colors had been put away.
She was stuck inside with the TV or the radio, or her own head.
She was inside all day, and her spirit ached and bled.
 She lays down on the floor, TV still blathering, still empty,
and wishes away the roof and calls down the sun, the hot
light and all the cold waters and green forests and bright blooms,
all the wonders of summer and the remembrance of paradise.
 And there she stands now, the TV gone, the snow left behind,
in the deep woods, near the cold waters, with all those bright blooms
nodding their heads in supplicant prayer to her. She is here,
in that cherished world, without death or fear or sorrows.
 Her kingdom, solace in the time of death.

The Key To The Door

James Agee Park as the sun rises. Saturday has finally come. Free for a moment.
I listen to tender ballads on my MP3 player, of love simple and everlasting.
It takes me to a world far from my broken head full of bad and angry shit.
It takes me to a world where I am a good man, a righteous man, a loving man.
 The back pack is at my feet, filled with books and Betty and Veronica comics,
a CD I made for a friend, and the laptop which holds the best and worst of me.
There is something else in there, the key to the door to the starless night, the quiet.
A song below the song ever tempts me to use the key and to open the door.
 A siren on the edge of my dreams, in the thick of my failings, in the loneliness,
sings from in that starless night, tells me it will make all this pain and anger go.
I try to think of sweet things and bright things, and all that makes me shine,
to drown out her song, the calling, to let the ache and tiredness send me away.
 James Agee Park, as the sun is rising. The sun is a red and gossamer haze above.
And I hear the birds call and the tender ballad fills me with love for all in the world.
I think of the one I love, and all she brings out in me, all that she gives me hope for.
The day is starting, and I want to find the light in it, in my desperate race.

Outside The World

Emma and me, outside the party, outside the world.
The night is warm in the first of September, clear, open.
We talk as if we could still walk among the stars, like children.
We talk as if the world never fell, and paradise was still here.
 She lays her head upon my shoulder, and I kiss her head.
Her hand holds mine, and we are warm, clean, like Eden.
She turns up her face, and I softly kiss her lips, taste the apple.
Her hand on my face, such sweetness became the fall, forever.
 The sky is filled with stars, and the moon moves wild tides.
She hung her name somewhere in Andromeda, for me to find.
Find her name, find the spell dream and desire and lust have cast,
as loud laughter and thumping music betray a perfect night.