Tag Archives: winter

I Dream of Indiana

I dream of Indiana, because of a woman.

I dream of Indiana, too dream of something.

Cold and grey days, colorless at noon today,

I dream of her, and how we know the score.

 

Some rural town, like the one I’m in now,

with mustard yellow silos pricking the sky

and a smattering of houses in the dead fields,

and the ubiquitous chain stores in town.

 

I dream that in a place even drabber, colder,

than the place I am now, just as empty, burning,

as left behind and sighing, that with her there,

I could be happy, content, settled.

 

Years ago, when we were young, we partied

and we knew heartbreak and loss and hope

and magic in the sung words, the right note

of a tragic and sorrowful song.

 

We knew the promise of April and spring

and the soft and warm sunshine through a

classroom window, the joy of connecting,

as we smoked cigarettes at shitty parties.

 

And know, older and greyer and fatter, left behind,

I dream of her and that grey prairie state, of finding

her and beginning again, recapturing something my

broken mind and scorched heart has lost.

 

I dream of Indiana because of a woman.

I dream of Indiana to dream of something.

Fools errand. Our moment has passed forever.

But I dream to escape the terror of silence.

 

The terror of my own thoughts.

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The Last Drive

The last drive, in the cold and snow.

To a place that was happy long ago.

The night dark and the snow falling.

The stars clear, winking in a bitter sky.

A demon does not always have a name.

A demon can burrow into your broken heart.

Drive you away, drive into the night for escape.

To someplace that has magic to heal you.

Heater on blast, smothering and choking.

Lisa Gerrard singing like a lost, melancholy angel.

The snow coming at the windshield, glistening in headlights,

like you were in hyperdrive, going into deep space.

One last stop for smokes, Marlboro Lights in the box.

The young man at the counter flirts with you.

You give him a smile, look him in the eye.

One last stop, and then never seen again.

The last drive, one a cold and bitter night.

Running from a demon only you knew.

Running all the way out of the world, out of hope.

The last drive, and I’d follow you there, to find you again.

Rochester

Johanna is riding shotgun,

in charge of changing tapes

and reading the map to me.

Telling me how the wind blows.

Up to Rochester, to the border.

The snow will dampen the scent.

The night will give rest to us, for a season.

Spring means dodging hellhounds.

Right now, our de facto song plays.

A vampire gets some poet boy high.

Damnation makes for stirring words.

I hold her hand. She smiles. Evening.

You can never outrun these demons.

Find solace in motion and music, touch.

We’ll make love in a roadside motel room.

But night will only give rest for a season.

Angels Lighting Candles

We’ve made it to Colorado, up in The Rockies.

The Red of Autumn is turning brown into white.

Our car is out of gas, we huddle together on

the steps of an old stone church, out in nowhere,

beneath the sky full of stars, angels burning candles.

The wind is crisp, becoming harsh through the night.

We cling to each other in the alcove of the doorway.

We whisper the secret words the angels taught her.

We whisper the verses that promised that we’re loved.

Will one of the angels come down and kiss our heads?

Who will come in the morning? Friend or Enemy?

Can’t trust a Jesus Thorns to have made a tender heart.

But we’ve got nowhere lese to go and nowhere to hide.

We’ve got to make it to the sea, so we can see again the sun.

Will those angels send a friend? Do they believe we’ve bled enough?

Floofy Pom Pom

I ordered a knitted beanie for a waitress.

Floofy pom pom. Black with white snowflakes.

Silly, I’m sure. She’ll never fall in love with me.

But her smiles, her kind words, my soul partakes.

So cold, and it’s starting to snow, flashes in the night.

Hot coffee, and chili, and nervous, fluttering butterflies.

She’ll be on shift soon, and this shit day has made me eager

to see her happy face, to see her when I give her her surprise.

Living alone, all to myself, I want to give a friend a gift.

It’s cold this winter. Give her something she needs in this cold age.

I see her coming in the door. I look down, heart pounding.

I’m just an errand boy, the knight of romance’s  errant page

Learning To Skate

Your from up here, long dark winters,

snow that stays until spring, frozen lakes.

I’m from warmer climes. Mostly it rains.

The days are overcast. Not often freezing.

I am as unsure and wobbly as a new born fawn,

out on the ice in these skates, your brother’s old pair.

I cling to you to stay up, almost like a child in a crowd,

as we slowly slide out farther on the ice, beneath stars.

I laugh, and you laugh. Me nervous, you amused.

Our breaths are like speech balloons in old comic books.

I try to stand on my own. You have to catch me again.

I can stand, slowly, gingerly, move myself in squiggles.

You elegantly make circles around me, almost float.

The night is bitter, and I shiver, but my chest is flushed.

My cheeks too.  Girlishly, you cover your mouth as you giggle.

Then you take my hands in yours, and we skate side by side.

Silent now, just us, to stars that were almost embers in the night,

now bright and burning bright again, the cold night be damned!

The stars are endless here. The things we will be even more so.

Cold Rain, Christmas Morn

Sophie’s long, dark hair is tied up and hidden
in the hood of her thick, navy blue sweatshirt.
Her chipped, bitten nails show as she holds
a flute of red wine, watching the cold rain.
It is Christmas Morning.
The Fort, seems like a forgotten kingdom now,
empty and dark with these closed in streets.
We watch it from our balcony with our wine,
with the rinky dink white flashing lights on the rail.
Jesus is born. It can be new again.
Platonic friends, which makes it perfect here,
not saying a word, just looking out on our world.
Soon we’ll go see family, and feel we belong there.
So often strangers in this city, this whole bloody world.
You can be clean again. You can be whole again.

Trains Ran Right Past Her Backyard

 

 

Sumner sat in her tiny back yard, in the cold of December,
drinking hot coffee, looking up at the smattering of stars
that shone through the lights of the city.

An Amtrak train passed right past her backyard, shaking
the rickety wooden fences that separated everyone’s yards,
the horn howling out into the darkness like a wounded demon.

When she was little, Sumner imagined riding on one of the
trains that passed behind her house, heading to New York City
or Boston, somewhere far from her broken world.

She dreamed no longer of such things. No place offered freedom.
The Devil was everywhere. The Devil could not be escaped.
The Devil had conquered the world.

There was an itch in her brain this night, a thorn in her thoughts,
of the one who she thought loved her, who’d left her behind.
She fearfully, tenderly, touched her belly.

The trains couldn’t take her to a better world,
she could not escape her world, broken and growing dark.
The fight was here, in her house, with her family.

She went inside, down into her room, to the small closet,
In the dark she went on her knees to fight The Enemy,
to fight for the hope of the world, to find the love in The Light.

 

The Distant Angels

Christmas Eve, almost midnight, all is still.
Ally walks alone, only her breath, heartbeat,
and the crunch of her feet on soft snow.
Her favorite jacket, black parka, faux fur
lining around the hood, is her armor,
a prism of her faith, in the darkness.
Christmas Eve, the sky clear, wide open,
all the stars, the distant angels, come to
sing of hope, of love, of all that can be.
The church was left behind years ago,
the stained glass smashed to jagged edges,
the large doors and tiled roof long lost to rot.
Ally steps inside, the starlight the altar candles,
the moon gives her her acolyte robes, the wind,
quiet and still, whispers something, somewhere distant.
Something lingers still, and there is a stirring, a dream,
a terrifying hope in the lonely night. No angels come,
but a birth has come, His Birth, a world without end.
She here’s a cry, a growl outside, no mere animal hunger
or aggression or fear, something more, something come.
Ally pulls her parka and hood tighter, whispers a prayer.
She leaves The Church, walks into the night, led by stars
and moon, led by her eyes that sees it’s light in the cold.
She looks not at the demon, though she feels it’s biter gaze.
Christmas Morning, the day has changed over, morning has come,
though still dark and cold, still so little light, still so far to go to the sun.
Ally walks, whisper sings an old hymn, of all the love that is near.

 

Interlude, Small Town, Kansas