Sunday, September 16, 2012



Won’t meet most of you in a lifetime
and know there are six billion of us
and more coming all the time, each trying
to interpret the sign of their own star,
you know, the one that nobody else can see
but for a few rays of light breaking
through the clouds here and there,
that says, this is the way to shine,
this is the way to shine, and that includes
black holes everywhere as well.

Whether you can see through it or not
as a plagiarism of water and sand
every mirage has its own meaning,
every star belongs to a different zodiac,
each with their own totems, mandalas,
and shapeshifting constellations, each
their own houses of worship and disrepute,
we’re all wearing on our foreheads
written in between the lines of fate
like a sidereal bandanna, each
a meme of one we’re hoping will allow
someone to recognize us in isolation
like a prison tat that says we’ve paid our dues
for the last thousand lifetimes without parole
and have a right to be here as well as anyone
because we’ve done our time standing up
just to be alive, whether you’re running from it
or not. Everyone’s got a different approach
to their own departure, and though
there is no gate they must go through,
there’s a garden they must spend
some time in for awhile, telling
the flowers what the roots of our names mean
each as unique as a snowflake
on a petal or an eyelid or a furnace.

Each a theme of their own picture-music,
our lives are not sub-plots of the main narrative.
There’s a whole symphony in the tintinnabula,
like a drop of water reflecting the entire universe
just the same as there is in the first violins.
And everyone brings their own instrument to the jam
whether it be the wind in the silver Russian olives,
a tuba, a burning guitar, or the fossil of the lyre
that used to sing the dead up from hell
to a day of show and tell, and it doesn’t matter
what kind of music you make, whether
its the choral riot of your favourite nocturnal animals in a zoo,
or the distant plectra of a hidden nightcreek
playing solo on a harpsichord in a lonely sacred grove,
or you’re riffing on futuristic mystic mantras
like Tibetan prayer bowls that used to sound
like a waterclock of urns, as long as you’re adding
your singularity like the longing high note of a nightbird
to the dendritic staves of the trees. Even the silence sings.

And what is it we’re all really longing for
in the solitary labyrinths we’ve made
of the complexity of our desires,
if it isn’t a world elaborated from
the prime fractal of our love,
as if it fell to each of us now, not god,
that weight was removed from her shoulders
the moment our cosmic egg hatched
and we took to our own wings,
eagles and fireflies and Icarus alike
to provide the image of light upon light
like a masterpiece we leave behind us
that’s everybody’s signed like a self-portrait
of who we were to each other for awhile
when we stood in wonder and awe
at what was arrayed before us knowing
it’s the exact likeness of everyone,
and the star in the eye that’s turned toward us
as if each of us were the direction of prayer
is the same one we’ve been following for light years
like the magi seeking the source of their own radiance,
candles in the dark wondering where
the light’s coming from in billions of creative mirrors
falling on everyone alike like rain and eyes
so that before we close them
like two dew drops of stereoscopic water
falling back to our roots like our last words
from the tips of the tongues of the stargrass
to dream up new blossoms in our sleep
like new moons budding on a dead branch,
we each realize that we’re the myth of origin,
the alpha and omega of all things that begin and end
as well as the unattainable for which there is no metaphor
placed well within the creative reach of everyone of us
though if I were to give it a shot as a poet, I’d say,
knowing what I know of this life in the arts,
like the habitable planets and ripening desert moons
of the low-hanging fruits of our hearts.




A little thought in a big space, I’m falling
through my own immensities here at my desk,
one of my Icarian propensities for plunging into things.
My voice intimidated by the violence of the silence within.
I’m on the dark side of my eyes.
No one’s ever been here before.
No window, no wall, no door,
I’m on the threshold of my homelessness again.
I’m looking at stars, but I feel like rain.
I’m talking to ghosts that I don’t remember.
Might be the wrong medium, but it’s the right seance.
I don’t even know what I’m doing here myself
but it seems I’m free to go or stay as I wish.
I’m wearing my shadow like a candling parachute
that didn’t step back from the edge in time.
No point in pretending you’re an airborne dandelion
when you feel like a rock with a message
someone just threw like the moon through a mirror
disguised as a sky the night birds keep flying into blind.

No one asks your name here on this pyre of a sky burial
if your birth certificate says you were born in fire.
Desire anything you like. It was all written in smoke
before you came. And these words that are saying me here
have been out of the aviary of the lantern for light years.
Who knows where the light goes or what if falls upon?
Trying to shine in a dark time without taking anything away
from the lunar eclipses that aren’t in need of enlightenment.
Don’t know if I’m a solar flare, a firefly, a matchbook,
or a lightning bolt that keeps stressing my starmud out
by sneaking up on it from behind and overdoing things a bit.

If you find yourself trying to pry the flowers open
with a crowbar or a koan, and it’s nightfall, it’s
time to turn your hourglass in for a waterclock
and see how the stars emerge out of nothing
as soon as you deepen the dark with a more acute sense of timing
that let’s everything happen spontaneously by itself.
Even if you’re the lighthouse of your dreams
that doesn’t mean you’re the nightwatchman
keeping his third eye on you in the shadows
like a theft of fire you can get away with
this second time around with only a warning.

If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime.
And if you did, whining about it in your sleep
isn’t going to help and who’s Spartan enough these days
to stash the fox under their tunic to keep
from being caught while it eats them alive?
If you want to be a dragon you’ve got to learn
to swallow people’s hearts like hot coals as if they were chocolates,
without wincing. The stars don’t come out
like emergency candles you’ve been saving
for exactly this kind of situation. And if
you really want to know the truth about illumination,
try and blow one out. Quick, now, look
and see immediately into the clear light of the void
what it’s like to shine without a metaphoric reflection.

The stars here don’t hide their nakedness under a cloak
of black holes and dwarfs that take it all in
but give nothing back like the second hand clothes
of serpents shedding their skin. One size fits all
like a bubble in a watershed of dark worlds
dazzled by how much a single eye can contain
whether it’s hanging from the lip of a flower in the fall
or going down the drain in spring. I know
you hit it like a snowflake on a furnace
and do your damnedest not to cry. Thing is
as unique among billions as you think you are,
there’s not a star in the sky that isn’t a rite of passage.