Amen

Eat In Peace

let me eat in peace

spare me the story

the videos

the tweets

of whatever war was going on

because there is always a war going on

don’t bother me

with more exploitative narratives 

of the people who produced

this yummy food

in the face of wars

famine

their own children

not eating

what I get to eat

no one needs to know all that

 

we just want to eat in peace

even if  real peace is impossible

because it doesn’t equal profit

money is lost

economies stagnate

when there isn’t exploitation

of people

of land

or resources

 

let me eat in peace

keep the reality away from the table

the lack of nutritional content

in the food is irrelevant

the suffering sacrifice of animals

makes meals even tastier

don’t you think

because we don’t want to think

we only want to eat in peace

amen

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Friendship Dead

Friendship Dead

Brian lay waxy pale colourless

stiff

immobile

dead

 

the room was full

live people

bright flowers

hushed conversations

occasional giggles

forced smiles

limp handshakes

uncertain head shakes

the same remarks

so sudden

who knew

 

his family

all present

the family of Brian

Brian

whom many of us knew

for fifteen twenty years

a family

none of knew about

we had clues about a brother

a twin sister

but nieces nephews

an asian sister-in-law

more sisters

all strangers to us

his friends

strangers to them

it turns out

 

questions asked

how did you know

what was your last memory of

haven’t we met

oh I didn’t know

you were his brother

you are as closed lipped

about family as he was

 

it wasn’t as if

he was the closest friend of many

but known by more

than he might have realized

gathered

passed though

for one last look

one look to be sure

that what was said was true

Brian

dead

sudden

overnight

snatched away from us

 

but he had been so hidden from us

all these years

all these lunches

walks

pains trials tears tribulations

and yet

this bedrock of family

was barely mentioned

the bitter father

the distant mother

we’d heard about

but not the others

why

 

then I look at my own

family

how little I talk about them to others

as if the family were a secret

but it isn’t

there just isn’t a secret to talk about

no odd uncles

no cruel mothers or missing fathers

an intact unit

an intact functional family

of care compassion and love

seems the families I hear the most about

are the ones where the damage continues

where it never seems to heal

where the scabs of the past remain fresh

scars become badges

of entitlement

My dad did this so I am this way

yak yak yak

 

so perhaps Brian had good secrets

in that family closet

that we are now get to see

for a moment

that death

is now allows them to share with one another

perhaps the unrest

is put aside for

numbed by the shock

 

we stand in small groups

occasional glances to the open coffin

some stop to touch the cold hands

some to kneel and pray

others remain distance

glance over a shoulder

in conversations

look at the photos of Brian

photos of different times

childhood

high school

last week

alive and now not

29drawers01

Still reaching back to 1999. Pieces I haven’t look at again until now though I can remember writing them, sort of, in general but actual contents has been forgotten. Friendship is based on reality. Even the name ha snot been changed but unless you know this specific Brian he’s a cypher.

I’d met him in recovery, a good & regular member of my Saturday Morning AA group. We’d talked often, gone for breakfast after the meeting many times over the years I knew him. His death was a shocked to all of us as he was well liked & healthy. We never did hear the cause.

Our friendship had changed over the years & the breakfast fellowship had ended a year for so before his death. My sexuality presented no issue until one breakfast, after they remarked on cute waitress, I said the bus boy was hot – things changed when my sexuality was no longer a theory.29drawers02

The viewing was as described – this meeting of his family – this odd sense of learning something so new about a man many of us had known well for years. But this is one of the facts of AA life, we share what is pertinent at meetings, not every detail. Thought it can be a challenge to keep a private life.

Another fact of recovery is that we often see the same face at meetings for decades but never know anything more about them than their name & what they choose to share at the table. 29drawers03The piece looks at how we share ourselves with others. No one getting the whole picture. How we create boundaries of what we trust people with & when we close up for self-protection. I’m out at all times but I don’t constantly tell people when I meet them ‘oh hi i’m a queer.’ If they can’t tell or assume otherwise it isn’t my issue unless it’s relevant to the conversation.29drawers04As I said his death came as a shock – he was physically well – her one day then gone. I was saddened but not heart-broken – he was a friend but nothing more. Oddly it is the death of strangers than can affect me more – the Pulse shootings were heart breaking – perhaps because the target was more than people but an population that even though I’m not p.o.c I am a part of & feel I have no way to defend or protect.

soon

 

cover170x170-1on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Deliciously iTunes

September 1-4: attending FanExpo 2016 (I’ve already registered)

expo16

https://www.facebook.com/fanexpocanada/?fref=ts

November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo

nanobullseye

http://nanowrimo.org/

6DC0301

June 2-4: attending: Capturing Fire 2017 –

newcap

https://capfireslam.org

check out these poets from Capturing Fire 2015: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCx5KD1eDccdjdTdQ28kZRNg

money

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh? paypal.me/TOpoet

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr

blue diamond

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Sunrise

Sunrise

the romance trail

like all trails

like all romances

leads toward the sun

set rise

twist turn

sudden canyons

abrupt cliffs

unexpected waterfalls

city streets

dotted with houses trees gardens

streets all lead

back and forth

from my house to yours

from one bed to another

from one shower to another

back and forth

ebb and flow

with stops

to eat

met

fight

rant range rage

shop

talk

lots and lots of talk

pointless for the most part

the subtle word clues

to one another’s moods

intentions

directions

which sunset set are you running off to

which sunrise will we meet together

who kicks who too much in the night

which bed is the softer

which has the wrong lumps

in the right places

who needs space

who has less

who mows the lawn

who carries the conversations

all that who

we are trapped in whoville

water for the who-terville trolley

no not trapped

enwrapped

engulfed within each other

when each other is present

each with their

own life flowing around the other

each tends his own side of the street

sweeps his own sidewalk

wears his own clothes

most of the time

though those socks have

become harder and harder to separate

though those friends have merged somewhat too

the separation has lessened

even as the distance has increased

I pass the same shop windows so often

on my quick trail blazing to your door

that I can notice

small changes in background

a watch sold

a new dress

different book records candy

seasonal

festive

summer winter

back and forth

we move in and out of each others’ sight

each others’ warmth

only to return

as often as possible

though we both admit

living together

is out of the question

oil and water

piss and clean freak

you get the picture

and neither minds how it develops

as long as we are both

in the same frame for that long

in that same breathed space

share that molecule

with DeVinci

and we blaze that trail

in all weather

in all emotional short circuits

I never tire of the first sight of your face

the first feel of your arms

the sweet dash

of your naked body down the stairs

after unlocking to door

for me to enter

to make the decent into our valley

our cave

our time to clutch

love

love

love

such a delicious opportunity

that so few have for so long

we have for some reason

held onto to something better than money

bigger than time

sweeter that lunch

and wider to track down

than

even these words

can ever encompass

or even vaguely hint at

22drawers01Another piece from 1999 – sunrise/sunset – plays on the cliche of riding off into the sunset – usually the handsome rugged cowboy who has just saved the tender, helpless female from the clutches of the blood-thirsty red-skins. Never mind the fact that many of the cowboys preferred one another’s company, that the Indians were defending their land.22drawers02Like the last piece I’m looking at the things that make break & hold relationships together. Westerns created a romantic false impression of cowboy life. Romantic movies have done the same things for relationships – with the right lighting & music everything works out smoothly – never mind the fact that neither the characters or the actors playing them actually hears that music.

But just like movies, pop songs – I let this piece go over-the-top in its rush to love. I try to acknowledge limitations & how sometimes the concessions to make things work can force us to a admit that our need for privacy is more vital that out need for intimacy. Creating a pair of lovers who need each other but just not all the time.22drawers03I’ve seen many great pairings sizzle out in the tedium of living together on a daily basis – getting caught in the cultural cages that stifle relationships – that if you don’t want to be together 24/7 then it really isn’t pure love but just some superficial stop gap until that real love comes along.22drawers04There is also a sense that love is endless when we stop putting limits not the way it is expressed, Sunrise/sunset is a cycle that continues regardless of our personal feelings. Those moments are its set & rise are momentary & we can chose to enjoy them for their brief appearance or ignore them for not being lasting enough – love can be like that – it comes & goes, with moments of intense experience not constant in intensity.  soon

cover170x170-1on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Deliciously iTunes

September 1-4: attending FanExpo 2016 (I’ve already registered)

expo16

https://www.facebook.com/fanexpocanada/?fref=ts

November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo

nanobullseye

http://nanowrimo.org/

6DC0301

June 2-4: attending: Capturing Fire 2017 –

newcap

https://capfireslam.org

check out these poets from Capturing Fire 2015: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCx5KD1eDccdjdTdQ28kZRNg

money

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh? paypal.me/TOpoet

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblrdrawers

https://www.tumblr.com/blog/topoet

Treasure

Treasure

this is you

you know it’s you

but you don’t want to accept it

believe it is true

this you

my treasure

my walking one and only

well not one and only

but you know what I mean

when I say this is you

the apple of my eye

the polish on my shoe

the drip in my tap

the wharf in my woof

woof woof woof

yeah baby that’s it

 

we both treasure

the woof

don’t we?

 

but the times

you don’t believe it

are the times you worry

you complain

you moan

bitch

toss turn whine sob cajole

and those are the times

I know I can’t tell you enough

you will never feel that truth

till you also feel

that truth about yourself

you have to be your own treasure

something that I can’t do to you

that I can’t create in your mind

that I can only hope

you will find someday

that ability to love yourself

as you know I love you

then you’ll have the treasure eye that I have

 

no map

no compass

no special sunrise

surprise

Christmas morning gift

that I can give you

will give you want you really need

that ability

that acceptance

that you are what I say you are

that you don’t have to prove to the world

that you only have to prove to yourself

 

give me a break

don’t say that

take a hike

don’t be such an asshole

I can hear you so clearly

swearing away at others

and swearing away at yourself

butting your head

against their walls

looking for what can ever come from those walls

proving only that you can butt walls

with the best of them

ending up with a sore head

a heart ache

a tantrum that leaves you breathless

bitter and spoiling for more

spoiling for more

than I’ll give you

because

as you know

I’m not fighting

I don’t put up my dukes

and your blows just pass through me

most of the time

sometimes they tickle

sometimes they just bore

they are so far off the mark

and slowly you swing at me less

swing out at others more

you brag of the latest encounter

while I shake my head

I think of the pointlessness of it all

as you recount your moment of glory

their moment of defeat

and hope you learn

that I won’t love you more

as you butt walls

on account of winning those

pointless little battles

with people

who only want you to shut up

get out of their way

get on with your life

so they can get on with theirs

 

my treasure

my sugar plum

the object of those sweet little names

that cover the anger within you

but which are true

are real

to me

and when you come home

weary from your latest day

of the war of life

I am here with my endearments

my soothing for your brow

our cozy

[for the moment]

little house

the comfortable snug as a bug in a rug

time for your recuperation

for my savouring of

the treasure

you

the treasure

unburied

open

for me to see

15drawers01Treasure is another 1999 piece – this time abut the ‘joys’ of queer relationships – guess what, emotionally they aren’t that different from hetero relationships. Human nature doesn’t change much from genders to sexualities when it comes to intimate interactions.15drawers02Expectations weigh things down, often smothering what ever simple attraction started things out. We all love that ‘apple of my eye’ energy that starts hearts beating until it turns out polish isn’t enough to make things last.15drawers03It’s also an early run at the theme of need – how we define ourself by having our needs fulfilled, by emotional & sexual validation from others – not by just any ‘others’ but that specific ‘apple of our eye.’ If they don’t respond, then clearly we are valueless.

Being told you are attractive by someone you don’t find attractive isn’t good enough – though there was time when I was first coming out when if someone found me attractive then that was enough for me to drop my pants or get into theirs – I needed validation that badly thanks to a culture (at that time) that devalued same sex attraction. I’ve been on both sides of that scenario & neither side is fulfilling in the long run.15drawers04The poem is also about the realization that you can’t love any one enough to heal them of their past, of their insecurities & their own lack of self love.

November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo

nanobullseye

http://nanowrimo.org/

money

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh? paypal.me/TOpoet

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr

drawers02

https://www.tumblr.com/blog/topoet

#GetIntoMyDrawers

nice drawers
nice drawers

Over the years I realized that Toronto really doesn’t have Spring. It’s damp and cold with flashes of sun then bam – hot and humid. I know summer is coming, and like nearly everyone I know, I can’t wait for these cold days to be over but I know putting away the long-johns isn’t going to hurry things at all.

dropped drawers
dropped drawers

So April is poetry month – something like cancer awareness month – only there ain’t no cure for poetry – no one is really fund raising to put an end to it – most people are just hoping it’ll die on of its own if they just stop paying attention to it –

snow drawers like your drawers
snow drawers like your drawers

I’m doing my bit to make things worse by posting a poem a day on my facebook site – each one will only be up till the next one gets posted – so get’em while you can. I’ve spent the last three months working on short story so getting back into the imagist space will be pleasant for me – and maybe for you too :-).