Known

Skewed

 

Being poetic can be accidental

However,

Being a poet is no accident

 

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Kiss (Portrait 11)

The streets at night shimmer under the emerging, movement of streetlights. It’s the tree limbs that cause their action. Above them, wires stretch into an evolution of light and dark.

Of course, that’s where we kiss. Where else? And it’s a damn good smooch. One of those that fits like two pieces of a puzzle, like it’s meant to be.

That’s when I hear you say, “These streets are like our bones, drawn to one another, making a map, an illuminated grid.” You get a scared-like look on your face, as if you said something weird. You did, but I like it.

Then chaos……… the shots ring out. I’ve heard them all my life. Some people live their lives to be snipers. But this bullet is no different than the others, hitting me in the head, the heart as well. I know what they’re made out of, nothing but misdirection…….yet…still…..tonight……..part of me lies dead on these living streets.

We’re looking at the body, my body. I don’t deny I’ve been hurt….hurt for good. I carry my death around. Always have……… I say, “Bury the body.” We dig deep. Our purpose is ……no one will find out this dimension is a drive-by shooting, quick, violent, darker than irony, lighter than a paradox. For tonight, we kiss in the streets.

I kiss you again when the gunfire is but smoke and I swear the streets turn luminescent. Bullets are cold compared to us. I feel as if I will climb the streetlights to string wires. When the sun rises, I will invent phosphorescence. Tomorrow night, we will kiss in the streets.

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Crows

Swirl

They swirl above me, swashes of crows, in a chaos of dashes. They cackle, arguing amongst themselves, bickering with the sky.

These large murders are new. I haven’t seen them like this, as if they’re scolding me. For, I think they follow me. I know you think they follow you too. I would ask you to look up. But who am I to ask?

I ask them if they’re trying to speak to me. Of course, because I’m self-absorbed, I answer for them, “Yes, I’ve made mistakes. Some of them large enough to follow me around for the rest of my life.”

Then, I realize, it’s my ability to communicate that turns them into metaphors. They’re my mistakes. They’re yours too. They are representations of me and you. No wonder their caws fill the air.

And that soothes me, but in a disturbing way. I can understand why it might make you feel uncomfortable. They fly as if they’re in love with tension.

As a child, I believed their eyes saw everything and they shared every sight they saw. They’ve seen everything. Once you’ve seen everything, you can’t believe anything. That’s why there’s so many of them.

The air is thick with eyes. Theirs, ours. Have I lost you yet? It’s ok. Disconnecting is a natural reaction. Perhaps, a survival mechanism. I reach for my phone to take a photo of them. You must see this, even though you’ve already seen it. For you’ve seen everything. I don’t care whether you believe. Let me show you again.

There’s not enough space for them to land. I feel sorry for us. The trees are lower than all the buildings. We’ve built it like that.

We stay inside. Our mistakes can belong to someone else. We don’t want to see everything. We don’t want to share anything. We just want to believe.

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I Used To Swim The River

Columbia River Gorge, December 2017

I remember swimming against your current, only to find myself stuck, muscles not strong enough to make progress. I learned to swim with you.

I remember heading for your deepest channels, where the big ships travel, catching large wakes. Your cautions were always whispers. I learned to hear you.

I remember bumping into sandbars, frightened, thinking I had swum into a sea lion. You let me feel the gritty sand in my hands and upon realizing what it was, I stood upon those sandbars, acting like I was walking on water. No one noticed, except for you and me.

I’ve lain upon your shores in the heat, where your gritty beach stung my bare feet. I searched for the softest sand and a tall shrub to shade myself. Overheated, your kiss, a cooling, minute wade.

I sang songs about you as a child, taught to me in schools smelling of waxed floors. Songs of commerce, soul, and lives. Those melodies still swirl about you and me, as do their themes.

You’ve seen me reflect upon you with lover’s eyes from on top the gorge. Countless reflections. Your expression is so vast, few grasp its content. Yet, you and I know, all who look will reflect.

 

 

 I’m sorry our dust has been kicked up high and settles down inside you. I no longer swim. I hope you can forgive me.

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Cerealized

Cerealized

We stretch what is real

Until it fits the way we feel

If we don’t think it’s right

We’ll let it soak overnight

Where dreams of our wishes

Are full of strange dishes

Then, in the morning we awake

To find reality can’t be faked

So, it’s back to the top we go

We’re artists, didn’t you know?  

 

 

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Page Turner

Breaking Confinement

 

Ask a poet for a page turner,

She’ll offer you a page

That can’t be turned

 

We tend to view life as  linear , as a series of events. Like art, it has depth.

 

Your happiness is a craft that travels within no time restriction.

Your sadness is only one measurement among an infinity of calculations.

When looking at life or art, there’s more to it, 

Than the appraisal of time.

 

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Cascade Soul

My Spirit

is a path built in the Cascades. Tectonic plates. It adheres to a dream where I’ve floated above the trail, without pain, not worrying about the forest. The seasons stilled and the river is silent. In this sleep, my imagined body feels like it’s falling through my bed. I abruptly wake up.

 

My Body

is an old child’s bicycle. Tubeless tires. The back tire had a gash chewed out of it, five inches long, causing me to bump along. Then, it refused to turn, sticking in place while I was riding a couple of feet off the ground. Made a full stop and I fell. During this life, my imagined spirit feels like it’s falling through the earth. I abruptly wake up.

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Dream Fumbler — Elan Mudrow Photography

Oregon Garden, September 2017

via Dream Fumbler — Elan Mudrow Photography

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Mountain Lake

Burnt Lake

I sit with her

Placing her in memory

Giving thoughts strength, yet

In her silence, she frightens me.

I rely on others

Camping upon her shore

To soothe my worry.

And although I haven’t

Seen her rimmed with snow

Echoing the clearest of nights,

Pitted with raindrops

Upon her clear face,

Witnessed her held tight

By mist and clouds,

I know she has experienced this.

 

She reflects me

Placing me inside her memory

Giving strength to her beauty, yet

In my silence, I frighten her.

She relies on the stream

And springs to ease her.

And although she hasn’t seen

All who I love, have loved,

My stumbles and woes

On nights of anxiety,

My elations and successes,

The clatter of the city

Reverberates within me

She knows I have experienced this.

 

(This is a link)

(This is a link)

(This is a link)

elanmudrow@gmail.com

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Sweet Dirt (Portrait 10)

You thought it would’ve been water and initially you were right. Then, the ocean changed. No one was surprised. After all, that’s what we do, change, survive, change again if we don’t die first. Not very poetic. What nipped us in the ass was the increasing storm surges and haunting fires. Beautiful when viewed from a computer screen, the greys of wind whipped sea, the coal red of fire eating its way through forests. Sometimes I think voyeurism is humanity’s best quality. We gaze at beauty and swallow it, holding it in, while it eats at us from the inside. Damn, if it wasn’t for beauty, we might’ve been better off.

And so, it came down to dirt, sweet dirt. This is what we had to learn to respect. Funny….learning how to respect something. You think we had already learned. Again, you’re wrong. No wait, I’m wrong. Because now I know. We needed to worship dirt, not carve it up, colonize it, bend it, treat it like infinity. I could wash my hands a thousand times and this dirt would always stain my fingers. I’m ingrained with the soil. You’re the same as me.

Now scarce, we look for the sweet spots, where the dirt is still alive, wormy, nutrient filled. We’re hunters of dirt.

 

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