Vulnerability

Only through our vulnerabilities  

Can we speak of ourselves

Where no genders build language

Where no categories structure

Your reaction to my voice…..

My reaction to your voice.

Either of us can be the words

Slicing into the coolness

Of our combined angers…..

Of our singular gentleness

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Adolescent Tongue

Photo of the Eagle Creek Fire provided by Oregon Live

Haze is in our voice,

Wraps the air in orange

Our mouths taste of ash

From heat and dryness

Encircling our throats

We speak through filters

We become speechless

 

 Our voice is smoke

As the sun turns colors

A Pumpkin glow, fluttering

Our talk is like cinders

Composed of dark cumulus

Layers bound inside bark

Released…we become confused

 

We seek the onshore flow

The lucid linear spoken spell

That quells our child tongue

Who claims immortality

Even if just for a second.

To deny the child

That sparks within us…for

It is us who light the dark.

The moth is eaten by flame….gone

With Both Our Terms Intact

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The bay is a memory

Whose time is always now

Glowing greenish blue

Before rocks and sand

Slow in its inland intrusion

Into small beach towns

Where I fish the unknown

Green line on a stick

Taste familiar cotton candy

Watch taffy pulled

Eat bread shaped

Like a rock.

I refuse to let the bay go

Even as I shelter

Myself from storms the bay brings

To my doorstep, mat, and mailbox.

I hear it pelting my shingles

Tapping at my dirty windows.

I don’t invite it in

Deciding to meet the wind

On its own terms; outside

Where it washes my old desires

Causing a yearn

From the skin to the inside

Filling me full of myths

The disbelief that shapes me

Stemming from a past

Lingering in the present

A linear fishing line

Dangling into the dark of the bay

And like you all

I decorate inside my basement

With old trophies, shoes,

Broken odds and ends,

Defunct tools of communication

My only glimpse of the beach town

Is through a window, distorted

A mirror of handed-down stories

That I scribble into sense, inside

The cracks of concrete walls

Trapped and freed

By the bay’s storm, I eat

The rest of the bread

Cotton candy and taffy.

Attempting to turn my water

Into a sweet reddish cherry drink

Held together by impenetrable

Veins, vessels, and arteries adhered

To bones the shape of rocks

Other towns dot the shoreline

With bays attached

Word Knots

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Span of index, arms weakened

Rambles upon wrinkles, I am

Pressed between Earth and

Air…..Flow upon my continent’s

Systems, scattered over ranges

 

Puddles flirt with thirst, Lakes,

Mock the drought of my

Throat, Reservoirs dribble…

For My body is a gathering

Of harvests from the oncoming

Winter, the divining rod dust

Only Scent lingers, eternal pine

 

I look to the snow, Taste

The season, a melted past of

Garnished greens, grays, and suns

 

Hearty robin, ever alive, steam

Floating from her beak, Nest

Built of water, sticks, and mud

Her Feathers, wisdom’s movement

Lay upon my words, a slow worm

Snagged from frosty grass

Scrawled black upon the field

Desert letters made of tree knot

 

Symbols smeared / slants of rain

The blue, blue liquid cleanses

Meaning, shot out of innards

The words, worms always

Cut in two, the clay I am

 

My eyes, lids nearly glued shut

Begging for preservatives

Or the relieving thought of

A connection to moisture

That will keep words moving

My wet hand through dirt.

Pain rides up between thumb

Finger, Palm and Lifeline.

My arm is silent, swollen.

 

 

 

Language is oil now, dug

Dug, deep under my nails