OSI: “Chaos”

I’m once again participating in the poetry fun over at One Single Impression. If you enjoy poems and awesomeness of various stripes, why not pay them a visit?

This is my first post of 2010. Long time readers of this blog will recognize my natural inability to meet most deadlines, which, when coupled with my nigh-pathological avoidance of anything like real work or significance, leads to things like my first blog post of the year arriving in the middle of that year’s first month. What can I say, my life is chaos.

Chaos (she segued so smoothly that she might’ve almost planned it) is, incidentally, the prompt this week over at One Single Impression. Many people think of “chaos” as swirling, netherworldly darkness, a vortex of inescapable doubt and confusion from which nothing, not even light, can emerge unscathed.

So, basically, the inside of Pat Robertson’s head.

Of course, I was also a Dungeons & Dragons fan as a kid (you’re shocked, I know…luckily I am wearing my +8 Kirtle of Snarkslaying), and a bit of a dimestore philosopher, so I am aware that chaos is not purely a force for evil. I refuse to expose myself to Ashton Kutcher in any form, but I am also familiar with Chaos Theory, aka “The Butterfly Effect,” in which a butterfly flaps its wings somewhere on the planet and, via chain reaction, changes the weather elsewhere (although my personal “butterfly effect” reference will forever be “A Sound of Thunder.” Now THAT’S a butterfly effect!) .

Chaos leads to change, which can be ameliorative as well as destructive. It’s just surviving the change so you have a chance to appreciate the improvement that’s the trick. With that in mind, I give you:

CHAOS

Witness: a tableau
The iron wheel of time stops,
Suspended.  And yet.

Life, though stilled, goes on.
And sitting at your table,
In the Springtime sun,

You see quite clearly
Every crystalline droplet
As your wine glass falls,

Spinning toward Earth
In a vermillion fan, an
Impromptu Pollock.

Perfect spheres of red
Orbiting a frozen wave
Of luminescence.

One drop goes astray
Its shadow hangs over your
New cream-colored pump.

The glass itself a
Bar of coruscating flame
Imprisoning sunlight.

All of it beyond
Your reach, just past the tips of
Your straining fingers.

You hear it, then. Whoosh.
Soft, yet powerful; a breeze
Caresses your cheek.

And time’s pitted wheel
Returns to its soft-edged rut
Lights, camera, action.

And then she is there,
Apologetic and lithe
“I’m sorry,” she says

Through cherry lips, quirked
“I should watch where I’m going.”
Dropping you a wink.

And in that moment,
As ebony lashes meet
her porcelain cheek,

You hear it once more
Gentle susurration; the
flap of velvet wings.

And in its wake, your
Tableau for One becomes
a Table for Two


OSI: “Reincarnation”

I’m once again participating in the poetry fun over at One Single Impression. If you enjoy poems and awesomeness of various stripes, why not pay them a visit?

This week’s prompt is “Reincarnation.” I’ve always been fascinated by this concept; the idea that the universe lets us keep trying until we get it right is both reassuring and (for some people, I’m sure) a little scary. With this in mind, I give you:

Reincarnation

Next time I come back,
I will be glamorous and
charming, glib and svelte.

I won’t make the same
Mistakes, won’t let my fool heart
Choose the primrose path.

As Tolkien once wrote,
“All shall love me, and despair.”
But I’ll be smiling.

And although I’ll hint,
Imply, and allude that I
Could give you my heart,

I’ll crave not your love,
Only your adoration;
This door is one-way.

And standing on high,
Ablaze with reflected light,
I’ll know what it’s like, darling

To be you.

OSI: “Evasive Maneuvers”

I’m once again participating in the poetry fun over at One Single Impression. If you enjoy poems and awesomeness of various stripes, why not pay them a visit?

This week, the prompt is “Elusive.” This word, for me, always conjures up two specific memories: Glenn Campbell singing the mind-destroyingly awful “Elusive Butterfly of Love” and my childhood efforts to say this word without spraying everyone with a fine mist (I had a lisp as a child so severe that it took six years of speech therapy to reduce it to its current state of mild Daffy-Duck-itude).

Today, though, I’m thinking about the things we desire the most elude us the most deftly. Whether it’s a word, a meal, a job, a mate…the things that are worth wanting seem to require the most chasing, although it may very well be that their value comes mostly from the difficulty of said chase.

With that in mind, I give you:

Evasive Maneuvers

From the first moment
My eyes touched yours and widened
I felt the hook set.

And though I possess
A sufficient strength of will
There the hook remains.

I’m pushing, pulling
And you hold the line, smiling
And enigmatic

But I wonder, dear
If I threw this hook, and fled
The line going slack

Ringed ripples marking
The point of my departure
Would you cast again?

Or would dawn find you
Standing, eyes wide, fighting now
A hook of your own?

OSI: “Rescue”

I’m once again participating in the poetry fun over at One Single Impression. If you enjoy poems and awesomeness of various stripes, why not pay them a visit?

This week, the prompt is “Allow,” a verb that affects a lot of us in very different ways.  For me, understanding that a life without risk is a life without reward was an uphill battle. By (slowly) learning to relax my guard, I’ve learned that being open may leave you vulnerable to harm, but it’s also the only way to really connect with yourself, the world, and others.

With that in mind, I give you:

Rescue

She was fond of rules
They gave a shape to her world
Reined in all her fears.

As if by saying
“You may do this, and not that.”
She was in control.

Such a flimsy shield
Against the terrors without and
The chaos within.

She told herself that
A heart safe from harm, a soul
safe from slings & arrows

Justified a life
Bound by reserve and distance
Of closing herself

Locked away inside
This fortress, her heart still sang,
Her soul still yearned.

But in those grey walls,
The song was heard but faintly,
her soul could not soar.

There came, then, at last,
A day when fear of chaos
Fell to fear of rot

And she saw the walls
As they were – not a fortress,
But a grim prison.

A shelter from harm
But also a barrier
To love and to life.

She threw wide the doors
Sweet summer wind rushing in
Warmth replacing chill.

Shoulders squared, she
Clung fast to heart and soul, and
Stepped into the sun.

OSI: Farewells

Once again, I’m participating in the sweet poetry fun they’re hosting over at One Single Impression. This week’s prompt is “Farewells.” If you enjoy poetry (and I know that you do), get on over to their site and check it out.

You never say it
So sweetly superstitious
Unwilling to be

The one who conjures
Finality within the
Circle of our love.

Instead you will say
“Later, Alligator!” or
“Hasta La Vista.”

In what may be the
Worst Austrian accent I’ve
Ever encountered.

The word has never
Had such power in my world
(Semantics bore me)

But I’ve said good night,
So long, farewell, and the rest
Often enough now

To know not to use
This shibboleth you’ve proscribed
Because in your ear

The world ends with

Goodbye.

Fork in the Road

Author’s note: The following is my contribution to the current poetry “prompt” on One Single Impression. Each prompt features a different theme for poets to write on…this weeks is “A Fork in the Road.” I hope you enjoy my poem, and please be sure to check out all the other great stuff you can find on One Single Impression.

A fork’s in the road
Holding up traffic today
Quite inconvenient.

There it stands, mocking
All efforts to remove it
Obstinate, proud steel.

They’re saying it waits
Like Excalibur, driven
Into the asphalt.

“The One shall remove
The Fork in the Road, and claim
This fair dominion.”

For a moment I
Imagine tearing it free;
Castle, crown, sceptre.

But…

Ladies of the Lake
Are in short supply here, and
“Heavy lies the head…”

So I stay right here,
Honking the horn as if it
Will change anything.

33 Years

Tomorrow I’ll have
thirty-three full years of age
and unknown years to go.

Tomorrow I will
celebrate palindromic
numeric status.

Tomorrow I’ll be
the age I was so sure I
would be world famous.

Tomorrow I’ll let
my crush take me to lunch and
pretend we’re in love

Tomorrow I’ll mark
my first birthday as Claire
both inside and out.

Today, though…today
I am just a girl who now
understands at last

That time gives and takes
that love is indeed what it
is cracked up to be

That regardless of
deep, deep discounts, plaid will
NEVER be my friend

That losing weight for
anyone but yourself is
pure idiocy

That calories count
even if no one sees you
eat that crate of chips

That a true friend can
save your life without knowing
How close the end was

That loving yourself
is the best way to ready
yourself to love

And that who we were
Need not be who we become
In our tomorrows.