Posts Tagged ‘Children’


Bending forward
she looked close enough to catch
her butt pressed
against the base of an enormous tree.
I was ‘it’ – and awkward long and skinny
limbs were horses driving a chariot.

The illusion of proximity
caused me to grow in size and strength.
Not enough to overcome
the recent changes.
She was tall and thick now like the tree
yet as flexible as the grass
tickling her bare feet.

The sun’s eyes bounced
off her tan skin. Like my eyes
bounced in hurried excitement.
Like dodgeballs bounce.
Like she bounced when she walked
or talked. Up on her toes with
a grin of energy.

I reached the base of the tree
and she was gone.
Like breath escaping
adolescent lungs
just a moment before you
can speak.

Read Full Post »

By the time I got here
I forgot why I thought
I would never be here.

Why I thought I’d never want this.

There was once a present moment
a present me
that thought that this me was not real.

Yet, without providence or design
I am here. In this moment
holding a human being who just peed on me.

Why I thought I’d never want this.

This is the third. The youngest.
Like me. Unformed rock
and probably already thinking

of reasons why they’d never want this.

In my arms they are the center of the universe.
There cannot be two centers.
This is the choice of our lives.

Outside the window, the cold barren
hills of Nowhere, Ohio are gloomy.
It’s incredible school system teaches kids

how to come to want this.

Read Full Post »

I gave.
Every reception
Everything away.
And what I got
was good.
It was good, and not free.
The product of relenting
of giving of allowing.
How then do I go back
how then do I tell the others.
Tell my child.
How do I drag them kicking
and screaming
into the sun and the shackles
when all they want is to choose.
Today’s lesson will be on
Dostoevsky and reality television.

Read Full Post »

Your hands press overlapping
crop circles into my knotted back,
the same high pressure system
that swirled a storm on dirty dishes
and cleared condensation
off the glass shower door to
reveal your face amidst steam.

We whisper though the house
is empty and too large.
You waited for me to come home
for this, to rub my back
and talk about vacation spots.
At work, my female colleagues
tell me of your servitude –
of a thing called woman
with a glass ceiling
and steamy condescension.

How did such a young woman,
such a modern woman,
get hoodwinked into loving to serve?
She has given it away you know,
this thing called womanhood.
For a man, for this man,
a young barely bearded man,
who needs her to dress him,
to feed him well,
to rub his back.

Did I make you into unwoman
by witnessing your dreams
unfulfilled? The lack of tiny feet
on the hard wood, even though
we cuss the dog out when he
relieves himself there. We would
love those tiny feet, kiss them
like a king, and serve them hand
over foot. To love such a thing,
such a tiny, tiny thing.

Then I could have an excuse for
a dead end job and you
would have a reason to stay at home
other than wanting to.
But instead you are unwoman and I am unman.
So after a relaxing back rub
we will enjoy sex with the lights on
then fall asleep in each other’s arms
while the dog watches through
the fat end of a white cone
like a little furry phonograph.

Read Full Post »

“I do not forget the ill affects of such mistakes
I merely let my brain filter out Aztec pitfalls and much
of the year spent with malaria. You see a life is not spent in history
it forsakes plain facts in favor of context and narrative.
The mind makes pilfering into excavation using
the same justification as a priest at an alter;
a still beating heart aloft in his hand. Call it profane
if you must but do not assume you do not do the same
when you lie to your children. At least my adventures are heroic
and their name will spread as fast as its mystery –
that is to say, at least I tell the world my lies.”                               

“I disagree with your premise kind Explorer. Man has no uniform
to put on or take off. History is neither fact nor narrative
but pedigree and convenience. Lies are only vicious when there is a truth
no matter how you justify. It is a pity that your genius
was so exaggerated. You may know much of nature but nothing of man.
I attribute much of your errors on the misfortune you had
being entrenched in ancient texts devoid of recent advancements.”

“You say such words with some authority which strikes me odd.
Don’t we share things with those ancients –
enough that they may guide us?
We’re nothing but clay – free to take shape, no two the same
but still clay.
Dissimilarities can be found among all things
only by first assuming they are common in some way.
Take the pyramids for instance in both Egypt and South America…”

“Do not try to assert yourself as an expert on people because you have
examined the affect they’ve had. Have you explored the brain
have you number the electrons, followed the neurons, and surveyed
the remains of a man long dead. Have you divined how to detect
the quantity and quality of man? Then do not tell me how to weigh
genus, species, and family because they are nothing but convention –
words that would cease to exist if we did so also.”


“Well if you think such of words
then we cannot have this discussion. Toward what end
would we continue to pontificate if tomorrow
if we all died and took our words with us.
Such an absurd thoughts brings only sorrow
to anyone with children. What cause would bring
you to this hell? That you would sooner remove
the power of your tongue then admit
to something beyond you – whether the thread of history
the endless grace, timeless nature, or the promise of words?
Why do you even speak? Why offer such grief to those
of us who respect words enough to use them with responsibility
rather than selfish charity – giving away only that which
you wouldn’t keep in your own home.”

“It is my duty, as it is with all mankind,
to seek the true shape of things.
Then to emerge with it in hand to send to all too weak of mind
to discover the same.
Call it the burden to knock down the wall. Doing
so ensures that our progression from apes was not for nothing.
We have emerged to tare the heavens down and finally unveil
reality for what it is –
a sham the scale of which astounds me
even as I prepare for bed each night. For even in the midst
of my deepest mind the universe still tricks me into thinking
that something is out there.
That my bed is soft, that my wife is happy,
that my children enjoyed that bedtime story.
Such experience doesn’t belong to me no matter
how many times I recall them. 
Despite my longing for them to be true. 
Memories are just useful fictions to
allow for sleep at night.”                             

“Then why do my memories frighten you
and my refusal to forget them? Why do you
care if I fabricate some details for the sake
of a good story – if all are untrue?”                            

“Because I care for you, dear explorer.
We are all in this despair together
and what would we be if we didn’t lend
a hand to those less fortunate than us.
Besides I can’t have you spreading such lies
around impressionable children. Heaven forbid
my own children would fall for such a line. I would
further discuss this matter, but we’re out of time.
Perhaps we can continue this later over prime rib and some wine
I know this secluded place down by the docks
perfect for such discussions.
Perhaps I could catch you coming in from another adventure.
Until then, dear explorer, do not forget what I have told you today,
it might serve you well.” 


Read Full Post »

I bring my fingers to the temple,
ten digits long been sacrificed to house work
a simple brainless rub soothes a headache.
Its been a long day, on top of a long life,
not that I could tell my grandchildren that
as they wail, at my knee.
“Grandma, grandma, play with me”
Such blissful ignorance. As if I could keep up.
But I must continue, they need me, and what is left of my love.

Outside my window a barren tree loses its final leaves
the bright sunshine nevertheless bounces off it
as if it where wrapped in golden fleece.
Its long limbs like an old man’s boney fingers
pointing away from the horizon.
It points to my dearest Virgil who waits
With God’s right hand, Eros.

One memory, plucked unluckily from a mess,
rises to the surface. An Easter service, Warsaw 1940,
our church dark and everyone whispered prayers.
Father left months ago. My mother never told me why.
Children these days do not know the meaning of such a lie
its importance, its weight, or the meaning of Easter.
I wore pink – the colors of my nation – to match the Amaryllis
which had somehow been resurrected from under rocks. 

Read Full Post »