They’re read and read repeatedly,
Though readers sensed already what was there,
Woven of one cloth, whatever tongue it be,
And in the long run all equally threadbare.
Still, unfolded again, after their lonely meals,
At night on watch, in bunks, once tales are told;
For those who’ve fought their solitary ordeals,
Such characters nourish as they did of old.
Between ‘my dearest’ and ‘yours ever’ there can be
But one theme – kids, isle, village homes they own –
Which only weddings, births and deaths rephrase.
After so long on board, it seems as if a haze
Shrouds what they know on land, they are alone,
One with the ship, consorting with the sea.
© 1998, Erven J. Slauerhoff / K. Lekkerkerker / Uitgeverij Nijgh & Van Ditmar
I love the imagery of this poem… It is beautiful yet still it crashes against me and tears me to pieces against the rocks of my own desperate need to once again write like this… Longing, it makes me feel longing in ways not much does right now…Nor’easter
I will strip you of your clothes
like an autumn wind robs the leaves from a tree
and my mouth will roll over your limbs
until you abandon your roots
And I will burrow into your flesh
as a worm, in fear of flood, turns the soil
a tongue feasting for winter’s forage
until your skin turns crimson and gold
My hand will strike your blushing cheeks
like the ocean crashes on November shores
with sailor lips I’ll taste the salt on your skin
coaxing the whale upon your shoulder
© gibson grand
By: Patrick Rosal
When the bass drops on Bill Withers’
Better Off Dead, it’s like 7 a.m.
and I confess I’m looking
over my shoulder once or twice
just to make sure no one in Brooklyn
is peeking into my third-floor window
to see me in pajamas I haven’t washed
for three weeks before I slide
from sink to stove in one long groove
left foot first then back to the window side
with my chin up and both fists clenched
like two small sacks of stolen nickels
and I can almost hear the silver
hit the floor by the dozens
when I let loose and sway a little back
and just like that I’m a lizard grown
two new good legs on a breeze
-bent limb. I’m a grown-ass man
with a three-day wish and two days to live.
And just like that everyone knows
my heart’s broke and no one is home.
Just like that, I’m water.
Just like that, I’m the boat.
Just like that, I’m both things in the whole world
rocking. Sometimes sadness is just
what comes between the dancing. And bam!,
my mother’s dead and, bam!, my brother’s
children are laughing. Just like—ok, it’s true
I can’t pop up from my knees so quick these days
and no one ever said I could sing but
tell me my body ain’t good enough
for this. I’ll count the aches another time,
one in each ankle, the sharp spike in my back,
this mud-muscle throbbing in my going bones,
I’m missing the six biggest screws
to hold this blessed mess together. I’m wind-
rattled. The wood’s splitting. The hinges are
falling off. When the first bridge ends,
just like that, I’m a flung open door.
“Every heart sings a song, incomplete, until another heart whispers back. Those who wish to sing always find a song. At the touch of a lover, everyone becomes a poet.”