No Good Deed

I thought I was a star

Shimmering a pathway to the moon

I got caught up in my illusion

Thought I might be beautiful

Then you ripped me from the sky

Pressed your bitter words against my heart

Looking down; I saw that I was just a weed

In the rancid dirt

The best parts of me were just a fractured shadow on your face

Creased valleys of drought that your fingers tried to scratch away

As you chased after the blazing sun

Until I withered with shame

Pinpoints of light, the delicate threads of my soul reeled toward nothingness

Devastated by your dissection of my spirit

A list of grievances so long that it wrapped round the universe 13 times

Your truths deliberately cruel in translation, extinguishing my light

As I stood on the burning bridge

Wondering if plunging into the gasolines wake might be a better choice

Unsure how to react to such venom as it ate at my eyes and skin

Melting them, to pool at my feet

I dragged my defeated shadow, my desiccated bones to the cemetery

My heart falling into dead rosebushes somewhere along the way

But, too weary, too despondent to turn around and search

I carried on, followed the western lights that brought us together

This time leading us apart

To my resting place

My lonely, unmarked grave beneath the scraggly lilac bush

Wondering what I had done to create this rampage

Animosity oozing from your pores, your breath, your eyes…

I like to think that before I met you

Atrocious years falling away with no gentle attention built up such fury

And I became the hope that you cupped in your palms, but eventually could not believe

I dreamt that you loved me

I dreamt that you loved yourself

That the fire in your belly wasn’t for the alcohol on your breath

Dreamt of when your eastern eyes sought me in the western midnight sky

And those lips that never smile, curved wide like the crescent moon, when you found me

Wrapped me in your arms, where I inhaled the luscious scent of you

Losing myself in that silky lions mane, and those warrior eyes that hid the ghosts you’d piled up

A demon on each soft shoulder, carping in your ears

Creaky voices hissing rancor, goading a perverse blind eye

Toward flinty choices that chained you to your history

Love is a force for good

But it can not heal all

This is a dream that time and again will find its way to the burial yard

It doesn’t matter how many good intentions have feathered those wings

It doesn’t matter how far those wings arch to reach

Some demons eat angels

Some stars plummet to their ruin

No good deed goes unpunished

My Mourning Gown

Snowy Steeple

My mourning gown
My stinging undoing
A wreck, ruined and breathless
As my lungs insist –

This firesong was ours without a doubt
Hearty passion, intuition, entered at our own volition
Look through my seasons
Look through my eyes
Onto the parts of me that no one else should ever see
Onto the pieces that should be left to obscurity
Douse the melting flame
With breath and touch and gasoline –
With lips and mouth and quarantine –
Where starched sheets tangle, like our legs
As kiss becomes one spark to flame
Within thin walls pressed ears could obtain
Soft moans, in peaks of cherished pain
Reckless marks on tender skin
Taste so sweet they should be sin
And mortal, crimson petals bleed
Passion purring rhapsodic need
Velvet smooth against the rough
To singe so sweet never enough

And in my mind I live to dream
Of angel wings we laid upon, as over skin our fingers crept til dawn –
Fingers drenched in the sweet obscene
That, after pulse and breath did still
Did hold filter-tipped to our delighted lips
Bleached, thin strips, of menthol flavored nicotine

Into your eyes I remember; I fell unbound
Silent, sweet, searing sound
To fade, to die as mortals do
These lips immortalize what was true

My mourning gown
My stinging undoing
A wreck, ruined and breathless
For what no longer does exist

The Last Dragonfly

Spectacular Sign

You
Were the highway of my childhood –
Aspen birch skin, feline green eyes, waterfall, platinum tresses
Curves and legs
Hollywood voluptuous in a small-city girl; You were Marilyns prelude
Your joie de vivre lighting the Hollywood strip, pale, candy cane pink kisses trailing behind you
You inspired eyes of desire, and I
I chased your magic –
It followed you everywhere, although you rarely noticed
I tried to catch it in a jar, but it was trickier than those fireflies that lit the lilac bush in summertime
I tried to lure it onto my palm, but it was fierce and wild
But as the years fell away, you did, as well
Clouds of fire
Rolling through the sky
Roiling, toiling angry monstrosities
Beautiful chaos like your embattled eyes
Violin lips pressing a haunted melody against every blissful season, chilling each pleasant breeze
Blowing icy kisses that frosted the ocean waves as you stood barefoot in the cold, wet sand
Lingering somewhere that could never be touched…
Captured in a Polaroid, your hair whipping in the wind, face turned sideways, eyes numb, like your smile
And I dared never ask the question –
Since your demons easily tripped you up
And your spurs, and quills shot to attention, punching through your delicate, pale skin
Like tarnished armor that kept you separate, kept you scarce and alone
But I remember how I played in your shadow, looking up at you with adoration
Heel to your toe –
The whole world rose in your smile and danced to your laughter
And should there ever be a measure of my soul
It would be those breaths taken within the span of your ethereal wings
Moments when your love unpeeled times grey shadows to reveal exquisite pastels beneath
And, having forgotten who I was
I found myself in the glint of your soft, fragile, velvet eyes
While your lacy wings wrapped me in their lilac-scented sweetness…
We brushed against, and pushed through the clouds that ringed the mountains
Carbonated wilderness full of specters drier than a dead desert –
Coughing up their putrid sawdust, choking us
But you gathered me up and without hesitation, dove into the sky
Wings beating a lullaby
Flew past the sunflowers and marigolds
To land in the clover-dotted grass
Where we tended to our nicks and gouges
And the world righted itself, surrounded by a cornflower blue sky…
Your silhouette unfurls and I reach out from my dreams, my fingers sliding through empty air
Drops slip beneath my lashes to flow down my temples into my dark hair
I don’t want to open my eyes and admit nothingness –
But it resides there, the yin to my yang
Kitchen table coffee mornings were a best part of us
Each time I traveled back, feet on the blue concrete landing, peering through the glass panes into my childhood
Hand on the doorknob, eager
I remember the time the egg shells cracked and I hid in the bathroom, sobbing –
Unable to understand how I could make you so angry
I still don’t know what happened that day, but I hold it close to me, along with sweet, candied moments
Now that I can’t hold you
This morning, I feel separate, scarce, alone, and wish for a lullaby; I’m looking at the sky
Wishing for that fierce and wild in your long ago
As you darted and dodged, hovered and swirled
Prisms of colors, purples, greens, blues and lush black
Wings that kissed my cheeks with tenderness as you flew by –

The last dragonfly