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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/books/item_id/1926559-red-shadows-on-deserted-snowfall
Rated: 18+ · Book · Emotional · #1926559
A new book to house this year's (and future years) NationalPoetryMonth's daily poems.
I'm writing once again this year. This book is my special event place for thirty special poems.

Here for National Poetry Month in 2018, I'm participating but life has not been kind in the last 15 months, so I'm not always in writing mode.

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April 30, 2018 at 3:43am
April 30, 2018 at 3:43am
where is sorrow
if nothing be forgotten?
leave now? but return!
on such a sweet morrow
surely joy will abound

such sweetness
in today's last embrace
blotted tears
only accelerate
the next first kiss

to leave, wherefore?
I cannot part from moonlight
reflecting in your eyes
lovely invitation
no, not to leave!

a hundred times goodnight
I bid the fading sun
your eyes, your soul
keep my image sweet
that I may share the morning

when all is said
gentle words linger on starlight
they do not die
like pain thrusting in my heart
come swiftly sweet dawn!

five Shakespearean tanka on "such sweet sorrow"
April 29, 2018 at 3:30am
April 29, 2018 at 3:30am
no, it's not called dissertation defense
I wrote a title in Arial caps: incineration fence

it deals with companies fabricating barbed wire
in the pre- and post desolation of Nazi quagmire

yes, of course I can tweak intonation a bit
(enunciates distinctly) decades of racist shit

now try out a whisper, seduce but not too bold
there are millions of bodies rotting in the cold

but isn't history a continual spiral of genocide
now's the moment for a Pirandello aside

(we caper through philosophy in search of reason
all fate delivers is complacent sighs of treason)

we open next month on Broadway

April 28, 2018 at 3:30am
April 28, 2018 at 3:30am
This is not what I intended.
Creating millions of life forms
to highlight the diversity of perfection.
And one -- although if he looks farther
than the center of his own shadow --
will discover other animals possess
the power to reason and emote, yet
he created religions that no longer honor
my perfection. Each branch of Tree of Faith
shares roots in the strong foundation
of the symbol "Do unto others. »
"Thou shalt not » has become selfish
in the name of my god. Man has cast
aside the shadow that truly guides
and burnt by the light, which contains
as much blight, has forgotten simplicity,
good and the truth of love, understanding
and acceptance. Man's greatness dwindles.
His honor clogs the rain’s purity.

This is not what I intended. Precipitating
death serves nothing but vileness. Blossoms
and forests cannot rise up and fight their own
extinction. The animal kingdom can no
longer survive. The winds and oceans,
irritated to their cores by man's disregard,
are rising with empathy for my inner turmoil.
Their intensity grows like disappointment.
Will you listen now, before endless night
strikes yet another time to wipe away life?
Will my words fall as faint whispers upon the
deafening isolation you create around yourself?

His words left unchecked
April 27, 2018 at 3:55am
April 27, 2018 at 3:55am
their language is onomatopoeias
they are wind whisperers
all but one still listen

they embrace mountains
with boldness stronger than cement
their lessons maintain timelessness

their steadfast presence grounds
rivers and protects fertile plains
their summits reach towards prayer

man, complex and self-important
didn't try to listen or admire
or question their greater necessity
instead, his quest for comfort
ripped away bark, wood and pulp
man never looked at their peace
and like infertile mulch, he forgot their wisdom
after he weakened their numbers he forgot
to replant their strongholds, they became
ornaments, lost, no longer pillars for life

trees, unlike dreams veering to nightmare
cannot defend themselves and slowly lose
their godship to the animal kingdom

they continue to guard earth's ancestral soul
its pulse mutating like the cooling of lava
that will break only man's lifeline

their falling majesty
April 26, 2018 at 3:07am
April 26, 2018 at 3:07am
I have magical pockets
filled with oceans, sunsets & bouquets
lint, of course, & a lost sock the washing
machine surrendered as a surprise just as I
had finally thrown out the first one orphaned
two months ago, an oyster's pearl, still a baby
a small meditation bell, a clown's nose
two cinnamon sticks & apple seeds, small
vials of Dead Sea sand & stardust, beach
pebbles & a flame from the Statue of Liberty
a book of famous quotes from guys like
Shakespeare & the Dalai Lama, a smile
which I hope is more contagious than the sun
my pockets never empty

come, laugh with me & surprise me with your joy

small things found in unlikely places
April 25, 2018 at 5:05am
April 25, 2018 at 5:05am
vagueness from days that wave at keys swept out to sea, they
reappear in your sable coat, to haunt my hands covered in wet sand

my prayer, my words, my years yearn to tame obsession
this trauma since Zurich backtracks life in my dreams

vagueness cries and swells to unseal itself from forgotten fears
to tame the mountain of this unplanned effleurage: a kiss on your lips

my prayer, my words, my years yearn to tame obsession
this trauma since Zurich backtracks life in my dreams

vagueness caged in memory's cells I review this last vision, distant
secrets threaded into sand courting my confused soul’s troubled death

my prayer, my words, my years yearn to tame obsession
this trauma since Zurich backtracks life in my dreams

The dead city, lighter than words

***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****
***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****
***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****

Original texts and their translations
Mohammed Dib, poet
plus légère de mots /// lightest words

et la vague /// & the wave
qui se dissipe /// that disappears
en tout ensablement /// in the sand’s wetness

qui se divulgue /// that reveals itself
en oubli /// in forgetfulness
sur un ensemble de lèvres /// on a set of lips

la vague celle /// the wave, the one
qui distribue le secret /// that spreads the secret
d'une mort confuse /// of a troubling death

from the opera by
Erich Wolfgang KORNGOLD
Die tote Stadt // The dead city
Mein Sehnen, mein Wähnen, /// My yearning, my obsession,
es träumt sich zurück. /// they take me back in dreams.

***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****

First text created from sound simplification and imitation.
days of vagueness /// wave
keys the sea weeps /// and disappear
haunt your sable coat /// in wet sand

my prayer, my words /// my years yearn to try obsession
its trauma since Zurich /// they make me track my dreams

keys die and bulge /// that unseals itself
a nobleman /// forgetting
sure of ensemble levers /// a kiss on the lips

my say, my words /// my years yearn to try obsession
its trauma since Zurich /// they make me track my dreams

vague cells /// the last wave
keys to distribute secrets /// threading secrets
dunes of mortified confusion /// trouble death

my say, my words /// my years yearn to try obsession
its trauma since Zurich /// they make me track my dreams

***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****
***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****
***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****

How this came to be:
I often binge listen to new music. For the last few days, I've been listening to this year's series of masterclasses by opera mezzo Joyce DiDonato's from Carnegie Hall. One of the singers, a baritone, presented an aria from Korngold's opera, both of which I did not know. The aria "Mein Sehren, Mein Wähnen" has captivated me since. The lines I have chosen from this text act as a refrain in the aria; I thought they should have the same place in my poem combining texts from two languages into my native one.

YouTube will give those interested many incredible versions of this aria.
April 24, 2018 at 3:39am
April 24, 2018 at 3:39am
press a button, the hologram
of my life stops spinning
fat nauseous cells are burned away
click play, no pain, no difference
image: hope plus a cure, image: hope
plus a longer life, add adjectives:
happier, more loving, patient
accepting, without warning I spin
back into that hologram hell needing
to be stopped, hit pause: doubt
breaks apart the link between throat
and voice, tears emerge contained
from nowhere a hologram should know
numbness claims other parts of my body
my soul
and the skirmish resumes, at night’s
vigil I list accomplishments in one
column, like soldiers ready for battle
and dark horrors on the thirteenth
page of bad luck, balance stymied
peace tottering but for no reason
my liver can hold responsible
I drink only water, fruit juice and herbs
the magic garden to rid myself of the burn
and its nasty snail-slow trail, the nausea
only grips my mind, flip switch at this
thought the hologram cannot think without
my brain and I accept the role of my own
general in a fight that cannot be won but
only be slowly tamed by counting the hours
one flipped switch at a time

untitled battle
April 23, 2018 at 6:42am
April 23, 2018 at 6:42am
deep in the whitened forest
where night shadows reveal
only the thinest dark outlines of trees
snowfall slows and clouds clear
her vaporous voice


and moonlight illuminates her white kimono
pearly iridescence of translucent white skin
a wild mane of icicle hair
eyes deeper than midnight
she floats beguiling white from whiteness
with only yearning instead of tears
young boys tell tales of her apparition
in words of forlorn sadness
when she speaks to them
they hear, all in unison

you are not my son

all wished to be the one
to bring her another moment
of happiness
before she melted again
into the winter night

a yuki-onna tale
April 22, 2018 at 2:55am
April 22, 2018 at 2:55am
he forms characters
with drops of rain
agile brush catching definition
from the clouds

for kindship
family & intent
he pricks a finger & mixes his own
redness to electrify brush magic

for sadness, solitude
& growth
he must tame wind so brush
loses anything brusk

catching sky blue requires
more than a hue called patience
for love & life & renewal
seek invitation
& wait upon timeliness

for it must be brushed beneath no stars
can only come from midnight’s ink
he is blind to its forms

before the characters dry
he sprinkles stardust
to add eternity
just enough to remember
only words
he, the messenger
is a comet's tail

April 21, 2018 at 6:46am
April 21, 2018 at 6:46am
the plums were for my mother
she died while you were away

the fruit you ate were large purple grapes
from Japan, you never had any taste

red, juicy plums, filled with sweet-tooth
yearnings, or those, I meant to say,
of expecting mothers

Margarita, our third-floor neighbor
told me her plums disappeared last night
what else do you take from her?

the real ones are always in the fruit bowl
it’s amazing you still digest wax so well

forgive you?
what offering did you leave in their place?

have I ever mixed plums in the morning smoothie?
I buy them for you, to nourish your guilt

left on the unset breakfast table: they were a gift
for your mother and her sudden arrival
I’ve left for an undramatic weekend

I have forgiven infidelity and bankruptcy
you can taste my sweet, ice-box shoulders at bedtime

this is just to say I found
the no-longer-secret bank account, emptied most of it elsewhere,
and changed your password
plums are a beggar's luxury now

snark on a midnight snack
After William Carlos Williams "This is just to say"

April 20, 2018 at 4:00am
April 20, 2018 at 4:00am
here flow no more than his thirty-one words

I cannot add the smallest touch
to bend his intent

& sway translated thus
into my own heartbeat

and hunger for humor

         morning banks
         drunk erasing themselves

         your [¿laughing?] curve makes
         the sacrifice to
         die as do embers

         & even childhood [¿games of tag?]
         because it had lighted
         the face beyond

         until intruding
         on candor

I'm sure he smiled
his effect

content to affect mystery
to a simple limpid scene

playing with imagination’s wile

after "light as a sign" by Mohammed Dib

April 19, 2018 at 3:08am
April 19, 2018 at 3:08am
possibly poppies distill choice
or hallucinogenic mushrooms

crazed cravings of fast
California freeways in the 60s

the danger of losing control
that one last hell-breaking time

waking, the welcome stubbed toe throb
or a heart finally on the starting block

the abyss called falling in love

a rose by any other name ...
April 18, 2018 at 7:58am
April 18, 2018 at 7:58am
we, the people, choke on the sweet pills
to gloss over or spruce up c'est la vie

medicine that kidnaps the dailyness
millions of other toy soldiers

who rush upright through Christmas
elbowing, an exercise in sleep apnea

pipe dreams filled with the dazzle
of cheap colored tap water

the parched quest for a human
teddy bear to warm up morning coffee

the chatter of Valentines, a single
forgettable day to celebrate tables

not set for two, the cat eats on the floor
and mirrors growl to “who’s the fairest?”

time runs out like a marathon and
c'est la vie offers a lumpy hospice bed

hoping, even though it's our absence
now someone will say a nice word or two

and won't disrupt the tombstone
engraved with a stupid c’est la vie

wasn't there something outstanding
like fireworks or walking on the moon?

when the bargaining table is tilted

April 17, 2018 at 5:41am
April 17, 2018 at 5:41am
this in-betweenness
chuchoté, à demi-mot

capsules of time, hidden relics
frozen ice, tundra, silence

this unexpectedness
a declaration of love,

whispered, a slight suggestion
a deathbed mea culpa

eyes with such intenseness
still vibrating this last smile

touched with the grace
of La Joconde

her immortalness
a mother's swan song

beautiful and blue-ish
Author's note:
"chuchoté, á demi-mot" is roughly translated at the beginning of the 4th stanza.
April 16, 2018 at 3:56am
April 16, 2018 at 3:56am
Breakfast for two, too early. Sans
romance the cat and I share only hunger.

Precision scalpels each hour into tasks
and likes, lists for tomorrow, forgotten

items at the grocers, the day's first wild
card. I huff and puff against aching joints

and return, buying extras not intended.
Next interruption, the phone. Landline. Not

friends. People with unique accents selling
poorly explained items. I don’t let them try

and politely hang up. Laundry to dry, two loads
every week adds no stress. Need a new rack.

I used to write you letters filled with details
how I occupied my solitary weeks when there
were interesting this-&-that's for telling.
The opera, theatre, cinema, gallery openings.
To spite fear, I went out alone waiting for you
to return and enhance my idea of romance.

We are old in our ways now. Of the two of us,
the cat is stingy sharing our meager space.

You told me to expect the doorbell to ring
in a few hours. Of touch and go laughter.

I never learned to bake at proper
temperatures. Happiness comes out

either soggy or too crispy. Leftovers
are normally food for entwined thought.

To add a pinch of unexpectedness

April 15, 2018 at 3:34am
April 15, 2018 at 3:34am
who other than Dr. Seuss added blue
dye to scrambled eggs
fuchsia is a lovely color not only
suited for blossoms

more orphaned children, asylum refused,
Liberty's dream is shrinking

it takes hours to say goodbye,
not destined to become farewell,
like a fading rose, clouds marring sunset
silk headscarves to wipe tears

then a few more zealots dropped
more bombs ...

rain aphrodisiac, a carafe of Bordeaux,
soft jazz illuminating candlelight,
thunder fails but sudden lightning
blinds the sweetness

... where hope is trapped by the thorns
of rubble ...

birdsong and gardens are untimely,
beauty pushes through somehow
the notion of Eden was born with the skies,
oceans and continents

... in a world where death gains a trophy
for mundaneness

So many closed doors

April 14, 2018 at 2:57am
April 14, 2018 at 2:57am
because is the commonest reason
it answers all and nothing

and if our favorite colors are not even

book of revelations: the doctor wants a journal
how, when, where

who speaks loudest? the me asking aloud
or the other responding rubbish?

why is still my favorite question
why do I still love you?

and trust you with the last embers
of my life? that's a mother's role

the fear is not of death but knowing
nothing about that first tomorrow afterwards

can we talk too much? the others say yes
can we discuss this?

today I feel only morbidity
and not the poetry of accomplishment

if bears could talk about caves
and hibernation, I’d listen

the first step is wet and undefined
I still growl, but that’s fear speaking

spring has not sprung the trap door
so I can gaze again at beauty

forests are filled with charms
few lucky ones can be found in cities

I am mulch not yet processed
into a fine soul

after Cordelia’s first frozen touch
I lost my sixth sense of warmth

sleep is turmoil and tumultuous
restlessness with no empowerment

I reached the “do not open beyond”
date, I missed my first kiss

hunger returns like a tortoise losing the race
not just for food

protecting nothing, I need to live
(scribbled on a napkin)

first dissociation: white
a dictionary of hieroglyphs

second: love
knowledge is not ever enough

what is missing then?

the chair squeaks as I squirm
each month I am lighter

I have a renewed appetite
wasting time is nirvana

can you still define hope?
only on the nights I dream

further conversations from the other chair

April 13, 2018 at 3:25am
April 13, 2018 at 3:25am
The chair is rarely empty. Strangers come and sit
in the drafty warmth of my home. They are dead.

If we talk, the cat opts for two choices: to hiss
or curl up at their feet. He always avoids me

in these instances of spiritual diversion. Not that
I pray, mind you, but meditation seems to have

awakened by resonance with things not completely
human. Some complain. On bad days, more frequent

as I approach their nebulous natures, so do I. Complain.
Our subject matters vary. A life/death cleaving.

My ghosts have mastered lessons in tolerance. Their
regrets are for absences never lived, never the banality

of bemoaning traffic jams or the second full month of rainy
days. Never a word of hate. They all carry the same scars.

Mine. My childhood fears. My dance with the overbearing
Cordelia, because none of us like naming the C word aloud.

On days I enjoy the vivacity of not-yet-gone visitors who
occupy their chair -- for they always visit one by one --

they amuse me and create extra wind rattling windows or
electrical disturbances, like cell phones suddenly

going dead. They are patient. Those still alive are not.
I head the list. Few are erudite but all play my poetry game.

Their lines are mostly abysmal clichés of comic book gore,
medical errors and urban war scenes that I temper

as best I can with tit-for-tat opposites. Peace helps us coexist.
They think I make an excellent future candidate for their club.

The second armchair
April 12, 2018 at 3:09am
April 12, 2018 at 3:09am
my head
on a straight
path towards healing
stuck in a sticky what if rut
where this disease has left my body (now in wellness)
but invades my tranquility
with vile indecent
thoughts that death

Fibonacci form.
Lines of 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 8, 5, 3, 2, 1 and 1 syllables.

April 11, 2018 at 3:28am
April 11, 2018 at 3:28am
today          like all the others          is mired
in the haywiring of monotonous routine
variation is a goal          wholesome
like balancing oats with cough medicine
fruit and chocolate with bus stops to the
hospital          though vital          its past visits
and success pass though a present
where my body refuses to recall it's time
to move on, forget and laugh          caught
with the mantra thread I am good
and perfect wellness
that I align
with hourly chimes          and soon
on a sometime day I'll gladly
watch unfold          I'll celebrate
with clamor and fervor
the return of the word

another after effect
Experiments in spacing instead of punctuation.
Not happy with the result.
Does anyone know how to add more
than one space between words without
resorting to the Indent ML?

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