Kiss me one more time beneath the goon fright. Scold me in your arms. Blister beat nothings in my ear. Glove me ’til the end of rhyme. My none and homely, you break my knees weak. You snake my heart skitter skatter. Will you scary me? Will you slay with me all fright long?
Here comes Monday morning strutting down the weekday runway. She’s wearing gloomy boots, got her moody blues cranked loud. Her real name is Shazam Kablam, comes from the land of Dontmesswithmestan. Talk smack about her, you’ll wind up eating a brass-knuckle sandwich, and kicked to the other side of Sunday. But if you treat her right, she’ll make your Monday morning feel like Saturday night. All she wants is a little respect. Wake up on the right side of the bed with her, she’ll suck the sweet outta honey, then deliver it in a kiss when you least expect it.
Mercy rode my bumper so close I could see its illuminated face in my rearview mirror. Was so blinded by its light, I missed my exit to work. Floated down the road like I had clouds in my blood. Mercy kept on my tail. All around me, grace reigned supreme. Bells of grief traded sorrow songs for undoomed tunes. Hate stopped sharpening its knives on humanity’s spine. Dead-tired bliss quit working the graveyard shift. Mercy finally pulled alongside me, wished me a good day. Its smile was bright as the key to love’s safe-deposit box.
This poem doesn’t have a face for wearing hats, or a voice for radio. Has an overly bushy brow that can beat Frida Kahlo hands-down in a battle of the unibrows. Doesn’t have a talent for horse whispering, or finding its keys in the dark. Gets cold in summer, warm in winter. Once dated a gloomy surrealist that told him old tombstones were Mother Earth’s rotten teeth. Doesn’t know up from down. Walks around with dog hair all over its most proper thoughts. This poem does, however, know to say thanks when kind words are offered its way. And it’s sure to wipe its feet before entering your ear to reveal its deeper meaning.
We are caged by day-to-day chaos. A human zoo where we’re fed a daily diet of dystopia and hate chants of Just Say No to Hugs. Aging miracles turn tricks on the boulevard of optimism, hoping to reclaim their mojo, as we offer mouth-to-mouth to saints and martyrs who’ve traded their sufferings for an overdose of pain pills. Every day, we wait to be excommunicated from this church of hurt, where the gun is God, and lies scribe the King Shame version of the Bible.
Even words have graveyards, collusive and convoluted agendas piled high atop one another, twisting and turning in coffins of thoughts falling from bitter mouths. Where to send the bones of the big-hearted when countless freshly dug lies pile up regularly before our eyes. Don’t count any souls among the missing if they’re not heard amidst all this noise. The sinner’s song may be the loudest, but its fatal intentions will eventually rust its instruments. Then we’re left with the music of truer, purer words that defy death, stay with us through time.
You can lock your brain up in a chastity belt, you can TiVo the last ten years of your life, you can lobotomize your darkest thoughts; but no matter how hard you try to weed out what you don’t want to see, feel, or think, it won’t work. Sooner or later, ghosts and demons are gonna find their way through the cracks. Then it’s time to deal, or get dealt out.
Plant troubled memories. Water them. When they grow flesh and bone, uproot them from the dark places in your mind. Allow them to sit at your dinner table. Teach them not to swallow fire while you are saying grace. Forgive them should they be covered in bad auras; they are sun-starved and slim of sleep. Feed them a diet of love and forgiveness. Sing lullaby light so their pickpocketed eyes may shine new magic. Hold them close, or let them go. Should they move on, offer those memories feathers and final words of peace. Help them soar high above the vast blue of this heavy world.
The problem with the problem isn’t always the problem. Rather, it’s making a bigger problem of the problem instead of first seeking a possible solution to a problem that might’ve not been as big a problem as the bigger problem created from the original problem. Which I suppose all boils down to the idea of thinking more positively, which can really be a big problem for those who have an even bigger problem with living on the bright side of life.
We share our mortal time and touch, but our words get spirited away. So many shadows between my lips and yours. A chasm filled with one too many spasms of divergent meaning. Open-ended messages subject to radical redactions and revisions by our miscommunications and the mercurial state of the world. Bitter tongues snipe hate speech while serenity dodges sniper bullets. Will we ever heal this disconnection? Not only send true messages across great distances, but also to the person next to us. Oh, bells of mercy, ring a song in our speech. Our mighty chorus of words, a resounding wave of understanding.