The Great Hartford Circus Fire






Falling Star (Song of the Rainforest)

Hummingbird in flight above my burning heart
I still feel the heat your nearness brings
The tears you spilt to ease my heart when parting
I wept to wash the fire from your wings

I am in tears right now I must confess
Though numb from years of trying to disguise
A child's heart within a muscled chest
And keep his fears well masked behind dry eyes

I fear the dying of the Earth's begun
Though in Her mind it's just the winter's come
Perhaps
In which the loss of children's lives
Is one more storm within near endless skies

I do not believe the sky will fall
Though I know not of our Creator's fears
It may well be He'll need the stars and all
To mask the falling of His tears

So let us love my love while love we might
For we may be the tears the spirits weep
That burn as hearts on fire through the night
Then fall as stars when last we sleep



May In Malicho

It's may in Malicho again today
the brookie-brookie way waves in to me
"A-be a-be oh be around
my baby boy be on thy way a day"

Indelible light on black
improbable motion to move so cleanly across the sky
should you not instead be on my side
waxing and waning with every tide
scattering star and sky upon the sea
bright star of stars come dance with me -

Malicho change forest to spring!
Malicho bring may chased round to me
again I'll beyond the boy away
stay Malicho a day.



The Theory of Relativity

They feed upon their young
and everything is food
even devour suns
defining the Good and the Truth
in these violent acts of Beauty

So then
there is nothing more
that men may say of their ilk
except to brag
that we'd be stuff
if they were silk

And speculate
that earthly horrors
might abate
had he too high to have a name
not been charmed
by our Sun's self-devouring flame
until blinded to all
but her fleeting and imperfect fire

And this is so
if as above
so below



Endymion and the Moon

In the distance there is the surf at night
But I can't hear it for the wind is wrong
Or clouds take her voice as they take the light
Leaving my memory to play her song.
At once Selene fuses the shoreline
As smooth and sharp as her teeth on my tongue
I'm washed in her cool white with the first time
We touched and were finally not alone.
Then she slips off down the side of the sky
And I can't blame her that she leaves this way
For she always has and she's never lied
Not even the times she pretended to stay.
In the distance there is the surf at night
But I can't hear it for the wind's not right...



The Great Hartford Circus Fire

I was a child when Big Bill Curlee straddled the tiger chute
and ferried us all across
until the Big Top collapsed into its final singularity
leaving behind only the impossibilities
of flight and of surviving the knowledge of beauty and innocence.

So after the fire I kept it from the kids
about the conflagration from what pulses in crimson
and cascading emerald
and if it catches
a man's heart will burn and burn.

If I could count tears like heartbeats to the final tear
and hold him in my arms to melt together into the grey earth
that would be enough
I'd toss the blue sky for that one forgiveness
but we can not count the tears in our cup.

Instead there are the consolations of music
the kindnesses of women
and sudden flights of birds
all the hopeful distractions
that mark the long wait.



Beach Glass

A leper thirty years and no one knew, not even himself
Though the nasal lesions came and went, the nosebleed chronic.
But with the nodule of bacillus biding its time
His doctors shrugged and told him to quit picking at it.

It was bad luck the time came just as he flew the girl in from Korea
His white hair falling first like dandelion fluff, then his hands starting to die
The things with the most use, his lips, his cock
His face drooping, his bowels freezing, then his legs
And at last his feet going all tingly and numb
A biblical plague that can only be cured by faith.
In the morning she said he looked like a monster
And still she held out two weeks.

Then everything had to go
The petals of red ginseng, the yellow blossom tea, all leftovers now
Everything her dark-chocolate eyes had lit upon
Contaminated, even though he still didn't know shit
Thought it a vitamin deficiency
But then he stopped at the rare beach glass
She'd left behind, bluer in sunlight now
Than in the pic he'd snapped for her on the shore
The tiny cobalt blue blue gem resting in the shadow of his maimed hand
Its sharp edges erased by years of surf, the gloss sand-blasted to a frost
Down to its essential core.
He'll keep that in his change pocket, with the lucky penny, until it finally breaks.

She'll have caught it from those thousand kisses
If she can catch it.
The odds are always slim.



The Memory of Water

It has been blasted from the Earth a billion times
as it vainly sought to cool the fire at her core
and it has been lifted by the Sun on a trillion days from every sea
as it's lifted by this breeze that cools my lover's breast
this water that seeks every pore as it seeks every rest.

Here is the sea split by the prow of the Golden Hind
drawn together with the sweat of Cain's fears and Mary's tears
it rests here in this cup now it passes my lips as I speak
and touches every bone in every ear to whisper its chiaroscuro to our blood
of every stone and shaft of light it's tumbled over and through.

We may say that there is that which is beyond the grasp of man
and mean by this that we can not know what we mean by this
as if it were the mind of God as if the memory of water
is what we mean when we say that such is divine that such is sacred
when we say we hold the ground upon which He stood.



Untitled

Tonight as I rode home beneath the sunset
I tasted love on the air
Like honey it was sweet.
I smacked my tongue against the roof of my mouth
It tasted like love.

Love binds us together
The way starlight binds us to the night sky.
You caress love as a treasure and so are treasured
You are blessed with light
Tendered of light
In love with the light of love.

Tonight as I lie here beside you
Beneath the star-shine that makes up the night
I dream of always lying beside you
The way I dream of lying beside you
When you are away.

Love binds us together
The way starlight binds us to the night sky.
You caress love as a treasure and so are treasured
You are blessed with light
Tendered of light
In love with the light of love.



In Scorpio (Song of the Savannah)

Do not be fooled by this too little life
Sometimes so fine in sunlight like clear sky
Then times the scent of smoke and fire combine
To stab the eyes and make that light a lie.
I am a lion
These hands don't lie
And I hunt on other plains
I am the lion of this place you live
But I have heard you call to me in voices from other lakes
As wind on grasses
Sweet roaring head and heart sounds
At high noons and full moons.

Do not be fooled by this too little life
That sprung us on each other
It's a dream
We meet here now and love it's true
The way a dream is true
It seems
And that is all it is a dream.
I have sometime met the dreamer
And there have seen we are the dream within our hearts
The idyl of our timeless day
Our nights
Are stars within the dreamer's eyes
Though few they seem
They do not end when they are dreamed.

Do not be fooled by this too little life
It could not hold our love within its means
Do you suppose it could without bursting the seems
It is the heart that cups the dream
The heart that picks the bride and groom
And whenever it picks life ends too soon.
No day could be enough
No string of days could hold our love
That's all you need to know
So that as I chase you round the sun
Should you think me slow
That red star you hear ahead is mine
We'll pass this way again
You seek you find
Our love it has no end.