Baltimore

Image courtesy of Johns Hopkins Medicine

Pulled my anchor from this harbor
Years ago.
Yet the current pulls me back,
Some irritant speck,
Yet to yield a pearl,
In the soul,
Some rough edged
Needless need chafes away
Until confession is made
And a pilgrimage to graves
Must be paid—

There is no why to this–
This steel wrought laundry list
To be run down and checked through

A visit, a meal eaten
At the landmark restaurant,
Where new owners chiseled hieroglyphics
over a history of years when
the landmark lived across
A narrow brick paved street
And my family lived upstairs,
Erasing my mother’s sacrifice
Of bloody fetal tissue,
My fraternal twin,
On the bathroom floor there
While I hung on to be born.
But such bloody sacrifice
Doesn’t sell cheeseburgers,
Greek salads, and over easy eggs,
A fairytale of family ownership-
Sells well and makes for spots
On reality television shows.

A drive by the childhood home,
Sentimentality at its highest,
Revisit the torture chamber
It became—
A wooden yardstick and when it broke,
A metal one I had to buy to be taken
Across my back by a drunken mother
Until the skin broke open to bleed.
.
Why the drive by?
Who the hell knows?
When all I’d like to see
Is it all disappear—

Then the statue of Christ
In Hopkins Hospital lobby, a must see.
Where I stood as a teen
Confessing the darkest
Thing upon my soul—
A part of me wishing
My mother had died
In that surgery of fifteen hours
The other part thanking Jesus
she had lived.

Then the graves,
To place some flowers,
Talk a bit to the air,
Turn my soul inside out
To find it dusty and dirty again.
We can think our souls clean
Until turning them inside out—
That is where we find the grime
Of all the living done.

I visit my brothers,
The man who was my real father,
Then on to the man I thought was,
And then my mother,
The saint she was,
The monster she became.
At her grave, my soul aches the most,
Tweezing thorns left from her old rose bushes and my own,
Turning itself inside out,
Leaving all the grime and dirt behind,
Or so it feels.

Then on to visit with what is left of the living.
And though, I love the living,
There is little, so little–
To charm me into staying.
But the currents, the tides
Of some blood element,
Like an ancient memory,
Bring me back
From time to time.

This is Baltimore—
for me.

 

Guarded Trail

Image courtesy of Sue Vincent
Thursday photo prompt: Guarded #writephoto | Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo (scvincent.com)

Give me a minute.

Let me have another cup of coffee,

Will you?

Before I slosh on after,

Down the trail–

Again– maybe.

You say, a guard now stands there,

Of the newer variety,

Who advises of the locust thorns,

The kind that pierces the shoe

And can go straight into your foot?

Could have used that advice–

Once or twice

Maybe thrice

In life.

But now I’ve rubbed my thumbs

Over the sharp tipped thorns of regret

Until callouses formed.

Then I moved on to other

Fingertips until bloody, raw,

Proving to myself the sharpness of thorns.

So now, you say this stony guardian warns

Of all the thorns

Along the paths and trails?

Might this guardian advise of a thornless trail?

I really wouldn’t care, but the soles of my feet

Are without callous, and I’d like to keep them so.

Send me down a muddy, sloshy trail where

I might just fall and break my neck.

That would be simply fine,

If the soles of my feet

Remain as soft and unmarred

as a baby’s behind.

A Witch Among the Willows

Image courtesy of fast-growing-trees.com

Sit among the willows,

drifting in ghostly silence,

each wrapped comforted

by misery’s blanket.

Except I am no longer,

listening to words

 

carefully scripted,

tumbling into deceit’s

delicious dishes

 

easily prepared

by your thin lips mouthing words

filled with ghost meaning.

 

Regurgitated regrets

bitter in the soul and heart–

I can tell you that.

 

A thing you would not

ever know, catalyst of misery,

your starring role.

 

Except–

 

tell-tale signs of age

now crackle through songs of your

sweet, deceitful voice,

 

makes harder to catch

victims snared in misery

of life trials made.

 

Stop floating among

the willows, thinking yourself

Calypso casting

 

spells of delicious

deceit, when you’ve aged into

Macbeth’s witch drifting

in the ghostly fog of ego.

https://godoggocafe.com/2020/10/20/tuesday-writing-prompt-challenge-tuesday-october-20-2020/
https://onewomansquest.org/2020/10/19/vjs-weekly-challenge-117-except/
https://amanpan.com/2020/10/19/eugis-weekly-prompt-ghostly-october-19-2020-%f0%9f%91%bb/

Schooled

Image courtesy of Daily Hive
https://amanpan.com/2020/10/12/eugis-weekly-prompt-foresight-october-12-2020/
https://godoggocafe.com/2020/10/13/tuesday-writing-prompt-challenge-october-13-2020/

 

In the fading light,

My hindsight schools, lectures, drills

My foresight

In how to take steps,

In how to look away,

In how to live hopeless,

In how to heal with saltwater dreams

Overflowing with hope.

Yet still with foresight

In how to guard,

My scars, my wounds,

My picked at scabs

In this

fading light of days

Unfilled,

Lived,

Cheered,

Flowering with dreams,

Left

Of life remaining.

Musings on the Cracked Crystal Ball

Image courtesy of Aliexpress
https://amanpan.com/2020/09/28/eugis-weekly-prompt-crystal-ball-september-28-2020/

When you found the things you could,

A mist of breath showed in the rain,

Twin clouded rain shimmered colors

Of gray stone before you on a path you would go.

If only, if only, you should know the bones of us,

Move knotted stiff with the griefs you’ve piled upon your soul,

We’d glow of phosphorus and neon in velvet darkness.

Walking the dark, shadowed canyon of dreams

Wilted by disappointments and deflated sunshine

Waking to dimmest daylight at noon

Where you cannot bear to look

Upon your own reflection,

A sight of horror in your own eyes now

In that cracked crystal ball where you stand,

In your own self-consecrated field

Of plastic flowers bowing their majestic heads to you,

Your straw haired head is bowed,

Smiling at the ground.

Leaden

image courtesy of scvincent.com
https://scvincent.com/2020/06/25/thursday-photo-prompt-silver-writephoto-2/

I can not begin to hold

the silver in the twilight air,

for it too quickly slips from my fingers.

My feet stuck in my quicksand thoughts

of moonlight shimmering on silvered hair

so, stop any step toward a silver chance,

Slipping away like silk as twilight

Fades into velvet night.

Charms

Image from BBC Culture- The Strange Power of the Evil Eye

Serrated edges of your secrets

Sliced open my chest long ago.

Yet, I carried those secrets

Across the borders of decades.

I guarded those secrets like gemstones.

I wore them as talismans,

Good luck charms, rubbing each

Like burnished bronze of ages old.

Why have I kept them so?

I do not know.