Once upon a time, I read that insomniacs keep the sleeping world from disincorporating (tho the description was surely more prosaic.)
I have a clock in my bedroom which does not glow, so when I wake, I’ve no ideas on the time. I flick the button & a blue flash lights, a bolt of pulling me from any thought of sleep; but I must know the hour. Twelve after midnight: time to write.
Recently, I “found” seven grandmothers for my walls – me, who had no grandparents whom I knew. These are women of powerful profile, women of flowing/flown hair from which eagle feathers rise in halo, or drift in unheard winds. I made a Council on my wall, replacing my Vision Board, a grace gathered of wisdom. I put away my nightlight. The silken darkness woke them. Tho quiet til now, I feel I shall hear more, soft sibilants in a tongue far from my native, but conversation / communication nonetheless. This is the first in the “Messages from My Mothers” Series.
NOR MINE TO SLEEP WHEN WHISPERS WAKE ME WISE
I rise to midnight
Wakeful & alone
My life unsung, is flaring to a tone
Unwrapped & watchful,
Barefoot & outside
A shawl to cut the chill
Of night alive.
I wait on words
They rise to overfill
To flow away to rivers, all downhill
These are my true love
Ever, thus, my world:
A child’s hand in fist I might uncurl
To find surprises hidden from the day
My heart sees through all blackness in this place,
A gift to share with all, with sky so dark
Around a glowing moon I set my spark
I write an old September, or a June
One day past full, a dimming, tonsured moon…
The pages in the journal start to fill
For sleep eludes creation as I write…
In daylight worlds, a creature of tonight
Lit from within, the certain glow undimmed
I am forgiven every time I’ve sinned
The Muse awakes, she stirs inside my soul
I scattered during sleep; she knits me whole.
These folded-over pages must unfurl
A child’s fist, I open & uncurl
I see you in the distance of my mind
You are not mine, a message so unkind.
Yet knowing you, I never can be blind.
Your eyes see far beyond a simple rhyme.
As words arise, insistent of their way
These messages in darkness filled by day
With chorus/blessing both, I busy out
When nightfall sleeps, I rise to be about
My muse’s business, all there is to say
O’erflows my heart, my mind up & away
I cannot think, for caught up in this flow
Of all but poem, resting in its glow
The world, unfinished, lest I write some more
Insomnia insistent at the door.
My duties crowd around me; I don’t care
For words all dance about me in the air.
I breathe them in & write them in release
My pen, my soul, my ever-loving peace
There are no hours when I sit to scribe
These poems are my fam’ly, art & tribe
So, hear me Moon – before you fade & fly
These words may live beyond the day I die
I shall return, in line & open verse
A value far beyond that in my purse
This ink, my blood, an overlighting world
A child’s fisted hand you have uncurled
This is as much a river to the sea
My heaven at our door, these words are me
As others live for love & duty sure
I live to write. The muse is at my door
I bid her enter, take a seat & share
She takes up my most comfortable chair
And makes of it a jeweled & shining throne.
I write, & I am suddenly to home.
My life uncircumcised, creation swells
Where others sleep at midnight, I hear bells:
My seven elders whisper from the wall
Tho no one else can hear them, I am called
For all my lives are brought about by words
My mind defrocked, unfeathered, undeterred
My dreams can wait til daylight in the world
A child’s fist, the words inside, uncurled.
Today is important, but only to me. Today I begin to explore my 7th decade on the planet. Today I plan to lay down new trails for more serious exploration, to turn away from old pathways that led me into soul’s harm – imaginary pain, taking offense where none was intended, poor habits of health, seeking not the perfection of the moment in the simple ease of drawing breath.
I might ask what I have learned & jot some notes: wordsmithing is a fine art, worthy of paeans of praise, but only in a literate society. It is a far better art to adjust to where the world lives now & dwell there. Yet in the places I cannot bring myself to gather up & enter – the worlds of Facebook & Twitter & Gab – so much energy surges, pulses, quivers upon itself, turning about & racing free. At times, I like the idea of hive mind; but only when applied to flocks of birds turning as one over the face of sunset. Humans need to unite over more than surface stimulus & unity of heartmind is so much more important than the latest line dance. Although I must admit, one might lead to the other.
Recently, I participated in a play called “Beyond A Reasonable Doubt.” it wore so many attributives: but mostly it was a moment of intense focus wherein all my energy applied. It was triumphant, except where it was not, where I took umbrage at my own mind’s seeming incapacity to remember long passages of mono/dialogue. And at others’ seeming inability to recall these as well. I lost my intensity as I reflected personal frustrations outward.
Recently, I took on an office job, thinking a return to a regular paycheck would remedy some immediate financial needs. Yesterday was my last day there, after six weeks. I simply could not relate to it in the way I once did.
Last night I did a 90-minute massage on a woman with self-diagnosed fibromyalgia. It was a barter that her friend offered to grant her ease from constant discomfort. I observe how the world goes around, kindness touching upon gift.
This morning I awake & seek new habits for myself. Once again free from rigorous scheduling. Momentarily, I scheme upon what I need to acquire, the “this n thats” of a life already out of balance financially. I opt instead for choosing new screen savers. From a wide open, sunny beach, I travel to misty mornings with a far dragon lifting wings upon her hill. This would seem a more fitting approximation of status. Comfort needs to rise above need – & a realization that I already am comfortable precedes acquisition. I offer “so help me, God” not as an affirmation of innocence, but as a softening prayer, for I alone am unable to overcome some ideas which need to be removed from the forefront. I need to turn the kaleidoscope one small twist. I choose to be more giving in the light of other’s gifts. None of us can afford largesse in my circles, yet we all practice it assiduously. Hive mind, indeed.
Lest this all seem too heavy for a promising morning to a day of celebration, I offer up a chuckle at how things turn out. The play was a grand success here in town. Word got out that it was good & we had a great audience turnout – a marvel in this half-horse town. I was lauded at a local restaurant with recognition … both a blush a treat! I’m told our play garnered more than any other offered this year by the local community theatre group. It caused rifts – one stagehand took umbrage at being told not to use her cellphone during performance, sitting in the audience. Obvious? But two people quit over it, while another was castigated by a fourth’s unwarranted accusations. More learning. Here, where a hive mind should have united in pleasure of success lay emotional carnage.
And lest this all be too heavy for a September morning where you live, ponder this: it seems to be a custom that the cast gives each other gifts…so because my character complained loud & long about having to wear manacles during the plea bargain session, our director gifted me with fur-lined handcuffs. Yesterday morning, I hid them in three different places before leaving for work; none safe enough from imagined burglars. I cast mind all day about where to pass these on…I’m not one for holding onto anything I cannot use in the immediate (!) nor intend to use in the near future (!). I dare not bring these to any of our local thrift shops…all goods are brought inside & inspected at these. And “re-gifting” them is far beyond my contact list.
From the sublime to the mundane with the stroke of a pen. Guess I can leave them in the packaging for my heirs to ponder when I’m gone. Guess I’ll continue to live well so as not to have this be soon…I can see me blushing from the afterlife!
Be well upon your days, my friends. Rest easy in your minds & hearts. Bring love to every encounter. Never surrender your ideals for less & always be aware how easy it is to fall in love just a little bit every day.
Dear World, At first I thought these were separate poems…but as I reread them before this posting, I realize they are One Rant About Living Life. The choices are upon you, made from you, about you.
Jump on in!
PEELING THE PRICE TAGS OFF LIFE
One by one,
I scrape at these with ragged fingernails
Burning a torch in daylight
Nothing is as expected
Unless you cast off suffering
Reclaim your power
Lose the knowledge of being poor
To manifest the many lives we know
To be Available.
Stand still for no distractions.
Reach & clamp onto the wrist of the hand
Slipping into your wallet
Pinch it off. Cast it into slag heaps for the fire!
I am entitled; I am no commoner, no serf
Tho my wages are less than modest
My dreams are not
Each day is one more step into an
Unknown of my own making
Mal-informed, uninformed, misinformed
I take no heroes from among false gods
I declare myself immanent
There is no time left for dissimulation!
Our souls have been hacked
Our thoughts are written in the skies
We move in & out of credibility
With impunity; but life is not a fiction role
Where is your truth?
What has happened to your kingdom?
Where is your wealth?
Sucked dry by siege, by sanction
By laws against nature –
The sins of other’s fathers
Visited upon my ravaged soul
I would claim my own
Had I time to commit them
But I am wound about $9/hour
Still wondering if the coffers will
Ever clink with coin
To pay the owings engineered by other men.
I am in my own word-war, world-war
My own upsurge of independence
Created by simple aging
The four horsemen mill outside
Their minions ring the house
While one smiles, reaching for the doorbell
But I am not going to answer this call
I am no longer either in control of my thoughts
Nor in thought control…
I have moved beyond into a kind of
Where breath is enough
Where life is enough
Where love is never enough
Since that pushes me into the arms of others
To seek it, bring it, endure it, bow to it,
Embrace it, one from all, from one.
There is no denial in my life anymore
Only very careful choices,
Sifting thru the gemstones to find one that fits
The one that seats in my navel
Upleveling the energy of eternity
The blessing I place on my forehead
Shines on anyone more poor than I
Pulling them into a light
Where they dust off their lapels & fasten a flower.
I will be the one who makes it through
I will be loved, I will make my way
Cannot you see where your life has led you?
The life you waste in watching the lives of others
On a bright & fervent-fevered screen?
Outside, the sun is rising/setting,
Outside the skies dance with moons & stars
The air will feed you; the light is nourishment
Why would you forego this for pretending?
It is so seductive to live your own life
Free from corporate lies, medical rumors,
It is a privilege to worship the gods of my living
The angels of my choices bear me up
Out of abandonment
Into the fullest expression of life I can be.
I spend no time following the false
I worship no idles (sic)
My life moves forward of its own volition
Pulling me forward, pushing me upward.
Curtains open every day to new stages,
Stepping into palaces where I meet
The leadership of life to whom I will not give my power.
My life isn’t made of falseness
I recognize the limits of my godhood
I acknowledge the fierceness of my warrior-self
Fully. I juggle words like knives
Some do make me bleed,
None make me weep.
I have been known to make stupid choices
But only by others: to me they validate
My life is defined by the next new pen I buy
(Herein my craft, my croft)
My boundaries gallop beyond any distance my aged eyes might see
For where the world ends
My imagination begins.
My rogue nature emerges
In the house I once divided
Yet pull back together now
The redeemers have entered
My social circle
We join hands & raise them to the sky
No longer silent, but voices raised collectively
In a song to rock the world from lullaby to
Be you fruitful in your thoughts; it will
Ring the world
Will take us out of comfortable orbit
Into prophecy & foretelling
Where the story ends well
Where the lovers get their Kiss
Where the wars subside into the very ground
They so bloodily seeded
The deceivings of the users
Thinking themselves possessed of forked lighting
Will instead experience my laser
Of shattering power
My brain will emerge
Through my heart
I will love the world back into being.
The Truth is not afraid of you.
Why do you fear it in return?
Your soul has never shirked from duty
To shepherd you into divinity
To reveal your god-nature
The certainty of this
Is writ upon the granite cores of worlds
Your parallel thoughts
Wrinkle stars with ponderance
The light of your being alone
Has stifled hunger, seeded worlds, changed a universe
In its course
The life you bring to life
Were it not to be believed by simple existence
Keep moving forward, keep holding forth
Your heart, keep offering
Your being to service
For everyone is more needy than you
By virtue of not being you.
Carol Borsello 9.15.2018
LAST CHANCES ARE SELDOM THAT
Betimes, I weary of this life, even my own name.
Far horizons sing more clearly every day
Tho I long for them no more.
The trick of the light
Turned to a trickling
After rising oceans
Stole the land I stood upon.
This place is only an awakening
I play at touch while longing for a full contact event.
I flirt when I long to fall & be fallen upon.
I bring forth this love like a treasure found in the junkdrawer.
So long pushed aside looking for a real thing.
There is only potential to be made of
Skin & tactile surface
These imply anticipation, a discovery of imagination…
All I need would be/could be given into Love
I am willing now, to release & relearn
To go public with private passions…
Bring me to the Gate, O Love,
I weigh the latch in hand & lift it free.
I could care less of being found beautiful
I am as you imagined me
Finally, in the state of knowing it so.
The thoughts of others so long imagined
No longer slow me down
Or turn me away.
They travel over me as water over stone
Giving off rainbows.
A quicksilver moment
The prophecies predicted you
But left out so much –
You’re a stranger, really.
These are not up to my undoing.
We are close by circumstance only
Who started it anyway?
So unlike me, yet it must have been.
I am an ever-opening heart.
I am the last to love, an unmarked trail
Full of my own footprints,
Far too familiar from following alone.
The light has changed. I’m in another era
From that last bumbling home.
There’s a mystery as to what could be discovered,
The farthest indelible vista
Of the lover I see reflecting in your eyes.
I feel an impish sense of grace
A dance of infinite energy
Love animates my bones, adds a sparkle here & there
Smooths my skin, manifesting like silvering rain,
I will find you; I will sing you onto the waters where I walk
Upon your thoughts
I am always ahead of you…waiting
The trips & triggers of clandestine love
Surround me, a deepening mystery
Of which I shall not speak.
A white flash of light in closed eyes
Turns my sleeping head to you
I walk with my heart in both hands
This simple single offering to you.
Come to me
Remove the layers of obligation
Like overheating wool
Your heart is stiff with scars
I will make whole.
Offer me but a passing glance
A ticklish whimsy
My heart will do the rest
Take me at my words, this austere truth
Gone lush with longing
Only this: to feel you skin to skin
Like air in secret places
Cooling fevers of unknown origins.
It’s not that I’ve kept myself
For anyone, I’ve just kept myself
Because I didn’t know you were here to share this with.
Your hands stay at your sides
When I will them “touch me.”
Your body stays separate
When I will it to melt into mine.
Let’s redefine all boundaries
Bridge all separations
Because we’re made from love for love…
I can’t be shy about us any more
I love your smile; I beg your touch
I wait your arms returning around me.
I look at you
And there isn’t a “no” to be heard.
Last Chances & Random Rhymes
The lights are all off
Moonlight through the window,
Strange Venetian stripes
Make you exotic.
Words will not say this
Like your hands on my skin
Chilled & heating both
Speaking cell to cell
A communication nonpareil.
I need a man with long arms
Willing eyes – see past this skin
To the heart ablaze within.
Take me now, I’ll last forever
The end of time never so near
As when we kiss & match our bodies,
These beginnings opening fissures.
No word so pure as touch
Escapes this pen
Time has melted from the clock
Held tight to you again.
I promised to clean house
But I am writing poems
About backing into love
Since we cannot meet face to face.
There has to be a way
Around or through
I refuse to take this underground
When all I can see is your sky to fly into.
The Most Dangerous Words
Are those unsaid
They hide like thorns in greenleaves
They are unkind, unkempt,
Blackened by Truth.
I brawl & bawl & break open
As they pierce me.
Something is bleeding here.
All I ask for is a heaven
To rest in.
A sigh to rest upon.
A love to press into
To wrap myself around
All I have is reaching fingers
When we have to draw apart.
My eyes would fill with you
And not these tears
But love is a
There is an alarm going off in my heart
Like that insistent reminder charm
But this is written in blood & fire
I die to hit the “send” key –
Releasing our love to the world.
I have made up a story
I am pretending your regard
I’m playing at becoming your fantasy.
Even at my fabulous age –
Desirable, warm, funny, talented…
The crest of love forgotten:
The Love of A Life again…
Oh, there it is again
It’s such a short message I want to say
To just one of the eight billion of us here,
“I love you, I love you, I love you.”
Gently, so gently do I touch love
The petal of a flower
With a tendency to curl into protection
Most tenderly I offer a wish, a promise, a longing
Turned into yearning, if I gaze too long upon it.
I am firm. Resolute. I will not disturb this seedling
Except to offer the water of my prayers.
Who knows where our perceptions may bring us?
To what tall doors opening
Into adventure or amorous murmurs?
I am familiar with this dance; the steps never leave.
I am not like her; not frail, nor sickly
I am an ocean after you have tended a mountain rill…
There are mysterious depths here, a rush of saline
A holy path to follow to fulfillment
But I see you patting love down as you would a stray kitten
While I am the panther, curled upon plateaus of rock.
When it is time, we shall meet on terms of strength
In skies filled with wind,
We will open wings & fly
Be where you need to be for now
I have our future well in hand.
I am daydreaming about being in love. What is happening here? What am I doing? What stray magic has padded in like a cat, curling its tail around my heart?
So much is going so well, why not? Why deprive myself of a dream when being awake might bring the same thing? why else are we placed in each other’s path, except to love & become the Beloved?
Yet I know nothing; love drives out all knowledge. What went before is erased, a film laid over the past to be rewritten, reworked, resumed at another chord.
Don’t listen to me. It is nothing, this tiny blossom, delicate as a wish…a sturdy mountain flower bright in color against a desert sea of sky.
I will tell none but you & my journal of this. Shh. Like oiling the tin man, this nourishes my heart. Unfolding an origami uncovers all the wrinkles; new patterns display, thoughts of never knowing this again are smoothed away. How does this happen except as a miracle patterned upon the sacred in life?
There is nothing here but a whisper about to become a song…a melody drawing a bow across heartstrings long bundled in silk.
THE COLLECTIVE OF STILLNESS
There’s not far to go before the land starts insisting
I am alive in every place I stand
The telepathy of clouds
Drawing my face to the sky
The valley bows to my feet
The Rock People watching.
I am listening as hard as I can to the Silence
My ears so still (no cilia vibrating)
No sound save Eternity
Settling in for the long run.
Earth whispers to me of immortality
Longing to be a poem
It tells me to take it everywhere
That water-meadow in Wisconsin
Chesapeake Bay largesse
The stone-poems of rock nearby
An unchanging safety
Waiting to claim all flesh
I am immortal as I can be in this moment
The activation of love in a grain of sand.
The spare skeleton remains; a lace & calcium poem
Yellow-white teeth resembling long-bone toes
I will be blanched
Gnawed by coyote cubs, dragged, growling, to dens
Sung into sunrise: danced on four legs
Visible only en masse
A color smudging the landscape
Wreathing no arches
Serving as Butterfly’s foothold
Nectar in a bitter landscape.