Yesterday’s Dawns

You are darkness. You are light. If you think, these poems are an ode to you, a guiding track for new ideas and to set your dreams on a path to self-discovery.

While prose leads you in search of escape, following a story from beginning to end, poetry is your story told through someone else’s eyes, tasted by another’s tongue, kept awake by a stranger’s half-sleeping nightmares but far more personal for all that.

If you ever wonder if there’s an alternative to living by today’s rules of laziness and inaction, drunken nationalism and hate, you may find your answer in these pages. This book is a contemporary interpretation of traditional Japanese poetry, not the haiku you learned in school but a more contemporary way or taking the simple lines, the few syllables of a line and creating contrast, meaning and a single snapshot of a moment before moving on to another.

Some poems tell stories, others tell thoughts, still others talk of a future that’s already been decided but can still be changed. Perhaps here you will discover yourself in words you never dreamed to use.

From the book…

idolatry

in the light of morning
the gentle current of your voice
speaks into the corners
still consumed by the darkness
of twilights unending
but with faltering steps
the shimmering of reflections
blinds me to its depth

i step across streams
yet lose myself in their relentless drive
toward salt’s stark bitterness
yet the taste comforts me
as i breathe your unspoken touch
across my hands
and strip daydreams’ expected metaphors
for their liquid centers

before the altar of burned idols
i pray
yet the flames of your mind
have not yet released
the fear of yesterday’s sun’s
planned obsolescence

but my eyes do not shy
from the shimmering fires within you
and with your light
a cascade of welcome cataracts
sweeps beyond my hastily constructed
fences of doubt
to nourish a core
once thought by all lost
by its own magnetism
yet you call me to wild sanctuaries
within your spirit

kami

beauty shivers
slightly beyond the doorpost
into unreality
from this darkened room
of negative development
basking in the red-pigmented light
of predawn shadows’ ubiquity

a cascade of rainbows
breaks
the visual silence
of traumatic self-reflection
yet it shakes you
not from the half-slumber of remembrance
into the daylight
beyond your unenlightened night

as you step from entombed cloisters
into the brilliance of morning’s presence
a sensation overtakes
a desire for becoming
with the knowledge of life
surpassing yesterday’s rocky
walls of separation

with the unforeseen touch
of petal to face
you step beyond a time of thought
into one where the newness of emotion
not of goodness or evil
but breathing a fluid essence of life
rebuilds history in its image

you taste the vision of birdsong
perfuming winds unseen
yet brushing against nascent hairs
striving toward sunshine
on arms no longer covered
in their shame
but raised in adoration
of panic’s absence

walking paths of moistened streamside stones
rebirths your soul from past lives
into the openness of a morning
literal in its becoming
yet possessing the depth of an awakening you
in oneness with the gods
within the world

sisters

slip gently behind lines
held by those not quite awake
enough to be enemies
yet somehow distant in their distress
at your existence

taste their thoughts on the air
as you walk before eyes cast upward
in an attitude of loss
while they become
the very image of distrust

breathe through the winds of their desires
calmed only by the brutality within them
unable to win against the terror of persecution
in the depths of depravities’ unadmitted lusts
at your otherness

stand peacefully overlayed against horizons
now silhouetted before a sunshine
they pray to for deliverance
out of foreign lands become their own
from where escape is their only refuge

yet they realize nothing
examining your skin as if it were unknowable
in its enveloping presence
while theirs covers sins of judgment
and grasps glass-housed stones of hatred

begin within their visions
and inhabit their forgotten dreams
if you must
as in their hatred
you become the obsession
of their unimaginable night terrors
visited not on your head but elsewhere
in their insatiable capacities
to denude your lips’ lyrics of self-compromise

end not within their minds
but fulfill daydreams’ enviable silences
from behind staged curtains of modest reawakenings
taken from your bedside
but returned
carried on the winds of tomorrow’s dawn hesitations

awakened self-directed photographs stir
reflected into your thoughts
from dark words spoken into ears
deaf with their ubiquity
and face not them
but one your fingers grasped as new family