Tuesday, March 30, 2010

three new springtime poems

I was so happy to be reunited with Harold Hummel!
Happiest, sweetest, and most handsome cat ever.



At Home in Santa Barbara On a Spring Night, 03-26-2010

It is not only for the sake of nostalgia that there is one

maraschino cherry in my glass of soda

which until now was brimming and rolling with

too much Maker’s Mark.

Any more whisky and I’d need a petticoat too voluminous

to barter or buy,

and someone to carry me out, or to gallantly


Words come easy from a woman that’s easy, easy as

sleep in an old-thyme nightie, lace and lilac blossoms

from ruffled hem to buttoned bodice,

but no sleeves.

Words come easy to little girls gazing into their mamas’ rings.

They come easy to ladies suffused with spring

and all of the love that spring brings.

In the tub I was lithe as Godiva and with a back just as bare,

as bare as my body every night spent dreaming in my bed;

naked as a seal, with lavender ‘neath my head: strewn among my sheets

as I make love to me, sweetly in the language of my sleep.

When I drew the fancy razor up the swell of my calf

I smiled at its sensitivity. Steel-clad, made for a man,

designed to kiss the contours of another skin entirely,

to be drawn like a tongue along a cheek

(a recollection of your beard sets me bashfully aflame

but all the same--)

the jingle of my cat’s collar enraptures me

and a life is comprised of years, o’

ain’t it lovely?

time enough to draw you into my pale arms,

rose - tinged, longing to

sing. time enough your bell to ring, you

undulating young thing





A Muse and An Artist


For Hannah, 03-27-2010

To she who would never allege to be a mere purveyor of luxurious things:

Of all the museums we have seen, we can recall perhaps thirteen;

And not a spool, a seed, or a photograph is for sale.

Our hands are neither weighed nor bowed with rings.

A few simple spheres whisper our

Confidential creed.

Our azure path is silk unrolling--

Only Love knows where it leads.

Only succulents in earth-red pots can lean

In the direction of the blessings we shall see.

To she whose hair tumbles in a garnet stream.

To she whose smiling mother waited patiently.

To she who found a crescent, bone

And bleached.

On my family’s land, Hannah caressed a forested stretch

And uncovered a nest

To she who surveyed the lot, and hand-picked only the best:

To she who understands why I have swallowed my grandfather’s key--

To she who I have known long before the citrus trees

Stretched and sprawled their roots so languidly,

I need not tell her not to worry. I need not tell her not to weep.

I need not tell her that we are swaying cyprus beams

Never captive, never trapped. No taxidermic thing;

We are not new though we are young and are not glass

Although we gleam. Through the marbled green of

River-stones we see Every thing.

We push aside our petticoats and stumble

Into the stream. We do not fear, do not want--

We have no need.







On the Last Night of a Spring Weekend at Home in Santa Barbara, March 28th 2010

Here she arrived pale and lithe, a slender green stem

unencumbered by the calla lily in pure white bloom at its end

its end, you see, was not an end like the sort which

clips correspondences deliberately short (sometimes

starkly short, but never scrawled unseen by

the eyes more knowing than any Other’s could hope to be.)

Here she arrived without any plans of which to speak.

Driven through Hidden Valley past the placid beach, where

all wore their airy finery to languidly stroll State Street,

drink a cocktail, have a laugh with those that love them--

enjoy the easy pleasure of the Spring.

In the garden she sat ‘neath the citrus trees

and lay naked unabashed in the heat.

From under a bed she came upon an old box of keys,

Snapshots of Morocco and her grandfather’s cufflinks.

On sunday evening she was suffused with a want

not to leave, to stay safe with her mother and father

on the couches where they laid, propped on those familiar

tasseled pillows, watching the cats play

Only vaguely contemplating the horizon of the Bay.

Her shoulders grew sunburnt as cherry tomatoes to-day.

At brunch the waiter fell in love and let it suffuse his face

and she considered that, were she brave, she could

have asked his name--

Driven back in her own time and spoken of things gentle

for it was all so gently fey.

She might have said, your face is kind, your eyes soothe

my eyes like rain. And, Thank You for your smile for your

smile was not in vain. Your skin reminds me of the

dulce de leche candy I craved

From the bodega I would visit on lazy days

Across from the church in my home-town where the

little girls wore white, and knew that they were beautiful

and felt it, too.


sterling silver cufflinks said...

Love those spring poems. Introspective indeed. Such a handsome cat and those accessories dangling on his nect are lovely!

Gold Leaf said...

oh god the ode to hannah poem made me cry, so so beautiful, allison.

and then i read the last one and cried again! o! two a.m. how you tickle my tear ducts

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