Sinking

How easily
the sunlit beauty
of the day
goes dark
when tainted
with words
that are not
lovely
and bright
like the call
of the wood thrush
in the trees
along the river—
words that
do not flow in
and out of me
smoothly
the way
this narrow boat
travels
mindlessly
on its course—
words
that do not
float pleasantly
around me
like I love you—
and I’m sure
he wishes
he could
tell me anything
without fear
of me
going under—
just as I wish
his fondness
for her
didn’t
have the power
to sink me.

 

 

 

 

DeMaris
7-16-17

The Answer

Maybe love isn’t the answer
after all
to the question of happiness
which was never part of the plan
when the cells
that would become us
were dividing into our ancestors
who never knew how easy
life would be in the future
with sharp tools and wheels
and gods
we are no longer required
to believe in or praise
for giving us a desire for love
that many of us will never find
so it seems like a good idea
to bury our hearts
in a mass grave dug
with a mass-produced shovel
and seek unconditional devotion
in the divine and perfect form
of cat or dog.

 

 

 

 

 

DeMaris
7-14-17

 

 

 

Going Going Gone

It’s a mystery
why I stayed
so long
settled
for being half
of myself
instead of whole
and it’s my fault
for thinking
that being alone
would reduce me
to loneliness
when there is
no place
more lonely
than being
at the table
across
from someone
who makes me
feel like I’m
not even there.

 

 

 

 

DeMaris
7-14-17

Sporobolus

He was just
a little bird
caged
in your love
for 13 years
by accident
because
he ended up
eating the
prairie dropseed
outside
your window
and you knew
he wouldn’t
last long
without
some kind of
domestication
from which
he must
have escaped
so you
lifted him
into your life
and
when he died
you felt
your feet
leave the ground
as if Sporobolus
was trying
to take you
with him
but you were
too heavy
for his wings
and you
crashed
onto the couch
in tears.

 

 

 

DeMaris
7-13-17

Fight or Flight 

Good thing
the night passed
between us
gave me time
to cool
collect
my thoughts
compose
and edit what
you needed to hear
which wasn’t
the first thing
I wanted
to say
after the hiccup
in our day
bounced us
out of alignment
and into
the realm of
fight or flight
and today
I am relieved
both of us
decided
to turn around
and walk
slowly
back home.

 

 

 

 

 

DeMaris
7-12-17

 

Disappointment 

How
unexpected
to hear
your request
which felt
like a complaint—
and I could see
your feet
stomping
in my imagination
as my lips
curled
into a grin—
finally
a wish
you’d like me
to fulfill—
and your
disappointment
that I failed
to see this need
fills me
with joy
that you
are human
after all—
that I have
any power at all
to hurt you—
even if
it’s only
a little.

 

 

 

 

DeMaris
7-11-17

No One Else

I feel
your
warm hand
over mine
on our way
to those places
either one of us
could go
with someone else
and we could
enjoy
the flowers
and the river
and the woods
with
another body
beside us
but
there isn’t
another
set of hands
that
could
elevate
my body
into
the clouds
after the sun
goes down.

 

 

 

 

DeMaris
7-9-17

“The Lovers in the Poet’s Garden IV” by Vincent van Gogh, 1888