poetry by michael fink

In this place, the heart leads the mind. Enjoy your trespasses upon my soul, laid bare here for those bold enough to venture forth.

Month: August, 2014

One Last Drink

Her lips pressed ‘gainst my ear
She whispered
Have you seen the devil
And I know I am him, and she is
And tonight we’ll live cause
Tomorrow we’re dyin’
But good lord, don’t give in yet
We’ve got hours ’til day breaks the will
Of the night we’re hiding in
So I took her hand in mine
And we closed our eyes and jumped
Fell, or flew, depends on your perspective
I say, it’s all the same if you can stick the landing
Hearts swelled, lungs bloomed
A rush of cool air to the flesh
And we were saved, or doomed
One last dance ‘fore the moon
Laid her head on that sweet-shouldered horizon
Lazily drifted off to bed and
We kissed, swore we’d remember
To forget this by morning
‘Cause love must be a drinker
I’ve never known her to sleep without
A little regret on her lips.

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One Lovely Blog Award

To begin with, I would like to thank Mum C at amoafowaa.wordpress.com for the nomination, I am truly honored.

 

wpid-one-blog-lovely-award

     I must also thank the many bloggers who continue to inspire me, by the beauty of their words, photography, and design, as well as through the many words of encouragement I have received since starting my blog a few weeks ago. Thank you all, you have been wonderful, and I look forward to reading more of your work, as well as your insights into my own. Onward, now, to the rules.

How One Lovely Blog Award works:
1. You must thank the person who nominated you and include a link to their blog.
2. You must list the rules and display the award.
3. You must list 7 facts about yourself.
4. You must nominate 15 other bloggers, and comment on 1 of their posts to let them know they’ve been nominated.
5. You must display the logo and follow the blogger who nominated you.

 

7 facts about me:

1.) I write every day, I fear I’d quickly lose my sanity if I didn’t.

2.) Due to a chemical imbalance, I lack a self preservation instinct, and I am supposed to take numerous precautions to avoid serious injuries. (I don’t, and the outcomes have ranged from hilarious to life-threatening.)

3.) I overcome my social anxiety by singing, poetry readings, and spinning fire in front of audiences.

4.) I believe in love above all else, though I have paid dearly for it, I could not imagine changing that.

5.) My favorite evenings usually end up an hours-long discussion of life and philosophy with close friends, much of my writing stems from that.

6.) No matter how much knowledge I might acquire in my life, I believe everyone still has something to teach me

7.) I’ve never kissed a girl I didn’t love, but I’ve loved a girl I didn’t kiss, and that’s how I learned what regret is.

 

And now, my nominations:

http://moonlightsonata1990.wordpress.com

http://seshatwuji.wordpress.com

http://shawnbird.wordpress.com

http://blancosirena.wordpress.com

http://personallydisordered.wordpress.com

http://resonantbellworld.wordpress.com

http://retconpoet.wordpress.com

http://redgladiola.wordpress.com

http://poesypluspolemics.wordpress.com

http://theadventuresofrosebud.wordpress.com

http://poeticallyspoken.wordpress.com

http://zar4h.wordpress.com

http://natalieslovelyblog.wordpress.com

http://creativestoryline.wordpress.com

http://astairwaytofashion.com

I appreciate you all, and I am grateful for the opportunity to have read and seen the works of each and every one of you. Thank you, and be sure to check these blogs out if you haven’t already. Take care, and again, I appreciate the honor.

 

Live

Dream big enough that you need only succeed once
And all your failures will be trivial in comparison
Do not ignore the low road, but pay attention
To the destination at the end of every road
Remember, fear is not the absence of courage
But the recognition of risk, use it to temper your decisions
But ignore it when the time comes to take action
It is not unpatriotic to be disappointed in your country
To challenge even the highest authority, patriotism is
A willingness to do just that, even if you are the only voice
Speaking out, speak louder, ensure that you are heard
And accept that many may disagree
Love deep enough that you leave yourself vulnerable
And love deeper still, that it reminds you that you’re invincible
Do not ignore the consequences of your actions
But weigh them fairly against the benefits
Remember, strength is not the absence of weakness
But the ability to overcome it when needed
Do not underestimate your capabilities, but do not
Overestimate them either, draw a fine line between
Reality and fantasy, then cross it as often as you can
Do not avoid anger, nor regret it
Do make sure it is well-spent, and do not dwell on it
Be confident in yourself, but never to the point of complacency
Or arrogance, the simple recognition of your potential
Is enough to move mountains
Live well, and leave behind all that made you
When you die, that you will be remembered
For who you were, rather than what you did
It is better to be remembered in a diary
Than a history book, no matter how great the deed
It simply cannot compare to the lives you touched
Personally, rage against the dying of the light
If only to accomplish one more great thing
That you never thought you could
Live enough, that you need only live once
And your death will merely be a footnote
To the life you’ve led.

Acknowledgement

I never stopped loving you
I never turned my back
Never withdrew my hand
I never thought less
Was never unimpressed
By you

And now we’re old friends and
Watching the tides roll in
Lamenting how quickly they
Withdraw again
And we’re left with miles of darkened sand
And traces of years that should have been spent
Differently
And now the time has come and gone
The skies have rolled over
Into the storm
As we fight and dig and claw at the world
Hoping to unearth what we were
Before the sun collapsed across the horizon
Before the gun went off in our hands
As we watched the corpse of beauty lying quiet
And the wind changed direction
Carried away sanity, left only
The weight of depression
On our breath

I never stopped loving you
I never turned my back
Never withdrew my heart
I never wanted us to part
Never wanted it to end
Like this

And now we’re alone in orbit
As close as we’ve ever been
And your as beautiful as I remember
As unforgettable as ever
We’re watching the stars cower
Behind the cloud of a cigarette
Talking like we’ve forgotten who we were
Like nothing was ever different
Now we’re wandering through the world
Pondering existence
Exhaling glass over the song we played then
And for every light that peers from behind
The echoes of our death
We’ve a shadow ready to dress in
A darkness born of hard-earned lessons
Who could trust us
After where we’ve been
Ferried away by the impossibility of
Subconscious suggestions

I never stopped loving you
I never turned my back
Never banished these memories
I never wanted a moment’s peace
Never wanted to sleep
Again

And now I see these pictures of you
Now I hear your words
And dance around the uncomfortable truth
That where we are is not where
We were
And you’re far beyond the corners I’ve turned
Too far gone to hear this verse
I wonder, what differences might come of a world
Where we might be
What we might see, if all that transpired
Hadn’t, and if we might sit on this beach
Old friends, who wrote this poem
Together, instead of lamenting the tides
Or the hidden moon that draws them
Or the weight of the world, that had fallen
Before we ever knew her name
I wonder if love and loss are
One and the same, or variations of a composition
We’ve both played

And if so, what note might come next
Is it hope, or withdrawal by reflex
Will I know more than words and
Context
When you lean across the dampened sand
And ask me where I haven’t been
Will I have the courage to ask you
To come with?

The Traveller

Some men are content to remain in the shadows
Some men are content to call complacency home
Some men can’t face the burning in their throats
When confronted with even a small taste of the unknown
Do not be those men, she said
Pursue life ’til your very last breath
‘Til the flesh separates from your bones
And your shoulders give from the load

So I set out into the woods
And stared down the night
And her long black dress
And glistening stars
Whose shoulder bathed in moonlight
Did seem as hope to my weary eyes

Some men will linger too long here
Some men will take shelter in the oaken arms I offer
Some men come to escape the morning
When faced with the weight of the world they’ve left
Do not be those men, she said
Take solace here, but do not lie down your head
Let the light of the moon remind you of the day’s approach
And beware the arms that would hold you too close

So I set out to the shore
And fashioned a boat
Of driftwood and daring
Cast out to sea
Where white crests cascaded over
A gown that glistened under the eyes of dawn

Some men will drown ‘neath the weight of the waves
Some men will drift without direction or aim
Some men will long for me long past their mooring
And see only the moment they may return to me
Do not be those men, she said
Be sure that your course is swift and direct
Hoist your sails and and embrace those winds
Who would press forward through any storms that threatens

So I set out to port
In a foreign world
And traversed the bustling city streets
‘Til the edge of town and I did meet
At the bleeding of dusk into desert sands
Whose tan skin invited me
Into oblivion

Some men will ever thirst for me
Some men will fall before moving on
Some men can’t escape the light I radiate
When the sun climbs high across my sheets
Do not be those men, she said
Walk ’til the water is heaven on your lips
‘Til the skin begs to crack from the fate that you’ve chosen
And your eyes see the oasis just beyond your hopelessness

So I set out to find
What else lie before me
Only to discover my circumnavigation complete
As my eyes lit upon that first day’s dream
Whose arms outstretched awaited me
Who, on my approach, whispered quietly

Some men are content to traverse the world
Some men would consent to calling no place home
Some men can’t face a future set in place
And see only those horizons to which they might run away
Do not be those men, she said
Who have tasted the world, and never returned to my lips
Before they tread quietly unto the abyss
And wished they remembered more than they had left.

      -Do not neglect the destination for the journey, or the journey for the destination. And when you greet the end, you will do so having truly lived.

In the End, Ariadne was the Ocean

I swim in your depths
They stay on the coast
They kiss your lips
And I swallow you whole
I live in your breath
They hold their own
I wake you from death
They cover you with stones

And here on this pier
Where I draw you near
The world still holds on to
Erasers
So don’t fear, let’s be clear
When they call you home
It’s to destroy what is dear
To your heart and your bones

But I’ll teach you to lie
When they ask if you’re calm
Give you the sky
As they extend dirt-filled palms
I’ll keep you, my ocean
Through your storms and your faults
And you’ll never feel hopeless and
Never be lost.

Absence

Where do we go from here
Sitting back, gathering the years
Like dust on the lens
Filtering out the sunlight
I wish
But I won’t say it right
And you won’t hear above
The volumes of repression
The sentence of depression
Under dark skies
Where our thoughts condense
Coalesce
Into the sunlight’s absence
Where do we go from here
When all I want is
A smile, my children’s laugh
And all I have is
This distance
This barren existence
Where they are not
And I am
And I hate it
This degradation of beauty
Into bloodshed
This capitulation of love to
Punishment
I have given everything
And still this is what you’ve chosen
To take from me
They tell me have hope
Keep the faith
Maybe even let go
If it’ll make it okay
Instead I’ll swallow the world
And still not fill
The void inside of me
The world cut from my chest
That left me broken
And hopeless
And knowing
The only chance at happiness
Is to overcome this
Hatred you harbor
Through the strength of my love
And I wonder sometimes
When the sun hides
Behind the clouds
And I want to shout
To scream from hell
I can not do without
I am not doing well
I wonder, if I am enough
If I have the capacity
The love
To withstand the torrents
You have rained upon me
To know trust
When it’s been shattered
So completely
To live on
Despite the calm in your seas
While my ship is ravaged
By the havoc you’ve wreaked
I doubt
Sometimes
Though I know life’s sublime
Peaceful moments
The beauty divine
And complete
I have my wreckage, you see
My crashes and recollections
Of dreams
Once painted so flawless
Now aged and fading
Quickly
Where do we go from here
I wonder
I can hear the thunder
Approaching
As I sit back, gather my tears
As memories across
My sleeves
And I in my darkness
I in my shadows
I and my demons, well
I know how it goes
I’ve seen
And I can only hope
Someday, I’ll find the course
That ushers me away from the scene
That touches the wasteland
Of my dreams
Breathes life into my seams and
I’ll stand, you’ll beckon
But I’ll not hear
Over the sound of the years
You’ve stolen
I don’t fear
What is to come anymore
For what might bring me to shore
Surely, can’t be worse
Than what set me to sea
Maybe I’ll drown
Before knowing the beach
But where I go from here
All my doubts and fears
The years spent thrashing wildly
And loving with the veracity
I have, dreaming with the capacity
Of kings
Well, that all belongs
To me.

Leaving the Nest

Who dares to fathom dreaming as
Society demands we sleep quiet
Through the raging storms of countless wars
Through the bleeding of our greatest hearts
Through the boots on our chests while we struggle for breath
Through the blisters on our hands as we claw for some ledge
That we might climb, where we might find
Some solace, that we might die having seen the light
From our first sunrise
As the soul flees the chest, who dares rest
Long enough to capture the moment
Long enough to stand for something
Other than the consumption of our environment
Eroding her gifts like rivers
Digging canyons through her soft flesh
Til all we are is the space in our heads
Between humanity and the manifest
Destiny, we swallow their reasons as nested hatchlings
Each morsel hung precariously close to the edge
Between freedom and death
Who, in our hearts, travel the same path
Altered only by our willingness to spread our wings
Before we break our necks
In pursuit of the floor of our souls
In pursuit of the warmth of the sun
We must risk the cold of the night
Chance losing the fight, discovering that we might
Fail to reach the light of day
And understand, as we flee our nests
That behind our terrified gaze, lies a fate
Worse than death, that complacency is for the sick
Of heart, the nestlings that remain where they are
Indefinite, in limbo, until they find their end
Already written, when the day passes and no one comes
To feed them.

The Nature of the Soul

Discussing the nature of the human soul,
Boundless, flawless
And the world we might dwell in
Should we choose to listen to it.

What comprises us
Ego, Id, Superego
Emotions, faults, talents
Passions, dreams, reality?

Love.

It is the only perfection we might know
Some call it God, Jehovah
Yahweh, Buddha
Muhammad
I am agnostic, or atheist, or spiritual
Or maybe I am
All of those, and I don’t know it.

Yet the soul, the soul sees it
Touches the center of the mind
And heart, intermingles the physical
With the fantastic.

All perception may be encoding within our complex
Minds, or chemical reactions spilt
Onto the canvas of our bodies
But do we not all sense
Something more, something beyond the veil
Of conscious perception?

To what do we attribute
Our connections, our distances, those fleeting moments
Of abstraction?

I can describe
The touch of a lover’s hand
Down to the most minute detail
And yet, without having felt it
Yourself, you would not know it.

We are foreign to each other
Walking within the shadows of
Our petty grievances, daring to step only
Within our carefully constructed
Isolation.

Love, the soul, the indescribable familiar
Within, that which ascribes tears
And laughter.

Our own perpetual motion machine
That which ceaselessly and easily overcomes
Our own science, our own understanding
Of the function of our universe.

That which in giving, is received
Without external need, the propulsion of man
The fuel of our progress.

Love, the soul
Who grows by mitosis
Multiplies through division
Accumulates within ourselves, only through
Being given away.

Some call it flawed, broken, painful
Loss, heartache, grief
Loneliness,
And never realize that what they describe
Is not love, but a life without it.

A life without a soul
A machine, cold and calculating
Whose each step requires
Recalibration, to overcome the sensation
Of emptiness.

Should we take the time to revel in it
Love, the soul, by any name
Is savior, a quantum step
Toward enlightenment.

In discussing the nature of the soul
We enter into a conversation with it
Confirm its very existence
And open a path to empathy
Peace, the harmony we need
To overcome the varied methods we’ve developed
To neutralize it.

So I ask, my friends, my love, my fellow
People
To open your day looking inward
To stretch your arms out and embrace
The beauty of your divinity
Your flawlessness
By any name you may call it.

Through knowing yourself, your soul
Your love
You will come to expose the beauty
In the billions of others
Who travel this same rocky path
As you.

Ariadne’s Veil

Ariadne smiled, said
You’re either ice-cold
Or scalding
Beads of sweat kiss the brow
Every time you look my way
And crystallize to raindrops
When the wind of your gaze shifts direction
You’re a devil some days
All curses and seductive sways
And an angel others
When your light eyes fall upon my face
Though maybe a devil then
For enticing me to give in
As I sip the water of your words
To wash down the poison on your lips
Ariadne smiled, led
The way to her bed
She’s either flawless
Or entirely broken
To tread behind her is glass at the heel
To sleep without her a thousand labored breaths
And where the sins of the grave keep us quiet
She’s a come-hither wave from death
All outbursts and spent rage
And a lover like an overcast day
Who promises rain, delivers only the heat
When her dark eyes circle like vultures
And swallow the ground beneath my feet
Though maybe a lover then
As I spare her hazy intoxications and
Wash down yesterday with a glass of gin 

Ariadne lied, dead
At the end of a romance spent
Having been either a potent lover
Or a better actress
Having swallowed the bitter pills of life
By the dozen, that I might come in
And regret, the last words before I left
When she said I love you
And I whispered
“Not yet.”