The Days Are Just Packed

The Days Are Just Packed

 

It’s like a Calvin and Hobbes comic

crawled out from the panes of the pages

and onto the rugs of my living room

just to enjoy its afternoon nap.

 

Maybe that’s what Bill Watterson understood.

That from the irony of free time

comes the iron shackles of inactivity

which chains us to the floor of our potential

 

and then when we try to pick ourselves up

the weight of our regrets pulls us back

onto the pillowy sameness of familiarity,

snuggled in tightly with my stuffed tiger.

——

 

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LOVE POEM #88 – Hotel Stop / Through the Wall

Hotel Stop / Through the Wall

 

It started with a tap,

light and fast, like a rat in the wall,

followed by a whispered echo

asking for an answer we both knew

should never have been yes.

 

Yet I tapped back,

slow and uncertain, thinking that maybe

it had just been her shuffling around

while the TV blared in the background,

and then came the knock on my hotel door.

——

 

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FIFTY WORD STORY – The Interview

The ticking of the clock was incessant. Every second echoed in Jim’s head like footsteps down an empty hallway. Every shifting seat; every squeaking shoe rattled in his ears. His knee trembled like a spooked horse, trying to escape. Then they called him, and he was off to the races.

——

 

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The Golden Apple

The Golden Apple

 

It’s a wonder Paris could choose

who would get the golden apple

when I can barely part with one

that has red and yellow spots.

 

Yet he thrust it into the palms

of the porcelain god Venus

without a pause to consider

the empty pit in his stomach.

——

 

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LOVE POEM #87 – Roommate

Roommate

 

I felt your heart between my fingers

beating like a heavy drum

and forgave how broken you were

when I found you on that bench

 

bleeding in the black of night

after some boy had left you

covered in sticky red bruises

that you said you deserved.

——

 

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FIFTY WORD STORY – Jello Legs

The door looked like it was a mile away. The orange sky was quickly fading, and with it Jon’s strength to move. He lurched past the desks, struggling to keep his footing. By the time he got to the door, he wasn’t sure if he could find his car beyond.

——

 

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Stick Figures

There isn’t very much to them.

A circle, a vertical line, and

a two pairs of diagonals

for some added flavor.

 

If you really liked them, you might

draw in a couple dots for eyes,

a lightly curved “L” for a nose,

and a slow, slothful “U” for a smile.

 

You may even scratch out the head

and replace it with a square

to make the robotic servant

that you always dreamed about.

 

And if they ever tried to tease you

you could toss their treason

onto the pile in the trash can

where they couldn’t hurt you

like the rest.

——

 

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LOVE POEM #85 – Late

Late

 

in life,

when love seems as difficult as laughter

the amber light of your reading chair may grow so dim

that you will struggle to see the letters on the page.

 

The white stationary of the note will be distant

and the scrawled, black handwriting so thin

that you may begin to wonder if her specter really existed

or if she was simply an illusion shaped by your sour heart.

 

Still, you will stay up, sunk into your chair

reading through a misty pair of glasses

at the page you have folded so many times

that you know the story of every crease.

——

 

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Snowfall on the Mountain

The grey wool coat clung to Harrison’s shoulders like a child to its mother. The first snow of the year was falling lightly through the brisk winter air as the last lights of the day arced over the horizon. It was his favorite time of the year.

In addition to his coat, Harrison had bundled himself in three blankets that draped from his neck down past the bottoms of his feet. Still, the cold had set in, and he felt it shiver through him in spite of his attempts at warmth. Up at his mountain house, the temperatures were half what they were down below, and even there the lakes had turned to ice. Still, the view of the pines daunted the grey city buildings he live for day in and day out. Their calm, cool whistle sounded to him like the voice of his grandparents, calling out to him from decades past.

The house had once been their house—though when they owned it, it had been more a shack than the manse he had built it into. The lawyers of the estate sale gave it up for less than a hundred thousand—a good price, but likely not much less than it was actually worth. The first year he had owned it, the roof gave out under the heavy winter snow, and he had had to bring in a work crew to fix it in the spring.

The memory of it brought a smile to Harrison’s face. It was bitter sweet to think of his grandparents, even all these years later. He had broken down crying that first year, after pushing his mourning to the back of his mind for work.

He lifted an arm out of his bundles, and reached for the Earl Grey tea he had brought out with him. It had been boiling when he brought it out, but the cold had swept the heat from the mug, and it hardly qualified as lukewarm now. The cold made the honey he had mixed in stronger, and for a minute he wondered if he had added a second spoonful by accident. He poured the rest of the tea onto the deck, though it simply painted the piling snow a grey-black color.

It was Harrison’s favorite time of year because the sunsets up the mountain turned the sky into a shimmer of yellow-orange diamonds. The light reflected through the snow, bouncing every which way, and from where he sat it looked like the stars had settled above the trees. In all his exotic business trips, he had never seen a snowfall to match the first of those up on the mountain. Eventually, the snowfall would grow thick, and even the highs of the day would become so cold that they would threaten a person if they stayed outside for more than a few minutes, but tonight it was still warm enough that Harrison could stay to see if the moon would be full or not.

He lost track of the days up here. Somewhere inside, his phone was waiting with an alert that would break the silence of his weeks off, and let him know he had to leave the next day, but for the life of him he couldn’t tell you where it was. All he could see were the snowflakes floating across the skyline, and the whispers of a long gone youthful innocence.

——

 

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Some Kind of Superman

Sometimes I wish I was the superhero

that my family thinks I am:

draped in a divine red cape

with the symbol of hope embroidered on my chest.

 

I would wake up with a cup of coffee

that I heated with my own two eyes

ready to take on the next towering villain

that planned to topple everything that was good.

 

And when I redonned the black-framed glasses

of the mild mannered, bulletproof man

I wouldn’t be worrying about the mortgage

any more than I worried about the moon rising at night.

——

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