but aren't they all random?



A Pocketful of Poesy was a Poem-a-Day(-on-Average) Blog* up until the great derail of 2013. The impossibly-high standard of quality proved impractical to keep up, without a book deal. But don't take my word for it: click RANDOM and judge for yourself! And feel free to offer your critique.
*based on poem rate for calendar years 2009-2012. Also, kidding about the book deal.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

suddenly, I realized

it wasn't that we broke up for no reason

after all that time
so much as that had been together for no reason

for all that time.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

downcast

perspective, proportion are easy to keep
introducing to situations
that don't need them.

Keep stepping back, considering all
- you will lose your chance
to lose yourself
in anything worth the fall,
with your eyes on the ground
as you watch your step.

off the top of your head,
don't you ever get?

A sense of things
coming together, but only
if both have enough of a sense
of abandon

A sense of wide skies
through which two specks
plummet
in different directions,
at random
- meeting -
and they are the only thing
in this whole wide world
of evening

one of them easily
could have been you,
as the other streaks off
downcast

into deepening blue

Friday, October 13, 2017

doomsday scenario, like we need another one

These remarks

approach the theoretical limit of obtuseness. It's like
you squeezed

all the awareness and progress made

over the past 30 years into a single, mathematical
point of infinite density. This is blockheadedness
on a cosmic, spacetime reality-puncturing scale.

The real danger exists

that if the antisense singularity you've formed in your head
remains stable,

everything will be sucked into it.

proofs withheld

I hope we never fight, but I expect we will:
You don't think you're beautiful.
I'll restrict myself to cool,
detached observation
and impartial facts. Have
you ever seen your eyes? Probably,
I'd have to guess. Mirror
in the morning, grimacing
through toothpaste foam

and scrutinizing
for such flaws as can be
dealt with out-of-hand
at home, in morning ritual,
before the rush of day
comes on. If I could be there,
taking notes I'm sure I'd point out
all the ways you lean and dart
and fuss, and you'd concede,

"oh yes. I am
adorable, aren't I? Objectively
speaking."

I'd be forced to agree, but
you'd probably protest: "But not beautiful,
though." Infuriatingly enough, if
anyone else said it! Fighting words,
but ok. You have every right,

Even standing ready to face the world,
marvelously sheveled, a credit to any street
you stroll! And beautiful as all. Still

You don't think you're beautiful.
You have every right to be wrong.

I'll do my best to shut up. It would be
a pretty dumb thing to fight about. Just

know this:
I have proof.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

the workshop

Time renders sense into memory, and
destroys the evidence
for us, so that we
in our turn, can open up

loveliest nostalgia
unhindered by contradiction,
irritations sifted through,
forgotten, fallen away to sawdust, the sieve
retains what is beautiful

to build worlds within it
which we can never inhabit, but

flatter ourselves
that we could have, once.

As pastimes go, it's harmless enough
and understandable. There is a need,
as all around us, in life we see

little enough evidence
of what kind of present this now will be,

after memory takes its chance to work
using all of its skills and tricks,
and turning it into a gift:

Always and only yours,

belatedly

The minotaur is winning

The maze has changed
in groans and growls
its corridors wind up
and out in spaces that
were never there before
the walls closed in

the air is hot and dense
and dry like death, and still
as too-long bated breath, until
in pain, you draw it back
into your lungs

all fade to black

course of study

how perfect for you,
photography

teaching you chemicals
, you - the acolyte, shut in
darkness, finding the lost alchemist arts,
the development of an image, captured
- literally, stealing the soul
of whatever your f-stop's darting eye
winked at, as the light bounced off with it

images
inform the mind, by feeding on souls
cloned and grown from light

That's sci-fi mephistopheles stuff right there
photography?

or rather, it used to be. It is,
of course
maybe all digital, now.
That might even be apropos

Study is, after all, supposed
to prepare you for life,

not nostalgia.
Unless one studies
deliberately to be

a historian, an archivist, haunting
hallways of evidence, an anthropologist
amongst other things:
studying primitive attitudes
that others can only

pretend to live

the big deal

I want to make a big deal
of my feelings for you. They are
so cool! I enjoy them very
much. My feelings for you are
like, love, fondness, admiration,
affection, amusement, curiosity,
devotion, wonder, wistfulness, occasionally
regret, or maybe nostalgia rather, or
heart-lifting sorrow. Also a sense
that maybe my feelings for you
are a bit dramatically overdone, but
that it's okay, it's nothing chosen
or deliberate, really, just something
to appreciate, maybe chuckle at a
bit, a thing to give in to, from time
to time to time, one's own ridiculous
-ness, it is no big deal.

Past Julie

Past you loves you
and wants you to be happy. She
may not understand everything you do, or
everything you're into, but she knows
that you've seen things she hasn't,
and that in your place, she'd
probably
do the same thing.

She doesn't want to restrict
and imprison you, any more

than you want to restrict
and imprison your future
self.

"Set free your future self, Julie!"

That's what she'd say to you
if she had the chance.

Ok, yeah

she also thinks you're a bit of a dork

but weren't we all such smug little
shits in those days?

Sunday, October 08, 2017

missing wish

I wish you deepening roots to draw lengthening strength,
nights of soft rain in plenitude,

with clouds chased by dawn,
and nourishing rays all day for as many days
as it takes for you to feel whole,

and healed,
and created anew.


Tuesday, October 03, 2017

The people demand

Things aren't like we want them to be.
The people we pay aren't doing their
jobs, and our discontent is about to
click. They should long since have fixed
what we're mad about. It isn't our job
to think of how. It isn't our job to
know the facts, to connect them up
and in consequence, be able to guess
which plan is best.

Our job is to live
our lives as such,
in a reasonable state
without too much fuss.
To wake and to work
and to muddle through,
without all this hassle and hullabaloo.
It's not what we do, to mess with plans.
It's out of our hands, by design and choice.
We pay all those people
to be our voice! To act on behalf
and leave us be! They're supposed to think,
and decide and guess!

Can't they even do that? It's disgusting

We

have been forced to this.
To take action, stand and demand outrage,
and to call for change

from the people we pay. They had better
come through. We want it now,
like we always do.

remain absent

For a moment just then, I inhabited the world again.
I think it was the wind. Standing out on
the mediocre hill by the spillway, I came to myself.

I have always been stuck in the Now. Never more present
than absent. But without notice, I seemed to have passed
out of it. I stood there, noticing.

There didn't seem to be any choice.

I will stub out my smoke, and go back in. I have
missed the wind

Monday, October 02, 2017

sempiternal and empyrean

Her nature elevates us all
on rising columns pedestal
in offering to lightning strikes
We gladly take the sacrifice

She comes from realms above beyond
and lingers here to point the way
we pile fragrant, oiled woods
and queue devoutly, day by day

awaiting our ecstatic turn
to join in an unchanging blaze
that burns our sacred faults to ash
as she stands back, intrigued, amazed

Sunday, October 01, 2017

Here's what I'm not going to do

Here's what I'm not going to do:

take any of it back,

change how I feel,

apologize for how sorry

it makes me, take

one moment of life

and make it last forever,

mention any of it in the first place

self-fulfill

don't remember
to open up your heart
from what you found out

last time you went through this, it
wouldn't have been the last time, and
as it turns out, neither

would you. You couldn't prove any truer
but you try, try again and tell yourself
you like it this way. Yourself. The one who
tries.

Next time,
promise yourself something else. Promise
that next time

you will give up before and during,
not after and because of.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

your welcome

You're welcome, don't
mention it. The pleasure
was all mine, and it
was nothing.

Friday, September 29, 2017

we broke up

you and I,
we broke up
there's really no two ways about it
we broke up,
and you left yourself wondering
"did we really broke up?"
yes
we did.
Only it should be "break,"
there. If it's an honest question,
about an event, if you really
don't know -
then it can't be past tense.
It sounds
like you're
a moron: "did we broke up?"
Oh yes, we did
you recall
You can even seem
to remember why

Sunday, September 17, 2017

out of unbelonging

You won't belong
where you've never been,
where nobody knows you,
where you're

not wanted

- how could you be?
When nobody knows
before you show up,
what to want you
for?

But if
you show up,
the people will see

you've arrived. And decide
how they feel
about that.

You are useful, you know
- but only so far
as you put yourself out,
as you give yourself back

where you go yourself forth.

For wherever you stray,
and wherever you stay,

you won't belong, unless
you have given yourself
to it.

So easy. Find a place -
It accepts your breath, and
it gives you air, and everything else

you can find that's good, and best,
and blessed,
and available, too

You belong to it all, but only if

you have given it you.

thought balloon festival

people who think in thought balloons,
clouds in the sky, or the corridor
- wherever they find themselves. They think,

and balloons go up, in white puffy shapes
trailing smaller puff shapes like a kite
trailing bows, and their thoughts within.

I don't understand
why the shapes their thoughts make
are so uniform. Like a white, fluffy cloud:

semicircled around, and resembling
nothing. Just abstract form.

What does a "cloud-shaped cloud"
even mean? I want thought balloons
that resemble

cows,
or cars,
or dragons - and everything else
that people say they see
when they look at clouds.
Any wild form that a cloud can take.
Why put your thoughts in a

boring shape?

skillset

I'm

my job is to...

analytics basically. In the job industry
that can be huge.

I consult

with people for their own good. Sometimes
people do something totally else, based on some stuff
I found out about? For them

Stuff only I might have noticed, basically. Or maybe

I notice a certain angle in my advice, and
I focus in, and emphasize that. People

can tell, sometimes. It comes across, word of mouth
gets around. A lot of people

come to me for exactly that. It's a nice feeling

when it happens.

to be respected

bee guru haiku

I teach shy bees how
to approach pretty flowers
without bumbling.

Wrong time

time out of joint
like a phantom limb sprain

I am used to these moments
occurring

by now. But you're not asleep
now,

and you won't be
for hours.

And I get up,
set to sit down

to the wrong meal, washed down
by incongruous beverage choices

and then go out, wondering why

it all seems too late

Thursday, September 14, 2017

outbound

The world turns over under you,
sleeping as it speeds its way and you
with wings, at cruising speeds and altitudes
lie hovering, for all intents and purposes,
a stationary bird in flight, asleep on solitary wing
and waiting to awake from night. Restless, lightly,
you'll touch down and make your way
to waiting dawn, migrating days
and nights to come, on paths planned out
or chanced upon. The world turns over
under you, as you walk on above its
sprawl and bring new landscapes
into view, to frame with eye,
and drink with heart,
and sign them all.

Saturday, September 09, 2017

validation, lately

So
I've been trying to get into
validation, lately.

It's just plain lazy
of me not to
try, to sit around
my whole life

wondering in anguish "why?
why other people need it
so? Die deaths of deprivation
over lack thereof?" Instead,

time for me to SEEK
VALIDATION and see

whether I can identify it

when any comes. Look out,

world. Validation
time!!

Please accompany any validation with
I don't know, a stamp or something?

so I know what it is. Cut me a pair of slacks
or something alright I'm

new here.

the pact

my friends and I
avoid each other out of consideration
for each other's
respectful difference, and
preference - we go
to lunch, kind of

at places that have lunch counters

with stained-glass
windows

in different parts of the city, and

we order dishes
that seem to speak to us. It's

okay. It's okay to be

seen, in seeming isolation
in knit hats and clunky
glasses, speaking word jazz

extemporizing life

explaining your point of view
to statues

in the middle of all this wondrousness,

surrounded by cartoon touches
and dressed like an anticliche cliche,
it's okay. Go now,
forth.

Make yourself a list: and strike

off

every

one

from

it.

counting time

There are times
- and this is one -
that come only once
in your life.

At least, once in mine.
And I don't expect to see luck again
like what landed me here.
I don't want to think twice

before losing this chance.
I don't want to think once
that I could be so dull.
I don't want to think

this

Is about to be gone.

I just want to take time
- just this one -

and hold on

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

low morning

a city carved from rose and soap
rises from the morning sky
that sinks away to background grey
as foreground marsh recedes to bay
and panes of glass gleam wet like suns,
just barely up from morning swims
- one eye, not even open yet
no coffee for the likes of him

Sunday, September 03, 2017

to choose again

It's a fear
many of us have. Once we've made a choice,
we've committed ourselves
- even if not irrevocably,
we've committed ourselves to
having once, in that moment, decided,
believed. Been for that choice, as
the choice that should be made
- that we needed to make. There's
no taking that back.

No taking it back. Once it's on record,
it's irrevocable. If ever again
we choose against it, we are

take your choice:

hypocrites.
Wishy-washers.
Wafflers.
Indecisives.
Milquetoasts. Morally lax,
whether because of
lacking moral fiber
or having taken too many moral
laxatives, we're

lax,
lapsed,
lost, we've
gone

back

against the choice

we made, back when we used to know.

We should be so lucky
to know. We should be so afraid

to know better.

to fix the past

If we're going to fix the past, we need
to go in hard
and study what it is,
that actually was,
that happened, then
argue over whether it
should have and why. Was what those people wanted, or
a subterfuge, a sabotage - a failure to
achieve what could have been, or some deliberate
thwart job? And if so by whom,

That, plus the implications and permutations.
What could have been, if only either/or
times the nth degree, and on from there
in orders of descending consequence cascade - if we are serious,

we have to think about these things.

About this task, which we've undertaken
or may be about to: to fix the past, or
at least fix our understanding of it,
perhaps that's a prudent place to start; we need
to get together now

and make plans first, fast,
built to last, and most especially

determined along definite and pre-argued lines,
so we know what the past should be. Then, get
a radical element within the group to construct a time machine

- like we always figured was bound to happen, once you involve
radical elements in these things - into the future, travel to the age
when they'll know whether it's possible to do so, and if so,

probably lose the plot at that point, since
once you've got a time machine, other things seem
proportionally less
important. Next thing
you know you've got to create
some kind of restrictive body of guards
to guard the timestream from major perversions
and watch out for damage done, zero in on where and when
and send a team back

to fix the past.

That's probably our best chance. Now

enough talk.

the wishing hook

Hung on a wishing hook, dangled as if
from the unsteady firmament, stars
falling left, right
around you, you
hang

there so
steady, as if

none of this

is to do with you. And it isn't.

I wish
and I wish,
I could lift you down, but
I cannot reach, and

you do not fall

for any of it. Yourself pierced through,
you've concerns of your own to occupy you.

It would be
so easy, or

easy enough, but

this isn't a dignified way to go, love.

I wish that it was.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Away, by Fate

Thou hast not knowing
within which thou art known,
Nor strength to discover that
within which thou art not.
For within that in which thou art is thee!
How canst thou deny thyself to me?
Abnegation, away with thine empty peace.
Let us build a pyre, and burn immortality upon it.
For oil, empty words, and vain glories for twigs.
In the morning, from the smoke we will build a comet.
The sign of disaster, we'll Christen her,
And take off in broad day, for Heathen lands.
You will look with sad eyes upon panic below,
Knowing not how we came to understand.

charity case

Maybe we should walk around all day
with wishes ready, set in place.
Think how many shooting stars we waste,
burning up in skies of blue,
never to be wished upon,
rained in vain - should've stayed
in outer space. Maybe you,
with wishes fixed like fishing nets,
could catch a few as they blaze by
invisibly. To grant one wish -
that's all that any shooting star
aspires to, and so - to die
unmiserably.

Monday, August 28, 2017

winged moments

I forgot what I was waiting for, and then you came in
making me come up excused for being there, which wasn't
very easily, but which I pulled quite neatly off, along
with some objections I'd been saving for a drier day,
still soaked from memories of pride. You've now since
stripped those from us both, despite I was the wandering
one, out in the storm of darkest nights without the sense
to come in from. As usual, you, adopted tones as if you'd
rescued something lost, that couldn't fend itself a way,
despite how many times it has, despite how many ways it's
made to find its way at smallest cost, to you: that pride,
again. It fucks
with you. Don't let it.
Just be cool. Just settle in
and down, and up. And wish your
falling stars for luck, and lose your
mind in what the hell are we doing. Don't ask

Friday, August 25, 2017

education, Pt.2

We must educate adults
to know better than to bring up things
we can't explain to children. To explain,

"Don't ask. It's rude," or "That's gross!" or
"What if a child had heard you? Don't you feel
ashamed?" I'll tell you when you grow up

you won't ask questions like those,
bring up things like that, you'll have learned

we don't. You'll have learned
not to.

The benefits
to an adult society
are enormous. It is rude

to talk politics, religion, right
or wrong or anything else
people might be embarrassed about
not being able to explain
what they themselves strongly believe,
or, the lack thereof. This makes

it easy

to avoid scrutiny of wrong
and thought about what's right,
concerned about the difference
between yours and mine, we can simply agree

everyone's idea of it is good, and
no one has to have one! Saves us all

bringing it up.

and/or else

When a child is learning to count - there's nothing
you can do about it. Just like

when a child is learning to read,
there's nothing you can do.

There's no way we can protect them
from these dangerous things. Just
grow up. And try to

The world
is a bad example. It takes
a long time to grow up, and seal
yourself off

so many things, uncomfortable
you don't know how
The children are vulnerable. Use them

to tell the world off when
it acts too adult. We will never be able to say
why. Uncomfortable facts, acts and ideas but

at least there is always
the children. We will do it for them,
and/or else if we don't, they might grow up knowing

and be able to say, and we
would look dumb, and scrunch up uncomfortable

unable to explain except don't ask it's rude
embarrassed by the only answer we were taught, looking
round for the children to rescue
us.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

love from who

stringless kite adrift
Wanting nothing in return,
and never to return,
like a freely-given gift

you've been secretly admired,
and so you trail along -
ever after under it, just
to spot some one.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

the result

I love it when your lower legs are
suddenly itchy like bug bites despite
you've been wearing long pants
all day, and you'd been wearing shorts
all week before that with zero contact, and

the only place different you went was church

for your nephew's baptism, and
that

is not a buggy place. So

itching like crazy, you surreptitiously pull
your pants cuffs up to your knees and SCRATCH
SCRITCH SCRATCH, stymied by the seeming absence
of actual bites, and the more-or-less all-overness
of the itchiness, then

1 day later

there are what look like legit bug-bit welts, scattered all over,
and they end up with those tiny clear hard amberlike scabs.

I say I love it. I don't love all of it. I just love the scabs.
Those tiny clear hard amberlike scabs.

I love the end result.

Written instruction

A poem can be read
in many ways. Perfect
is only one of them.
I leave it to you,

the reader

to choose. Go back
to the start,
and try again

darkless

You brighten my life to such a degree
that I wonder sometimes how I used to see.

for reals

as the death toll mounts
on the internet, and around you
everyone in your social set
gets shares likes posts,
unfriends for keeps,

I can't believe you would say that
to me

your sheep