Friday, June 17, 2016

8 MM

Love is a black dog
in a video store.

You see him
through a glass window
as he glides in
through the door.

Love is a black dog
in a video store.

You’d like him to say hello
and hope he won’t hear
your new shoes creak
against the marble floor.

Love is a black dog
in a video store.

Nothing of the sort happens;
he pays swiftly
and walks out
while it starts to pour.

Love is a black dog
in a video store.

Under the roof of a garage
next door, he stands
and smiles at you.
You know there’s more.

Love is a black dog
in a video store.

Under a lopsided beret,
his eyes are a dark brown;
they say a word or two
but many a secrets they store.

Love is a black dog
in a video store.

On a torn piece
of typed paper
he writes his number
and name “Salvador.”

Love is a black dog
in a video store.

In the shade
of your study lamp,
you open the piece
of crumpled paper.

Salvador now is a blotch
of blue and white
The numbers are hazy
A nine may really be a four.

Love is a black dog
in a video store.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Summertime love

Ahead of you, her words sway
to the sound of the wind.
Murmurs and whispers,
they carry the smell of wet
grass by the pavement.

Her laughter dances around
and fills the limpid air
where lovers once blew
their first playful kisses.

Smoke from her cigarette
makes hooplas round and bold.
They float across the midday sky
before the summer air
swallows them whole.

You watch her from afar
with her wavy, auburn hair
while she blows into her coffee,
staring at the distant pier.

You wonder if you should
walk up to her, talk about
books and the weather,
but instead, you sit by
and sip on your chamomile.

Rain patters on the café roof
and fogs your glass window.
You read a wistful ballad
while a man walks in through
the wooden café door.

You pretend not to see
as she melts into the arms
of her lover, the rain from his hair
coloring her cheeks crimson,
like a midsummer afternoon.

*First published in Aaduna's 2016 Spring Issue.

Night Skies

Like a yellow eyed snake
East Express slithers through
the burnt grass of Jonai.
It flashes through sleepy towns
that wait for clouds of grey
to sprinkle fields with rain.

At deserted check points, it wakes
hushed nights to the sound
of passengers’ banter while
I drown myself in my novel’s
next chapter.

The lines in my book dance
to the music of the dark.
I think of the summer nights
we spent beyond the wild grass
reading Keats and Neruda
under orchard trees we called home.

I know it is a long night
ahead until I see you
but the stars will
keep me company
till black skies turn blue.

The stretches of forests
that border the railway line
lie awake with the constant
chirping of crickets.

Sleep wanders away from me-
I watch shadows of trees
resemble faces, objects
and sometimes of witches
that mask well against
the black of the night.

I know it is a long night
ahead until I see you
but the stars will
keep me company
till black skies turn blue. 

*First published in Aaduna's 2016 Spring Issue.