Category Archives: Prose and Poems

Poems from my children, my friends, my colleagues, and my grandmother.

Verge of a Dream: abandoning the question

He places the gold
Banded watch from
His father on the dresser
Top.
People don’t have to
Be bad.
Her crescent
ear rings
Unclipped. The rest
Are in
The soft pink box, some
Gold trim left, though
Like Childhood,
now parts
have rubbed away.
People can be
Kind, with a smile and
An unambiguous okay.
Saturday on the main
Street, the felt fedora
The cashmere scarf,
They stroll before
Store windows,
With Christmas coming
next
The manikins are cold.
So was said, give
of yourself, it never
Will grow old.
But in the game
of freeze tag
some never heard
the word to go.
The kids will bring
Their kids tomorrow.
They ask to light
The dinner table’s
Candles and why
The bed’s so high.
Abandoning the
Question before
Can come an answer.

Verge of a Dream: It may be

It may be because of
Simple boredom you
don’t want it
Mentioned or that
Love is like the
Weather with nothing
To be done
About it.
It may be that
Question marks
Belong to you,
Like pain that gets
Respect.
It may be
You know what’s
Been seen before
and are ready to
Toss it aside. Except
For how we hurt
Ourselves, so
Much else
is uselessly
Transparent.
Give the handsome
Gentleman a prize
And send him on
His way.
I don’t know why it seems
Necessary to make
You into words.
But a mirror cannot
show what is real
which for you is
something
That falls between
Indifference and disregard.
Amidst your thoughts
Buried like water
A hundred feet below
The surface.
There are glimpses in
Which with forbearance you’re
Now a generation like others gone
Before where
Less was given than
should’ve been gotten.

RLB 11-15-2021
notes:
Been thinking about how when someone has a bad experience, for example a loss and someone attempts to show empathy….the aggrieved says something like “no you don’t get what its like to have this happen”….”you don’t know you just pretend to understand”. “you’ll never know how it feels to lose….” etc. That conversation is in so many TV dramas, police shows (I watch British ones) or the latest was Baptiste on PBS where Baptiste is told off this way even though he had lost his daughter to a drug overdose…the other person had lost his sister….My current thinking is that saying to someone you “can’t understand” is BS..people understand in their own way and don’t have to experience in the way the grieving person experiences something. I think putting another other person down for not being as injured as I am is useless and vain anger. I was trying to wrestle with this idea in this thing I wrote….in which I am saying…a loss another feels can be understood and/or imagined. What might not be understood by someone else is how we torment ourselves, how we hurt ourselves and obviously why we do it.

Verge of a Dream: Heritage of Years and tears

Doubt I’m the one to ask
For what to say to your kid.
Waiting to be a kid no more.
A hard spot, for both of us.
Far from advice, not only wrong,
but ignored before forgotten.
They’ll find their own truths
The heritage of
Years and tears.
Only friends only friends
Only they
Don’t mind what’s said.
With flesh and bone
worth
So damned much more
Than gold.
To get by, you’ve got
To try
things you’re told.
And hear
how many times that
The ice you’re walking on
Is this damned thin.
Should you decide sometime
To give in and look
back, maybe what I say
Will be mostly true. There is
more luck needed than
Ever ever you get.

RLB 9-29-2021

Verge of a Dream: One candle

It kept burning.
One candle that
Held the wish.
Maybe to keep
The others from
The dark.
A shrug unapparent
To most,
for the gift
with your name
on it.
Maybe to build
Humility.
A heart may
Hold me along
With another.
One Anxious child
Amongst the smiling waves
On the gangplank
Shudders, color of
The white life saver.
Maybe it hangs like
Decoration not
To bob in the cold
Ocean.

RLB 07/17/2021

Verge of a Dream: Last year

With the blinds
Half open, the office
Is cool, in the after
Noon. There is
Little money now,
Less than even
Last year.
At least the
Fair is coming
A day, a night
With twirled candy.
I’ll drive, no I
Will, the conversation
Has not changed
Since last year.
I wonder why
The flag’s at
Half mast where
The school’ll be
Empty for a month
Or more. I hope the
Aproned gal will serve
The lunch just
The same as
Last year.

RLB 05-30-2021

Alternative facts: a tourist activity?

when the republican congressman said today that the invasion of the capital was simply ordinary tourist activity…this came to mind. Probably nothing new…  (the comment about a visit to the white house was made by Rep. Andrew Clyde, R-Ga)

With a lot that
I don’t understand or don’t see..
It may be a revelation that
Simply ignoring the reality of people
Being there may not be
A symptom but an idea worth
Trying. Some people might be there
Occupying space and yet have
No purpose to improve their
Tiny fraction of the universe.
With all the remaining room it
Is possible to lithely slip around
Them and hope the small
Waves you make fail to startle
Them into activity. It apparently
Takes a lifetime or more to
Get that hallucinations can be
Be ghosts or monsters or
Can create
non-entities when it becomes
necessary.
Being able to not-see is a clever
And useful way to have the room to
Shake free of a reality that expects
you to fit among
shockingly unpleasant
characters when it stretches
your inherency less to
have them go away.

RLB 05/14/2021

Verge of a Dream: Just in case

Just in case, you know
what I mean, before
I die, I want
to live in a beautiful
place. Just in case.
Before I can do
no more, you know
what I mean. I want
to explain myself
through my acts. Just
in case.
Just in case,
I want to zero out
the mistakes. If they
will be re-lived,
you know what I mean,
Just in case, I want
to have a wish, like
finishing what won’t
be otherwise done.
I don’t know what
it is and shouldn’t.
Still, just in case,
you know what I mean,
I want
to take communion,
before I die.
Before I die
I want to unclear
my thoughts.
You know what
I mean, with a
fine cocktail,
a breeze on
the terrace,
A sun that
rises and sets
without telling
what comes next.

RLB 05/03/2021

Verge of a Dream: “the future is clear”

It isn’t anything more
than you know.
It is not
questions with
unwanted answers.
No, it is not wanting
to be in love,
not this place here
and not In paris
either.
Unlike the past,
the future is clear.
Unlike
being in love, you are
someone
you once wanted to be.
Seeing you through
a sealed window,
holding a ticket
to a true one.
I stay on the ground,
Looking
without
sorrow from rented
rooms
waiting for
the next waves
across
the boardwalk and
sand
and not wondering
how
a heart will break
tomorrow.

RLB 04-26-2021

Verge of a Dream: ‘In a silver frame’


Three pink roses.
Almost white, less
than a blush.  I might
Have known if your
brow is so….but
Never saw you then,
At a confirmation
Or saying grace
when young.  And
in the late day light,
I never saw you on
The grand piano in
A silver frame
Wearing white.
Maybe by the time
You held the
first child, I was
on my own.  I think
You would remember.
if the innocence had
left.  And with it,
the third rose,
was just
the same.  It must
be for you to say
if the bloom has
come back again.
RLB 03/31/2021

Verge of a Dream: Two trails

In this daydream
Half way between rose
Mountain and the
Seven hills. Almost
To the end of two trails we
Meet.
In this daydream
At the gate of the
Family farm unknown
To them, You were
Forged there in that
Struggle with little
Time for a
Daydream.
In the land there is
An understanding
That gives acceptance.
There we are in the
daydream, waiting,
Not rising until the
Sun, the air and
We are one.

RLB 03/31/2021