“Loneliness is better than [the] friendship of a fool” (P. Lal’s translation of Dhammapada, 61).

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no — not ever

no — not ever.
the horror,
the terror,
of loneliness
is nothing, but
for the insight
that it is
ontological.

blue-gray city,
looking across
the harbor,
the steel,
sky, and waves
all seem
the same color.

stern faces,
serious adults,
so concerned about
some result,
so willing
to punish to
make it happen.

a hawk’s wings,
against sky blue,
a brown, red,
blue, and white
camouflaged
cornucopia of
multi-colored corn.

a proud, war-worn
face, 1940s cropped
hair, jaw raised
defiantly, vainly.

it’s mine!
no it isn’t!
you’ve had enough!
no i haven’t!

on the edges
of the party,
there was
a funeral.

rainy streets

rainy streets —
endless tires
run the
endless roads,
cannot be still,
as if cars
are like prayer,
and must be
done ceaselessly
somewhere.

smiling faces,
hidden agendas,
fatuous men
in elegant suits
working the crowd
with compliments,
like waiters
serving wine.
radiant lights,
shimmering glass,
and women
in sparkling gowns,
disperse views
around the room’s
elevations and angles.
your wry smile
was like dark crystal,
both shadow & light —
affecting, yet
deeply sombre —
both attractive
and repulsive.
loneliness is purer
than feeling conflicted.

where is home?
you all only
think of yourselves;
therefore, this
is not home.

grandeur, tonality, judgment…

grandeur
tonality
judgment
invocation
agreement
viciousness
calloused
judgmental
evaluative
perusing
causational
formative
operative
constructive
abstruse
longing
yearning
lusting
craving
colding
holding
which way is best
closet
folding
germane
scolding love
my hosed
holding
mane
folding
balancing
excitement
pleasure
contusion
monstrosity
veracity
resting arms
lonely eyes
swarms
pastels gentle
smile
like the wind
beautiful
waiting
blown away
frail leaf
flicker
of sunlight
your existence
come again
then gone
breaking stone hearts
he worried
about himself
again
scornful face
unchangeable
unconstant
unseeming
he forgave
the lies
we told ourselves
our thoughts
and the trees
golden rustled
in muddy green
daily girl
perennial smile
unfaked
informed
weathered
right place
right size
gentle mother
loving gentle.

after a broken wedding

half awake
half asleep
wandering through
empty old streets
cannons
of the shuddering past
sunlight flickering
waves waving past
a girl smiling
something
like all the others
mellifluous voices
and eyes
dance before her
a drink too many
a phone call missed
exhaustingly worried thoughts
unceasing
forgetting
or trying to forget
an angry other
the pressure
of mothers
sad loneliness
all around

your voice in thanks echoed…

your voice
in thanks
echoed
and washed away
by the absolute ocean
over endless sands
voice cracking
oasis eyes
walked
spanned
saw the gentleness
breezed
kindness
apprehensive
too many faces
to just one
alone
purple
white
black
not at all harsh
effervescent
highly held
strong habit
the wheel tracks
worm deep
sculpted
last word
lasting
in silence
nothing
but you
your voice
and your inexplicable
smile.