17 Seconds

Seventeen seconds after they jumped the world ended.
Torn apart by war, family, fate, they decided 
They would rather die together than live apart. 
Had they but known (how could they?) 
What was about to happen
Perhaps they would have spent those last seventeen seconds together - all the time left in the world
But I suspect not. 
They would not want to share their moment with anyone. 
They would want it to be theirs and theirs alone.

In the Stillness

The quiet stillness hangs heavy in the Dark.   
They call it Solitude, but this is a dressed-up word.  
It is Loneliness, and the Night alone knows its silent savage effect.

One never feels so empty, so hollow, so hopeless and so truly 


As in that darkened stillness.  

The days seem long when they are happening, 
But at night they are just....
Gone, snatched away with barely a
Jumbled memory left to hold in their place.

How can this much of your life have been taken from you, 
With so little of your Life's Work accomplished?  
Where have the days gone?  
How long has it been since you laid there 
Thinking these very same thoughts, and
What have you done since the last time?

These are the things one thinks of, 
Alone with the cruelty of unstoppable thought, 
There in the dark, in the stillness.

The enormity of Life's flow lost cannot be understood by the young. 
They are transcendent in their immortality, and
Elevate trifles to problems and problems to crises, 
To be obsessed over and moved on from before the Moon turns, 
Before the Dawn breaks Night's hold.

It is only after some of those days, 
And weeks, 
And months 
And years 
Pile up that their true worth becomes apparent, and 
Even then there seems nothing ever to be done but
Bitter lamentation. 

Moving forward, 
Life plays out as the Tyranny of the Urgent, 
One moment, 
One thing after another that needs be done.  
Only in the stillness, in the dark, do those 
Moments which seemed so necessary 
Fall flat when held up and examined, 
When compared to ideas, goals and dreams.  
The banality of daily life is almost too terrible to face, the 
Shame of it might bring down Heaven's judgment at this 
Very moment 'twere there any justice.  

These are the things one thinks in the stillness, in the dark.

They say the death of a man is the destruction of a great library, 
Full of works that can never be copied or retrieved.  
Each day wasted is like a book thrown in the fire, 
Given over to the hunger of implacable flame.  
The binding cracked, the pages singed, now charred, now gone.  
The fire eats the book without remorse - it will 
Never ever be read by anyone.

These are the thoughts one has, alone in the stillness, in the dark. 

{Originally Published June, 2010}

Travel Down That Road


Travel down that Road with me, travel down that Road
Not to a Place, or a Time...or a Memory...
But a Feeling.  You know the one I mean.
The feeling that does not have any words to describe it. 
I would best call it....I don't know....searching....maybe
Contentment, stretching its muscles languorously, 
Pushing against Boundaries, not as if to destroy the 
Walls of a Prison, but as if one reaching out to the 
Rough-hewn rock for the first time, Feeling the deliciously 
Cool texture against finger-tips and cheek.
Like stretching muscles you didn't know you have - 
A slight tug of resistance -- maybe even a little pain -- 
But nothing you cannot handle, or even welcome. 
Fixing the Calendar won't work - neither of us trusts that 
Drunken Guardian Time to keep vigil on the Truth
To a Place?  As if the mind could be so contained. 
To Memory?  She's a whore: she goes where the money is. 
(Don't mention Logic. The smartest never have a clue.)
All we have left, then, is admittedly the worst standard of 
Measurement available; we can never explain it to others, 
Something we can rarely understand in ourselves.
An inner THRUM of Thought and Bone fused together.
Can you feel it?  Is your soul stretching with a slow smile?
Travel down that Road with me.  Travel down that Road. 

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