Thursday, July 05, 2007

New Poem - "Spark"

Sorry that I haven't been posting very much lately. I've been a busy boy of late. Lots of living life away from my keyboard. It's not that I haven't been writing, but I've been really distracted from getting to my beloved blogging. Here's a poem that I actually performed a while back in the "Rapture" series with the Raving Poets. You'll notice that it's dated for July and that's because I just did some revising to it and it feels like a busier poem to me now, a little more dynamic than its first draft. Oh, and I've learned how to indent text using html. I never bothered to learn that before, so yay for me! I suggest reading this out loud while listening to the song "A Tender History In Rust" by Do Make Say Think. That's the song I was listening to when I first drafted this poem and I think it makes a great soundtrack. It was meant as a sort of companion piece to "Lamp Men Of Midnight" in that I was going with that same nocturnal feel. I love the night. I love it. Anyway, enjoy it. Feel free to leave feedback or just tell me how much of a pretentious boob I am. It's all welcome.

Nocturnes after midnight and I am looking for a spark in a square mile of darkness.

X-Rays of the Man In The Moon came back negative. Nothing is broken. Not a lunar banana bone is out of place.

All us creeps and sidewalk crawlers walking in the Black-Out City, no electricity the media will say, “crippling,”

all us sullen solipsists and recreational somnambulists are children again, barefooted, open-eyed, jaws yawned in awe of the suddenly apparent spectacle of night, pinholes in black construction paper appearance of night, diamonds on witch’s cat’s ass.

Milling from lit candlewick to tea light to tiki torch, matches in hand, flames as bees on pollen bends,

drunk on boxed win, remembrances of the last great time we heard a Billie Holiday record, incandescent light bulb light

and sodium glow in our neighborhoods after dark.

I am holding your hand.

Your name is on my sleeve along with my heart and your name is in the roots of my hair and the tip of my tongue, at the foundation of 27 different marriage proposals that find comfortable silence beneath the shelter of my breath—

vespers at best.

Just waiting for the moment to be right,

the breeze to part your hair a certain way,

or headlights reflecting halogen crystals in the whites of your eyes.

And the city, turned a bible in and ink well is silent enough that the choruses and choirs humble themselves

to whispers and whistles of songs we recognize, but not quite recognize

or muted bits of laughter cobwebbed between intimate friends

the way you laugh when I hold up a lighter, waving it back and forth, quietly calling out:

Freebird! Freebird!

Somewhere Van Gogh is sighing. His Starry Night is alive in concrete, bronze statues of men on horses, workmen on city benches treating themselves to immortalized lunches, bicycles launched perpetually over the fountains in front of city hall frozen on a time line, cyclists always amazed.

And I’m sighing. You’re sighing. We’re sighing,

sinking down easy on park lawn over riverbanks, waves of hazy navy blue and purples that border of pitch.

Maybe the right moment never arrives,

but I’m at ease with the waiting and the pacing, bellows breath, almost asleep, time and welcomed darkness,

meandering the way that people might or riverbanks do,

realizing that sometimes no spark at all

is all the spark you’ll ever need.

-Michael Appleby
July, 2007