Flightless Birds & Fireballs

I am not love, and
lust is no object I possess;
attention is a cardboard city
strung with garish Xmas
lights.

I am not man or woman—
my present state attained by
psychosomatic chromosomal
elimination.

I am not indulgence or delight;
the food I chew is cold and
bland, plucked from a gaunt
metal grid under the pale
light of a wheezing
refrigerator.

I am not corporeal, my
two-dimensioned body
won’t be discovered in
sunshine or by dark,
for I have sidled
into a realm of gray
on gray—an endless
archipelago of mist-clung
uncertainties.

I am not the skeleton key to
your locked strongbox of
happiness or despair—
not the kindling or the
matchhead to strike
sparks upon your dry
desires.

I am not genius, nor am I
revolution at the tip of
a sword, the end of a
gun, or in the gleaning of
catchphrase words on a picket
sign.

I am but moth wings,
passed through the slits of
too many fingers—my flight
powder dispersed among the
unstill bodies in a ceaseless side-
walk shoulder rub; wiped
like chalk off a board by
a populous that I can’t call
kin.

Earthbound, I sit on a slab—
legs crossed and parted, a
silhouetted jet plane, grounded
on the tarmac by
an inclemency of
spirit.

I have picked a perch from
which to watch the dusking of
our kind—I bathe in the holy
heat and glow of come-and-go
wildfires, punctuated by the
distant ripples of exploding
souls.

And this is how we
end—slathered with
napalm gel, lit on fire in
a frenzied dance of hugs and
handshakes, setting all the
other people ablaze in a
brief, impersonal
embrace.

But, remember, I am nothing and
I am no one; so, I resign to
watch and wait, and
wonder, before I curl
fetal, drifting into dream,
as one by one, our once-
flames flicker, smolder, and
wane—

myriad
solitary
cooling
suns.

Thoughts 1/7/2017

Friends, Enemies, Frenemies,

I’ve been a little backed up lately—speaking metaphorically, not literally. While settling into my new role as a member of Sudden DenouementI’ve taken on (what seems to me like) a massive amount of community involvement. I’m rather unaccustomed to it. If I’ve appeared quieter than usual, the former accounts for a large part of the reason. It’s fantastic to interact with so many like minds on a regular basis; I’m still figuring out how to assimilate this new interaction into my routine so’s I can get back to writing, which is why I’m ultimately here.

My depression is another titanic contributor. Now, I’m well-versed in the prose of depression and I don’t use that word lightly, or to describe anything other that what it actually means. Depression isn’t sadness, general malaise, or listlessness—those things are side-effects of a greater condition. Depression is a galloping lava floe—one that we all must ride when it comes for us. We have to float it, kayak it, and keep from being burnt and utterly encased until it gets to where it’s going, cools, solidifies, and allows us to dismount so we may return to our regular lives. I would say that I’m about three-fourths of the way through this one.

Well, that’s it. I just wanted to tune in with anyone who might be listening on the same frequency and apprise you of my situation. You’ve probably seen more social media links appearing on my page, which I encourage you to follow if you enjoy anything my blog has to offer. I’m working on new poems and developing fresh outlets, which I hope will manifest themselves in time.

Loving you all. I wish you the best year ever… in the entire plane of the history of mankind. I mean it.

-Nick

Thoughts 1/1/2016

The year ends, and so also ends this black-checkered composition book I’ve been scribbling in. Coincidence that the final page is filled on the last evening? Maybe my subconscious drove me to it.

Either way, I am still here—still writing, though you may not know it. I hope that what I have produced is meaningful and satisfying for you. I write for me, but also for you.

I want to thank you all for bearing with me this year. It’s a doozy for the record books, I think. Your readership, love, and support has gotten me through many more difficult days and nights than you will ever know. You have given me a reason. For that, I thank you.

Here’s to fresh starts and bold undertakings.

 

-Nick

My New Relationship

I know I swore off romance altogether a very long time ago, but this opportunity approached me from across a smoky bar with all its assets bared and jiggling. I simply couldn’t say “no.” I mean, who could? I am only human.

Now, as writers, we have a few priorities. These obviously depend heavily on the individual, but we all share a commonality:  we endeavor to expose our work to as many eyes as this planet can produce. Personally, I write for myself—I also write to be read. Lonely words don’t always have meaning.

What value does a thing possess if one keeps it wrapped up and covered under a heavy cotton drape? It’s like buying a comfy dual-recliner sofa, then entombing it in thick, translucent plastic (I’m looking at you, grandparents). What’s the purpose of holding onto a beautiful thing if no one has leave to enjoy it in every intended way?

Therefore, I have decided to join the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective. I’m quite honored, if we’re getting everything out in the open. It is a home for poetry and a resting point on the writer’s road. Sudden Denouement has some wonderfully talented, creative contributors, and I confess that I do feel a bit alien among them. However, I received an invitation and grabbed at it with my grabby little hands.

I’m not one to throw in my lot with just any ragtag group of rascals, vagabonds, and misfits. I have standards for my rascals, vagabonds, and misfits. These folks fit the bill. Their writers are overflowing with passion and fresh perspectives. I am happy to relinquish myself to the Collective, as it were.

You can probably expect to see maybe one or two of my poems per month published exclusively by Sudden Denouement. I’ll obviously let you know when this happens and provide hyperlinks to those pieces. And, this doesn’t mean I’ll stop posting on The Dirty Limerick. Not at all. If anything, I hope the additional readers inspire me to write even more.

Here’s to a new beginning. Raise a glass of champagne, beer, rotgut, or lemon-lime soda (if you’re a dirty non-drinker, like me) and let’s hope for the best.

Thoughts 12/17/2016

Friends,

My recent silence has been caused by a fundamental reexamination of both myself and my blog—what purpose I want the two of us to accomplish together. It has been a semi-productive reflective exercise, and I think I might have shaken a few buttons loose and stitched a hole or two back together.

I’m steering this rusty tub in a different direction.

My primary focus here is poetry. I may dabble in short fiction, but stories are something you sit down to read, not posts you flip through on your phone before work. I’ll still extend thoughts (like this) from time to time; it’s fun for me—I hope it is for you. I’m only changing my approach.

Quality and purity:  that’s where we’re going. Sometimes, I’ve been known to blow my nose onto a piece of paper and call it poetry. It might be poetry, but it may very likely be just an uncontrolled expulsion of repulsive bodily humors. Who’s to say?

So, I’m going to cinch things up. I’ll likely post less often, but what I do post will be fully revised and edited. We (my blog and I) will endeavor to better ourselves for you (the ambiguous “you” that is the Internet). You are why we maintain this place, after all.

Can you live with that?

-Nick

Midday Thoughts 12/5/2016

There’s still much light left in these eyes, and many more adventures to come. My energy may have been temporarily dispersed, but it is back now—it is more centered and burns more brilliantly than ever.

Thank you to those who read my blog. You have helped me immeasurably. Prepare yourself for a full-frontal poetic assault.

-Nick

20161205_1

 


And yes, I’m an adult male who decorates the headboard of his bed with purple Christmas lights. Judge me.

Late Night Thoughts 12/5/2016

Everything I’ve written here—all the past loves, hopes, sadness, and other expressions—is still as true as it was at the moment I penned it. I still love. I still feel. I am still here. I am an organic entity lost in an infinite universe, one who’s desperately trying to understand his place and his purpose. These words are the travelogue of my journey.

I love all those I have lost. I look forward to the loves I have not yet met. I love life and I love creation, and my life is dedicated to exploring everything I can in my limited time with this consciousness of mine.

I believeI believe in decency and rightness. I believe that we can all improve ourselves. I believe in selflessness and altruism. I believe in forgiveness.

I believe in you.

Forty-Two

If there is to be a counting,
forty-two is what I paid the man.
And no mundane currency did he request—
he asked a far more intimate recompense.

He handed me a large, sharp drawknife,
which I took, and raked its gleaming blade
across the softness of my body,
shedding forty-two strips of flesh,
dropped, wet and limp, like lifeless
snakes that coiled at his feet.

Because all things cost, and
the toll will be exacted,
willingly or not.

………

Forty-two in pounds; nineteen in kilos.
I tore them from myself with purpose,
because that is what was asked.
Seven by six; nineteen by one—
what was demanded, I met in full,
and now my debt is ended.

I fulfilled my part, without
protest or hesitation, and so
my owing has been satisfied.
I did not question the account—
the one that needed settling—
but I paid its balance, all the same.

………

The passage of time has made it
evident that this was not
simply an outstanding debt,
but a more-than-fair transaction.
All I gave, in live body and flesh, has
been repaid with generous interest,
in enrichment to my soul.

My spiritual coffers are brimmed
with love and with wonder,
compassion and forgiveness,
with confidence and clarity.

………

I did not know the Asking Man,
nor did I even try to glance his face,
but he was no deranged Merchant of
Venice, bent on settling a score—
he was both benefactor and guardian:
the source of a new strength.

And to him, I am grateful
beyond measure.

………

For the one whose debt is yet unsettled,
I am moved by the heart-heavy
weights of empathy and sadness,
for you no longer get to choose the hour,
or the amount, or the currency of paying.

Because all things cost, and
the toll will be exacted,
willingly or not.

Thoughts 11/28/2016

To all who have wronged me, I forgive you.

To any whom I have wronged, I am deeply sorry.

The man who you knew is no longer the man who I am. I have finally begun to embrace a measure of peace and surrender in my heart and mind. I have found within myself renewed confidence, serenity, and purpose. Who I continue to become is who I have always wanted to be. Some irony exists at the timing of this metamorphosis, but perhaps everything old must be forcibly stripped away before any form of renewal can gain root.

I see who I am, and I am content. I harbor no malice—nor any form of ill will—toward those who have touched my life, and in turn, whose lives I have touched. I am filled with love and with wonder at the sight of this world and its people.

To all, peace and long life.

 

-Nick