I Want Answers

A FIXED GAZE

What happens when we die?
When the sun can’t wake us,
though it tries?

When the cold inside spreads,
and that odd expression
freezes on your face?

What happens then?
Is it the end? Finally free.
Or do I become we and fly

back to a bluer sky?
Not so heavy anymore.
Not so sure of the answers.

All the questions changed
in the blink of an eye
and a fixed gaze.

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I Never Make It Very Far

I’VE TRIED TO RUN AWAY

I left god in a Maryland parking lot
Dancing with my drunk neighbor. No looking back.
I doubt they noticed I was gone; they never
Noticed I was there. Two consumed by spirits.

I ran home to find my parents’ god had not
Aged well and wasn’t taking any questions.
They never understood why I kept asking,
When the answers were both ancient and clear. It’s

Too late to demand changes. And all you need
Is written in stone. Why did I still attack
A sleeping god? The One God, they insisted,
Though I had met many more, and knew fear hits

Hardest when the gods want to see what you’ve got.
They take my bag, and together we unpack.

All Questions, No Answers

HAPPY

”Are you happy?” he asks again.
My silence is a trick answer
He won’t accept. What’s this about?
Happiness has no place here.

He asks as if it means something
Now. As if there were a time when
It mattered. I don’t know happy,
Though sometimes I laugh at my fear.

Does that count, I wonder? No doubt
I can fool us both with a smile
And a quick laugh. Who’s pretending
Now? Who’s smile is more sincere?

Am I happy? Ask now and then.
Together we’ll figure it out.

Only Questions, Pantoum Style

IN A WORD

Can I sum up a week in a word?
Can it capture my feelings within?
Do I simply repeat what I’ve heard?
Will it stop me before I begin?

Can it capture my feelings within?
Do I dare express all that I feel?
Will it stop me before I begin?
Do I die from these wounds? Do I heal?

Do I dare express all that I feel?
Which word is the one I should choose?
Do I die from these wounds? Do I heal?
Do I really have nothing to lose?

Which word is the one I should choose?
Do I stretch for that one out of reach?
Do I really have nothing to lose?
Is it better to pray or to preach?

Do I stretch for that one out of reach?
Do I simply repeat what I’ve heard?
Is it better to pray or to preach?
Can I sum up a week in a word?