Ode to an Eastern Blossom

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An ode to a lost girl and a lost country, both of whom I know will one day find their peace.

Willower, widower, dreamer of dreams,
Weeper and waterer, filler of streams,
Will rose blossoms grow from the earth where you’ve been,
Jasmine flowers white, scented, and Damascene?

Walk our streets, a stranger now you are,
Walls that make even dwellers not at home,
Carrying and crumbling you into palms that scar,
Littering streets with mem’ry of home.

And how I wanted to be that hand that held,
Gently curling fingers over,
Folding love on gentle flowers,
Dying in that gentle hold.

So pardon me, for none had spoken,
To me of truths that love to lie,
The words, that flowers only open,
When they are just about to die.

Do old, dead cities, still bury you,
Grim gardens in a once-happy town?
Will old, dead places, still carry you,
When I’ll need one to help me down?

These wars have a way around humanity,
They’ve torn my walls beyond my pace,
And I am a warzone beyond my sanity,
To lay you even inside me, I have no place.

And if you ever come to visit, you should know,
That my rooms are full of coffee stains on wooden floors,
Covered with pages of torn books and scores,
Riddled with dried roses that never left the door.

Floral prints and silk lace sheets,
All torn and faded,
Teatime talks in the summer heat,
Now teacups cold and summer shaded.

(Somewhere across the Eastern wall, you’ll also find gunshots,
The only place where daylight pierces me, in dispersed polka-dots.)

And you see, even in all this misery,
And because of all this misery,
The death of one woman, I still find time to remember,
If only because her life lived on like sun in December.

And from the Ommayad Mosque,
Her body, like incense is burning,
Floating over the dawn and the dusk,
Ever and homeward returning.

(Dec. 2014)

Anna

Death knows not my solemn dream,
Dying in her’s all that seems
To light the fire in mine eye,
Touched with the flame of hers to die.

Music runneth from her lips,
Rests in the harmony of her soul,
And I will drink a thousand sips,
Sweet poison settled in her bowl.

And in my heart of hearts I’ve vowed,
Unknowingly but yet I did,
To die an amorous victim, 
Unknowingly but yet I will.

Muttered I an’ ever spoke?
To what occasion must I speak?
For hearts that wander, life that broke,
Will not mend a world so bleak.

Did not her eyes beset a fire?
Enchantment did not last a day,
But took a day and stretched it high’r,
Lit infernos in my everyday.

My Anna will not speak of love,
For time that’s longer than her own,
She’ll speak of men that travel free,
To hold on hours on the phone.

And in my heart of hearts I’ve vowed,
Unknowingly but yet I did,
To die an amorous victim, 
Unknowingly, my Anna’s will.

Happiness: The Serotonin Shot Anecdote

An old man sits on the front porch of an old, weary house. As the people pass by, he tries to subdue his loneliness with memories of his past, reading newspapers and rereading old news again and again.

All of a sudden, and every so often, a noise or movement shakes this state of delusion, and he sees himself, old and wrinkled, desolate and waiting for a calm destruction. The memories come back as he wonders how truly, the happiness has gone from his life.

A relation perhaps visits the man every week or so, to check on his health, or rather put bluntly, the persistence of his now lowly existence. The man speaks of loneliness, of impending death, and of now bitter-sweet memories, going on and on, up and down the timeline of life, finishing in exhaustion, pleading and gesturing helplessly for an escape.

With the persistence of a man who has lost all, and has not more to hope for than a grain of happiness, his few distant relations decide to fulfill his pleadings.

Thus on a bleak autumn night, when the winds blew heavier, and the rain fell thicker than it would most days of October, the old man, fallen asleep by a windowpane, is rushed awake, yet calmly, by his distant relative.

He’d come with the cure; in his right hand clasping, measured precisely, a shot of Serotonin, the happiness hormone.

Without restraint and expecting approval, the younger, middle-aged, man rolls the elder’s sleeve, feels around his frail forearm for a vein, sets the needle in, firmly, the old man holding his breath, a tear going down his pale face. Pressing down, the shot is injected, and suddenly, no magically, the tear dried and the breath exhaled, his eyes fix for a moment, his pupils dilate, and in an abrupt twitch, the old man bursts into a loud laughter.

His happiness was restored.

“What have I become, my sweetest friend? Everyone I know, goes away in the end.” -Johnny Cash

Photo credit: PhotoAtelier / Foter / CC BY

Sometimes, When the Night Falls Gentle

Sometimes, when the night falls gentle over the land I cannot call home, the thought of you flows with the wind over and into me, toxic fumes on a midnight wind’s path, bleak and obscure, from that soul I called home.

Many a time, when life brings my aching seaward, to rest on the shore, I turn my mind to the dreams I’d left, on those waters, for the dreams now lost.

And as the fresh mountain winds blow on the wounds now lain bare, I find in them treason, and love struck and broken, lingering in the air on which you flew.

Sometimes, when the roses grow in a summer field, amid the stairways of an old town you knew, I find myself there picking blossoms, to be never sent, to the girl I did love, for the love she withdrew.

And often amid my nights of wandering and sitting atop the rooftop we spoke from, I notice a star shining brighter yet than her sisters, its warm radiance recalls, of the eyes that I knew.

I know not today, tomorrow, or years and lives forth, what cruel things I’ll meet, that will utter your name, and now as the moonlight passes, shines on lovers, and shines again, I find my world crueler, and ever reminding, the essence of you.

And now in my solitude, ever when the night falls gentle, I find my mind wanders, from the streets that I know, and the skies that I look upon, wanders astray, to the home that is you, and rests ever there, in somber tranquility, eyes shut and wandering, to the memory of yours.