Wondering...

Uncomfortable in Euclidean space,

Encountering skin you'd rather

Crawl out of, left to wonder

How some, fortunate perhaps,

Find sustenance in a steady

Diet of sedation and ignorance,

Both blissful and willful,

Always armed with a lantern

That lights the pattern 

Of their thinking, best

Described as wishful?

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Phototropism

Will sunflowers still

know who to search for, 

if the tanks march in?

 

They have a covenant with 

the sky, but their roots

are in the land, and

there's no guarantee 

they get to keep 

that title deed. 

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Sunset

The sunset of a selfhood

that no longer serves;

who you used to be, and 

who you're supposed 

to be: a blurring,

sun meeting sea. 

 

The hues of fire govern

the metamorphosis,

set the fictions 

of convenience

ablaze, so that

the ashes of

the perfunctory

may give rise 

to the manna

of discovery.

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Wishing Well

A crinkled fountain, 

Every ripple a wish

Just floating to meet

Its very next of kin;

Because won't there be

A reign of similarity

In this aquatic

Tapestry of humanity?

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Conclave

A college of cardinals

that brims with cardinal

sins, a conclave of

mysticism manufactured, 

enclave of a complacency

so rarely fractured; 

a hub of pomp and

circumstance, harbouring

a pretense of the 

apostolic, enough to

conceal the vitriolic. 

 

Fumata nera, or bianca?

No one worthy of the stigmata. 

And the epoch's achromatopsia

ensures that the ver...

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Phonograph

The phonograph feigns interest 

In the nets of narrative

Woven in the third person

To catch the tales 

Of a semi-reliable narrator,

Curator of once melodious

Motifs, morphed now into

A diaspora of discordant 

Echoes, which the stylus

Stern but righteous, 

Delivers as it pierces

A lifetime's past tense. 

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Reprised

Reprising roles

In a comedy farcical

But never radical,

Beginning-middle-end

Stale, nothing to upend,

Left with little more

Than the repeat comfort

Of having to contend

With devils you know,

Who will always betray

But shall warn you so, 

In a well-worn script,

Its pitied pages frayed. 

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Timelines

The fabricated timelines

that govern our lives:

torture chambers we

saunter into, fooled

by those ingratiating

signs on the door, 

the sinister singsong

at first far too

faint to discern,

but soon enough,

the encomium to

convention begins 

to sound a lot 

like a requiem

without redemption.

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Cityscape

A cityscape littered

With the guilty spires

Of eras bygone, ones

That never did sire

The outcomes foretold.

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Today

In a score-settling mood

With the way things go, 

Though the point might be moot,

If life's sine qua non

Is the precariousness of it all. 

 

Indeed, yesterday's feast

Could be tomorrow's defeat;

But what of today?

It could be the olive branch

Extended in exchange.

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Porphyrogenitus

A polyglot fluent

In too many of

Pain's iterations, and

Evergreen reverberations. 

 

Born in porphyry, 

The purple of victory, 

But one they called Pyrrhic,

With a tinge of the satiric.

 

Does the trophy even matter

If they'll make you dress

In the Shirt of Nessus next?

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Cracking

Recklessly thought it

yet another squabble, 

only to then rummage

through the rubble, 

trying to salvage 

morsels of a past

that's already

cracking in a 

looking glass. 

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License

Could the license to live

be resurrected from 

the embers of a

borrowed breath, as

the vespers sigh

a solemn request, 

hoping the worshiper

meets the listener

who reassures that

it is not in vain 

all that one endures?

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Defined

The confines of a definition, 

Prison of one's own volition;

A marionette enacting

A puppet play of discontent,

Like the renegade once

Fond of derring-dos,

Now marooned sans

A good excuse, pleading

For the autogenous

Warfare of attrition

To, at least, ordain

A sea-change of vision. 

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Freeze Frame

Transfixed by the trappings

of a purposeless sentience

that kindly aim to mask

an existential reticence;

to lull the din of all

the humdrum, and blur

the stalactites that lurk

in the freeze frame 

of a life sublet. 

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Visionary...

Is there a beguiling

allure to being a 

visionary on a quest,

never at the behest 

of anyone but the 

breeze, letting 

Zephyrus set 

the course, for

both the rise, 

and the fall?

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Make-believe

Marveling at the mileage

That make-believe 

Can cover, to give

Scorched earth a tinge

Of the ethereal, amidst

A hesitant penumbra,

One that complements

A silence sepulchral.

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Avoidance

Bet-hedging at the headquarters

of a blinkered vision, trying 

to avoid the collision 

that would make an exodus

the only option decorous,

as you ignore shadows

that lengthen, and favour

fallacies that strengthen. 

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Unrehearsed

Life fails to provide

a dress rehearsal, hence

the stage fright remains

all too real throughout

the play, never knowing

what act you're in, 

which scene is coming up, 

or whether the prompter

will be on duty to

save the day, as the 

voice trembles beneath

the spotlights of truth,

while it searches for 

the next line that 

doesn't break character

and fav...

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Time Trademark

A vigil for the temporally bound,

Deafened by the bodeful ticking

Of a grinning grandfather clock,

Retinas scratched by grains of sand

Lurking in inverted glass, 

Hermetically sealed to conceal

That all constructs are makeshift.

 

Try to outrun the analog hands 

That slice like scimitars;

Reside in realms that protect 

From the arbiters of neglect

Who relish chr...

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"L’homme est condamné à être libre"

The paradox of puppetry

With all our chosen strings

Performing the part of analgesic

That allays the pain of picking,

Assails the liberty that looms

An idea too large, and dooms

Us into an epigram of Sartre. 

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Dog Days

Could the sounds of summer

be the tuning fork to which

melancholy sets its pitch?

 

While the well-adjusted revel

in the crash of the surf, 

and the breath of a breeze, 

others, sickened by the cicada,

resort to a simple wish:

that another bright day

goes by, and they have still

to crawl out of their skin. 

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Vantage

A leading question for

one begging to be led, 

to be fed the answer

like manna from 

a benevolent sky, 

one that never lies, 

yet chooses to divide

truths in halves;

and so caters to 

both the picturesque,

as well as the grotesque,

depending on one's 

vantage, and the 

day's selected adage.

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Siren

An air-raid siren,

Rhythmic harbinger of war

Ordering a sing-along,

Ready to give right of way

To the jackboot with sway;

To drown out the fifer, and

Awaken the huntsman in Orion. 

 

The siren cares not

That the daisies 

Are in bloom, or

That the children ought

To be in school, and

That there's no 

Such thing as

An exit wound. 

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Destinies

The accident of birth

favours and anoints, 

and rushes to appoint

a destiny to match

mercurial georgraphies, 

as well as your branch

on that grand common tree

of our cosmic family. 

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Bridge

Trying to build a bridge

from one end of the abyss 

to the other, just to 

have it suffer the very

same lot as the 

Bridge of Arta, built 

by daylight, crumbling

by nightfall. 

 

Another immurement to 

end the curse and 

save the day, just like

at Arta? And how much

more blood to be claimed

by the mortar?

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Endings

Reams of dialogue 

and a newfound love

for the polysyllabic

exalt prevarication, 

the elevation of evasion

into the day's art;

a transparent attempt 

to wrap an end

in leaves of gold, 

instead of a forthright

admission that the time

for curtain-drawing is nigh. 

 

Yet, an end does not

negate the old beginning,

or the middle; it may

even be the herald...

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Close Harmony

A barbershop quartet 

invited to lament

the unalloyed solipsism

symptomatic of a

monochromatic way

of being.

 

An a cappella rendition

of a pellucid vision,

in which the self

drowns out the rest. 

 

But the harmony is close,

to the point of suffocation,

and the melody of escape

demands a major change

in octave to avoid

a looming decimation. 

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Catch her if you can...

A rather pedestrian setting

For the ethereal bloodletting

Required to catch a muse, 

Or at the very least,

Catch her in a decent mood. 

 

But what will it be today?

Thalia's ivy wreath, or 

The knife of Melpoméne?

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Rendezvous

The script of one's life

written in Braille. 

 

The future artfully

rendered in grisaille.

 

At the rendezvous of

fate and personal 

agency, which wins

and which bestows

clemency?

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Feint

A sea shanty or a siren song?

A smile that had to be stitched on?

 

Always on the cusp of a golden age

That waits in the wings, yet

Refuses to take centre-stage.

 

A universally accusatory 'why'

Permanently rolling off the tongue,

For isn't it far smoother than

An apologia for ignorance?

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Dotted Line

Stare at the dotted line

Till it blurs,

As it attempts

To confer a choice. 

 

But are you willing 

To bleed on it, 

As it morphs into

A ligature that

Connects the shaky

Hand to that

Precarious equilibrium

Of safety and liberty,

With a signature that

Threatens to turn life

Into a caricature?

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Narcissus

The glittering lake

beckons a face to 

find the forbidden 

reflection, the one

heretofore hidden for

his own protection; so,

Narcissus, convinced

that who he sees is

other than himself, 

becomes enamoured of

the hydrous wonder, 

yet no amount of

genuflection ever moves

the inimical reflection,

and the youth, spurned, 

dies of a broken heart;

an artfu...

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Counterintuitive

Truths twisting tongues

into silent submission.

 

A spiteful song emerges

in place of contrition.

 

The eyes seem mesmerized

by the sudden ultimatum,

but won't ever blink

to grant the imprimatur. 

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Trapped

A music box ballerina

trapped in an on-demand

universe of dance.

 

A dervish who never 

gets to cherish

the fruit of the twirl.

 

A pearl doomed 

to be entombed

forever in its shell.

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Quicksand

Utterances never to be made,

devoured by the quicksand 

of a mind stuck on the refrain

of dementia, lucidity 

in absentia; and though

the wheels of cognition

on occasion seem to spin, 

the will to endeavour speech

fades with facility, just

to hammer home the fragility

of an orchestra whose conductor

fails to be the anchor 

required to prevent discordant

notes...

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Outfoxed

Running through a tunnel,

But you're on a treadmill.

Panting for the exit,

But you're only guessing. 

Looking over your shoulder

For the Fury on pursuit,

But you're just ruminating

While the Jury she recruits. 

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Maladapted

Clinging to ill-fitting goals

Is to accept being addressed

With a borrowed sobriquet, 

To expect protection 

From a bedevilled amulet,

To forage for an entheogen

And end up with a pathogen,

To pray for a philosopher king

But be gifted a profligate régime. 

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Laconic

Forced to extract subtext

from  threadbare sentences

spoken with a Spatrtan

disposition, not out

of reverence for the

laconic, but rather

a fear that honest

exposition might 

lead to a shift

tectonic, where

proper explication

banishes prevarication, 

yet opens the door

to the realm of

irreparable fission.

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Mortal

Hope persists like

barnacles on a boat, 

even as said boat 

sinks, and nobody

proves invulnerable;

because even Thetis

couldn't guard her 

son from menace:

she dipped him

in the river Styx,

but left his heel

ground for a mortal

wound, portal to

the land of those

who perish in the

flux of a different

river, the one

of Heraclitus.  

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Horizon Hermeneutics

Dreams coagulate on a

horizon never to be

reached.

 

The wire behind which

they lurk is barbed,

and more than willing

to draw blood. 

 

But perhaps it's in

the reaching that 

the meaning lies, 

that a saving

grace resides?

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Off-key

Irises dipped in fury.

A confession through coercion;

A lullaby off-key;

A laurel wreath veiling fangs,

All as fatuous as basking

In reflected glory, with

A Jolly Roger on the mast. 

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Pandora's Box

In medias res of the cataclysm,

Trying to trace the commencement

Back to a Pandora's box that

Looked like treasure galore, 

Failing to understand that

The cornucopia also fostered 

The dystopia, as divine

Temper tantrums disturb

The fulcrum on which

Humanity swivels as it

Dithers over good and evil.

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Fine Print

A counterfeit complacency

to ease the bane of being.

 

Why aim for the firmament when

you've read the fine print?

 

Inscribed in small type

is the loss that won't be

quantifiable, yet readily

identifiable. 

 

So you lower the sails

in shame, before the

voyage even gets

its say. 

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Dueling Spindles

A master weaver unwittingly

Challenges the divine

To duel, eluding humility,

Ensnared in the lair of pride. 

 

Arachne declares her skill

Superior to Athena's,

Forgets that her gift 

Flows from the goddess

And that it would behoove her

To be grateful and modest. 

 

Athena in old lady garb

Appears before Arachne

With but a single chance

For the mortal to...

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Ballet

The Andromeda galaxy, 

principal dancer in a 

patient collision ballet

choreographed by a universe

and its benign indifference;

a galactic pas de deux 

to span the ages, until

prima ballerina and Milky Way 

merge to commence

new dawns and fables...

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Easier said...

Train the eye

To find the miracle

Prior to sanction

From an oracle. 

 

Cast the die. 

Don't deliberate 

In the purgatory 

Of the dilatory. 

 

Meet the tide

As if facing

The elements' whims

Was a life's calling. 

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Crayons

If cannons shot out 

crayons and we made

canon the common

picture children

painted, might there

be a chance for an

innocence revival

to ostracize the

ouroboros of 

incursion and

reprisal?

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Shadow Plays

A nighttime pantomime through

weeping windscreens, a 

different shadow play

in every car, gestures

that run the gamut

of emotions, humanity

in silhouette form, 

mini-dramas in

proportion, soon

to be carried away

by an asphalt 

reminder of 

the fixity of

transience. 

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Dichotomy

The human nuisance of being

An amphibious dweller,

A hell and heaven lodger,

Amity and anomie

Within a single psyche;

An asset, this biformity?

Or redolent, rather, 

Of fated deformity?

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