The Last Romanticists

And I will love you
until romance fails
and words no longer fall

when eternity is just
a blur of color
in the faded sky
and there are no depths
left for dreamers to plumb,
when the stars assume
their places, unconcerned
about writing our fate,
we have the moment now
to make our vows count
and make of them
the hands that
hold up tomorrow

when bourbon roses and
maraschino cherries
get cheated off their sweetness
among the distracted steps
of rushing hours,
I will still love you

when there comes a time
that the night is but a void,
and a touch is only
among lethargic limbs
doused in a need
for selfish sleep,
I will still reach
into the weakness that
hurts you the most,
and hold you there

when the wires of intentions
get crossed where voices
make a tangled mess
and emotions get pulled
in many directions,
I will keep a safe space
and be the first to protect you

when the cupboards are bare
and our pockets are empty
and the vestiges of home
have been reduced
to four featureless walls
and a caving roof,
I will still carry your name
as the last treasured
adornment of my soul

when everything else
that has brought us here
and kept us together
has faded away,
I will still stay

and later, when death arrives
not in dark robes
but as the spirit’s slipping
into some involuble unknown
and there is a narrow gap
left in the closing door
just enough for one memory,
it will be of me, loving you

because the poetry of living
may not always serve us,
but after the last notes
of the last passion symphony
have ceased playing,

there is a silence

and that belongs to us too.

Set against a Leonid Afremov Backdrop

So many times I have
awakened within a daydream
only to realize
that we’ve made it,
we actually made it;
so many times I have marveled
at how far we have come,
more than the oceans
we have crossed,
the miles we have flown
across the face of the sun,
but the continents
less tangible and
more difficult to overcome:
chasms between cultures
and thousands of words’
worth of bureaucracy
and we faced them all
like bullets,
sheltering each other and
walking fearlessly
across the battlefield
in steadfast synchronicity
from opposite ends
of a story
whose beautiful ending
is written somewhere
in the middle,
tucked among dogeared pages
in the shape
of our darkest torments
and typeset with promises
received and treasured, then
broken and discarded, then
rescued from the heap
of the ashes we have
repeatedly risen from,
to serve as reminders
that the many times
we gave ourselves
and the many times
we came so close to becoming
what we’d always feared
are worth retelling
if we give a little bit more
for every second chance granted,
after all, life is only
as large as we make it
and we have to turn ours
into no less than a legend
that our great-grandchildren
would want to hear every night
to tuck them in
and help them dream.

Footprints on the Clouds

He calls me his serenity
and I call him my strength
and we are each
the one thing
the other needs the most
two lesser angels
each with one wing
bound to the earth

both rich with reason,
with rhythm,
we never noticed
what was missing,
we weren’t looking
for completion,
except maybe
a little more peace
for him and
a little less fear
for me

a respite from voices
at night, after
he’s driven his demons
back behind
the wrought-iron fence
of his inner sanctum,
some silence with which
to clean his wounds

a greater courage
to flee the Purgatory
of inertia, with its
mute, stoic ghouls
that rob my decisions
and dog my footsteps
in broad daylight,
a firmer step when
I walk away from the vice
of too-bruised goodbyes

we’d look in the mirror
and we were alone
save for the one wing
that needed meaning

there was no gaping hole
to fill, only flaws
in our character to work on

caught up in our lives,
our lives brought us together
our lives are our message
to each other
and we are now called
by the names
of our better reflections
joined at the soul,
we can finally take to the sky

If Life had a Soundtrack

Thunder on the road

and remembering

the skyscrapers flanking
this strip of palm-lined
cobblestone pavement
like scrapbook pages

and the clouds heavy on the sky
like responsibilities on shoulders

beyond that next stoplight
you are my destination

and my distraction

the song fed into my brain
by my earphones
and all the psychedelic
kaleidoscope patterns
in my heart that
change to the beat

The Way Gravity Choreographs the Fall

So love strongly,
love with the strength
of karma and evolution
and the burning stars
inside your soul.
Let your love be
a storm unto itself.
Let it roar through
the corridors in
the freedom of being
whole, or at the
very least the grace
of beauty in brokenness,
and in embracing it,
Love as if
you’re moving worlds,
as if gravity is
something you can close
your fingers around.
Throw yourself
into that love.
Take pride in it.
Create it while
it carries you,
as do the music and
its marching band.
Know that love
as you know how
to pray
and push its walls
against every inch
of who you were
before you found out
you were infinite.

But above all,
love strongly.
Occupy that love
the way pleasure
and pain occupy
your body.
Love as if
you were drowning,
as if you could fly,
as if the choice
is all yours,
always been.

I dare you
to be strong in love
for the Bible says,
“Perfect love
casts out all fear”.
Move as it moves,
grow as it breathes,
dance as it forgives.
And watch all
the flaws of the spirit
quietly fade, like embers
of a dying fire
at snowfall.

Of Converging Lines and Vanishing Points

Love, how you have
changed so many things and
saved so many things
from changing.
Love, how I have become
the stars in your endless
silk of sky and the
seashells in the shoreline
of your infinitude,
the well-lit tunnel and
the haze on the rainbow
where R blends into OYGBIV.

Love, I heard the rain
and saw it fall on
the ink you have used
to sign your name to
acknowledge receipt of
my all and my future,
making the words run and
staining everything
to the farthest edges,
even the lonely corners where
you used to be absent.

They merge together,
the memories. Life
from the time I met you
has since forgotten to
wind its clocks and
the calendars have become
obsolete to the unchanging
of the passion in your touch.
One day we will wake up
with decades hanging
in frames around our walls
and I suspect you will
still look at me with
the same fire in your eyes.