Two Failed Poems
I thought I might live forever. But no,
The poet Olson advised, "Limits are
what we are all inside of"'; Albert Camus said
eloquently much the same of limits.
Methusaleh must have known in his heart,
his concealed heart, there was a limit to taking
the Bible seriously. The Old Testament claimed
he lived on earth, when one year counted
as two or more. But it was a fine story in
a book of stories, some better than others.
The New Testament is the tale of a man
with more to risk, though it too is fiction. For
how could you comprehend the miracle
of ascendance arriving with dawn following
Golgotha, a day and night on the cross
he was cut down from; and the ladies coming
to seed and root his body's soul, thinking
that as he said, out of death comes new life,
only to find him gone, the big rock rolled away
from his tomb, the cave's mouth open.
Where is he? they wondered, and he appeared.
How bear such praise mixed with venom
she suffers from men whose need to be stained
to validate her heart's honesty
can kill love, a simpler task than giving birth.
Ecstasy ends. Nothing to believe. No need
to start over: The soil is leeched with death.
He is careful to the point of paranoia.
She tells him to stop making excuses.
Surely, the lady still loves him.
May she let him love from her lips
to her toes, their bodies filled midway down
with all they imagined still between them.
The black-eyed susans love morning glories.
The cedar is home to squirrels and blue jays.
Pigeons arrive to eat and fight sparrows
first, as they must, the earth growing fallow.
Wait until dark after a long day ends.
The tongue is more convincing than the body.
Bring food you have tilled all your life to give
to her, and she has waited all her life to eat.
Now you are too old, man. Her skin is young,
a beauty still, who called you Father or Lover;
you might be both if seed and ovum would
find each other to live even longer.
So she never answered what you asked her!
So you lost your temper! You're not alone;
no hurricanes, not even warnings where
you are high up in the middle of the west.
(15 August 2014)
copyright 2014 by Floyce Alexander