Ashes and Flax

The dust in my rear view is ashes and flax
Remains of fire wood and totems
Flowers with seed I never turned to oil

Emergingly the brakes feel firm while the gas is soft
The only things that keep sole anchored to the right
Knowing that letting go will lead us nowhere fast
and that fuel and opportunity are rarely both priced well at the pump

I find myself questioning what you taught me of safe journeys
Like locking the doors when I dry too slow or not worrying of flashing light
My fault for mistaking the high school parking lot for a classroom
and the assuredness in your voice for some sign of wisdom

It’s hard to know so much of what I’ve been taught is the reason I like to drive toward walls
Tantalized by the cracks in the brick as if a sign that at proper speed I could break through
Without worry of bodily consequence or the weight of falling stone
Equally it was hard to have noticed how quickly you built new walls around me

You know I’ve grown to hate having your eyes
They make me look tired
They make me look like someone who stays up at night writing poems to calm down
Mostly though they make me look like sad

At least the path of overcoming the flaws in my roots causes me to bear some fruit
Like knowing when it’s time to keep my foot on the gas
Or the determination to gaze past the glamour of silver and gold
In favor of cherishing the sight that is ashes and flax

The Fall of Olympus


Hid behind a marble vanity
Clawing together what might be saved
Aphrodite desperate clutching pearls
Disbelief the walls finally caved

Hammering away on a final project
Betrayed by the product of his hands
Hephestus tries to forge a new life
In case his is spilled unto the sands

Athena pulls her bow with deadly aim
Hesitates too long from the shock
Sight of blood on her own fingers
Overwhelmed by the rising flock

Apollo atrempts at fiery rage
But learns the plight of Icarus
This time, the sun too hot for him
Blaze of glory and sweet caress

The seer warned of calamity
Hekate knew it was to pass
Yet the gods just dismissed
This pairing of stone meets brass

Younger brother to the throne
Master of the oceans crest
Poseidon as if lost at sea
Swallowed up with the rest

Golden footsteps leave a trail
Through halls and down slope
Seems Hermes may have escaped
Left the pantheon to cope

Zeus was the last to tumble
Highest perch touches down last
Yet even the mighty could not stand
After the last die was cast

In that moment they’re stuck
Their own forever Hell
Where they were
When Olympus fell

The Year of Rebellion

The high sun begins the year of rebellion
Fires from the sky bring ash to the ground

Grey snowfall begets a somber tone
Recalls a lack of color beneath surface
Lesser shades from what is shown

Yet the blaze continues just overhead
Crackling reminders to sow your rage
Igniting the desire to paint it all red

Water ripples in the year of rebellion
Cooling pools within a draught

Movements rapid like hummingbird wing
Whirlpool dragging down the last regret
Cleansed until you again feel the sting

Torrents of change with personal grace
Cast rejection to the lady of the lake
Laugh at her gift, and cry in her face

Winds run hot in the year of rebellion
Steam bellows angry from every pore

Gusts of heat somehow make us smothered
Discomfort, this new reality with the others
A much worse meaning of “hot and bothered”

Yet stagnant air had left something missing
An empty field with no breeze is a false promise
It simply wasn’t our own voice we were hissing

The Earth lies heavy in the year of rebellion
Even sand grains add to crushing weight

Continents shift with passing fellows
Different boulders upon their shoulders
For standing beside different bellows

We were warned of an unfortunate truth
That passing to new world is still cumbersome
Like closing jaw against a broken tooth

Ironic that defiance is an obligation
Another hole to dig, a little bit deeper

Contribute to our change with them, women, and men
We’ve had room for weapons and microphones
Among the rebels, shouldn’t some of us hold a pen?


Anyone reading, thank you for the support! Today marks the one year anniversary of the website, and though I stopped posting as frequently for personal reasons I can see my poetry still steadily improving and being enjoyed by people in my personal life. It really means so much to me. -TJ

Broken Throne

When I decline their offer of cheer
I always wonder if they see the fear

A kindly gesture met with refusal
Chilled bomb within grasp
My very own Mozel Tov cocktail
Terror clawing at sanity’s clasp

Do they see me wrestle the wheel
Take the right turn on the wrong street
Committing a sin against my song
Trying to resist my own beat

Craving the sweet taste of submission
Wash of failure drowning out that fight
Momentary charade of peace in the land
Shield blinding from the reality of blight

When guards are down sleeping shallow
Silent invaders seize their opportunity
Disguising themselves as if they should be
Uniting all of me in peaceful toxic unity

A silent war hid snuggly beneath gaze
Carried on the back for all else to know
Yet we find the truth of our betrayal in our folly
Naming our enemy for a chance to grow

At the end of the road is recovery
Yet the journey stands hollow and alone
A civil war raging for a new king
To hope the close lends no broken throne

Still I wonder what people think
When I tell them I don’t drink

King of the World (a buncha couplets)

Our world seeing now some troubling things
Reminds us to look for hope in our kings

Master of strength; show off your brawn
Move the sun forward to dawn

The light of the moon shines often dim
A hopeful reminder of your whim

But your people lie suffered in the dark
Grasping for the song of meadow lark

Though the record of the sun goes strong
The presence of night grows long

Won’t you use your might to correct the mistake?
Or will you watch as your people break?

Sovereign of mercy, enforce your desire
Clear us a path away from this fire

Friends in the south suffer and choke
Watch it all burn and go up in smoke

More still east inherit fear of the west
Ravaged but still comes yet another test

An iron bird’s wail is a troubling sound
Engines breed tensions wherever they’re found

Will you prove name’s promise to the world below?
Or will we our fears bloom as part of your show?

Ruler of music; play us a song
Make it go down a little less strong

Drinks are swallowed with much more ease
When drowned out is the sound of the least of these

Averted eyes can find new opportunity
Fresh songs are best heard with less scrutiny

That distraction can grant new insight
In sorrow we forget to turn on the light

Is the love of your fruit a blessing in kind?
Or yet another attempt to deafen and blind?

Lord of wisdom inspire your voice
Remind the masses we have a choice

King of the world, where lies your crown?
Is this your will, and must I take it lying down?

My Short Angsty Relationship Poem With A Long Title

This will be the last poem I write about you
Personal closure on what I’ve been through

To think that you’d find, this lost face of mine
Deep within the thing at the tip of my spine

I remember swooning, lost in your touch
Planning things out as if I’d earned such

We’d have a house; on top of a hill
And watch the world stand a little bit still

I think I’ll wake up, after this tune
Realization stalks me from across the room

Dreams can be goals, but they’re often a farce
Reality is usually just a little more harsh

Such a delusion; it felt like me
Why did I choose not to be set free?

I don’t hate you; I admire a lot
You helped to bright the shadow I fought

No reason to stand; but a care about me
A window to look at the man I’d be

You’re much the same, but I know I’m different
‘Cause I don’t even care that you’ll never read it

The best way to guide, a lost man in love
Is simply to burn it

Lions

We never asked for the screaming
It just busted the windows and came in

A burglar stealing our thoughts
Leaving us with gaps on shelves
A broken mural of men
Trying to paint ourselves

As if that weren’t enough
Those walls, they’ll close in
The people that don’t understand
Will treat it like it’s our own sin

They’ll build up crashing waves
Then bring ‘en down on our clout
Villafy us in their village
And wonder why we don’t come out

They’ll claim we’re the bullet
From their tragedy’s gun
They forget who pulled the trigger
As if their works could be undone

And yet their stance is fatally firm
Our illness is the matter
They climb up like King Kong
Standing high atop their tatters

Oh but they’ll pretend to care
Without action to match word
Turning us into rhetoric
Silencing a voice to be heard

So instead we cling to our pride
Nursing the pain that leaves us crying
But if you took the splinters from our paws
You’d see us stand as lions

The Wick

I feel like a candle
Lit from within the wick

You’ll find my fire reaching out
Clawing against a waxy shell
Looking for room to breathe
And to dance upon a timely day

I often envy those whom quickly burn
From their heads and their feet
Both ends is a pretty effective way
If you’re hoping for people to see

But for all candles it ends the same;
The curse of fire will never fail
However bright we’ll just fall.
One puddle, made of wax

And just before that you find
As it breaks through its casing
That these flickers were practice
Learning to burn what I’m facing

You’ll behold grandiose performance
Built with fire, intrigue and woe
Maybe you’ll figure out why I did it
Or maybe I’m telling you now

Through that wax you can’t hear much
But -I- hear the flickers, all at once
And sometimes – they find voice

I feel like a candle
lit from within the wick
Until you come find me melting
You wouldn’t even know I’m sick



————————————————————————-
This one is intended to be somewhat experimental from me because as anyone who’s read the rest of these posts so far know, I really like rhyming conventions – so I tried to break away from that, not completely divorce myself from it as can be seen, but just try to structure the rhythm a little differently.

Defiance

The natural order is our jail.
Stuck somewhere in time and space
On a lowly forward monorail;
Just caught up in another race

To hear the cry of a soul
A thousand years after conception
Is to learn we have a tool
To reach beyond our perception

To separate ourselves from cattle
We make music from our brays
The stage of our greatest battle
Is the same as our grandest plays

Creating is our weapon
It’s how we win the fight
How we reach passed heaven
And avoid that good night

Art is our grand defiance
Not against man but fate
Without we sit in compliance
Of our inevitable state

Show the future your reflection,
So far away they may learn
That we swore rejection
Of fate trapped in urn

Write down and savor
Some tales of great valor
To make a world braver
In the face of great power

Send out your lore!
Pass down your pain!
They’ll hear your roar
Long after you’re slain

In defiance of time
Share with the rest
Your love of rhyme
Your worst and best

Be proud of your revolt
In a way it’s all you got
It’s the only record they’ll consult
Showing how hard you fought

For those yet blinded by cage
Do you yet hold rebellion?
Have you quelled your mortal rage?
When will it finally be enough?
Do you hate the songs of the morning birds
Because they wake you up?