Dazzling glimmers mesmerize
as smoke spirals enchant.
In the muted light your fingers
spread fan-like on my breast and
rise as I slowly inhale, exhale.
Deep sleep consumes you, but I think about
how in our youth back seat interludes
veiled our senses.
Now satin coverlets provide comfort.
The smell of you, the strength of you
Now your presence calms me and
images of you rarely stray
from my mind.
Old eyes ignore bald spots
and smile wrinkles.
As flames sputter, the glow dims
like the white streaks in my hair.
Still, you're there with your allure, your
Now, deep sleep consumes us in candle's
afterglow, and I reflect on youth no
Five figures frozen in a photo shoot.
Great grandfather staring intently out at
Great grandmother in her best dress.
Young uncles fidgeting but suddenly still.
Secrets hide from the lens.
Her stone-eyed gaze buries the loss of
What grief she must have endured.
Does she know she will be proud of
Could she have known she would live 50
His kind face hides trepidations he is
unwilling to reveal.
Tribulations crossing the Atlantic, saber
wound at Vicksburg,
hard scrabble work and sod house on an Iowa
Ailing for the rest of his life.
Three thriving brothers creating family
honoring parents, proud of accomplishments.
Continuing gazes beguile; contentment
Two depressions, two World Wars, the advent
Would that we could step into the photo and
Are you proud of the boys? Are you happy?
What about the babies?
Minutiae unexposed--only glances, stares
and wide-eyed gawks
protect secrets--fear, courage
Miles of forlorn terrain
littered with empty sea shells
and dead crabs
a deadly gush
belies the horror
Alone on ghostly beach
trying to imagine the clamor
cries, screams and
fifty years ago
Deafening thundering artillery
moaning timbre of the dying
My feet leave prints in wet sand
I conjure up others left by the
dead and alive
panicky and daring
I continue in the sand and
marvel at the curve of the land
lying silent--a peaceful country
across the sea
full of faded reflection
A nothingness lures me
to this fearsome sea.
It calls, intrigues--
I consider the entry
to this world.
What mysteries lie in the deep?
What discoveries wait for me?
What dilemmas to be alleviated
in this world of dismay?
On wing above
a calm belies what lies below--
existence or extinction?
Soaring over the
I hurl toward the dark
dreading the deep.
Descending into the depths,
I want to breathe, to live,
yet, I'm frozen.
Love of life pressing on me,
No time, but I fight.
No time, but I struggle.
I wait for the inevitable?
Shells, bombs, missiles
explode silent abodes.
Leaders pointing fingers, yet
death floats over
the debris, the devastation.
Tears at first. Anger next.
Young man with dreams
chooses a course--exact fate.
Mothers know. Fathers fear.
Young man with dreams no more.