In the Wake Of

After hours, the store looks strange:

the lighting’s wrong, the energy gone,

cleaning and reshelving have no charm,

the sound of floor-buffs is hardly a song;

one can’t buy, and stealing trips the alarm

and changes the scene to a criminal cage.


There is no romance in wrapping up wires

from microphones after the concert is done;

the break-down crew drudges dolleys while tired;

their blood boils not, anticipates none

of the crackling club-bar looks

or all-sing-in-unison hooks;

slink they home, blurry-eyed, and expire.


Their love is like a deathless weed

growing around the stifling concrete

longing to touch the sun, which feeds

them both; but Sol is discreet,

wraps in clouds — which pay no heed

to the arrest their concealment bequeaths

to green things, for the context impedes

all beginnings. Invictus, indeed.


You say, “decease, this all must stop!”

We sit, facing one another across

the silence; hearts ache, so the chatter pops

until I self-censor; you break it, so I toss

a rag in your mouth; we sadden; the loss

of our commerce removes any hop

from our gait, slouching back to our dross.


Sighs in the tepid, damp, dead air

cannot repair

the oaths that they broke

when they spoke


and then frowned nearly

to death in the bitter white-knuckle hush:

neither wishes their strange symmetry to rush

away; as it is immortal, it does not die,

though it dreams as it sleeps, recalling its sky

that’s not touched in the aftermath’s virulent rust

but smoulders e’er beneath its own sputtering dust.

15 thoughts on “In the Wake Of

      • You’re favorites are excellent pieces to this poem. I think that even pain has a lot to offer because pain is real. I really enjoy reading your poetry because it is intelligent, and multi-faceted. What I like most about reading you is your depth.

        Liked by 2 people

  1. Sometimes it needs to be externalized to be seen; the richness of the moment always risks being stripped-down and decided upon in the wordly figurations it is translated into, however; reality is rarely entirely so final, rarely entirely “just that”. It helps, however, to say it, to name something about it, in order to process it. So, yes: there is that dimension.


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