Bio Note: At last 2020 is over, and with it Trumperdammerung. I wish all the denizens of Verse-Virtual a healthy and prosperous new year. The darkness isn’t gone, but I hope, at least, that we can still see the stars.
The Darkness Gate
In the quiet, I watch you sleep. You are dragging a chain across a small pond, and ravens call out to you from spindly pines. Have you forgotten? You wander out toward the desert and the moon. A clock ticks, but then it’s not a clock at all, but a round window, a porthole facing a northern sea. The ravens have flown home, screeching and squabbling in a wide ring. You have lost your way. Now you must strip off necklace and rings, descend toward the darkness gate moving like a dancer, singing your way between stars.
Staying Up to Count the Stars
We stayed up all night watching the stars. We didn’t try to count them or record their names. Really, they were countless and had no names. We stayed up to avoid our dreams. Lately they were vivid and bad, fields burning and then rain, mud, insects, sticks stabbing our legs. In fact the sky was cloudy, and we could see no stars, just the streetlights with their halos of fog. I admit, I couldn’t stay awake. You made me coffee, but that may have been a dream We ate scones or maybe muffins, who can know? I think you held my hand and led me out to the museum grounds. Somehow, we snuck in and had to duck behind a curtain in the Hall of Man. A small boy smacked me on the back, and I was terrified that he might recognize the face I wore. The lights went out and we were swimming in the aquarium near the harbor. Wearing our rain slickers, we hauled our catch to shore. You made enough to buy us breakfast and then we slid down the hill toward home. It was getting late and our hands were stained with ink. The game would be starting soon and all the pitchers warming up. We took a knee, we prayed, we ate baked goods, we talked for fifty minutes. Above our heads, the old man with his harp played on and we sang to each other as if the world made sense. Our editor didn’t care. He sent us out again to write about the rain.
©2021 Steve Klepetar
Editor's Note: If this poem(s) moves you please consider writing to the author (email address above) to tell her or him. You might say what it is about the poem that moves you. Writing to the author is what builds the community at Verse Virtual. It is very important. -JL