the poetry knook, the poetry of stephen m. james

Poems with the tag ‘love’

Time in a queen’s single slough

The one time, I’d give up time–twice,
as fast as chlorophyll leaves fall
to the ground: blood. Oranges coupled with bitters,
the saving grace: incoherent post-midnight mumblings of the past
day passing, air calms, (eupnea)
Leviathan to break free, locked up in this Loch
Lethargy desiring, to dote its anti-dote, anticipating
the smearing of oil, and the anointed,
return the plastic clamshell, tearing away,
thermoformed around a thermometer’s rising crescent,
carmine colored by parasitic spirits leaving,
into veins cautiously cauterizing
a brand. New. Return to each single second
is not difficult to imagine place to serve,
time in a queen’s single slough, tossing,
turning slowly-recalling at once,
upon a time.


Pommelled fruit

Back up against a tree,
golden foliage shelters the curves,
freckled islands, a desert
of smooth sand, gripped by palms
soaked in the sweet, salty sweat of a summer night
squeezed of the juice from a fallen fruit.


Will they love me if I comment?

I will love if she comments (so many)
times and sights un-seen,
climbing mountains and sipping beers Flickr before my eye
and ewe sit behind a webbed and woolen curtain
following, descending, my stumbling Bloc,
stares into a liquid crystal reflection,
for nuclear arms are easier to hug than bloggers.


You’ve stopped up my pen

my well, my pad, you’ve stopped up my pen, for I scribe on you every night,
pinning my anger to the ground, you hold fast

my million pieces, my puzzle, curiosity arousing me over and over
the horizon of this sparrow’s eye,

my perfect, my storm, I am wall-eyed and hooked wallowing
in the night so young an infant, the day still suckles with

my revelation, my special–burned into, an image, cloth
buried in a broken body

my mouthwash, my goodnight, I may never brush my teeth,
and gum your neck at thirty,

my lion, my lamb, doodles on the page became your name,
the softest thorns of the vineyard snag my skin,

my friend, my lover, your experiences, story, and knowledge
poured over an altar for me.
and all you get is I
will love you more than knowledge,
more permanently, more pertinently than life,
for life, for you.


Tigers (or your tormentors)

I never wanted to kill for anyone,
until you held me,
down, your face rests
on my sox and shoes slide,
next to you I wanted to rise and slay
tigers,

Not cuddly pillows
nor caged cubs
that suckle dreams of independence,
but savannah-bred savages and ice-aged
mastodons and saber-toothed
tigers

Growling, pouncing a bout:
boxers breathlessly clinched,
our softest thorns snag
ear and hair, teeth
marks, cross hairs align with
tigers

These slabs of meat began to come
into my head, I will provide
soup around a blazing campfire,
ladling brisket and blade that bleed
warmth under the fur of our
tigers.


Forbidden cricket song

hills of grassy fields without mowing,
resonate a gushing spring worth welling,
your hairy shanks tonight slide
against me, hidden by cuff of jean,
vegetation’s swelling I know
mother nature’s maestro
no feline stomach could play
poetry scraping me to sleep.


Preparation for the hearth

Foot friction, she smiles,
“sandals braking down cause duck-walk,” I say,
and fly across the claymated basement,
jettied like the muddy earth encircling.

mortarboards form next week
and fly across another room:
pots will be removed from the kiln,
placed on selling shelves with resumes,

her fingers resume, slippery nails filled,
stuffed to overflow like the glazing shelves,
“this is craft, not art,” curtly said.
the adding . . .subtracting . . .centripetal . . . centrifugal. . .

“what color should this one should be?”
her call? will clay return to rock
for defeating paper,
will she write

her mark brandishing,
initializing the final piece
this Friday night,
the final week,
to fire.


Hug buddy

another couple’s caress
is a “love is a dove from above” poem,
reserved in a library,
checking itself out it scribbles in the margin
-tly the lights fade,
the librarian says “We’re closing,”
my eyes bring no catalog of goddesses, but the book-next-store
to need me and feel me,
up to no good
-nested in this contrived world trying,
not to envision prostitutes
carrying on conversations about
Myers-Briggs, MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour
by hour, do I need a pay
“meant to be?” she asks when the long
walk ends the girlfriends
gather eyes tell it all,
“he said we weren’t dating.”


Hash browns (after Waffle House)

scattered
No answer.
She plays with her fork,
her food divides into individual hairs,
I’m parched:
waiting for words all night.

smothered
Am I onion, cutting, alone?
“does he love me?” she asks.
I said, “This isn’t romance”
as I slid my arm around.

covered
“I love cheese, too” she says,
“American is fake
“and grease is bad.”
She won’t let me pay.

chunked
Hamming it up, no bite, no sip
water untouched
no thirst for talking;
I know her like our waitress,
emm. . . (looking at nametag)

topped
off with ice scream “You chilly?”
“No, nervous–my first date.”

diced
unripe remains of Kyle
and other tropical storms of rejection
crush;
weathered palms cling for anything.

peppered
with smiles, glances, hugs,
phone calls on nights ending in “day,”
I can do no more.
Goodnight.


Getting her off, his chest

He’s spent the hour deciding how to get her head to her pillow and off his chest where lay her silhouetted cheekbones, high and smooth, against his sternum rising slow. His eyes–breaths before closing–stay ajar to see his reason–her–to open: sweat with hair, her humid breath undulates love. He’s lost this hour, the first of twenty-four, in thought, recounts this day, ceremony, the vows, her muddy eyes now veiled in sleep, her arms, his, interwoved in figure eight. He grasps for pen and pad on nightstand out of reach to write his joy, his words: hopeful to not to wake his bride from needed rest.



© 1993-2024 by Stephen M. James.