Saturday, April 04, 2009

by train to the sea

before leaving Monterosso Al Mare
i am already aching for the beauty
paining for what
i can not take with me
the voice of the sea
the breath of humidity
it is my life
my heart of hearts


an hour later on the train
with five hours to go until Rome
i was beyond my longing
lost like yesterday
those far away days

over the water
over the Med
my sweet

resolved to get over
and get on with life
i let love slide

it was not coming back to me


we clack the track
we’re in the first car
behind the great engine
powermeister of the rails

she asks if it is smoother in the last car
the one way behind
or do they get whip lash?
i don’t know
i think the ride is all in the
suspension of the car we’re in
something hanging over the steel wheels
kept us floating above sparks


some time later we stopped
still not there
i did nothing
for many minutes
then it occurred to me we weren’t moving
i thought to go out
for a smoke

i made it as far as outside our compartment
a know–it-all looking guy with dark darting eyes
who obviously thought well of himself
looked as if he worked there
was standing in the isle
he had the time
he had the exact time
said we had five minutes before the train started again
five minutes
he spoke with authority
i asked if he worked for the train

i went out, down three steps,
and began to lite a cig
the doors closed before i puffed
the train was moving
i barely got back on the train
my shirt caught in the closing doors
good thing it had a rubber seal
or i would have lost a piece of it
i put the cig out on the step
saved it for later
the know-it-all guy
was nowhere to be seen


Tuesday, March 31, 2009

a pause

My wife’s sister is here in Rome for a visit. I will pause in this daily writing as we journey north to spend a few days near the sea.


wind chime

varied length tubes
left over plumbing copper
thumb flop strung in the wind
rolling drum bongs
ding songs bling

or mum sometime
that’s fine, until the line
they are hung on zings tight
bouncing in the wind
the string goes ting

unfolding hollow tones
chime resounding clings
so light clinging rings
follow plings and gongs
the song sung sounds long


wood chimes

above walkway bricks
wooden chime sticks
bound with cord
dangle and click
as they nick
neatly tick
or tock when blunt ends
meet slick wind flicks
trick track nicks
crick sticks in the wind


Monday, March 30, 2009


if you gave someone
one dollar every second
in twelve days you can give
a million bills

at the rate of placing a dollar
in someone's hand every second
to give a billion dollars
would take you thirty years


Sunday, March 29, 2009

here's to all

here is to all
the uncles and aunts
cousins, sisters and brothers
fathers and mothers
men and women of strength
and pride and layers of familial love
never worn tired of happiness
who burst into the day
dressed so well
all in their Sunday best
scarves, bright colors, hats and ties
with a handshake, warm embrace
old jokes and nicknames
to stand side by side, so tall
smiling proud laughing

we gathered together
seeing which children were taller
which old folks were slower
gave gifts for the occasion
and undying love
as dogs barked skipped in circles, nipping
while the children chased each other
all played coats off games outside until it rained
or became too dark to see
so we kept losing the ball

then inside to sit at a well set table with candles
share a fragrant delicious meal
the mothers had prepared in love
grandma made her special desert
then all partied and drank with my folks
the old friends who stopped by
and laughed together
my God how they laughed
there’d be music
dad played his violin
and they sang a well known favorite song of old times
in harmonies, how they tried
always some little cousin kid ran through,
tripped, fell, again and again until he cried

then at the end
when day was complete
in cool dark as
outside lights were turned on
and tiredness moaned
everyone frantic to gather their things
went outside for hugs and kisses again
to warm up the cars
already in anticipation of the next holiday
already longing for the next time
when we would do it all over again
and to wave goodbye